Are you buying a silver tea set? Some people like to collect them and keep as an investment.
What To Look For
It is recommended to look for marking such as "925" or "Sterling on the item.
When you buy make sure that you know what you're getting. A service advertised as a silver tea set may not actually be so.
Mass produced, silver plated sets are much more readily available. They are much less expensive than a true silver service and can give you the look of silver for less.
Depending on what you are purchasing and price you may want to take the item to an expert to confirm if it is the real thing or not.
Even if you aren't in it to get a tea set that will be worth money, silver sets are distinctive plus less likely to break.
They do need some careful maintenance to prevent tarnish from taking over. If you're not willing to do this a real silver set might not be worth it for you.
Take the time to think about this before you make a decision. (My sister has a set that she let go and is tarnished. She did not realize the correct care that was needed for it).
What A Set Consists Of
The average tea set contains a pot, cups and saucers, a sugar bowl, and milk pitcher or creamer.
Formal services may also include a coffee pot, a kettle and an alcohol burner to keep it warm, a bowl for pouring spilled tea or tea laves into, and a silver tray.
Not all tea sets will contain all of these items and the exact style of them will vary.
However, most silver services are formal tea sets, and are more likely to contain extra items.
A good silver tea set should be the best in the house. Some will not
use it for everyday use. It is up to you as to when to use it or not.
Perhaps you want to keep it on display the rest of the time. It can be an attractive ornament in your home.
It is also a good conversation piece besides it serving tea. Remember to present your tea service on a tray. Also have on hand a good set of sugar spoons, as they aren't likely to be included.