Jewelry is a prized possession, a piece of art and most people want to hang their art on the wall in plain sight so they can admire it. Maybe they want quick access when dressing and it helps them to choose an outfit or maybe they would forget to accessorize if their jewelry is not in plain sight. Makes sense to me ...
Most people think it's normal for their jewelry to tarnish, and that jewelry just needs to be polished periodically. Me, personally, I would rather NOT have to polish MY jewelry. And if you own a piece of jewelry that I have designed, you are dealing with a whole different species of jewelry, with design details that really aren't meant to be polished. Have you ever tried to polish a piece of my textured jewelry? It's not really doable. If you do, be prepared for some lint hanging up in the texture of your jewelry. YIKES! And the patina is not rub proof unfortunately ... polishing a piece of jewelry with a patina could change the patina finish and, in turn, change the look of the piece of jewelry. I'm not saying you can't lightly polish the non-textured areas. You may polish these areas using a gentle pressure either with an old t-shirt or a polishing cloth.
If you have ever wondered why sterling silver jewelry tarnishes, it is actually a chemical reaction to the moisture and sulfur in the air. Silver actually tarnishes faster in areas of higher humidity and air pollution. Chemicals like hairspray, perfume, deodorant, lotion, bleach, etc., can speed up the tarnishing process, so it's best not to wear any of those chemicals in the area where the jewelry will be worn on the body. If you are wearing copper jewelry, those chemicals can have a reaction with the copper and leave dark marks on your skin - don't worry, it's not permanent. I always encourage my customers to keep the lotions and perfumes away from their wrists, fingers and decollete area, depending on the copper jewelry they are wearing.
The best way to store your sterling silver jewelry (or any metal jewelry) to prevent tarnish is to place them in an airtight bag inside of a jewelry box or drawer. I currently have in stock some anti-tarnish plastic bags, that are treated specifically for preventing tarnish. Look for one of these bags to be included with each jewelry purchase.
I absolutely adhere to this practice with my jewelry and all pieces of jewelry that I design for sale. When I complete a piece of jewelry, I always place it in an airtight bag for storage in my completed jewelry drawer. When I take any of my jewelry items out for photographing or shipping off to a customer, that piece of jewelry is as shiny as the day I finished it ... no polishing necessary.