Editorial: Is Swarovski Cheap?

16804534746_c2f3a15d4d_b Photo courtesy of crafty1tutu. Earlier this year, Swarovski celebrated its 120th Anniversary. Because of this, I’ve seen it in the news lately, most notably in a blog posted a few days ago on AtlasObscura. I think the article is fantastic—it highlights the history and the process of the Swarovski company (at least what little we know of it), as well as its rise to fame. But the article is also clear on one point—the materials sure aren’t that expensive. This makes some people feel Swarovski is, well, cheap. I’ve heard the refrain several times, especially by those in the business of fine jewelry: Swarovski is glass. The materials cost nothing. It’s costume jewelry. That phrase. “Costume Jewelry.” It should always be spoken with an elitist British accent. It carries the most demeaning connotations. If you want to play princess dress-up like a 5 year old in your mother’s closet, get yourself some costume jewelry. If you want to pretend like you’re a person who can afford the real stuff, buy some Swarovski. I’m not evangelizing Swarovksi, but I am picking on you if your ego doesn’t permit you to say “Fashion Jewelry.” Jewelry isn’t just all about rarity and expense. Don’t forget we wear this stuff because it’s beautiful. Who wants to walk the streets in $10,000 of loot, anyways? I personally like that I can afford lots of Swarovski. I like that I can pile up a huge Mariana collection in my spare room. It’s inexpensive, but it sure is beautiful. And with Swarovski’s commitment to make their crystals more and more brilliant, who knows? Maybe I’ll prefer it to my diamonds in a decade.