Swarovski is a name that’s thrown around in the high end and luxury fashion world quite often. From collaborations to selling their own designs, Swarovski is the pinnacle of crystal quality (1). Even Lady Gaga can be caught flashing the new Jimmy Choo x Timberland Swarovski crystal covered boots. But what are Swarovski crystals? What is it about them that makes them so desirable? This Austrian owned company may have a more surprising backstory than most luxury jewelry companies.
The Start of Swarovski
Swarovski, headquartered in Wattens, Austria, is an Austrian born company that specializes in producing glass. The company was first started by Daniel Swarovski in 1895 and is now run by its fifth generation of family members. At a young age, Daniel Swarovski worked with his father in a small family owned glass factory. It was there that Daniel served an apprenticeship under his father and learned the ins and outs of fine glass cutting. In 1892 he finally patented the first electric cutting machine which lead to the production of crystal glass. The Swarovski vision was to create a diamond accessible to everyone by making crystals affordable. However, with such a high quality product comes a high demand.
Swarovski began to soar and continued to explore other opportunities in the glass industry. In 1935, Daniel’s son, Wilhelm, created a customized pair of binoculars. This led to the wildly successful launch of Swarovski Optik which is still operational today. Swarovski Optik manufactures any kind of optical instrument including rifle scopes, telescopes, and binoculars. But that wasn’t all. Swarovski also started Tyrolit in 1919 bringing the polishing and grinding tools that were typically used in the crystal business to other markets. Now, Tyrolit manufactures grinding, sawing, drilling, and dressing tools, and also acts as a supplier of tools and machines for other companies.
Generation after generation began to grow and expand the hugely successful company. However, it wasn’t until 2012 that Nadja Swarovski, the great great granddaughter of Daniel Swarovski, became the first woman on the Swarovski executive board in 2012. Now Victoria Swarovski, singer, TV hostess, and winner of Let’s Dance Germany, is now the next heiress in line for the entire Swarovski fortune.
High Quality Products
With centuries of experience, the Swarovski Crystals have perfected their cut and quality. They produce anything from glass sculptures, jewelry, miniature collectable figurines, rhinestones, home décor, and of course, chandeliers. The crystal is made by melting a mixture of high quality, carefully sourced materials including soda, quartz sand, and other ingredients, and melts them down at an extremely high temperature. The crystals are cut with Swarovski copyrighted cuts that are unmatched to their competition. From there, Swarovski coats their crystals with special metallic chemical coatings to give their products the rainbow spectrum when light hits it. Some of the companies most popular coating finishes include “AB” or Aurore Borealis, Crystal Transmission, Volcano, and Dorado.
The Swarovski name holds the most pristine reputation of any crystal maker in the world. The products they offer, and have been offering for decades now, cannot be compared to any other level of quality crystals in the market today. With a history in quality jewelry and glass wear, it is to no surprise that Swarovski has risen to the top as on the of the most desired luxury jewelry brand names.