Chamilia Beads



European-style charms are becoming more and more popular. Surprisingly, it was Trollbeads, invented in 1976, that started the craze (I always thought it was the Pandora bracelet that came first, but no), and nowadays, there is seemingly no end to the different brand names to choose from, and there are also many companies that make their own beads (of varying quality) that are compatible with these bracelets.

The different brands are all pretty much the same, with only small differences (Troll beads do not have threads, some beads will not fit on other brand’s chains, etc.). Interestingly, three of the “big ones” are Danish -  Troll beads, Lovelinks, and Pandora jewelry, but I guess it shouldn’t be surprising, since Denmark has a long tradition of design and jewelry making.

Chamilia beads, however, are from the US. The company was started in 2002 by Killian Rieder and Jeff Julkowski and is headquartered in Minneapolis. The designs are made by Killian, a graduate of FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology) in New York. She worked as a designer at Ralph Lauren Polo for many years before returning to her native Minnesota to open her own business.

The Chamilia beads were an instant success, and today, the collection consists of over 600 beads as well as several different bracelets, necklaces, and earrings that you can add the beads to.

Their beads are made from solid Sterling silver, 14k gold, colored stones, Swarovski Crystals, and Murano glass, and new designs are introduced on a regular basis. They have a (very popular) special Disney collection, as well as the Cause series, which supports several different charities. If I had to pick a favorite though, it would be the Chamilia glass beads – they are all stunning.

The bracelets in this post are all examples of Chamilia bead bracelets. The first three are their own designs, and the one below is one that I put together for myself. Gorgeous, aren’t they?

Photos: Chamilia

How do you know that what you’re buying are authentic Chamilia beads?
First of all, always buy from authorized Chamilia retailers (who are NOT allowed to sell Chamilia charms on auction sites like Amazon and eBay). Second, look for the Chamilia mark. In 2008, the company started stamping all their products, so if you are buying newer beads and bracelets, look for one of the following marks: C, Chamilia, CHAM, 925 or Cham 925.

How are they different from Pandora beads?
Chamilia beads also have a threaded core, but the bracelet itself is one smooth piece, it doesn’t have the two “stops” you see on Pandora bracelets. Instead, to keep the beads from moving, you can use their special lock pieces, which can be placed anywhere on the bracelet.

The Disney collection is exclusive to Chamilia, so that’s another difference, and the Chamilia beads tend to be a teensy bit more affordable than Pandora’s, but other than that, they are very similar.

Compatibility
You can put Chamilia beads on Pandora bracelets (and vice versa) as well as those from Biagi beads, Tedora, Bacio, Lovelinks and some of the Troll beads styles.

For more gorgeous designs, see my latest Chamilia charmsChamilia bracelet and Chamilia bracelets posts.


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4 Responses to Chamilia Beads

  1. [...] They have a totally different look from what we think of as European-style (like the Lovelinks, Chamilia beads and Pandora bracelet) more like a traditional charm bracelet, but easier to put [...]

  2. [...] other charms of this type, check out my Lovelinks and Chamilia beads posts. Both brands are compatible with Pandora bracelets, giving you even more mix-and-match [...]

  3. [...] As I have mentioned before (in my Chamilia beads post), authentic Chamilia charms will fit on the Pandora bracelet, as we all as those from [...]

  4. [...] Traditional Cathy Waterman – Traditional, Pre-made Cellini – Traditional, Vintage Chamilia beads – European-style, Kids Chanel – Vintage, Clip on, Traditional Charity Charms – Clip on, [...]

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