Oct 152012
 

Swarovski fanatics are constantly seeking that rare find, and hopefully at an affordable price.  The more rare the find, the more exciting that it is!  One such rare Swarovski find might be the Swarovski Pentagon Paperweight, that is seldom found at an affordable price for most collectors.

Rare Paperweight....the Swarovski Pentagon

Swarovski Pentagon Paperweight

Jimer at Swan Seekers Network sent us an article from her newsletter archives about this figurine for collectors who are uncertain about what the rare Swarovski Crystal Pentagon is.

From Maret Webb, who originally wrote about a Pentagon found in Italy, basically shared this:  The large Pentagonal crystal, Swarovski item # 9456, weighs 2.2 lbs was designed in March, 1977.  Another one was later located in Arizona.

One thing that both paperweights had in common was literature, written in German.  The translation of the literature they ascertained was…. The original examination date for the design was March, 1977. No one knows for certain if that was a production time or design time since it contains the Swan logo, which was not introduced until 1989.  The category description for the Pentagon is “ready product” from the ‘main program’.  The literature in German further indicated that the item was produced in Factory #1, which was surmised to be in Wattens.

10 colors of vaporization effect are listed as available, as well as the opportunity for an emblem.  (Crystal Exchange comment…these are likely to be the same 10 colors that we find on the colored paperweights like carousels, rios, and pyramids).  Suggestion of the emblem leads one to believe that this was a presentation type piece that could be customized upon order and that this is further reference to consultation with the customer.

The Pentagon comes in a very nice box with metal hinges and a latch.  The box sides can somehow be removed, leaving the Pentagon on a blue velvet pedestal for display.

No one knows how many were ever produced, but they are seldom seen.  The literature makes reference to a minimum order of 240 units, but it is not clear if that was for the order of which the Pentagon came from or for new orders at that time.  Referring back to the group designation “ready product” , one may conclude that the factory produced 240 units at a single time, which would then be available for customization.

A special thanks goes out to Jimer at SwanSeekers.com for the Swarovski Pentagon article!

According to Warner’s Blue Ribbon Book on Swarovski, the Pentagon is 3 ¾” high.  They indicate that the Swarovski Pentagon figurine is also known as the “School Block Paperweight”.

I have regularly seen this Pentagon Swarovski Paperweight on ebay, since Feb, 2012.  The ebay seller generally advertises with a Buy It Now price of $5700 – $6000 USD.  I have not seen this item sell, despite the numerous attempts.

Sep 032011
 

Through some business relationships, we recently learned about bottles with the Swarovski label affixed to them.  The bottle has been referred to as a “bitters bottle”.

Background:  According to Wikipedia, “bitters is an alcoholic beverage that is flavored with herbal essences and has a bitter or bittersweet flavor. There are numerous brands of bitters that were formerly marketed as patent medicines but are now considered to be digestifs, rather than medicines. They commonly have an alcoholic strength of 45% ABV and are used as digestifs as flavoring in cocktails.”

Dating back as far as the early 19th century, bitters bottles were known for their unusual shapes, colors and ornate designs. Bitters were ‘supposedly’ cures for stomach illnesses, but in reality alcohol disguised as medicine.  Bitters were popular wherever and whenever alcohol was not ‘acceptable’.

Swarovski Bitters Bottle and Glasses

Swarovski Bitters Bottle and Glasses

Swarovski label on Bitters Bottle

Swarovski Label

 

The bottle in the picture is about 7″ tall.  The 6 glasses are slightly taller than 2″.

From the information we have gathered from our reliable contacts, the container and glasses were purchased from a Tyrolean glass-blowing company and an artist at Swarovski hand-painted them.  It is for this reason that the Swarovski sticker label is attached to the bottle and glasses.  The bitters bottle and glasses were available for purchase in a shoppe that was likely open to Swarovski employees only.

What a tremendous find on rare Swarovski!  Who would have thought there to be any connection between the bottle, glasses, and our favorite crystal brand?  It was only because of the Swarovski sticker label, still attached that it was possible to make any such connection.  Because of the octagonal shaped label, this suggests dating of the bottle and glasses in the 1970’s and mid-1980’s.

Other rare Swarovski finds and sales have been documented on the Kristall Buzz in 2011:

Look for more rare Swarovski stories on the Kristall Buzz, and check out the Crystal Exchange America web site www.CrystalExchange.com for rare Swarovski figurines!

Jun 292011
 

In 1988 the International Winter Olympics were held in Calgary, Canada.  Swarovski Canada officially licensed at least 2 Swarovski crystal plaques to commemorate the event.  I have heard rumors about a plaque with bears and a flag being previously discovered, but there was no year on the plaque.  The Swarovski plaques are not marked with a Swarovski logo on the crystal, so finding a rare one with a Swarovski box was a real treat.

The Saddledome plaque was numbered 9503M2692, and officially referred to by Swarovski as Saddledome, Iceberg.  Unfortunately, the original box for the rare plaque featuring the bears hoisting the Canadian flag has been lost.  The Saddledome Iceburg can be found in Warners Blue Ribbon Books Beyond Silver Crystal as well as the plaque with bears using the Warner’s assigned product number of BSC201000007.  The bears plaque itself is very interesting, with Calgary, 1988, Winter Olympic Games, in English and French, engraved.  The same blank crystal plaque was used for both Olympic memorabilia.  It has physical size of 3 3/4″ wide and 3″ high.

Swarovski Olympic Iceburg Plaques
Swarovski Box for a Swarovski Crystal Olympic Plaque

These plaques indeed are rare Swarovski crystal plaques to find.  They may also be sought after by avid Swarovski crystal collectors, Canadians, or any participating Olympic athlete.

Thank you to our Swarovski fanatics friends for passing along the information for us to share with crystal collectors around the world!

Jun 152011
 

The Kristall Buzz, a Blog on Swarovski Crystal, has launched a brief YouTube video starring two Swarovski crystal figurines, both Swarovski Bee crystal figurines! Take a look!

The first Swarovski Bee in the video is the Crystal In Flight Rhodium Bee. This rare Swarovski Rhodium Bee was introduced in 1985 and retired in 1986. This Swarovski Bee was available only in the North American market: USA only (not in Canada like the Gold Bee). During its 2 year production time, it retailed for $200. On the secondary market, a Swarovski MIB Rhodium Bee presently sells in the range of $1500 – $2000.

The second Swarovski bee in the video is the Crystal In Flight Gold Bee . The Gold Bee was introduced in 1985 and retired in 1988. This Swarovski Bee was available only in the North American market : USA and Canada only. During its 4 year production time, it retailed for $230. On the secondary market, in MINT condition with original box (Swarovski MIB), it presently sells $650 – $850.

Both Swarovski Bees were produced with the old Swarovski logo, the Block SC logo. Both have been noticed to have different types of supporting feet underneath the flat disk holding the flower petals in place. The feet may be smooth, faceted, or molded. The different feet do not seem to impact the selling prices of these crystal figurines on the secondary market.

Both these Swarovski crystal bees are getting harder to find, but can be found on the Crystal Exchange America web site in the “Insects” category!

May 032011
 

Today, crystal fanatics all around the world (myself included) received an email from Swarovski announcing that the Swarovski Sunshine Mo will be available for purchase (in 23 countries) beginning  May 30, 2011!

The Sunshine Mo crystal cow looks adorable.  She is a very bright yellow crystal figurine wearing a red and pink flower necklace that resembles a Hawaiian lei.  I still think that Sunshine Mo might make a great sister or cousin for ‘Hula Mo’! (hint, hint Swarovski!)

Swarovski Sunshine Mo, Limited Edition 2011

According to the Swarovski web site, they say that this online limited edition is going to be a rare Swarovski figurine.  This then begs the question….does that mean that Swarovski is producing and releasing a much smaller quantity of Sunshine Mo figurines than her predecessors, sisters, and cousins on the Swarovski Lovlots West End?

Here’s for the introductions of the newbie Mo’s limited edition Lovlots relatives:
  • Swarovski Pinky Mo (LE 2007) – transparent pink cow with solid pink horns and bell
  • Swarovski Alabaster Mo (LE 2007.  production quantity limited to 300); solid pink cow with transparent pink horns and bell
  • Swarovski Soccer Mo (LE 2008) – red cow with white horns and ball (NO bell)
  • Swarovski Flower Mo (LE 2009) – green flowered cow with white horns and bell
  • Swarovski Halloween Mo (LE 2009) – orange cow with black horns and bell
  • Swarovski Country Mos (LE 2010) – spotted cows with matching horns and bell
  • Swarovski Glamour Mos (LE 2010) – golden cow and black cow with white horns (NO bell)
  • Swarovski Charming Mo (LE 2011) pink hearted cow with greyish horns (NO bell)

 

Rare Swarovski Alabaster Mo

Crystal Exchange America has listings for many of the Swarovski Mo Cows and Swarovski Lovlots special editions.  Just visit http://www.crystalexchange.com/ and navigate to the ‘Lovlots and Zodiac’ category in the menu on the left side of the web site.

Mar 202011
 

The Swarovski Hong Kong Pyramid is an exceptional sculpture that was in the Swarovski Crystal Home Accessories product line.  The Swarovski crystal figurine that sold in January had a price tag of $900 with shipping cost included.

Are you curious to know how rare or hard-to-find that it may be?  Swarovski produced only 1997 of them from 1997 to 1998.  Each of the Hong Kong Pyramids produced is numbered, that that makes this sculpture a Swarovski Numbered Limited Edition (Swarovski NLE).  The original MSRP of the Swarovski crystal figurine was approximately $1100 USD.

The designer who created the unique sculpture wasTsang Mei Fong.  The designer’s design was a competition winner, where her crystal figurine was selected to commemorate the transition year of Hong Kong.  The Swarovski Part number is 9280 000 035.  The Swarovski system number is 222 858.  This magnificent art object measures 12″ in height and 2″ square at the base.

Swarovski Hong Kong Crystal with Swarovski Identification Label and Designer Inscription

 

This rare Swarovski crystal is not necessarily hard to find, despite the limited number of production.  Crystal Exchange America presently has 4 listed, ranging in price from $1700 – $2100.  One or two can generally be found in the online auctions near $1200 – $1500.

 

Illusion looking at Swarovski Hong Kong Crystal through the bottom facet

My advice to Swarovski collectors is to purchase the Swarovski crystal figurines that you really like….ones that tug at your heart.  One never knows what is going to happen in the economy or how well a figurine may sell to make it more desirable or sell for a much higher price in the future.  If this were predictable, we would all be making good investments in crystal and in other market areas.

Mar 132011
 

Crystal Exchange America has a very joyous couple of clients who recently purchased a rare Swarovski Mouse. This crystal mouse is a very special figurine that was never sold or marketed by Swarovski.

This particular Swarovski mouse is like no others that I have ever seen.  At the onset of the transaction, the selling client stated that less than 1000 were produced and that it was a gift to some retailers.  The selling client was located in the European community.  So, it sound like it may be a piece of rare Swarovski?  During the sale, I learned that less than 400 were actually made in 2006. It does contain the Swarovski swan logo, but because the mouse was a special family member project, it was never assigned an official Swarovski part number or system number.

Rare Swarovski Mouse Crystal Figurine
The mouse is just over 2.5″ long, and features silver whiskers and black ears.  The black tail is about 3″ long and resembles a round shoe lace.  The crystal body reminds me of a bell shape.  It is 1.75″ wide and 1.25″ high at the broadest point.  The face and back end are polished, not faceted like most Swarovski figurines.

This rare Swarovski figurine is documented in the 2011 edition of Warner’s Blue Ribbon Books.  It is in the Silver Crystal Book, located in the Employee chapter.  No Swarovski Value was assigned to the figurine in the book.

This was a terrific find and the Swarovski fanatics who made the purchase are very happy collectors.  I’m thrilled that Crystal Exchange America was able to assist in the transaction to make all parties involved satisfied clients.

Mar 102011
 

Rare Swarovski Violins?  FUSE?  What?  I had never heard of FUSE, Ben Lee, Linzi Stoppard, and nor did I know anything about Swarovski violins until a few days ago.  I was intrigued and thought I would share what I found with my fellow Swarovski friends.

FUSE is a string group, based out of the UK.  They formed their group in 2007.  The group leaders are Ben Lee and Linzi Stoppard.  These are unique musicians…. They play the ‘electric violins’.  Woa…but not just any electric violin (I didn’t even know such a thing existed), they play Swarovski crystalencrusted violins, decorated with over 50,000 Swarovski crystals each.

And if that doesn’t sound incredible enough, these violins are not ‘museum display units’, they are really used during the FUSE performances.  Each electric violin is insured for £1.0M each.  Their tour in 2010 was sponsored exclusively by Swarovski, so they have been blessed.

I’m so amazed with the Swarovski violins, that I’m overlooking the people with all the talent!  Ben Lee and Linzi Stoppard have been called the Prince and Princess of the rock violin world.  I understand that their sound is unique and original.  It is a classical-cross-over taking popular rock songs to a new platform and more.  I won’t even try to describe it further, check out the YouTube Video:

Additional FUSE information is available at Squidoo and the Electric String Quartet web site.

I am fascinated, not just with the Swarovski violins, but also with the style.  I would definitely try to attend a show if they were anywhere near Ohio.

Feb 172011
 

The Swarovski Centrotavola Centerpiece is a rare and unique sculpture that was in the Daniel Swarovski product line.  So you are wondering just how rare it is?  Swarovski produced only 250 of them from 1989 to 1997.  The Centrotavola bowl is a Swarovski NLE. Each of the Centrotavola centerpiece bowls had a numbered certificate (matches the number engraved on the bowl) accompanying the rare figurine.  The original MSRP of the figurine was $5275.

Swarovski Centrotavola Centerpiece sitting on Swarovski Box

The Swarovski artist credited with the design is Ettore Sottsass.  The Swarovski part number is 9980 000 005.  The Swarovski system number is 155 459.  This magnificent centerpiece measures 10″ in diameter.
There are surprising factors in the sale…the length of time listed and the final selling price.  I’d like to think that a Swarovski limited edition figurine of 250 units would definitely hold the original retail price.  And that a Swarovski limited edition figurine of 250 units would have a faster turnaround with respect to how quickly it sells after it is listed on the web site.

This rare Swarovski crystal Centrotavola was listed  on the Crystal Exchange America web site (http://www.crystalexchange.com/) nearly 2 ½ years prior to selling.  Not only that, the list price when it sold was about 33% LESS than the original MSRP.  The Centrotavola bowl was in MINT condition with all original packaging, so condition, certificate, and box did not play a part in the final price.

Swarovski Certificate, engraved number, and engraved designer signature

So what does this mean to Swarovski fanatics?  I believe there are a lot of factors that contribute to whether or not retired Swarovski sells quickly and the final selling price of the figurines.  In this case, I think the biggest factors are the economy and the overall appeal to the collector.  The economy is still weaker, contributing to the overall trading prices on ALL retired Swarovski collectibles.  Since our beautiful Swarovski crystal is not a necessity, people and collectors are spending less money from their expendable budget on it.  While the Centrotavola is certainly a magnificent Swarovski figurine, I think that many collectors still prefer animal-type figurines and sculptures.   My company, Crystal Exchange America, has a much higher turnover rate on animals or cute figurines, than on functional items, like candleholders, bowls, or more artsy-type productions from Swarovski.

My strong recommendation is to purchase the Swarovski crystal figurines that a collector personally likes and will get enjoyment out of displaying.  I used to purchase more Swarovski than I do now….mostly due to the economy and limitations on my budget.  So, it is more important than ever for me to pick my favorite Swarovski figurines when I make that decision to purchase.

Dec 062010
 

This is the time of year when Swarovski Ornaments are most popular on the secondary market and Ebay auctions.  The current Swarovski 2010 ornament is available as well as very old, hard-to-find, and rare ornaments.

Presently, there is a rare Swarovski Ornament on Ebay:  the 1996 Cadillac Ornament.  The 1996 Cadillac Ornament is a teardrop-shaped Swarovski crystal, customized for the Cadillac company.  It has a Christmas tree etching in the middle.  Below the etching is the word “Cadillac”, and the feature year 1996.  This ornament is in a green box, with a velvet-like lining on the inside.

1996 Swarovski Cadillac Ornament

1996 Swarovski Cadillac Ornament

1996 Swarovski Cadillac Ornament Packaging and Paperwork

1996 Swarovski Cadillac Ornament Packaging and Paperwork

I did find other Cadillac ornaments in addition to the 1996 Swarovski Cadillac ornament on Ebay.  1998 and 1999 Cadillac ornaments were listed, but closed at ‘unsold’.  From my research, I found even more:  1997, 1998, 1999, and 2000.  All the Cadillac ornaments I found utilize the teardrop crystal.  The 1997 Swarovski Cadillac ornament features a snowman in the etching. The 1998 Swarovski Cadillac ornament features bells in the etching.  The 1999 Swarovski Cadillac ornament features a wreath etching.  Lastly, the 2000 Swarovski Cadillac Ornament features a penguin in the etching.  All ornaments contain the word Cadillac, with the issue year below.  All are packaged in similar green boxes, with red interior.

The same Swarovski Crystal teardrop component was used for the 1984 Swarovski Ornament, 1987 Swarovski Ornament, 1989 Swarovski Ornament, and some 1986 Swarovski Holiday Etchings.  The 1987 ornament displays at candle.  The 1989 Ornament displays a dove and the teardrop crystal is framed by gold-tone metal in the shape of Christmas tree.  The 1986 Holiday Etchings display bells, angels, holly, mistletoe, and other designs.  These 11 Holiday Etchings are among the rarest of Swarovski Ornaments.

All these Swarovski ornaments mentioned here (from the 1980’s) have the year etched below the feature design.  They were all released by Swarovski by their “Giftware Suite” division, so they were only available in the USA at the time of production.

Some of these Swarovski Ornaments can be found at the Crystal Exchange America web site.  If you have one of these and wish to sell, now is the time to do it with Swarovski crystal fanatics collectors naturally looking at this time of year.

Oct 302010
 

The rare Swarovski Buddha is on ebay now!

The Swarovski Buddha was originally available for a donation of about $2000.  It was a Limited Edition figurine commissioned for production by Swarovski with a maximum of 10,000 produced.

This ebay auction has an opening bid of $775, so it seems likely to sell.  Check out the auction for the Swarovski Buddha that ends on November 3, 2010.  Good luck to all who bid!