Dec 072011

During the past couple of weeks, I noticed a Swarovski Soulmate Panther on eBay, which is advertised by the seller to be a very rare prototype.  This particular Swarovski figurine just might raise the eyebrows of Swarovski crystal fanatics wanting more information about it.

It can be very difficult to tell which items are truly Swarovski prototypes, and which items have after-market alterations enhancements and are misrepresented for sellers to make a buck.  The controversy will always remain without official company statements, which I seriously doubt would ever happen.

This press release is about a rare Swarovski Poodle purchased by a Swarovski crystal collector from Crystal Exchange America in October, 2010.  While official Swarovski literature shows the standing poodle with both a frosted tail and a clear tail, some critics still speculate that the crystal brand did not officially produce both the Standing Poodle with clear tail and Standing Poodle with frosted tail.

This press release is about a Swarovski Frosted Mane Lion that is for sale at Crystal Exchange America.  I’m not aware of any official company statement regarding its authenticity.  Having it for sale on our web site, I do get asked my opinion about the authenticity.  I can only say that I really don’t know….the Swarovski Frosted Mane Lion is interesting, and it is attractive.   If the price is right and you like it, buy it.  But I do not recommend a Swarovski collector purchase it with the impression that it is genuine and that it will increase in value, because there is simply no proof at this time to substantiate the claim.

Swarovski Soulmate Panther, with Matte Crystal Appearance

Swarovski Soulmate Panther, with Frosted Crystal Appearance

So, now on eBay (a closed auction), is a Swarovski Soulmate Frosted Panther, which the seller claims is a rare prototype, a part of the Eclectic Panther collection, in the Moments of Wonder display at Swarovski Vienna.  The seller’s description clearly states “frosted flocked white (matt)”.  And that it is “very rare”, “prototype”, about “15 pieces worldwide”.  What might be actually concluded about the authenticity of the Swarovski Panther from the auction?

  • The seller indicated that the Frosted Panther is on display at Swarovski Vienna.  There is a picture of part of the display, but it is impossible to tell if a Swarovski Frosted Panther is actually displayed there.  Why wouldn’t the seller have used a more conclusive photo for proof?
  • The seller indicated that it is prototype, with about 15 produced.  One of our trusted contacts has indicated to me that Swarovski NEVER frosted the panther, that the only explanation is that a frosted panther is an after-market alteration.

Swarovski crystal fanatics will have to form their own opinion.  IF this is a fake (aftermarket enhancement), I think it is sad that society has risen to the level of deceit to cash in from altering a fabulous Swarovski design, then misleading the public that the Swarovski company produced it AS IS.  And if it is genuine, the seller is going to have to come up with better proof of the statements in the auction….i.e. high quality conclusive photos of the display, perhaps prototype logos, or official company statement.  It will be interesting to follow this figurine through the holidays to see if it does ever sell.  I originally saw it listed and closed unsold for $5500 or best offer.  Several days later, it was relisted and closed unsold for $3950 or best offer.   My recommendation is that everyone should use caution when purchasing crystal advertised as “prototypes”, as this could be extremely difficult to substantiate.  Personally, I would even remain leery of crystal figurines that “slipped out the back door”, and the like.

I certainly don’t wish to put a damper on anyone’s holiday spirits….I just want to provide some food for thought so that no one ends up with buyer’s remorse about spending a nice chunck of change on what could be a fraudulent figurine (aftermarket enhancement).

Swarovski crystal figurines are available at Crystal Exchange America, a professional brokerage service of 15 years, dedicated to helping Swarovski collectors buy and sell retired Swarovski crystal figurines, ornaments, and collectibles.

Crystal Exchange America is reputable, knowledgeable, and has a world-wide customer base with thousands of satisfied customers. Swarovski crystal fanatics can go to to obtain more information about safely listing, buying, and selling retired Swarovski, limited edition Swarovski, Swarovski Silver Crystal, and Swarovski crystal figurines.

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