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Crystal care

Swarovski's Crystal Fest offered a platform for the Swarovski Collectors Society to exchange views as well as gave valuable tips on caring for crystal.

TAKING FLIGHT: Crystal to inspire the muses. — Photos: K. Ramesh Babu

IF ALL who see them do not cry "beware, of their flashing eyes and floating hair," it most probably is because they are not poets caught in the frenzy of creation. They are collectors, and not just any old collectors but collectors of Swarovski crystals.

It was a happy weekend for the Swarovski Collectors Society as they congregated at the showroom in Time in style at the Topaz building for the Swarovski crystal fest. "The SCS was launched this year in India," commented Pooja Ahluwalia, of the consumer goods division of Swarovski. "There are approximately 800 SCS members in India." Pooja described SCS "as a forum where collectors could get together and interact."

FOR COLLECTORS: `Isadora' and `Vase of Roses.'

Members of SCS get a whole lot of goodies including the SCS Trilogy Annual Edition. "The theme changes every three years," Pooja said. "For the next three the theme is dance. For this year, we have the Isadora and you have to be a member to apply for these collectibles. Usually the process of applying for a membership, getting the membership number and then giving the number to apply for the collectible would take over ten weeks. For the fest however, we are allowing a collector to apply for the membership as well as the Isadora at the same time."

The offer is on only till December 31 and after that you will not be able to get an Isadora. As Pooja explained, "we committed to our collectors and any extra pieces of the Isadora in our warehouse in Austria would be destroyed after December 31." So better hurry in case your heart beats for the lovely dancing figures with an outstretched bare foot and a trailing blue scarf that embodies the prima donna Isadora Duncan's desire to break through stereotypes.Other goodies include an in house quarterly magazine that gives display ideas, free entry to the crystal museum Crystal World in Wattens, Austria, where the largest and the smallest crystal are displayed, a membership card with exclusive concessions as well as invitation to special SCS events and tours and specials pieces like the anniversary Vase of Roses, celebrating the 15th anniversary of SCS with 15 blood red roses.The Crystal Fest comes to Hyderabad after meeting success in Bangalore, Chennai and Calcutta. "Collectors love to talk about their collections and the problems they face maybe in display or packaging. The fest is an ideal platform to address these issues.""We have also given ideas on how to get Swarovski out of your cabinets. Like you could use the Birthday Candle holder, Rainbow Napkin Holder, Knife Rest, Toasting Flutes or the absolute darling Wine Stopper to make your dining experience beyond special."

CRYSTAL SHIP: The `Camel' is part of the African wildlife section.

The SCS theme for 1999-2001 was Masquerade (Pierrot, Columbine Harlequin) and "we borrowed Dr Raju's collection for display," Pooja said. Introductions include the Flamingo, which is doing "very well" and utility items like the crystal cardholder and the Data Bug cardholder. The Crystal Fest had valuable pointers on the care of your sparkling lovelies.

"The cleaning kit costs Rs 1,400 and comes with a gloves, a lint free cloth and brush. Always handle crystal with gloves and once in three months you could dip your crystal in lukewarm water and a liquid detergent and wipe them dry. Under no circumstances, should you soak crystal with metal in it as it would tarnish."While Pratima and Vinaya are first time buyers and decided to buy the Isadora, as "it would be rare," Shailaja has a few pieces and loves collecting "crystal for the glitter. My favourite piece is The Train," she says."I would like to buy the entire range," Shailaja says echoing sentiments of all who have been bitten by the glitter bug. So if you need your crystal fix, just head for Time in Style and become a member of the glitterati.


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