Apr 252012
 

Yesterday, I found an update on the crystal brand’s web site regarding the launch date of the upcoming Limited Edition Swarovski Bubble Mo.  The company has announced to its SCS members that the 2012 Limited Edition Bubble Mo will be available for purchase in the online shoppe May 29.

Lovlots Limited Edition Bubble Mo by Swarovski

Swarovski Lovlots Limited Edition Bubble Mo

Swarovski Lovlots Bubble Mo is about 1 ¾” in height.  The company uses these colors in their official product description: Scuba Blue, Air Blue Opal, and Lavender crystal.  Swarovski mentions that the laser engraved bubbles are symbolic of “bubbles of joy” in the SCS news, and calls them “bubbles of excitement” in the product description.

Swarovski states in their announcement, that the Swarovski Bubble Mo blue cow figurines will be limited to 10 per person.  But don’t forget, there is only one Swarovski certificate per online order (modification in 2011), so if you desire a certificate for each Limited Edition Bubble Mo (which may not be a bad idea at all!), collectors should purchase one Bubble Mo per order.  Just remember, if you order one crystal figurine per order, additional shipping charges may be applied to the order.

The Swarovski Lovlots Bubble Mo (blue cow) and Swarovski Lovlots Lucky Mo (green cow) are both Limited Editions that are only available in 2012, hence retiring at the end of the year if not sold out prior to that date.  There are about 15 Swarovski Lovlots figurines that are retiring in 2012.  Other Lovlots may be slated for retirement later in the year, but those figurines (if any) have not yet been announced.  These Swarovski Lovlots Retirements can be found at www.RetiredSwarovski.com in the Swarovski Lovlots product line (down the left side of the browser window).

Apr 242012
 

Several weeks ago, I wrote a post about the pros and cons of Swarovski Discounts and how discount prices relate to the Swarovski Warranty policy.  In a very brief summary, the article basically states that if you buy your crystal figurines online from a discount source (not an authorized retailer with a brick and mortar store), you may very well have sacrificed the post-sale service and ability to use the warranty service if the figurine should have defects or accidentally break.

Several days after the post, I received an email from a Swarovski boutique manager with his perspective about the crystal brand’s warranty policy changes.  With the author’s permission, his email is being posted for collectors to consider the Swarovski discounts and Swarovski warranty from a different angle…..

Swarovski CrystalAs a Swarovski Boutique Store Manager for many years, my perception of recent changes to the repair process, as distributed to Swarovski Boutiques, seems more accommodating to clients.  Prior to the recent guidelines, customers were asked to contact customer service directly if an exchange or refund could not be made in the store.

Consumers were responsible for calling customer service and mailing a package themselves, once the return authorization paperwork was received.  The present guideline for repair allows consumers to bring a qualifying item requiring repair directly to the boutique.

This year I have acted as a liaison between customer service & the consumer, as directed by the stores directions for repairs. Per the guideline, I have sent items from other sources of purchase.

It has been a pleasure to connect with clients offering this service. In the rare event I cannot immediately offer a solution in the store, I have enjoyed offering solutions and sharing the client’s delight when they return to the store and pick up a refurbished item.

For myself, the Swarovski Boutique has evolved into a service center, or point of contact beyond customer service, as Swarovski continues to evolve.  I have perceived all customer service documents as ‘guidelines’. Each customer I interact with has a unique situation I can address in the most appropriate way.  At times I have found it necessary to ‘make a partner’ for exceptions, but I am confident we have achieved a high satisfaction rate.  With any business, the guidelines may change at any time, but I for one, am comfortable with these improvements.

On the subject of gift receipts, the Swarovski boutique manager included this…”Gift receipts are always available point of sale at every Swarovski Boutique and should be requested, if not automatically provided.  The gift receipt enables the gift giver to provide documentation, without providing the price of the gift.

Hopefully, this manager’s information and perspective will help Swarovski collectors and buyers make the best choice for source and price when considering upcoming Swarovski crystal purchases. A special thanks to the Swarovski boutique manager for allowing us to share his email with our Kristall Buzz readers!

Apr 212012
 

Swarovski recently released the list of crystal figurines that will retire in the first half of 2012.  Over 40 Swarovski figurines are slated to be officially discontinued beginning January through June of this year.  With this Swarovski news, the popular website, RetiredSwarovski.com has now posted the complete list in the Swarovski Retiring Soon section of the web site.  This page of the web site includes links to the crystal figurines in the Swarovski shoppe to make shopping easy for collectors.

Swarovski Black Diamond Woodpecker Retires in 2012

Swarovski Black Diamond Woodpecker Retires in 2012

Some of the retirements are no longer available from the online shoppe.

I was surprised to see many of the Swarovski Lovlots Circus figurines in the list, as they only launched about 1 year ago.

Some of the longest running Swarovski figurines on the list that will no longer be produced includes:

  • Swarovski Squirrel, introduced in 1985
  • Swarovski Beagle, introduced in 1990
  • Swarovski Baby Elephant, introduced in 1995
  • Swarovski Ladybird, introduced in 1995

A couple of the Swarovski figurines retiring have colored versions that are replacing them.  This seems to be a new way to re-introduce figurines.  Kristall Buzz featured an article about this trend on Swarovski Clear Crystal Figurines in February, 2011.

  • Swarovski Mandarin Ducks – Clear: 2006 through 2012; Topaz: introduced in 2010 and still current in 2012.
  • Swarovski Tortoises, Baby (Set of 2) – Clear: 1998 through 2012; Golden Shadow: introduced in 2012.

If any of the 2012 retirements are on your wish list, get them before they become too hard to find, and a premium price must be paid to obtain them!  CrystalExhange.com has a huge list of retired Swarovski figurines, so crystal collectors should check out this site if the desired figurine is no longer available on-line or in stores.

Apr 202012
 

Some Swarovski collectors are satisfied to purchase older Swarovski books and save some money so that they can afford to buy more Swarovski crystal!

Crystal Exchange America has a 2010 Swarovski Silver Crystal Book Buy-It-Now auction listed now on eBay.  They also have a 2010 Swarovski Beyond Silver Crystal Book Buy-It-Now auction listed now on eBay.  The Swarovski book publications are not pre-owned and have not been used previously.  The Swarovski books are leftover inventory.   Since the information in them is based on 2010 research, the Swarovski ERV Values are 2 years out of date, but would work well to inventory a collection that may consist of only older pieces.  And of course any Swarovski Crystal figurines released in 2010 and later are not included in the book.

The Swarovski books: Warner’s Blue Ribbon Book on Swarovski Silver Crystal and Warner’s Blue Ribbon Book: Beyond Silver Crystal for 2012 can be purchased directly from the authors at wbrb.com .  Individual books start at $75 for black and white editions and $150 for color editions.  As an online only alternative, Swarovski collectors can purchase subscriptions to the Swarovski database by the Warner’s at wbrbonline.com .  Annual subscriptions begin at $40 / year.  Database subscriptions do require internet access, but can be used from any computer, ipad and possibly smart-phone anywhere in the world.

So, any Swarovski enthusiast wanting a fabulous book at an attractive price, may check out these eBay auctions.  There are a small quantity and the auctions are only running for 10 days!

Apr 192012
 

Last year, Swarovski introduced some figurines in the Happy Ducks group that could have some royal lineage.  Since that time, they have added more royal Happy Ducks to the family, so I wanted to do a brief posting on all of these Swarovski Happy Ducks.

Swarovski Prince Happy Duck

Swarovski Lovlots Prince Happy Duck

Swarovski Princess Happy Duck

Swarovski Lovlots Princess Happy Duck

In 2011, the crystal giant launched the Swarovski Happy Prince Duck and Swarovski Happy Princess Duck.  The Swarovski designer for these two duck figurines was Keiko Arai.  Both Happy Ducks are still available from Swarovski.com at a retail price of $75.

 

Swarovski Royal Wedding Happy Ducks

Swarovski Limited Edition Royal Wedding Ducks

Then, around March, 2011, with the celebration of the royal wedding on April 29, Swarovski produced some limited edition ducks, Royal Wedding Happy Ducks.  This pair of Happy Ducks was essentially the Happy Prince Duck and Happy Princess Duck, packaged as a pair with some special etchings, and offered as a Limited Edition in the UK.   (Check out the out the article on the Kristall Buzz for the Swarovski Royal Wedding Happy Ducks for more information on them).

The Swarovski Royal Wedding Ducks can be found at an attractive price on ebay for about 2 more weeks.  The ebay item # is 140735067314.

Swarovski Sir and Lady Happy Ducks

Swarovski Lovlots Sir and Lady Happy Duck

At the beginning of the year, they crystal brand realigned some figurines into different product lines.  So effective Jan, 2012, the Swarovski Happy Ducks are now Lovlots Happy Ducks.  The CrystalExchange.com has a complete list of Lovlots Happy Ducks on their web site.

Now, in 2012, Swarovski has created yet another pair of royal Happy Ducks.  But it is not the King Happy Duck, nor Queen Happy Duck.  This new couple of Happy Ducks is the Swarovski Sir and Lady Happy Ducks.  The Swarovski designer for Sir and Lady Duck is Verena Castelein.  These royal ducks are available at Swarovski.com at a retail price of $150.

Perhaps all these Swarovski Crystal Happy Ducks should get together for a tea party!

Apr 182012
 

Acronyms continue to be the norm is today’s fast-past environment and abbreviated language used in texting in other situation with writing constraints.   In online auctions, due to the limitation of characters in item titles, it is very common to see abbreviations used in the titles.  While the majority of Swarovski collectors understand the acronyms, I’m sure there are still a lot of inexperienced bidders (aka newbies) on the scene.  I have also seen acronyms misused in titles, so I thought I’d do my best to explain the acronyms, provide history, and offer cautions on the use of them.

Swarovski MIB – Swarovski Mint in Box.  This means that the Swarovski figurine is in original factory condition complete with Swarovski Box.  MINT implies free of damage.  However, this gets a bit trickier on the very old candleholders (and other figurines) where it is fairly common to see “pin pricks”, rough edges, or on large items where it is not unusual to see bubbles.  While these “pin pricks”, rough edges and bubbles still passed Swarovski’s standards of perfection to ship product to the retail stores, some crystal collectors will not accept these characteristics in a figurine described as MINT Swarovski.

Also, the box should be the CORRECT box for the figurine.  This is easiest to discern when the Swarovski product identification label is still attached to the Swarovski cylinder or Swarovski box.  The box included should NOT be ‘just any’ box with the Swarovski logo on it.

Swarovski NIB – Swarovski New in Box.  Swarovski BNIB – Swarovski Brand New in Box.
I don’t feel there is any significant difference in item descriptions for items that are NIB or BNIB.  I do question that if an item is retired, should it really be described as a NIB Swarovski figurine or BNIB Swarovski figurine?  When I think of NEW, I don’t think of pre-owned, retired, or previously displayed crystal figurine.  I think of a current product or new release coming from a store or online retailer.  I’d bet that a lot of sellers would disagree with this perception, but what about the buyers?  Again, that’s just my opinion.

Swarovski NRFB – Swarovski Never Removed from Box. I personally have never cared for this description for a Swarovski crystal figurine.  Can the owner REALLY say that the figurine has never removed it from the box?  They don’t honestly know whether or not their retailer displayed it.   Or if it was purchased on the secondary market what the previous owner did with it.  If it is a NRFB Swarovski figurine….was it ever inspected to know if it was in Mint condition at the store prior to purchase?  And if it were inspected, does the description NFRB still apply since it would have to be removed from the box for the inspection?  It is my professional opinion, that I’d rather know the item is MIB than NRFB.

Beginning several years ago and still used at present, I see ads stating Swarovski NMIB (yes, one that I have not covered).  Reading the description from the original ad, I learned the seller was shortening ‘Nearly Mint in Box’.  Nearly Mint?  REALLY….Nearly Mint means NOT MINT.  It means there is damage somewhere on the figurine.  The seller may mean minor damage, but any damage is significant damage when it comes to Swarovski Value.  It may be minor if the collector is displaying it and the cosmetic damage does not bother the owner when looking at it.  Or to the seller, it may be minor since the hopes are that it will sell at the highest possible price.  So bidders should carefully consider if they wish to purchase a NMIB Swarovski figurine, or spend extra money to purchase a MIB Swarovski figurine.

None of the acronyms Swarovski MIB, Swarovski NIB, Swarovski BNIB, or Swarovski NRFB imply inclusion of the Swarovski COA (aka Swarovski Certificate of Authenticity).  Also, none of them imply anything about condition of the box…they all focus on the crystal inside the box.

Kristall Buzz has also featured articles on acronyms to be of interest to Swarovski collectors:

Some buyers feel more comfortable with unbiased professionals doing the inspection rather than a seller’s description of an item they are attempting to get rid of or possible make money on, especially if the crystal figurine is a high-dollar figurine.  In this case, crystal collectors may inquire about professional brokerage services like those offered by Crystal Exchange America.

However, some collectors like the excitement of bidding in auctions or taking a chance on a bargain.  In conclusion, I feel that the buyer should thoroughly read auction descriptions and ask questions if there might be conflicting information.  When the transaction is completed the buyer needs to be satisfied with the crystal condition and price paid.

Apr 172012
 

Yesterday, I came across this Swarovski blue cow (by accident I must say) on the crystal brand’s web site: Swarovski Bubble Mo!  This discovery was quite the surprise!

Swarovski Bubble Mo, Lovlots Limited Online Edition

Swarovski Lovlots Bubble Mo, LE 2012

According to the product description, Swarovski Bubble Mo will be an online exclusive that will retail for $65 USD.  The blue bubble decorations are laser engraved into the crystal, not tiny decals like some of the other decorations on the limited edition mo figurines.  While the Lovlots Bubble Mo will be available only in 2012, I did not see any information on the launch date.

The crystal brand produced one other blue cow: Swarovski Belle Mo.  This Lovlots blue cow officially retires in 2012, but it does appear that it is no longer available in Swarovski’s online shoppe.

The Swarovski Lovlots Bubble Mo is one of several Limited Online Edition Mo figurines.  Other Swarovski Limited Online Edition Mos include:

So let’s give a this Lovlots blue cow, Swarovski Bubble Mo, a warm welcome to the “Lovlots Mo herd”!

Crystal Exchange America has more details about Swarovski Lovlots Mos special editions.  If you are looking specifically for the Swarovski Limited Edition Mo figurines, they can be found in the Limited Edition Swarovski category of this online store.

Apr 162012
 

Exclusively available from April 14, 2012 onwards, Swarovski is proud to present the Limited Online Edition Lime Panther.  This eclectic, eye-catching crystal sculpture is limited to 888 pieces which are only available from the Swarovski online shop.  The Limited Online Edition Lime Panther is the third in a series of online exclusive panthers. Balanced and impressive, the sculpture captures a graceful poise and seduces with its exceptional color in perfectly faceted crystal. The Black Spot granite base sets a nice contrast and further underlines the strength inherent to these famed creatures. Graceful power combined with luxurious materials which better combination could possibly grace your interior?

The Swarovski Lime Panther Online Limited Edition has a retail price of $1100.00 USD.  The system number for the crystal Lime Panther is 1142792.

Swarovski Lime Panther, Limited Online Edition

Swarovski Limited Online Edition Lime Panther

Other Swarovski Panthers available for purchase from the crystal brand include:

  1. Swarovski Soulmate Panther (clear) – 9600 000 074 / 874 337.  Introduced in 2007 and retired in 2011.
  2. Swarovski Soulmate Limited Online Edition Panther (black) – 9600 000 151 / 1060325. Introduced and sold out in 2010.
  3. Swarovski Soulmate Moroda Panther (moroda) – 1096051.  New release for 2011.
  4. Swarovski Soulmate Limited Online Edition Orange Shine Panther (copper-like) – 1096050. Introduced and sold out in 2011.

The Limited Edition Black Panther (500 units) sold out in under 48 hours according to the Swarovski web site.  The Limited Edition Orange Shine Panther (888 units) took about 3 months to sell out.

The designer for the Swarovski Soulmate Panther figurines is Heinz Tabertshofer.  All the crystal figurines are fully faceted animals attached to black spot granite bases.  The online limited editions (black and orange shine panthers) are engraved in the granite base with a unique # and the words “limited online edition”.

The Limited Edition Black Panther has been trading at favorable pricing to the seller on the secondary market, with selling prices in the $2900 to $3300 range.  The Limited Edition Orange Shine Panther has been trading prices very close to original retail price….$1200 – $1400.

I’m sure that crystal fanatics wish they had a crystal ball (pardon the pun) to know how this one is going to sell in the future…buy only one for their collection, or buy several in hopes of making a few bucks?  (Reminder….Swarovski indicates on their web site that quantities are limited to 3 per person).  I have purchased mine (just one).  One thing for sure…you’ll want place your order now, so that you won’t have to pay secondary market prices to add this Swarovski Limited Edition to your crystal collection later.