I'm reading through the Silmarillion when I came across this passage:
... yet, in the tempering of steel alone of all crafts the Dwarves were never outmatched even by the Noldor, and in the making of mail of linked rings ... their work had no rival.
I knew that Dwarves had a gift for crafting of all sorts of things but I never realized they were ever considered the "best" at anything, with that title being reserved for the elves. To seemingly back this up, it is shown that characters seem to prize finding elven made gear above almost all else and even in various LOTR related RPGs you can assume that elven made armor will outmatch its dwarvish counterpart.
That being said, is there anything to explain this dynamic? Did something happen in a later age to change this claim? Or is it assumed that elven gear is imbued with magic, like with Sting, making it more sought after than a similar dwarfish item?