Eggs and belt buckles; how to add an aged patina to silver…naturally?

I took my shiny, new belt buckle and…egged it.

No, I didn’t actually touch the egg to the silver…what a mess that would be…but I did use the egg to age the silver.

Here is the before and after shot of the buckle:

Silver belt buckle before and after egg

When I was working with Wende from Gist Silversmiths, the maker of the buckle, I explained that I wanted both an aged look and crystals. As we discussed the options it was decided that the best way to get the look I was after was to add the sparkle and then let the buckle age. I have won many buckles over the years and I knew that they do age…but it takes awhile. Months even.

When I received the buckle this week I really liked it but was feeling a bit impatient about the aging process. Enter Google.

The first website suggested putting bleach on the buckle…a little to aggressive for me. The second website mentioned using an egg and my first thought was ‘what a mess!’ but also very natural. I mean, really, I could possibly spill egg down my front while wearing the buckle. I suppose I could spill bleach down me too but I rarely wear my belt buckle while doing the laundry…anyway.Using egg to add aged patina to silver buckle

The website went on to say that the egg didn’t even have to come into contact with the buckle. Basically the buckle was just going to be sealed into the same bag as the egg and the chemicals in the egg would react with the chemicals in the metal. This was getting easier to explain to Gist if it went really wrong (I was thinking of you Wende:)

The first time I used a cold, hard boiled egg. An hour later nothing.

Upon re-reading the site and some others it seemed that a hot egg would make this go faster. Oh, buddy did it go faster!

Two, still hot, hard boiled eggs and a half an hour later look at the change! I almost panicked a bit (thinking of you again Wende)

From what I read the process can be repeated or time can be added if you want a darker look. I decided to stop where I was for now. I will be wearing it and normal wear will continue to add to the depth.

I finally called Wende at Gist to both thank her for how beautiful the buckle turned out and to confess about speeding things up. After a good laugh (egg is not in their recommended care items) she told me I could use a polishing cloth to shine the high spots if I wanted. I did and I love how it turned out.

Belt buckle after; Egg, patina, polishing cloth


  1. Jonny D on May 30, 2016 at 12:33 pm

    I collect antiques, this came in handy always for traditional Native American ” Old Pawn ” Jewelery, especially from that hayday from the 50s to the 80s. I used it on several Fred Harvey pieces as well. When I buy for myself I enjoy see u ng the polished work as it was so long ago, while then being able to speed up the natural process after. It’s not quite the same, but to fill in metal stamps,lines, etc., for wear, great tip. Sheary London had some great tips as well. Thanks

  2. Lesia Lowe on June 26, 2014 at 4:32 pm

    wondering why it took 2 years for you to get a buckle?? ….it is pretty….. love the aged look too!

  3. Sheary Londo on June 25, 2014 at 11:00 am

    Awesome. Good to know. I’m wondering why I didn’t think of it when I want to oxidize silver? In school we made silver jewelry. To get the aged patina after the piece was made, we painted on a liquid “sulpher” fluid, which turned the silver black. It’s a black that buffs off tho. When put to the buffing wheel, the high spots got a wonderful “glow” and the deep places stayed dark.

    I’m very glad you didn’t fall for the bleach option. I can tell you from experience, you would have hated the result. Bleach blackens silver, big time, but not in the same way as sulpher. It’s more of a “stain” type blackening, and it does not buff off right. The silver will shine up, but the black remains in a shadowy uneven “stain”.

    I learned this the hard way when I was working with bleach without gloves and my silver rings suffered for it. It took A-G-E-S for that “stain” to wear away. I don’t mean weeks or even months. It was several years before those rings looked right again, and they are rings I wear all the time.

    If you have silver rings, beware, also, of sink cleansers containing bleach. That’ll “burn your rings too.

    Thanks for the wonderful “egg” tip!

  4. Jackie on June 25, 2014 at 12:07 am

    Very nice and congratulations.

  5. Patti Young on June 24, 2014 at 3:36 pm

    Sent from my BlackBerry 10 smartphone on the Verizon Wireless 4G LTE network. From: Stacy Westfall HorseblogSent: Tuesday, June 24, 2014 8:51 AMTo: pygoldust152@verizon.netReply To: Stacy Westfall HorseblogSubject: [New post] Eggs and belt buckles; how to add an aged patina to silver…naturally?

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    Stacy posted: “I took my shiny, new belt buckle and…egged it.

    No, I didn’t actually touch the egg to the silver…what a mess that would be…but I did use the egg to age the silver.

    Here is the before and after shot of the buckle:

    When I was working with”

  6. Ron Nelson on June 24, 2014 at 1:52 pm

    CONGRATS STAY, well deserved, blog is still #1

  7. cm on June 24, 2014 at 1:05 pm

    love your blog, and what an honor. i like the adjustment you made to the buckle, nice!

  8. Patti on June 24, 2014 at 12:15 pm

    Funny, with my law enforcement background, everything buckles, buttons, badges had to have a high gloss polish to it, So with my Gist buckles, I’ve always followed that philosophy. I would have never, ever thought of this. After seeing it, I may take one of the buckles and give it a try!

  9. Lucy Howe on June 24, 2014 at 9:46 am

    You must be very proud of that buckle Stacey…It is Beautiful !!! I been a cowgirl since Roy Rogers day !!!! LOL

  10. Bonnie M. Butler on June 24, 2014 at 9:15 am

    BEAUTIFUL. Can’t believe that eggs would help it turn out so nice. Really shows the depth of
    the buckle. Great job.

  11. Jan on June 24, 2014 at 9:05 am

    Really a nice look. It adds richness and depth. Plus you can still make egg salad… maybe not.

    • Stacy on June 24, 2014 at 9:44 am

      Lol, I guess I should have removed the shells first so I could have aimed for egg salad with the remains:)

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