While in other markets the Pandora Shopping Bag charm was released with the Autumn/Fall 2013 Collection, in the UK this charm was delayed until the Christmas collection. Consequently, it seems appropriate to review it now that all markets can obtain it. I’ll say from the get-go that this charm was one of my must-haves from the Autumn/Fall 2013 collection and already one of my favourite Pandora pieces!
I bought the charm as part of the £99 bracelet bundle, and I’ve kept it by itself on the bracelet for the time being. It makes a lovely focal point or centre piece, as it is quite a large and detailed charm.
I love the detailing on this charm. It’s double-sided, meaning that it’s got the same level of detail on both sides. It’s a perfect representation of the classic Pandora gift bag, right down to the little ribbons on each side and the weave of the handles.
However, it is quite a big charm and takes up some bracelet real estate. It’s quite chunky in some ways, and it can look a little over-sized if not placed well on the bracelet. Still, this same chunkiness also has the potential to make it a perfect focal point on a bracelet, as it does draw the eye.
Any Pandora fan will know that a lot of charms often spend a lot of time upside down ;) Consequently, to add a bit of interest, the Pandora logo is stamped on to the bottom of the charm.
While some people avoid overt branding (including myself), this little bit of extra branding hardly matters with this particular charm ;)
All in all, the Shopping Bag makes a perfect representation of a passion for Pandora jewellery, and would be a great present for any Pandora collector.
My instinct with this charm would be to put it on a girlier-themed bracelet; I was tempted to put it on my pink bracelet. In Pandora’s campaign images, for example, the Shopping Bag is placed with the new Pink Fizzle / Effervescence muranos, to give a sweet, feminine look.
Of course, the beauty of Pandora is that you can create whatever look you please. It’s a great symbol of a love for Pandora, which in itself should make it appropriate for any bracelet that you like! ;)
The Pandora Brand
This new offering from Pandora seems reminiscent of the iconic Tiffany box and gift bag charms. Tiffany & Co trade massively on the prestige of their name, and consequently charms representing things such as their famous blue box sell very well for them.
Consequently, this imitation from Pandora could be interpreted as Pandora trying to market themselves as a similarly desirable and fashionable brand. They want customers to feel that buying a piece of Pandora is such a special or prestigious experience that it warrants a charm of its own to commemorate it!
This seems part of a larger trend for Pandora. I’ve noticed that they have been increasingly putting more obvious branding on their charms: over 2013’s releases, we have seen numerous charms featuring gratuitous Pandora branding. These have included the Happy Crab, the Cable Car, the Sleigh and the Love Struck heart charm.
I’m not overly keen on branding on every charm, but perhaps others feel differently.
Did you buy the Shopping Bag? Or is it on your wishlist? :) How do you feel about increasing amounts of Pandora branding?