Q: What are the fancy decorations and handles on silver trays made of?

A: If the tray is sterling silver, its handles are probably sterling. The handles on silver-plated trays are often made of spelter, Britannia metal or another low-grade metal and then plated when the rest of the tray is plated. Be careful. We know of someone who put a silver tray in the oven to keep food warm. The heat melted the handles and they fell off.