Stainless steel flatware is a cost effective and low maintenance alternative to sterling silver or silver-plated flatware. While stainless steel is low maintenance and hard wearing, it is not impervious to scratching, rust, oxidation, dings and spotting. Proper storage and routine maintenance can readily prevent or mitigate these shortcomings and ensure that your stainless flatware has a long and useful life.
Preparing Flatware for Storage
Whether you wash your stainless flatware by hand or in the dishwasher much of the marring of stainless comes in the form of moisture and cleansers sitting on the surface of the steel causing oxidation spotting and rust. Prevent these problems by hand drying and buffing your stainless flatware one piece at a time and never stacking or storing your flatware when it may still have water, food or cleanser on the surface. If air drying, never overlap or pile the flatware as this invites dings and scratches as well as spotting.
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Storage Drawer Compartments
Store stainless steel flatware with like pieces stacked neatly in divided sections protected from bumping or abrading one another. You can purchase utensil drawer dividers in a wide array of materials from rubber, plastic and lucite to wood to bamboo and canvas. Whatever divider you choose, make sure that there is plenty of room for your entire set of flatware, in other word don't attempt to stack 24 forks in a slot designed for 12 or damage of some kind will likely ensue. For a no-cost solution for a flatware drawer divider use shoebox lids draped in old tea towels to create shallow dividers. Cut the lids down the center lengthwise and slide together to create just the right size for each utensil bay.