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Beading Q And A: Swarovski Crystals (4/8/2011)

2011 April 8

Ruth asks…

Where is the best place for buying Swarovski crystal beads?

At my local store, 18 of 5301 Swarovski beads cost about $7, which is way too overpriced. Artbeads has recently increased their price (in fact, they do it all the time).

I want to purchase beads in quantities of 50, so can you recommend any online/eBay stores (or actual ones) that sell Swarovski crystal beads for cheap and often give quantity discounts? I’m looking for low prices as well as low postage to Canada.

Thanks!~

BeadGal answers:

I don’t know about low postage costs, but http://www.firemountaingems.com/ has good discounts, and now they have changed it to discounts on just about everything you order at one time instead of discounts on the type of product you order.

The cheapest website for Swarovski that I’ve found so far is BlueMud – www.bluemud.com . They have a discount system that gives you a percentage off based on how much you would spend before discount. Their first discount level starts at $50. I’ve been happy with every order I’ve gotten from them.

If you get lucky on ebay you will pay about $5US for 100 beads… I’m not sure about shipping though.

It seems like http://cosmic.ca/crystal/index.htm has cheap Swarovski, but they seam to deal with more bulk than anything else. (They are in Canada though)

Lizzie asks…

What’s the difference between Swarovski crystal beads and “crystal” beads that sell by strands?

I see some stores that sell “crystalbeads that look just like the Swarovski ones, but in strands. Looks much cheaper (http://beadbuddies.net/Crystal_Round_8mm.html). What’s the difference? How can you tell real Swarovski crystals from just plain crystal beads?

BeadGal answers:

Swarovski beads are more expensive, but they are usually a much better quality and have more sparkle.

Sandy asks…

What is the difference between Crystallized Swarovski Elements with Swarovski crystal beads?

I was wondering if the Crystallized Swarovski Elements (sold at Michael’s and Joann’s and other craft stores) are considered Swarovski crystal beads and whether or not they are in fact different?

I mostly hear crystallized elements so I am not sure if they are real crystal beads or just have a little bit of crystal in them. Thanks! Also, if there are any websites you can lead me to, then that will be great. Thanks!

BeadGal answers:

No, they should be the same. The Swarovski company wanted to distinguish the ever-growing bead and jewelry component division of their company by giving it its own identity: CRYSTALLIZED – Swarovski Elements.

Lisa asks…

How do I purchase Swarovski crystal beads directly from Swarovski??

I am kicking around the idea of opening my own business selling beading supplies, I don’t know who to get in touch w/ from Swarovski to purchase my Swarovski beads though their company.

BeadGal answers:

I think you have to go through an authorized dealer. Try http://www.kgottfriedinc.com/.

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