Polishing, Restoration & Conservation

Restoration and conservation services are offered through our affiliate shop, The Brass & Silver Workshop, located at 758 St. Andrews Boulevard, Charleston, SC. Operating under the guidance of Master Silversmith Alfred L. Crabtree, Jr. for over five decades, we present a spectrum of services on antique as well as contemporary pieces, including: 

  • Fine hand polishing and finishing
  • Precision machine polishing and finishing
  • Dent removal
  • Replating
  • Lacquering
  • Fabrication of parts, such as handles, lids, finials, feet, fretwork, etc.
  • Insulator, finial, and handle restoration
  • Lamp and lighting restoration
  • Monogram removal

Restoration and conservation services are available in all metals, including brass, solid silver, sterling silver, coin silver, bronze, pewter, gilt, vermeil, solid gold, platinum, pewter, nickel, iron, copper, paktong, aluminum, tin, brass plate, silverplate, and Old Sheffield Plate. Each item undergoes a careful inspection upon arrival, and an assessment is relayed to the client. Together, we establish the client's goal, relay the steps involved, discuss expectations, and establish an estimate. Once the work is approved, our approach entails using time-honored techniques and authentic tools. Whether a 7 gallon punchbowl from the USS South Carolina or a loved family heirloom, all items are addressed with the utmost care and precision.

Al remains widely regarded as one of the leading silversmiths in the country. Entering the business with over a decade of experience in chemical research, he pursued his passion for metallurgy full-time, with the birth of The Brass Workshop in the fall of 1968. Al's reputation expanded as his skills became even more honed and diversified.

He has been featured in the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts (MESDA) journal and recognized in the magazine Antiques, Charleston Magazine, Charleston Style and Design Magazine, and InCollect. Al served twice as a master for apprentices enrolled at De Valschool, the Netherlands.

His work may be viewed at The Charleston Museum, The Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts, The South Carolina Governor's Mansion, The Florida Governor's Mansion, The Charleston Governor's Mansion, The Jacksonville Museum, The Flagler Museum, The South Carolina State Museum, The United States Air Force and Navy, and many of the major churches around the Southeast.

Estimates and evaluations remain an integral part of business at The Brass & Silver Workshop. With regard to client choice, items may be mailed or hand delivered to the West Ashley location. Shop hours are Monday through Friday 10:00 AM until 2:00 PM and by appointment. Relationships are of the utmost importance, therefore, client discretion is always observed.

Do you have a question about polishing, restoration or conservation of a specific item? We invite you to send us an email, including images, to brassworkshop@gmail.com.