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.
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.