Their new holiday collection is all about glitz and glam, and I really like it. New beads include five new Pave beads – round beads pave set with glittering cubic zirconias in different colors (clear, blue, black, brown and pink), and a sterling silver Christmas stocking bead. (more…)
Posts Tagged ‘pandora charm bracelets’
If the old adage “imitation is the sincerest form of flattery” is true, then Pandora should feel very flattered. If you have ever shopped for Pandora charms online, you know that there are literally millions of sites out there offering “authentic Pandora charms”. But are they? How can you be sure that what you’re buying is indeed an authentic Pandora bracelet or charm? I have received a LOT of questions regarding this, so I thought I would dedicate an entire post to the subject, in question and answer format:
How Can You Tell Authentic Pandora Beads From “Pandora Style” Beads And Charms?
- A Maker’s mark (ALE, which stands for Pandora’s founder’s Dad, Algot Enevoldsen)
- A Quality mark (S for silver, G for gold). Note: this is a more recent addition so if your older beads, like mine to the right here, do not have it, that doesn’t mean they’re fakes
- A Purity code (925 for sterling silver, 585 for 14k gold and 750 for 18k gold)
Unfortunately, many of the fake Pandora beads and charms on the market also have these markings, so to be absolutely sure that you are buying an authentic piece, shop at a Pandora store or one of their authorized online sellers.
Can You Find Authentic Pandora Charms And Bracelets On Sale? How About Other Pandora Specials?
Pandora charms do not go on sale. But authorized retailers often have Trunk Shows and other special events where you get a free something with purchase (like a free bracelet with the purchase of x number of beads or x dollars spent).
How About Retired Pandora Charms And Beads? Do They Go On Sale?
No, retired charms and beads are sold at their regular prices, no less, and not any more either. If you see Pandora beads advertised as retired and the seller is asking a higher price because they are “collectibles”, be careful.
Can We (The General Public) Buy Authentic Pandora Beads Wholesale?
There are quite a few sites that supposedly offer this, but no, we can not (only authorized retailers can).
Is It Possible To Find New Authentic Pandora Charms On eBay?
Yes, if they are pre-owned. Pandora does not authorize any of their retailers to sell on eBay (or other auction sites). People can of course sell beads and charms from their own collections, and these can obviously be authentic Pandora charms. If you find yourself in a situation where you want to buy a pre-owned bead, the best thing to do is to contact the seller, strike up a conversation, ask lots of questions, ask to see photos of the bead taken from all angles, and trust your gut instinct. If it’s a charm that is still being sold, compare the photos you get from the eBay seller to the ones on Pandora’s site and check for any discrepancies. Remember that pre-owned beads are not covered by any warranties.
Should I Buy Pandora Charms Online At All?
Yes, but make sure the seller is an authorized Pandora retailer.
Telltale Signs Of “Pandora Style Beads And Bracelets”
It’s easy enough when the seller openly advertises that what they sell is “Pandora style” but there are many out there who try to pass fakes off as genuine Pandora charms and bracelets. Price is an indication, but what else?
I did a quick Google search for “authentic Pandora charms cheap” and ended up with close to 250,000 results. Some were honest about the fact that they sell fakes, but many were not. Granted, the quality of some of these sites would be indication alone that what they’re selling is not the real thing (one site I looked at had even misspelled Pandora!), but there are also some pretty slick sites where customers could easily be fooled. The bracelets are photographed in a Pandora box where you clearly see the logo, and their charms even have the correct Pandora hallmarks. Sometimes it becomes clear that they are fakes if you read the fine print on the page, but not always. My advice? Read the small print everywhere on the site, look at the quality, compare what you see with what’s listed on Pandora’s own website, and again, trust your instincts. If you think the site is selling fakes, don’t shop there. In fact, you should report them to Pandora.
Pandora Compatible Beads
NOT fakes. It is openly advertised in the name that they are Pandora compatible beads – charms that fit Pandora bracelets, but not Pandora brand charms. They are not fakes, just other brands (it could be Chamilia, Trollbeads, or no-name charms, etc.”) that work with the Pandora charm bracelets, and they can be of just as high quality as the brand name charms.
So, in conclusion: you can take your chances with non-authorized sellers or save a bit of money (usually) by going with Pandora compatible beads, but if you want to be 100% sure that you’re buying an authentic Pandora charm, your best bet is to go with an authorized seller, either online or in a shop.
The people at Pandora do not rest on their laurels – they keep coming up with not only new charms and designs, but also features by the handful.
In early June, they released a new collection of charm beads with birthstones. The beads are really cute, a flower design in oxidized silver with a tiny stone. They tell you a little bit about each stone too; mine is garnet (for January) and it is supposedly thought to protect travelers and it’s color (red) symbolizes courage, love, joy, warmth and energy. Nice to know, and especially nice to include if you’re giving one as a gift to someone. You can also download an image of your birthstone charm as a desktop or cell phone wallpaper.
In mid-June, the first edition of their bi-monthly online magazine (simply called Pandora magazine) was published. The premier issue featured Penelope Cruz, several “inspiration board” pages where they tell you who made the clothes, shoes, etc. and you can click on the jewelry pieces to get more info (they’re all Pandora, of course), styling tips, behind the scenes, etc.
They also recently introduced a new line of great looking macramé charm bracelets (I just started dabbling in knotting macramé myself, so I was very excited to see this). They come in several colors (black, gold, red, natural, navy, orange, grey, and my favorite, dusty pink) with 14k gold or sterling silver endings, and there is a little indentation in the middle of them where you can add a clip-on bead if you want.
Then there is the new jewelry matching tool where you pick one piece of jewelry from a “wheel” on the left hand side of the screen and then a matching piece on the right and add to your wish list. This is obviously a way to make you buy more, but it’s fun to play with nevertheless, and useful for holiday and birthday wish lists.
Also check their website (or sign up for their newsletter) for competitions and other ways to potentially receive or win free stuff. Right now, there is the Ring upon Ring competition, where you create a set of rings to be stacked (with the help of their online tool) and enter to win the stack you designed.
And I recently answered one of their customer research questionnaires and as a thank you got a leather Pandora charm bracelet with a Murano glass charm on it sent to me in the mail. Nice!
All photos: Pandora
For more on Pandora, see my Pandora Jewelry Story, Investing In A Pandora Bracelet, New Anniversary Pandora Bracelets, The New Pandora Charms For Spring and Summer 2012, and the Authentic Pandora Charms And Bracelets vs. Pandora Style Beads posts.