Working with Pandora charms is easy, fun, and creative. The hardest part is deciding how you will capture your memories and arrange them. Charms come in all shapes and with a cross-section of price tags from.
Authentic Pandora beads have a a thread inside each charm, with the exception of the fixed beads/clips and the spacers. Pandora bracelets have a screw thread on each end, so all genuine Pandora charms simply screw onto the bracelet utilizing the exclusive thread system. The bracelets have 4 threads. Two in the centre and one at either end. If it doesn't have the thread, it's not Pandora, and we suggest that only authentic Pandora charms are used with the Pandora bracelet system. Each bracelet section holds around 5 charms, though charms come in a wide variety of sizes and shapes weaning you can sometimes fit more or less.
There's some creative variety in you choice of arrangement and overall type. Pandora sells two types of bracelets, those with the 'barrel' clasp and those with the 'lobster' clasp. In addition to the 'bead-like' charms, there are also 'dangling charms'. Coming in a variety of cameos, gold drops, pearls, two-tone's with silver threaders, birth stones, etc. 'Clips' are used to space the charms, both to help arrange charms symmetrically and to prevent the bracelet from stretching by balancing out the weight. 'Spacers' are utilized to pack out any empty spaces on the bracelet where there's no space for a standard sized charm. 'Safety chains' are also popular, allowing you to add a chain to the end of your bracelet that will hold it on your wrist as you open and close it, to avoid any accidents.
Charms, in all their forms, are very collectable. Pandora makes limited addition pieces and regularly stops production of one charm in order to make way for a new range or to commemorate a new event. If there's a charm you are fond of and you hear it's being retired, it's a good idea to grab it while you can (or perhaps mention it 'subtly' if you have a birthday coming up). While there are shops online, Pandora is also available in many retail outlets world wide, and you will often find 'country specific' ranges in these stores. For example, the Pink Enamel Heart dangle is a UK only exclusive to match a similar pink bead charm that was retired the year before, and the 2012 Olympic Medal is one of the Best of British collection released this year to commemorate the London 2012 Olympic games.
Whether you complete one Pandora bracelet, or many, it's a beautiful, timeless, and personal way to capture memories. A string of moments from special times, guaranteed to make you smile for decades to come. Have fun, get creative, and start your collection slowly. Making sure each charm has a memory behind it - perhaps chronicling the birth of a child, your marriage, a year in another country, or your daughters years at university - it's the perfect way to create a treasured piece of jewelry that will stay in your family forever.
Riley Stewart shares his interest in Jewellery on behalf of Argento Contemporary Jewellery