What is Swarovski?

Swarovski is a premium brand of finest crystal since 1895. Swarovski works with top-class designers and brands in the fashion, jewelry, accessories, costume designers, interior designers and lighting industries all over the world. Swarovski produce crystals in millions of colors, shapes, sizes – with an innovative, lead-free technology called Advanced Crystal standard. Swarovski is a precise cut crystal, which gives the premium look of the diamond for acceptable price.

History of Swarovski

Daniel Swarovski, the founder
Daniel Swarovski

Daniel Swarovski, the founder

Daniel Swarovski established his company in 1895 with his vision: creating a “diamond” for every woman. That was the first step of creating a worldwide brand as well.

Daniel Swarovski (October 24, 1862 – January 23, 1956), formerly Daniel Swartz, was born in northern Bohemia (now the Czech Republic). His father was a glass cutter who owned a small glass factory. It was there that the young Swarovski served an apprenticeship, becoming skilled in the art of glass-cutting. In 1892 he patented an electric cutting machine that facilitated the production of crystal glass.

In 1895, Swarovski financier Armand Kosman and Franz Weis founded the Swarovski company, originally known as A. Kosman, Daniel Swartz & Co., which was later shortened to K.S. & Co. The company established a crystal cutting factory in Wattens, Tyrol (Austria), to take advantage of local hydroelectricity for the energy-intensive grinding processes Daniel Swarovski patented.  (Wikipedia)

Swarovski products

Authorized Reseller of Swarovski Crystals

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More Products…

Swarovski has several types of products, not just in consumer goods, but in industry as well. However the most well-known products are in consumer goods segment – especially in fashion jewelry and glass sculpture (the miniatures).

The Swarovski miniatures, the small glass sculptures wear the Swarovski logo – which used to be the edelweiss previously, and since 1988 it is the swan logo.

The Swarovski jewelry is a wide range of accessories: medals, rings, earrings etc. The company works together with famous designers and issue limited series – like Jean Paul Gautier range nowadays.

The brillance of Swarovski

Victoria's Secret runnoway 2014
Victoria’s Secret runway 2014. Made with 150.000 crystals!

The reflection of the light makes the Swarovski products so glamorous and premium looking. The secret is twofolded: the precision cutting and the special coating. The precision cutting comes no only from the ancient glass industry, but was developed with the use of diamond cutting technology. The diamond cutting provide the fantastic brillance of rhinestones – in any circumstance of stage lighting. The special coating is adding another layer of premium quality looking to is:

To create crystal glass that lets light refract in a rainbow spectrum, Swarovski coats some of its products with special metallic chemical coatings. For example, Aurora Borealis, or “AB”, gives the surface a rainbow appearance. Other coatings are named by the company, including Crystal Transmission, Volcano, Aurum, and Dorado. Coatings may be applied to only part of an object; others are coated twice, and thus are designated AB 2X, Dorado 2X etc. (Wikipedia)

You can buy Swarovski AB crystals in our online shop!

In 2012 Swarovski launched the Xirius line – named after the brightest star in the galaxy – celebrating the birthday of the founder. Due to the precision cut and the new lead-free technology, combined with enchanced foiling, it was a huge step to provide “diamond” for everyone. Xirius is available in various colors, both in flat back non-hotfix and sewable variants – talking about costume decoration.

Swarovski company nowadays

Today, the company, still family-owned and run by 5th generation family members, has a global reach with some 25,000 employees, a presence in over 120 countries and a turnover in 2012 of 2.38 billion Euros.

Showing the creativity that lies at the heart of the company, Swarovski’s own brand lines of accessories, jewelry and home décor items are sold through more than 2,350 retail outlets worldwide. The Swarovski Crystal Society has close to 300,000 members across the world, keen collectors of the celebrated crystal figurines. And in Wattens, Swarovski Kristallwelten, the multi-media crystal museum, was opened in 1995 as a celebration of Swarovski’s universe of innovation and inspiration.


Costume design and stage lights

Costume design and stage lights

Lighting a scene or stage is an important job when you think about the final impression of any stage show. Different colored lights can work differently in terms of impression, with the same costumes and make up.

As a performer there are a few things to think about to give the best impression for your audience:

Importance of stage lights
Importance of stage lights
  1. colored lights can give different impression of your costume – talk to the director and lighting expert of the show beforehand
  2. try your costume and fabrics with the show lighting to test their impression and colors appearing
  3. communicate your request concerning lighting with the director or the designer of the scenery – to highlight or cover some parts of your performance
  4. think about the props of your performance (stick, hat, jewelery etc.) and ask for a rehearsal with the final lights – audience in even the last row must see clearly
  5. sidelights can sculpture the costume – think about it details what you want to show and how the fabrics of your costume would work
  6. makeup – even the most natural look – has its on color – so include your makeup in the lights rehearsal
  7. rhinestones support the most impactful visual effect – test your final, decorated costume in scene lights
  8. media and the cameras can modify the actual scene – consult the relevant expert how to show you


See also: https://www.rosco.com/technotes/filters/technote5.html

Stage costume for three generations

Stage costume for three generations

My grandparents used to be famous Hungarian artistes in the 60s, 70s and 80s with their acrobatic show – called Duo Ernesto and later Susy & Ernesto. They performed in the best vaudevilles, cabarets, shows and revues.

This blog post is written based on my grandma’s storytelling: costumes and stage dresses were extremely important in stage performances at that times as well. She explained how the stage costumes influenced her whole professional life…

During my entire professional life my stage costumes had important roles and had a huge effect on our success as artistes in Europe during the 60s, 70s and 80s – says Zsuzsanna Kövesi Farkas.

My costumes were designed and prepared by myself. At the designing I always took into account my figure and my movements on the stage and the impression it gives in terms of being attractive and sexy.

I had so many stage costumes that the colleagues came to see each time what I wear…

Variete posters
Variete posters

Except Romania and Albania we performed in all European countries with my husband in different well-known and famous vaudevilles, caffés, cabarets, casinos etc. throughout 25 years with an acrobatic show. This show was special, because I was wearing high heel shoes for the acrobatic elements.

We performed in places like Friedrichstadt Palast, Urania Palast (East Berlin), Red Rose (West Berlin), Mocambo Cabaret (Bern), Kursal Casino (Baden), Eden Cabaret (Leipzig), Café Drag (Dresden), Steintor Variete Halle (East Germany), Intermezzo (München), El Amra Variete (Rotterdam), Splendid Cabaret (Luxembourg), Rozmaryn (Czechoslovakia), Aeros Variete (Leipzig), Tabaris Variete Rosand (Switzerland) etc.

Working together – Duo Ernesto

Working together - Duo Ernesto
Working together – Duo Ernesto

In the 1950s the performing artistes’ dresses in Hungary did not have any decorations – or just a few – because at that time it was impossible to buy rhinestones and flitters in Hungary. In 1957 my husband was performing in Spain in an acrobatic trio act. For the first time in his life he has seen glimmering and shining costumes and so called net tights on dancers – and he was impressed. He discontinued the Spanish contract, returned to Hungary and told me that he had missed me a lot and he wanted me to be with him always… I was a dancer and a gymnast and he was a very good comic character – so we took all the possibilities in consideration and had the idea of a funny dance and acrobatic act together.

The very first costume

The very first costume
The very first costume


We started to work hard on our common showpiece. After several months of hard practicing we could start performing. But before starting to contract with our act, we needed a so called artistes’ licence, and to get the licence we had to take an exam with our showpiece in front of the artiste committee. The exam was at the Kamara Variete in Budapest, for what we had to invent a costume very quickly.

At that time there was not a huge supply of costume fabrics in Hungary – so I bought blue and white striped fabrics and prepared my costume in sailorman-style. So we performed our show as sailors on the exam.

It was so successful that the director of the Kamara Variete offered a several months’ contract for us. We accepted it happily.

When we started our performances at Kamara Variete, the director called for the theather company and said that we would have foreign guests on the next week’s performance: directors of varietes and different agents seaching for new show elements. I don’t have to say how suspenful we were…

And the day arrived when the agents and other important people were sitting in the first row. We were very exited, but the debut was successful. After the performance a piece of paper was hanged behind the stage with the names of the artistes who were interesting for the agents or directors. We were surprised to read: “We call Duo Ernesto to the Manager Office; Aeros Variete wants to discuss with.”

We were extremely happy to get a one year contract for 1958 to Leipzig, to the Aeros Variete. This was our first common debut with my husband in abroad.

The first step to abroad

The first step to abroad
The first step to abroad

We started our performances at Leipzig Variete. One day after the performance a gentleman came to us, an agent, and said that he was searching for show elements to Friedrichstadt Palast, East Berlin for 1959 and our show fit perfectly to the concept.

He asked us whether we were interested in this opportunity. During the iron curtain era, after the 1956 Hungarian revolution it was very difficult for Hungarians to get visa – we mentioned this to the agent. His answer was: “we take care of it with MACIVA”. (MACIVA – Hungarian Circus and Variete, an association of artistes in Hungary)

Of course we were interested, so we discussed the details and two weeks later he brought to contract with him to Leipzig. We did not know too much about Friedrichstadt Palast, but the colleagues in Leipzig explained us that this was a high quality, well-known revu show, and it still is, even nowadays: one of the highest quality, biggest stage revu show worldwide. Our colleagues explained that this was a famous place with fantastic costumes, huge scenery and ballet. Hearing that we came to the conclusion: we couldn’t perform in our sailor costume in such an elite place!

Returning home after our Leipzig contract we spent all of our money on stage costumes, elegant and marvallous ones for our show, hoping that it would suit the Berlin revu…

Berlin – Friedrichstadt Palast

Berlin - Friedrichstadt Palast
Berlin – Friedrichstadt Palast

In the spring of 1959 we travelled to East Berlin,, to a new world, very excited. East Berlin was a “political shopwindow” of Eastern Germany: it was possible to buy everything and entertainment was top quality. They wanted to show that they could keep the pace with Western Germany.

At that time we heard in Hungary: “Be careful with western people, they are bad and provocative…” We went to East Berlin, not West, but we were very curious about the life of western people…

When the rehearsal period started at Friedrichstadt Palace, the director came to us and said that we would be in the Boat Scene, where the scenery was a huge boat, the dancer girls would wear sailor costume, so we had to perform with our acrobatic show in our own sailor costume! They asked us to dress up into our sailor costume and show ourselves.

We were looking at each other with my husband and said that the sailor costume is not there, because we have new costumes… The director and the others were astonished – what could we do? Due to the visa issues we arrived late to the rehearsal, and time was not enough to sew a new sailor costume. Therefore they asked us to show our new costumes. We stepped onto the huge stage excited.. As we were coming to the stage in our new elegant costumes, the director shouted: “that’s it! That would be perfect!”

After the debut the director of Friedrichstadt Palace came to us saying: “A great carreer is waiting for you in the west!”

During the performances we admired the stage costumes of the dancers, and we were impressed by the glamour, decorations, rhinestones, feathers and sexy lines of the stage costumes. That was the point when our attention was really drawn to elegant and nice costumes in stage appearance. We realized very quickly that we could step forward only if we put huge emphasis on costumes! We spent more of our monthly salaries on costumes, to reach the best appearance and impact.

After getting known that the shining decorations for the stage dresses were from West Berlin, we went there to do the shopping for ourselves. Before the building up of the wall it was not so difficult to get through, and we had a special diplomat visa, so we could go as many times as we wanted and could bring whatever we wanted from West to East!

Soviet tour – where a nice costumes was a sin…

Soviet tour
Soviet tour

After the Berlin contract period we returned to Hungary. MACIVA – the Hungarian Circus and Variete – sent a complete performance to the Soviet Union with a longer contract. The company was performing in the bigger towns of the Soviet Union, in circuses.

Just returned from Berlin and having seen the sexy costumes of the dancers, I thought I prepare a stage costume for myself in crochet! This crochet costume was covering only the most feminine parts of my body!

The company performed in Moscau when a delegation arrived from Moscau, from the so called Russian State Circus. After the show they called the director of our company asking him what this dress was on the lady in Duo Ernesto??? Seemed they did not like my costume. The director reported it to MACIVA in a telegram… We did not know about it, of course.

Getting a sack… the biggest luck!

Getting a sack... the biggest luck!
Getting a sack… the biggest luck!

As the Soviet contract was finished, we returned to Hungary. We were called to the office of MACIVA, and said that the Soviets were “hurted” by my costume, and we were cosmopolitans, West-loving people. They said that we couldn’t be MACIVA artistes in the future and gave us a sack!

They stated that 10% of all of our future contracts must be paid in. In return they took care of the visa and let our family members visit us. If we miss the 10% payment, our performing licence and passport would be withdrawn.

We accepted, and we came out of the office extremely happily! It would meant that our income would be multiplied (because the artists who worked for MACIVA got a very low daily payment) – and we were full of contract offers from East to West.

After this point our career was kicked off, as the director of Friedrichstadt Palast had predicted! We performed throughout Europe in the best places, and we were occupied for the next 2-3 years all the time.

Three generations’ costume design

Three generations' costume design
Three generations’ costume design

At the end of the 70s we created one aditional act. It was a Magic act and I thought I design a very sexy costume for that, because during an magic act I didn’t have to make so many movements. I wanted to prepare a very sexy dress, made of beads solely. I ordered beads from the U.S., and I prepared the Costume of My Life during one of our tours in abroad. I even did not dare to think that this costume would look perfect even 30 years later, and my daughter and my granddaughter would wear it!

I wore this costume in Moulin Rouge, Vienna for our illusionist show. After the performance the director came to me, saying: “It is all the same what you do, but if your wear this costume, it is an attraction and total success by itself!”

That is the role of the costumes in a show – in my life it was such an important element. We could have been grateful to our simple sailor costume that our career has started. What if I had bought red fabrics…

I am over 80, but I still feel myself an actress in my heart. If I would be born again, I would be an artiste again…

The Three Generations!!!

The Three Generations
The Three Generations

…and I wear my granny’s costume proudly today…

Kristina Eötvös

Change costumes 8 times in 6 minutes

Change costumes 8 times in 6 minutes

I think there is no other act on the stage where the costume design is so important than in a quick change show.

Quick change – where the performer changes her/his costume in no minutes. The miracle is: how can they do it so quickly? It is illusion, but being a part of the illusion is always a fun – for me and for my partner, Sebastian, and hopefully for our audience as well.

Our act is a bit more than quick change, because it is combined with dance performance. I dance and change at the same time in the act – 9 times in 6 minutes!

Therefore the act and costumes required adaptation not just in terms of dresses, but the dresses have to be in harmony of the music and the style of the dance:

We sorted out the costumes very carefully. All of them should have suited me, to my figure, and support my movement on the stage. At the same time they should have been in line with the melodies’ style and on top of that they have to be showy on many types of stages and stage lights!

Time to time we change a part of the costumes to show something fresh for our audience.

My advice for you: think about the style of your act as well as your personal style first! Be clear in your mind what you want to emphasize: your breast part, bottom part or your long and nice legs! Choose the costume design with what you feel “love at the first time”.

I hope that all of our costumers in Costume Design Plans will feel the “miracle” what a well-thought costume means for a performer!

Kristina Eötvös

Costume Design

Costume Design

Costumes are extremely important parts of all performing arts. The costumes must be prepapred with extra care and in perfect quality to support the artist in his/her great performance. The costume is the very first impression when the artist (the singer, the dancer, etc.) enters the stage. The audience must be mesmerised in the first seconds by the appearence, the stunning costume and the femininity. However the costume should not be overwhelming or arty, because it can ruin the performance.

The Costume Design Plan and the Reality – as Kristina shows you

The costume is an investment for the show. We – the CDP Costume Design Plans Team – design the costumes based on our wide stage experience, discussing all the details, and moreover, the plans can be sewn. (Kristina Eötvös, Member of the Costume Design Plan Team)

Nowadays sexy costumes are the part of our everyday performances and experience. But we definitely suggest to be careful with widely opened dresses… A good stage costume shows SOMETHING, but covers enough… A sexy costume is not a colourful underwear! That’s why we put emphasis on the feedback of our Psychiatrist team member when we put together a costume design plan.

Costume design – reflection of the personality


A good costume is an investment for the performance. The character of the costume should reflect the personality of the performer, her stlye, her beauty, her sexuality. In costume design the designer should grab the personality and based on that, the costume should support the type of the performance – must be easy to wear and to move within.

The costume design has an important role in showing the nice part of the performer’s body while it hides or corrects other parts. A perfectly designed stage costume do this job properly, therefore the performer feels herself perfect on the stage – and this feeling ‘comes down’ for the audience.

Costume design for singers

The most important point in costume design for singers is the stage performance. The costume design must reflect the style of the song or songs, but mainly should be in line with the personality of the singer.

Costume design for dancers

The perfect costume design for dancers takes into account that the dancer must feel free in the dress and move in it comfortably. What is important for dancers’ costumes?

  • flexible for movements
  • comfortable to wear
  • sexy to the perfect limit

The good dance costume is open in underarm, because sweating must be taken in consideration when the designer starts to design the costume.

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Fabrics for stage costumes


The stage costumes have to be nice for the audience, should support the act and practical for the performer.

How to choose a fabric for costume?

When a costume design is made we think about the fabrics as well.

Lightweight fabrics – like Silk – follow the movement quickly and flow around the body. Therefore the fabric itself can have a huge impact on the show, supporting the dance movements. At the same time the performer must get used to it how to wear it.

Stretchable fabrics – Jersey, Chiffon, Lycra, Georgette – are essential materials for dancers’ costumes as they don’t restrain even big movements.

Cotton and silk absorb dye well as they are natural fabrics.

Stiff fabrics create immobile, square look and make the performance stiff as well.

Colours and costumes

A nice costume design uses the colours well! Colours can support or ruin the view, and both colours and fabrics can improve the quality of the act. Some colours look premium and nice all the time, while others – for example brown – never! What are the roles of the colors in costume  design?

  • emphasize contrast with the stage, the lighting, the props
  • express emotions of the act – for example red is considered to be sexy in Western culture. However performers must be aware of the differences! While white is a clean color for Western people, it is the colour of mourning in other parts of the world.
  • shape and enhance the body and figure – dark colours shows the person slimmer
  • prints and patterns using different colours – a printed fabric can change the optical shape of the performer
  • some vivid and vibrant colours can make the eye tired
  • vertical and horizontal lines in design and fabric colours, patterns

Sparkling costumes: rhinestones

While a costume design could require a sparkling tulle or velvet as fabric, rhinestones and spangles can improve the artistic impression especially when the stage lighting helps that. Rhinestones can be applied on the fabric in two ways:

  • with sticking – these rhinestones shine nicer and could be the only solution for certain fabrics – however sticking is not enough strong sometimes
  • with ironing – these rhinestones are fixed on the fabric by the heat