Proenza Schouler, another hot American designer upstart, also signed on with swarovski, putting crystal accessories and beadwork trim on outfits in its fall 2004 runway show. But the design team was uneasy about overly publizing the association. "Nothing is worse than when it is too obvious that thereís a corporate sponsor, and we didnít want to come across as a sellout," says Lazaro Hernandez, one of Proenza Schoulerís two partners. "We only did one piece-a tank top-than was entirely of crystals, so it wasnít too obvious."

In the end, a half-dozen stores placed orders for the $3,000 crystal top.

Ms. Swarovski also worked feverishly behind the scenes, underwriting the high-profile Council of Fashion Designers of Americaís annual awards and sponsoring other parties and events attended by fashion luminaries.

She opened six showrooms, dubbed "creative service centers," in cities such as New York, London, Milan and Paris. The New York office is a supermarket of crystal, one whole wall fitted with dozens of narrow drawers stocking more than 350,000 variations of crystals in every shape, color and size. The centers also help designers learn how to apply the crystals to their fabric.

Her timing was fortuitous. Starting with the year-end celebrations of the millennium, fashions had shifted to more colorful, glittering clothes with sequins and beading such as the rhinestone-buckled baguette handbag by Fendi. By this time, other brands were finding that the Swarovski stamp was bringing added value. This holiday season, the crystals on a $135 Anne Klein watch arenít simply mentioned as "crystals" or "Austrian crystals," but as "Swarovski crystals."

Next page

Home| Contact us| About us| Our Irregular E-Letter| Jewelry Findings Glossary of Terms |Site map
  Frequently Asked Questions| Our Products, Filigree, Ornaments, Charms and Novelties| Privacy policy| jewelry and jewelry history|

  Guyot Brothers Co inc