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The History of Swarovski Crystal

Swarovski crystal figurines and jewelry items are renowned the world over for their breathtaking beauty and intricate detail. But believe it or not many collectors are not aware of the rich history behind the manufacturing process of these magnificent works of crystalline art.

The Swarovski company was founded by Daniel Swarovski in 1895 in Wattens, Austria. When Daniel was growing up the industrial age was well on its way. This created the perfect nurturing environment for his creative and industrious spirit. His experiments with glass cutting and machinery soon led to his invention of a machine that would mechanically cut and polish glass, a process which up to this point had been done only by hand. The company was spectacularly successful and was soon creating glass crystal for everyone from the optics industry to the jewelry and fashion industries. Their success has never diminished and continues to this day.

While Swarovski still manufactures glass for various industries and while Swarovski jewelry such as rings, earrings, bracelets and necklaces are quite popular they are most well known for the stunningly beautiful collectible animal figurines they create known as "Swarovski Silver Crystal". In 1974 designer Max Schreck started a new product line rather accidentally when he built a tiny mouse out of glass chandelier parts on a whim. Soon to follow was a series of crystal animals, the most famous of which were crystal lovebirds. Today Swarovski's Silver Crystal division is a major part of the company.

How a Swarovski crystal figurine is created is a closely guarded secret. In the beginning the figurines were manufactured from random chandelier parts the company had available. This soon changed to the modern process which is quite a bit more complex to say the least. Initially the designers will study a proposed subject by going through photos, books, etc. Once a design is decided upon they create a rough model. From this point it is passed on to a team of engineers who create a series of blueprints from the model. These blueprints are of the separate pieces of the design. A team of machinists then create the tools necessary to create these pieces and bond them together. Based on how complex the figurine is there can be anywhere from 5 to 50 separate pieces required! These pieces are manufactured by pouring molten glass into molds. The glass is heated and cooled multiple times which anneals it, a process which strengthens the glass and prevents it from shattering. Once finally cooled the pieces are tested for clarity. Only an absolutely perfect piece is allowed to go onto the final stages where it is precision ground, polished and glued together with all of the other pieces using transparent glue.

This is quite an involved process and seeing how much work goes into each Swarovski figurine makes one truly appreciate the craftsmanship involved!

What you see here is a sampling of all the Swarovski crystal collectibles available for sale on eBay - many rare and retired. If you don't see exactly what you're looking for use our site search to see even more items!

Swarovski Crystal 1999 SCS Annual Edition Masquerade Pierrot Plaque, Mint, Logo

Swarovski Crystal 1999 SCS Annual Edition Masquerade Pierrot Plaque, Mint, Logo

$1.04

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Swarovski Crystal Kris Bear – Christmas, Annual Edition 2020 Decoration 5506812

Swarovski Crystal Kris Bear – Christmas, Annual Edition 2020 Decoration 5506812

$126.95

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Swarovski Crystal Planet Millenium Edition 238985 MIB & COA 7607 000 004 -239

Swarovski Crystal Planet Millenium Edition 238985 MIB & COA 7607 000 004 -239

$59.95

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Swarovski Anniversary Mouse Limited Edition 2020 Crystal Figurine 5492742

Swarovski Anniversary Mouse Limited Edition 2020 Crystal Figurine 5492742

$139.85

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Swarovski Crystal Figurine Kris Bear Christmas Annual Edition 2018 5399267 MIB

Swarovski Crystal Figurine Kris Bear Christmas Annual Edition 2018 5399267 MIB

$94.95

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Swarovski Crystal SCS Mother & Child 1990 Dolphins Lead Me Annual Edition

Swarovski Crystal SCS Mother & Child 1990 Dolphins Lead Me Annual Edition

$160.00

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Swarovski Crystal Annual Edition 1999 Masquerade Pierrot 7400 099 000 SCS MIB

Swarovski Crystal Annual Edition 1999 Masquerade Pierrot 7400 099 000 SCS MIB

$79.95

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NIB Swarovski Crystal Figure SCS 10th Anniversary Edition Squirrel W/COA

NIB Swarovski Crystal Figure SCS 10th Anniversary Edition Squirrel W/COA

$64.00

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Swarovski Crystal Figurine Kris Bear Christmas Annual Edition 2014 5058935 MIB

Swarovski Crystal Figurine Kris Bear Christmas Annual Edition 2014 5058935 MIB

$79.95

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New Swarovski Crystal Party Mo Limited Edition 2018 Figurine 5301580

New Swarovski Crystal Party Mo Limited Edition 2018 Figurine 5301580

$53.95

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Swarovski Crystal Disney Figurine RAPUNZEL Limited Edition 2018 -5301564 New

Swarovski Crystal Disney Figurine RAPUNZEL Limited Edition 2018 -5301564 New

$359.10

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Swarovski Crystal Figurine Porsche Type 356 Limited Edition WAP 05040015 MIB W/C

Swarovski Crystal Figurine Porsche Type 356 Limited Edition WAP 05040015 MIB W/C

$299.95

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Swarovski Crystal The Dragon 1997 Annual Edition Fabulous Creatures W / Orig Box

Swarovski Crystal The Dragon 1997 Annual Edition Fabulous Creatures W / Orig Box

$175.00

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Swarovski Crystal Figurine Lovlos Reindeer Mo Limited Edition 2014 5059025 MIB

Swarovski Crystal Figurine Lovlos Reindeer Mo Limited Edition 2014 5059025 MIB

$89.95

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Swarovski SIKU POLAR BEAR 2011 Limited Edition SCS Crystal FIGURINE 1053154 Box

Swarovski SIKU POLAR BEAR 2011 Limited Edition SCS Crystal FIGURINE 1053154 Box

$300.00

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