Silver trays have been in use since the 1300's, though the tray as we know it today with a lip around the edge and sometimes handles used for carrying it did not become a popular design until the 1600's. Since that time trays have been used to carry food and drinks to guests and the table. Most silver trays these days are used to set a silver tea set on, or to serve snacks to guests. Rarely are they used for transporting food from the kitchen to the dining tale any more.
There are many different styles of trays made today, although it is surprising how many follow the same design of antique trays. One main difference is that trays used to be mainly circular or rectangular, however now you can find them in a variety of shapes including octagonal. Most have the lip around the edge of the tray, which is often engraved with pictures of flowers, fruits or geometrical designs.
When pricing silver trays you will find
that the price will vary according to the weight of the silver and the
craftsmanship and design. Generally, however, smaller trays using less silver
cost quite a bit less than the larger trays. This is not always the case as it
does also depend on the design with an intricately etched tray sometimes
costing quite a bit more than a regular plain tray. A silver plated tray will also be less expensive than a Sterling Silver tray.
A silver tray makes a great gift,
especially for a silver or 25thwedding anniversary. It is also
something that can be given as a wedding present, with or without a silver tea
set. A silver tray will cost anywhere
from $75 to $150 or more depending on the size and style of tray. They are,
naturally, considerably more expensive than stainless steel trays but nowhere
near as expensive as a genuine gold tray.
You do not usually find silver plated trays, mainly because plating
scratches fairly easily making it not that realistic to use for something such
as a serving tray, although they are great to use with other tea accessories.