Schonbek crystal chandelier advice

nolefan_2006December 22, 2012

We're looking for a chandelier for our formal dining room. We have been to a few local dealers, but their in stock selection is limited in styles, crystal types and metal finishes.

We saw one chandelier with Spectra crystals and it was absolutely striking. We liked the hand cut crystal chandelier that was next to it in the showroom, but the difference between the sparkle of the Spectra and hand cut was significant. The Spectra was absolutely stunning and brilliant. Our salesperson told us that the difference in price between the Swarovski Elements and the Spectra was "minimal" at that price point and that the Elements crystals were even more beautiful. Unfortunately, he did not have any chandeliers with elements crystals in stock.

So there's the background leading up to my question. Is there really a significant difference in appearance between the Swarovski Elements crystals and the Spectra crystals? We're willing to pay for quality if it really is apparent. Unfortunately, we don't have any options for seeing the differences in person. Any input would be greatly appreciated.

Also, does anyone have any long term experience with the polished silver finish? Does it hold up? Does it tarnish or flake off? We were in Circa Lighting in Charleston this week and they had a beautiful chandelier with crystals. We almost purchased it until we saw how the finish had aged (horribly).

Thanks for any advice you can offer.

And in case anyone's interested, this chandelier will be for a formal dining room in a traditional renovated 60 year old home. We have a Henkel Harris mahogany table (46" x 120"). Long narrow dining room (10' x 24'). 8' ceilings that are significantly limiting our options.

Last bit of info. Our sales person told us that he will order anything we want as sell it to us at 40% off MSRP. That seems like a great deal. Even less than the Internet pricing that I've found. Is that a good deal?

Thanks again!

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I have a Schonbek 'Fantasia' crystal chandelier purchased many many years ago.

It is dripping with crystal, swags, the whole nine yards.

i have moved it from house to house three times now.

Schonbek has replaced a few crystals over the years for free with just a phone call (mostly dropped and chipped by accident during cleaning).

At least once a year it gets striped of everything and cleaned.

    Bookmark   December 22, 2012 at 2:55PM
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Thanks Brickeyee. Sounds like you love yours. How do you clean it?

    Bookmark   December 22, 2012 at 8:05PM
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Remove the crstals, quick di pin hot water with a little liquid dish soap, rinse under running water, let dry on lint free absorbent towels.

While all the crystal is off use a damp sponge to wipe the chandelier down while wearing nitrile gloves (no fingerprints).

The use nitrile gloves or finger cots to put all the crystal back up.

There are all sorts of 'hang an umbrella under and use spray cleaner' methods out there.

Never trusted them enough to try one.

I am worried they might damage the tarnish free coating on the brass.

    Bookmark   January 3, 2013 at 2:46PM
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So we found a beautiful chandelier locally- Trilliane. Incredibly pretty. The sales person and owner of the small local lighting company told us that it is similar to the much larger version of Trilliane that he placed in his new home. He had a Spectra model on the showroom floor. It is the correct size for our dining room. However, he stated that he saved up for three years to buy the Elements model for his own home and he suggested that for the money it was worth delaying the purchase and waiting to come back and buy the Elements version if our budget allowed.

His price is extremely good, but still ridiculously expensive. Can anyone comment on whether the coating on Elements crystal is that much more brilliant and refractive than Spectra? Really looking for some assistance here. It's a big purchase.


    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 1:48PM
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Hi nolefan,

I would love to hear which way you went with your chandelier and if you don't mind, how much you paid. I'm trying to make the exact same choice - spectra or elements? Also, please please please post photos. Thanks!

    Bookmark   October 28, 2013 at 3:10AM
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Brickeyee can you or post pictures? Someone in my area is selling a schonbek fantasia but their pics are terrible. Pics are impossible to find online.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2014 at 3:51PM
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