Jul 232012
 

The Swarovski Woodpeckers ‘Sharing’ was the second Swarovski SCS crystal figurine.  These Woodpeckers were another amazing work of art.  A title plaque for the 1988 SCS annual edition was offered to SCS members an an optional accessory to the AE Woodpeckers, from the Caring and Sharing trilogy.

Swarovski Woodpeckers Plaque, accessory for the SCS 1988 AE

1988 SCS Plaque for the Swarovski Woodpeckers

The Swarovski Woodpeckers plaque is rectangular in shape, with rounded corners.  It measures about 1.5” high and 3” long.  It is identical to the Swarovski Lovebirds Plaque, but with obviously different verbage.   The SCS Woodpeckers plaque is dark blue on the back side with a fold-out hinge allowing it to freely stand.  The front side resembles has a silver-colored brushed finish.  The outer edge is dark blue as is all the engraved text and design on the Woodpeckers plaque.  In addition to the SCS logo at the top, the text reads:

Annual Edition 1988
“Sharing” – the Woodpeckers

The Woodpeckers Plaque is identified using reference # SCMRP88, which was originally used in the Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski catalogue of recommended insurance values .

We believe that the Swarovski Woodpeckers Stand and Swarovski Woodpeckers Plaque were sometimes sold as a set.  Crystal Exchange America has seen just a couple of them that come together, in a small Swarovski gift box that matches the silver and blue color coloration of the Swarovski Caring and Sharing trilogy SCS boxes.

A special thanks to Jane Warner, co-author to Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski for consulting on the Swarovski Woodpeckers Plaque article.

The SCS Swarovski  Woodpeckers Plaque is not always easy to find, so placing a replacement value on it can be tricky.  Crystal Exchange America, presently has a single listing for Swarovski Woodpeckers Plaque that is over $175 with their commission.  There are a couple plaques in the online auctions ($135 to $150), but remember that auction items may be sold quickly and then not available for a long time to come.



Jul 222012
 

The second Swarovski SCS crystal figurine was the Swarovski ‘Sharing’ Woodpeckers.    These Woodpeckers, part of the Caring and Sharing trilogy, were certain to be treasured by the SCS member.  Just like the Swarovski Lovebirds, Swarovski offered an optional display stand with the 1988 SCS annual edition.

Swarovski Stand for the 1988 SCS Woodpeckers 'Sharing'

Swarovski SCS Woodpeckers Stand

The Swarovski Woodpeckers Stand is very similar to the Lovebirds stand…It is mostly thin plastic with a cardboard base underneath.  The SCS Woodpeckers Stand is navy on the surface, and has a velvet-like texture.  The underneath side appears to be black cardboard.  The round cut-out on the top is a perfect match to the frosted Woodpeckers trunk, which gives it further stability not seen by many other display stands.

The Stand for Swarovski Woodpeckers Sharing can be found using reference # DO1X881S, which is used by Crystal Exchange America.  The Swarovski Woodpeckers Stand is not included in the Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski Price Guide.

The SCS Swarovski Woodpeckers Stand is not easy to find, so determining a value on this stand is more difficult.  Remember, the Lovebirds were very limited in terms of distribution.  Crystal Exchange America does have a couple Swarovski Woodpeckers Stand units available in the range of $135 – $185.  We have not found too many Swarovski collectors purchasing them, but they are available for collectors who want to have every possible accessory to go with their Woodpeckers.



Jul 202012
 

Most everyone who reads the Kristall Buzz blog knows that it is maintained by the Swarovski expert dealer Crystal Exchange America with occasional contributions by the well-known Swarovski book author Jane Warner.  One of the most common questions that we hear is…..”I own Swarovski Crystal figurines x, y, and z;  What is the value of my Swarovski collection?”  Well, this is a huge question, and I am going to try to address the issue of Swarovski Value in this article.

First, I want the owner to completely forget about the price paid.  The original purchase price has absolutely no bearing on selling price, nor insurance replacement.  If anything, the price paid could be a sore spot in realistically determining a present day value as the collector / owner will be focusing on ‘profit’ (or loss as the case may be) in their mind and not the real question which is ‘What is the value of my Swarovski figurine?’

The simplest scenario is when the collector needs to know the Swarovski value to obtain adequate insurance.  If this is the case, we recommend purchasing these Swarovski books from www.wbrb.com .  The Swarovski ERV in the book is specifically determined for collectors to use for insurance purposes.  However, collectors need to remember that the replacement cost fluctuates and that the concept of replacement value needs to be revisited annually.  Providing an example….if a figurine is found at a reliable brokerage site at $500, it may have an ERV of $525 or $550.

However, when most people inquire about value, they are asking what they can obtain by selling the Swarovski figurine.  When selling, there are a couple of considerations.

  • Are you urgent to sell (must sell now and must sell fast)?
  • Can you sell at a more leisurely pace (3 to 12 months to conclude a sale is ok)

If you are in an urgent situation, you can typically expect the selling price to be less than if time is on your side.  If you have just a couple of Swarovski figurines, this may not be of significant consequence.  However if you have a substantial Swarovski crystal collection (ie 100 or more figurines, some of which are Swarovski AE or Swarovski NLE), liquidation prices can be quite painful to the pocketbook or personal expectations due to prior hypes on value, oftentimes only about 10% or 20% of the price you could purchase the figurines for at a Swarovski broker, like Crystal Exchange America.

So, our last scenario is what Swarovski value via what can be obtained from a leisurely sale.   To determine this, we first need to know actual current trading prices.  One can view completed transactions on eBay as one source.  When I say completed transactions, that may be a from a “Buy It Now” or “Auction” style listing that was actually successfully concluded.  This does NOT mean unsold figurines.  Another option would be to look at the figurines available with a reputable online dealer, like Crystal Exchange America.  They focus on secondary market sales of retired Swarovski, but do indeed have some current figurines at discounted prices.  If looking at their prices, remember, these are available prices, not sold statistics.  So, to be conservative, you may want to assume that they are selling at 10% less (not because the company is discounting, but because the cheapest ones sell, and the sold ones disappear from the web site when they are no longer available).  Using these two references and doing some mathematical averaging, you can roughly determine true trading prices.

Now that you have a trading price for the Swarovski crystal figurine, you can do some final calculation to see what you can get by selling your Swarovski figurine.  Crystal Exchange America operates on a 20% commission (minimum commission is $25), so on a figurine that sells for $500, the seller gets $400.  Ebay also has a number of fees associated with using their service:

  • Final Value Fees, which i believe are 10% of the selling price
  • Listing fees, must be paid even if items do not sell
  • Fees to use PayPal, which is practically required by eBay, around 3% or 4%.

Using eBay is more of an effort to use for the seller, but is indeed a logical option to get world-wide exposure selling a Swarovski crystal figurine.  In our example of selling a figurine for $500, if the crystal owner would sell the figurine on eBay, the seller would obtain about $425 (using an estimate of 15% for overhead to cover listing fees, FVF, and PayPal fees).

So, one can see that the frequent question “What is the Value of my Swarovski Crystal Figurine (or collection)?” does not have an easy answer.  And the answer that goes with it is definitely a function of how the individual wants to use the term “value”.



Jul 182012
 

The second Swarovski SCS crystal figurine in the Caring and Sharing trilogy was the Swarovski ‘Sharing’ Woodpeckers.  These Swarovski Woodpeckers would have a special presentation and package that would be very similar to its predecessor, the Lovebirds.

Swarovski Woodpeckers Box, SCS Box for 'Sharing' in 1988

1988 Swarovski SCS Woodpeckers Box

The SCS Woodpeckers had a custom box, which would be so unique, no other figurine would fit in it.  The box was primarily silver and royal blue in color.  Since the SCS was growing its distribution channels, the packaging would also be available in other languages.

"Sharing" - The Woodpeckers on the Swarovski Woodpecker Box

The English Woodpeckers Box that we most frequently see in the USA features a blue top.  On all 4 sides, collectors can read the text ‘Annual Edition 1988 “Sharing” – the Woodpeckers.

The multi-lingual Woodpeckers Box is a box that we only occasionally see.  This box has the text for “Sharing” – the Woodpeckers in four different languages, depending on the side:

  • “Donare – I Picchi” (Italian)
  • “Compartiendo” – los Carpinteros (Spanish)
  • “Partnershaft” – die Spechte (German)
  • “Partager” – les Pics (French)

The Swarovski –assigned part numbers can be found on the rear side in a very small type.  The English Swarovski Woodpeckers Box reference number is DO3E871.  The multi-languange Swarovski Woodpeckers Box reference number is DO3M881. The Woodpeckers Box can also be found using another reference # DO1X881B (same reference number regardless of the language), which was originally used in the Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski Price Guide.

The foam was specially made to especially protect the SCS figurine.  As can be seen in the image, the trunk rests in the largest indentation on the left side.   The egg-shaped indentation on the right fits over the mother woodpecker wing and head.  There is also a slot in the foam below from the crystal for the mirror.

A special thanks to Jane Warner, co-author to Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski for consulting on the Swarovski Woodpeckers Box article.

Regarding availability and replacement value, the SCS Swarovski Woodpeckers Box is becoming harder to find.  One reason is that collectors simply did not keep the packaging.  Even for collectors keep it, the Woodpeckers boxes was thin and would easily tear.  I did not find packaging boxes for the SCS Woodpeckers in the online auctions, nor at Crystal Exchange America.  However, in their last completed transactions,  Swarovski Woodpeckers Box in good condition sold in the range of $350 – $500!



Jul 172012
 

The Swarovski Woodpeckers was the second Swarovski SCS crystal figurine produced.  It was in the Swarovski Caring and Sharing trilogy.  To date, the SCS Woodpeckers are the only SCS figurine to ever include a special mirror.

The Swarovski Woodpeckers Mirror is an octagon shape (8 sides), about 4” in diameter.  The mirror has a beveled edge and is accented with an official Swarovski logo.

There are two different official Swarovski Woodpecker Mirror displays.  The only difference in the mirrors is the Swarovski logo that is present on the mirror.

Swarovski Woodpeckers Swan Mirror on Left; Swarovski Woodpeckers sCs Mirror on Right

Swarovski Woodpeckers Mirror: Variation 2 on Left; Variation 2 on Right

The Woodpeckers ‘Sharing’ Mirror, variation 1 (as it is referenced in Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski) has the sCs logo painted on it.  This Sharing Mirror can be reference using identification # DO1X881M V1, as originally used in Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski.  Crystal Exchange America presently has this SCS Woodpeckers Mirror available for $175 to $200.

The Woodpeckers ‘Sharing’ Mirror, variation 2 (as it is referenced in Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski) has a Swan logo painted on it.  This Sharing Mirror can be reference using identification # DO1X881M V2, as originally used in Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski.  Crystal Exchange America presently has this SCS Woodpeckers Mirror available for $70, but it is not in MINT condition.

Many collectors report to us that their Swarovski Woodpeckers did not include a mirror.  While we do believe them, the crystal brand indicates that all Woodpeckers included a mirror in the box, especially since there is a slit in the foam for the mirror.  The only possible explanation that has been offered is that perhaps it was removed by retailers before the SCS member took the Woodpeckers home.

A special thanks to Jane Warner, co-author to Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski for consulting on the Swarovski Woodpeckers Mirror article.

The Swarovski Mirror Variation 1 is the more common of the two mirrors produced, at least that is true in the USA.  It is easier to find this mirror at reputable broker sites and in the online auctions. Replacement cost for either Woodpeckers Mirror is in the $75 – $200 price range, depending on the source.  If purchasing a replacement mirror, carefully inspect it for scratches on the reverse side (they sometimes show through), tarnished edges, and unflaking paint on the logo to ensure the mirror has like-new qualities.



Jul 162012
 

The Swarovski Woodpeckers were available for purchase only in 1988 for collectors who were members in the Swarovski SCS.  In the last article about Swarovski Woodpeckers, the most common variation was the focus of the article.  In the previous article, it was not mentioned that Swarovski released 2 different versions of the Swarovski AE.  However, this article will expand on the Woodpeckers variations and what makes them unique.

Displaying the two variations of SCS Woodpeckers side-by-side, it is not possible to distinguish the variations.  While there are often great differences in the positioning of the birds and how close or far apart the mother beak is from the baby beak, this is not what makes them unique.  To identify the variations, one must look at the very bottom of the figurine where the backstamp is located.

The Woodpeckers ‘Sharing’, variation 1 (as it is referenced in Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski) has a frosted base.  The bottom side looks a lot like the trunk as it is not possible to see into it.  The backstamp is difficult to see as it too has a frosted-like appearance.

The Woodpeckers ‘Sharing’, variation 2 (as it is referenced in Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski) has a clear base.  The bottom side is clear, just like the top of the trunk that the birds are attached to.  The backstamp is easy to see as it has a frosted-like look.  (Remember, the backstamp is the year of the Woodpeckers “88”, and the designer’s (Adi Stocker) initials “A St”.

Both 1988 Swarovski  Woodpeckers were known using the Swarovski part number DO1X881 and system number  014 745.  Swarovski did not assign unique numbers to them even though they were different.  Furthermore, it was not possible to order a specific variation, and for the most part the variations went undocumented for many years.

Backstamp on Clear Base of 1998 Swarovski SCS Woodpeckers

Swarovski SCS Woodpeckers showing Backstamp on Clear Base

Some Swarovski Crystal Fanatics make the mistake of looking at the top of the trunk and become excited seeing a clear top, thinking that the bottom will be clear too.  This is not the case.  ALL Woodpecker trunks are clear on the top, so when looking at the trunk to determine the variation, it is the bottom that must be examined.

So why are there differences in the trunk base?  According to a former employee, the SCS Woodpeckers were supposed to have a clear base.  But something did not go as planned during manufacturing, and the trunks had to be, more or less, ‘filed’ to make the bottom smooth and allow the Woodpeckers figurine to stand upright.  The next step should have been to re-polish the trunk base to restore it to its original intended design.  But that did not occur….the trunks were ‘backstamped’ and used as is.  So, in short, the filing the base and leaving it with a frosted-like appearance was a corrective action taken when the bases did not come out of the mold process ‘just right’.

A special thanks to Jane Warner, co-author to Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski for consulting on the articles about the second SCS Annual Edition exclusively for SCS members: the Swarovski Woodpeckers.

In 1988, the SCS Swarovski Woodpeckers retailed for $165 USD.  For this price, the SCS member received the crystal figurine, an octagon-shaped display mirror with a Swarovski logo, an SCS custom box for the figurine, and a Swarovski COA (certificate of authenticity).    While Swarovski Woodpeckers Variation 1 (Frosted Base),  in mint condition, complete with mirror, and original packaging can usually be purchased on the secondary market for $1000 – $1400.  Swarovski Woodpeckers Variation 2 (Clear Base),  in mint condition, complete with mirror, and original packaging is much harder to and likely will cost $2500 – $2800 from Swarovski expert dealers, like Crystal Exchange America.  At the present time, they have one Variation 2 Woodpeckers crystal figurine only (no box, no certificate, no mirror) at $1875 plus shipping.  Personally, since they cannot be distinguished displayed on a shelf, I would have a hard time spending the extra $1,000 to get Variation 2 over Variation 1.



Jul 152012
 

Following the Swarovski Lovebirds, the Swarovski Woodpeckers was the second figurine in the ‘Caring and Sharing’ series.  The Woodpeckers ‘Sharing’, were available for purchase only in 1988 by Swarovski SCS members.  By then, SCS membership had grown and was available in more countries than just the English-speaking ones.

Swarovski SCS Woodpeckers -1988 Annual Edition 'Sharing',

Swarovski SCS Woodpeckers - 'Sharing', 1988 Annual Edition

 

The Swarovski Sharing Woodpeckers stands just over 4” tall.  It is a figurine with 2 clear birds, attached a frosted tree trunk.  The birds are a mother woodpecker (the bird with the full body) and a baby woodpecker, with its head peeking out of the tree.  Since the figurines are hand-assembled, we often see the woodpeckers at various angles and proximity from each other.  Sometimes the beaks are so close that you can barely slip a piece of paper between them, while other figurines may have the woodpeckers situated such that the beaks are nearly ¼” apart.

Adi Stocker is the designer of the Swarovski Woodpeckers.  The SCS Woodpeckers were the first SCS figurine he created with full credit from the crystal brand.  Since that year, Adi Stocker has designed 4 other Swarovski AE figurines.

 

The Sharing Woodpeckers contain the ‘backstamp / bottomstamp’, which is included for the sake of authenticity.  Looking closely at the underside of the frosted tree trunk, the year “88” can be seen.  Per Swarovski’s definition, the designer’s initials “A St” should be visible, but it must be very faint.

Backstamp of the Swarovski 1988 SCS Woodpeckers

Woodpeckers Backstamp (Frosted Base)

The Woodpeckers were known using the Swarovski part number DO1X881, and when Swarovski began using system numbers for identification, 014 745 was divulged, so it can be identified using either number.

Since the 1988 SCS Woodpeckers, the crystal giant has produced other Swarovski woodpecker figurines:

  • Swarovski Woodpeckers, Black Diamond  by Elisabeth Adamer.  These Swarovski Woodpeckers, in the Paradise line, retires in 2012.
  • Swarovski Woodpecker, Ziggy by Edith Mair.  This Woodpecker, in the Lovlots line, was a limited edition figurine available in 2010 only.

The SCS Swarovski Woodpeckers retailed for $165 USD in 1988.  The purchase price included the crystal figurine, an octagon-shaped display mirror, a custom box for the figurine, and a Swarovski COA (certificate of authenticity).    The Swarovski Woodpeckers,  in mint condition, complete with mirror, and original packaging can usually be purchased on the secondary market for $1000 – $1400, from Swarovski expert dealers, like Crystal Exchange America.



Jul 082012
 

The very first Swarovski SCS crystal figurine was the Swarovski ‘Togetherness’ Lovebirds.    These Lovebirds were an outstanding figurine, to be cherished by the SCS member.  Swarovski offered more than just the figurine, they also offered an optional display stand with the 1987 SCS annual edition.

The Swarovski Lovebirds Stand does not compare to the effort and presentation that we think of when the term ‘display stand’ is mentioned along with ‘Annual Edition’.  The Lovebirds stand is mostly thin plastic with a cardboard base underneath.  The SCS Lovebirds Stand is navy on the surface, and has a velvet-like texture.  The underneath side appears to be black cardboard.  (And I’m not going to disassemble it to figure out what is in the middle.)  The cutout on the top is a perfect match to the frosted Lovebirds base, which gives it additional stability not seen by the presentation stands produced in the 90’s and into the first decade of 2000.

1987 SCS Togetherness Swarovski Lovebirds Stand

Swarovski Lovebirds Stand

The Stand for the Swarovski Lovebirds Togetherness can be found using reference # DO1X861S, which is used by Crystal Exchange America.  The Swarovski Lovebirds Stand is not included in the Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski Price Guide.

Based on collector reports, it appears that the Swarovski Lovebirds Stand and Swarovski Lovebirds Plaque were sometimes sold as a set.  Crystal Exchange America has seen just a couple of them that come together, in a petite Swarovski gift box that matches the silver and blue color configuration of the Swarovski Caring and Sharing trilogy SCS boxes.

TogethernessLovebirds Stand, Lovebirds Plaque, with Box

Swarovski Lovebirds Plaque, Lovebirds Stand, and Box

The SCS Swarovski Lovebirds Stand is not easy to find, so determining a value on this stand is more difficult.  Remember, the Lovebirds were very limited in terms of distribution.  So, of those SCS members that purchased the figurine, what percentage actually procured accessories to go with the Lovebirds?  I did find any ongoing transactions anywhere for the Swarovski SCS Lovebirds Stand! I found a couple completed auctions (Feb, 2012) on ebay for “Lovebirds Stand”, but without being able to see a picture or review the item description, I cannot be for certain it is the correct stand.  But if one wants to  assume they are valuation, each were sold at $199. It is not fair to draw conclusion on value based on out-dated pricing as re-sale prices fluctuate based on availability as well as the state of the economy.  That being said, the last two transactions for the Lovebirds Stand at Crystal Exchange America were back in 2007.  Both Swarovski Lovebirds Stand units sold in the price range of $155 – $180.  Would a Swarovski collector pay that now?  Would they pay more than that now?  In short, it all probably all depends on the condition how badly a collector wants it.  If the ebay auctions were indeed for the same stand, this would show that the value of the Swarovski Lovebirds Stand has not dramatically changed in the past 5 years.



Jul 072012
 

The very first Swarovski SCS crystal figurine was the Swarovski ‘Togetherness’ Lovebirds.  These Swarovski Lovebirds were an incredible crystal figurine.  Swarovski offered more than just the figurine, they also offered an optional title plaque to display with the 1987 SCS annual edition.

The Swarovski Lovebirds plaque, by today’s standards, was fairly inexpensive, and perhaps a bit sub-standard looking, after all, the plaque is plastic.  The Lovebirds plaque is rectangular in shape, with rounded corners.  It measures about 1.5” high and 3” long.

SCS Plaque for the Swarovski Lovebirds, 1987

Swarovski SCS Lovbirds Plaque

The SCS Lovebirds plaque is navy on the back side with a fold-out hinge allowing it to freely stand.  The front side resembles brushed silver.  There is a navy border, and all the text and design on the Lovebirds plaque appears engraved in navy.  In addition to the SCS logo at the top, the text reads:

Annual Edition 1987
“Togetherness” – the Lovebirds

The Lovebirds Plaque can be found using reference # SCMRP87, which was originally used in the Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski Price Guide.

A special thanks to Jane Warner, co-author to Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski for consulting on the Swarovski Lovebirds Plaque article.

Regarding availability and replacement value, the SCS Swarovski Lovebirds Plaque is not easy to find.  Remember, the Lovebirds were only offerered in English-speaking countries.  So, of those SCS members that purchased the figurine, what percentage may have actually purchased any accessories to go with it?  I did find a completed sale (in 2012) in the online auctions for $120! Crystal Exchange America, presently has a single listing for Swarovski Lovebirds Plaque that is over $300 with their commission!  Keep in mind that their selling clients establish pricing, so not all items may be priced appropriately for a quick sale.



Jul 042012
 

Swarovski often uses a standard crystal component or design and allows for companies to have it customized to sell or use as a company incentive or award.  We have seen many Swarovski ball paperweights, keyrings, hexagons and so forth with specialized company names or logos.  Common examples are the 40mm colored paperweights seen with the Warner’s Blue Ribbon Book logo, Crystal Affair colored paperweights, and Crystal Exchange America keyrings.

In 2011, I saw some of the more unique contemporary designs implemented for the same use.  These designs were called the Swarovski Crystal Peak figurines.  The Crystal Peak is available in 2 different sizes:

The Swarovski Crystal peak gifts have a topaz-like colored stone, affixed to dark-brownish granite pillars.  The Crystal Peak figurines that I have personally seen are in a traditional blue Swarovski Box do have the Swan logo on them.



Kristall Buzz wants to take this opportunity to celebrate July 4th with some fireworks, over the Swarovski Crystal Peak of course.  So Happy July 4th to Swarovski crystal fanatics across the USA!



Jul 032012
 
Steiff Swarovski 'Cookie' - 2012 Limited Edition of 1500 Teddy Bears

Swarovski Steiff Bear Cookie – Limited Edition in 2012

In June, I wrote about some limited edition Swarovski – Steiff Bears that launched earlier in the year.  Now, there is official news about another limited edition teddy bear…the Swarovski Steiff Bear ‘Cookie’, the Holiday Bear.

The Steiff description states that this teddy bear, Swarovski Steiff Cookie, is made of mohair and alpaca.  Cookie’s necklace is the Swarovski Twinkling Gingerbread Man.  The Twinkling Gingerbread Man Ornament was introduced in 2011, and presently retails for $45 at the Swarovski online shoppe.  How fitting of the name, ‘Cookie’ the Holiday Bear, wearing a ‘gingerbread man cookie’ on her neck!

Steiff Bear Cookie is a Limited Edition Bear with a maximum production of 1500 units. The Steiff USA web site and stores in North America will be accepting orders for this Swarovski teddy bear very soon.  The suggested retail price on the Steiff Holiday Bear Cookie is $310.  Steiff Cookie may be at a slightly lower price at Sunny-Bears.com .

Crystal Exchange America has a few retired Swarovski Steiff bears, including Steiff Bear Crystal, Steiff Bear Jewels, Steiff Bear Poinsettia, and Steiff Bear Sapphire if you are looking for an limited edition Steiff – Swarovski Teddy Bear.



Jul 022012
 

The very first Swarovski SCS crystal figurine was the Swarovski ‘Togetherness’ Lovebirds.    These Lovebirds were a remarkable work of art.  Swarovski ‘s efforts on the overall presentation and package would not be overlooked.

Swarovski SCS Togetherness Lovebirds Box from 1987

Swarovski SCS Lovebirds Box

The SCS Lovebirds were the first figurines to have a custom box, which would be suitable for use with no other figurine.  This Swarovski SCS box was primarily silver and royal blue in color.  On all 4 sides, collectors can read the text ‘Annual Edition 1987 “Togetherness” – the Lovebirds’. The Swarovski–assigned part numbers can be found on bottom in tiny type.  The Swarovski Lovebirds Box reference number is DO3E861. The Lovebirds Box can also be found using another reference # DO1X861B, which was originally used in the Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski Price Guide.

The foam was specially made to securely package and transport the Swarovski SCS Lovebirds.  As can be viewed in the image, the back side of the Lovebirds rests in the largest indentation.  The smaller indentation in the foam closes over the base keeping the figurine firmly in proper position when the foam-enclosed figurine is placed into the box.

A special thanks to Jane Warner, co-author to Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski for consulting on the Swarovski Lovebirds Box article.

Regarding availability and replacement value, the SCS Swarovski Lovebirds Box is becoming harder and harder to find.  For one, early on, collectors were unaware of how important it would become to save the original boxes.  Even for collectors who did save them, the Lovebirds boxes did not tolerate frequent usage…..the cardboard was thin and would easily tear.  Opening and closing them even a few times could result in tears on several sides of the box.  While the picture shows a box in excellent condition, for the most part, collectors should not expect boxes to look this clean.  I did not find any in the online auctions.  In the last completed transaction at Crystal Exchange America,  Swarovski Lovebirds Box  sold in excess of  $700 with their commission!



Jun 302012
 

The Swarovski Lovebirds crystal figurine included a special Lovebirds Togetherness Certificate and custom Swarovski Togetherness Box. The crystal giant only offered the SCS membership to five English-speaking countries when it came about in 1987.  For this reason, it was not necessary to have a multi-lingual Swarovski certificate for the Swarovski Lovebirds.

However, at Crystal Exchange America, we have seen a variety of authentic Swarovski COA documents for the Swarovski Lovebirds:

Swarovski Togetherness Lovebirds Certificate, 1987

Swarovski Lovebirds Certificate for the 1987 Togetherness Lovebirds

Both variations of the Swarovski Lovebirds COA is identical on the front, and includes the same picture of the crystal figurine on the inside.  The only difference is whether or not there is the authenticity information in French on the left side of the interior of the Togetherness COA.

The Swarovski –assigned part numbers can be found on the back side in a very small font.  The Swarovski Lovebirds English certificate is DO4E861. The Swarovski Lovebirds English and French certificate is DO4E86.  The Lovebirds Certificate can also be found using another reference # DO1X861C, which was originally used in the Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski Price Guide.

Swarovski Togetherness Lovebirds Certificate, Complete with white envelope.

Swarovski Togetherness Lovebirds Certificate, Envelope on left, Certificate Front on Right..

The Swarovski Lovebirds COA was originally in a square white envelope when it was packaged with the crystal figurine.  However, we do not commonly see the envelope when there is a sales transaction pending on the Swarovski Lovebirds.  This original envelope is tissue-lined, and bears the Swarovski Collectors Society logo on the front side.

It is important to remember that the Swarovski Lovebirds does have a COA that is specific to this figurine.  Less knowledgeable collectors have posted online auctions selling their figurine to include the original box and certificate, yet posted a picture of the Lovebirds with a generic product booklet instead.

A special thanks to Jane Warner, co-author to Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski for consulting on the Swarovski Lovebirds Certificate article.

Regarding availability and replacement value, the SCS Swarovski Lovebirds Certificate is on the more-difficult side to find.  I was able to locate on ebay for $139 with free shipping.  It is the English only certificate with the envelope.  At Crystal Exchange America, the only listing for the Swarovski Lovebirds Certificate does not specify language is priced over $300 with their commission.



Jun 292012
 

2012 is the 25th anniversary of the Swarovski Crystal Society (better known as the Swarovski SCS).   According to the crystal brand, there are over 300,000 members in their exclusive Swarovski club.  Swarovski is commemorating the event with some special figurines, including the Swarovski Jubilee Dragon.   Kristall Buzz is going to join in on the celebration featuring articles on the Swarovski Annual Editions over the next couple of months.  Swarovski Lovebirds are the feature crystal figure of this article.

Togetherness Lovebirds - Swarovski SCS 1987 Annual Edition

Swarovski SCS Lovebirds - Togetherness, 1987 Annual Edition

The Swarovski Lovebirds were available for purchase only in 1987 for collectors who were members in the Swarovski SCS.  At that time, SCS was an acronym for Swarovski Collectors Society.  The Swarovski SCS was begun in 1987 only in the English-speaking countries: USA, Canada, Australia, Great Britain, and South Africa.  As a result, the distribution channel for the Togetherness Lovebirds was much more limited than it is today.

The Swarovski Togetherness Lovebirds stands just over 4” tall.  It is a figurine with 2 clear birds, somewhat looking at each other.  They have frosted beaks and are perched on a frosted branch.

Following the release of the Swarovski Lovebirds, two Swarovski designers were given credit for this beautiful design:  Adi Stocker and Max Schreck.  ‘Togetherness’ is the only figurine designed by 2 Swarovski artists.  For about 10 years, either designer was permitted to sign the crystal figurine (at designer signing events).  But in 1998, Swarovski decided to give full credit of the Togetherness design to Max Schreck and Adi Stocker was no longer permitted to sign it.

The SCS Lovebirds does contain what the crystal brand calls the ‘backstamp / bottomstamp’, which is included for the sake of authenticity.  Looking closely at the underside of the frosted base, the designer’s initials “MS” and the year “87” can be seen.

The Lovebirds were known using the Swarovski part number DO1X861, and years later the system number 013 560 was revealed, so it can be identified using either number.

The Swarovski Lovebirds is one of three crystal figurines in the Swarovski Caring and Sharing trilogy.

Other Swarovski Lovebird designs include the Swarovski Baby Lovebirds, which were produced 1996 – 2011.

A special thanks to Jane Warner, co-author to Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books on Swarovski for consulting on the Swarovski Lovebirds article.

The SCS Swarovski Lovebirds retailed for $150 USD in 1987.  The purchase price included the crystal figurine, a custom box for the figurine, and a Swarovski COA (certificate of authenticity).    While the resale price of the Swarovski Lovebirds spiked to over $4000 shortly after 2000, a mint condition figurine, complete with original packaging can generally be purchased on the secondary market for $2300 – $2700, from Swarovski expert dealers, like Crystal Exchange America.



Jun 192012
 

Several days ago, I wrote about a limited edition Swarovski – Steiff Bear that was a spring 2012 release.  There is also another spring release limited edition teddy bear…the Swarovski Steiff Bear Shelly.

Steiff Bear Shelly with a Swarovski Scallop Pendant, Limited Edition in 2012

Swarovski Steiff Bear Shelly, 2012 Limited Edition

Stieff’s description reveals that Swarovski Steiff Shelly white felted mohair teddy bear.  The bear brand indicates that Shelly is ready for a wonderful day at the beach.  At a glance, her pendant shell resembles the Swarovski Scallop in a topaz color, but at a zoomed in view, I don’t believe they are the same.  The Swarovski Scallop was the 2006 gift when SCS members initially joined the Swarovski club or when returning members renewed their SCS membership.  The scallop in 2006 was clear and went with the Swarovski Wonders of the Sea trilogy, which consisted of Swarovski Harmony in 2005, Swarovski Eternity in 2006, and Swarovski Community in 2007.

Steiff Bear Shelly is a Limited Edition Bear with a maximum production of 1500 units. The Steiff USA web site and stores in North America are accepting orders for this Swarovski teddy bear.  The suggested retail price on the bear is $240.  I found Swarovski Steiff Shelly in stock at a slightly lower price at Sunny-Bears.com .

Crystal Exchange America has a few retired Swarovski Steiff bears, including Steiff Bear Crystal, Steiff Bear Jewels, Steiff Bear Poinsettia, and Steiff Bear Sapphire if you are looking for an older one.