While Endangered Trolls started life as a dedicated Trollbeads blog, it soon morphed into much more and now many brands are represented here. Recently I had the opportunity to visit Danish brand By Aagaard, home of Story Bracelets and the Lovelinks charm concept.
In October, I had the privilege of visiting the headquarters of Danish jewellery brand By Aagaard. While the name itself may not sound familiar, their brands undoubtedly will as they home Kranz and Ziegler’s edgy Story Bracelets and the charm concept of Lovelinks. Needless to say, enthusiastic doesn’t even begin to cover the excitement I felt as my visit edged closer. What follows in this article are my impressions of the company that house two iconic modular jewellery brands.
By Aagaard, Kranz and Ziegler and Lovelinks
In order to clear up any confusion, there is no relation between By Aagaard and Lise Aagaard of Trollbeads. Kranz and Ziegler and Lovelinks operate independently of each other but can be considered sister companies, both being owned by the same umbrella brand.
Kranz and Ziegler’s Story bracelet concept has featured at Endangered Trolls a number of times since I bought my first bracelet in 2011. Most recently, I offered a review of a stunning red Story snakeskin bracelet which I wore for Vogue’s Fashion Night out 2012.
Lovelinks are set to be a new addition to Endangered Trolls. They featured very briefly in my alternative Halloween fashion jewellery article, Sticks and Stones May Break My Bones but Whips and Chains Excite Me.
It’s worth noting that while the By Aagaard headquarters home both Story bracelets and Lovelinks, I was primarily there to get a better insight into the latter brand. I’m reasonably familiar with Story as a brand (and my enthusiasm for them needs no encouragement.) Lovelinks, however, were quite unknown to me and I took the opportunity to delve into the brand a little deeper.
Lovelinks are, broadly defined, a charm bracelet concept. The brand is particularly popular in the UK market and, in my opinion, lacks awareness among collectors. My immediate impression after visiting was that this brand are highly fashion conscious. I was honoured enough to be given a guided tour and witness people working on every level, from the initial trend spotters examining new catwalk themes and creating broad style sheets through to early product mock ups. This brand embrace new trends, draw inspiration from them and turn them into charms. They weren’t just producing oodles of cute charms, there was an in depth thought process from catwalk to end product and as a self confessed fashion addict, this impressed me enormously.
The second aspect that impressed me was the sheer depth and breadth of their actual product range, particularly in regards to colour. They had glass, prisms, gemstones, pavé charms and ceramic charms in every shade of colour.
From a fashion perspective, this is an enormous plus for the brand. Pandora’s glass beads have vastly improved over the last couple of years but I still find their range of colours quite restrictive. By contrast while Trollbeads offer an enormous range of colour options, finding contemporary glass styles can be quite difficult.
In addition to the vast colour selection comes an enormous array of materials. I’ve mentioned before about my love of fall fashions in general. This interest is two fold. Firstly, I love the darker and more sumptuous colours so commonly associated with the colder months. Secondly, we tend to see a more interesting assortment of textures. Colder weather means heavier textured fabrics are more viable. Suede, leather and faux furs are all excellent examples of texturing being used to an eye catching advantage. The same can be said of jewellery of course. While I love glass beads, I always welcome a break from this. This is where pavé, gemstones and prisms all become interesting.
Lovelinks Metallic Collection
Lovelinks boast an enormous range of materials and textures. Indeed I was especially drawn to a collection officially named “Metallics”.
This series of charms focuses entirely on texture and contrast created via different metallic finishes. A dramatic mix of high shine and darker rhodium plated silver is seen in a number of charms, including the Black Rhodium charm pictured below.
The Sparkling Star charm boasts an almost matte, brushed silver background with a star pattern etched into the surface in a high shine contrast.
Even rose gold makes an appearance within this collection after seeing a broader revival and increase in popularity throughout 2012. (I have to confess, while I’m not an enormous fan of yellow gold, I adore rose gold!)
Lovelinks Detailed Silver Charms
While colour spectrum, material range and texture are all vital components for an interesting and fashion forward charm brand, the detailing in the silver beads can’t be ignored. I considered myself somewhat spoiled in this area. I have an extensive collection of both Trollbeads and Redbalifrog. As regular readers known, I’m originally from the UK so beads and charms that represent my home country have an obvious appeal. When given the chance to create my own Lovelinks bracelet, I opted for a couple of their UK themed silver charms.
The first charm I chose was the utterly adorable Clear Sky. This charm struck an immediate chord with me, being an apt representation of the UK climate.
More over for a relatively small charm, the detailing is incredibly impressive. The second charm I selected was Tea Time. Created in the same styling as Clear Sky, this charm represents the stereotypical British love of tea. (In honesty, I drink equal quantities of tea and coffee in what can only be described as copious amounts.)
Lovelinks Pavé for 2012
It’s almost impossible to avoid pavé jewellery at the moment as it’s featuring in nearly all fall collections. Lovelinks, embracing the current fashion trend, have shown a number of pavé charms ranging from single colour to duo-tone and even animal print.
I’d decided to create my new bracelet with the upcoming party season in mind. As such I wanted something loyal to current trends, subtle enough in it’s colouring to accompany any outfit and yet eye catching enough to be a high glamour accessory.
The colours I opted for were soft pinks, greys and blacks and the beautiful Pin Stripe pavé charm shown below is one example of the range Lovelinks are currently boasting.
Endangered Trolls Visits Lovelinks
I had an amazing time visiting By Aaagaard. Being able to see the entire collection was, by itself, an incredible experience. For reference, Lovelinks charms are compatible with both Pandora and Trollbeads brand bracelets. In regards to size, they are a little larger than Pandora and indeed in a future article I’ll be comparing the Pandora pavé charms for Christmas 2012 with the Lovelinks pavé collection.
For those interested, I’m going to be offering more reviews on the Lovelinks charms and two rings in the near future.
If you’re keen to read more about Lovelinks, you can check out their entire product range via PDF at the link below. Also listed below is their newly launched Facebook page.
What follows are the remaining images I snapped during my visit.