Today’s post brings my next Pandora review of 2018, with a closer look at the adorable Sweet Panda charm! This lovely little bead made its debut last year with the Pandora Autumn 2017 collection (although not in the UK, for some reason), and I fell instantly in love with its cute face and innovative use of enamel.

On a side note, I have just received my Luck & Fortune Pandora CNY 2018 bead – so cute! – and will review that shortly. I’m also planning on getting the Club charm soon – so there are 2018 collection reviews on the horizon!

In the meantime, read on for some cute panda bear inspiration! 🐼


Pandora Sweet Panda review

Given that the Sweet Panda is almost entirely detailed in enamel, it’s amazing how much character and charm this little bead packs. He’s got adorably droopy soft panda eyes, and he’s posed just like a teddy bear. The little lick of green from the bamboo shoot is perfect, too – it adds a little bit of interest without being too bright or affecting the ways in which you might want to style this bead.

This was undoubtedly one of my favourites from the AW17 collection, so it was such a surprise to me that they didn’t release it in the UK. Pandora were always known for their adorably detailed animals back in the day, and it’s really fun to see them play around with that a little with the enamelwork in this bead. You can see the differences in style and technique when you compare it with their original retired silver panda bead (left).

The Sweet Panda is threaded, which I was relieved to see. You can find the hallmarks tucked discreetly away to the panda’s lefthand side. The other thing that I’d advise you to do with this one is to be extra careful to keep it away from perfumes, chemicals, sweat etc. – Pandora’s white enamel beads do have a tendency to yellow a little, especially when not treated with extra TLC.

The level of detail in the bead evaporates a little as soon as you look at the back and the base of the charm, however. Most of the interesting stuff is at the front of the charm. In a plain silver animal bead, you’ll often find oxidised fur detailing or a tail or some other little hidden detail if you look all over the charm. However, as Pandora have made this almost entirely in enamel, they’re a bit limited as to the extra details they can add.

(Incidentally, if you’re ever stuck for anything a bit different to do of a Monday evening, I do heartily recommend photographing miniature panda bottoms.)

Styling

One reason I picked this bead to review is that the Lunar New Year is fast approaching, and I know a lot of us are thinking about Asian-themed bracelets and stylings. IMO, the Panda is perfect for this! His black and white colouring doesn’t clash with traditional CNY reds, and he contributes so wonderfully to the sense of fun.

Here, I’ve put the Panda with the red Twinkle glass and the Longevity Lock charms (both Winter 2017 sales purchases) on a red leather mini design. The two-tone flower clips add the necessary sense of occasion, too!

However, this is how I actually wear my Sweet Panda charm – on my summery travel bracelet design. This combines pink and teal for a fun, tropical design, mixing in bright colour, cultural travel beads and some other exotic animals. I’ve used both older and newer Pandora styles – and I think they look great together!


Conclusion

The Sweet Panda shows far more originality in design than many of Pandora’s other charms from last year, and I think it’s surprising versatile. The fact that it’s black and white means that it has a little more range for different stylings and looks more elegant than if, for example, they had tried to do a full-bodied dog in brown enamel or a tiger in orange. It’s a well chosen design, and so cute in person! I’ll be interested to see how well it wears in terms of enamel yellowing, etc, but for now I’m content to be delighted with it. ^^

The Sweet Panda is $55 USD.

What do you think of this bead? Have you added it to your collection?

60 Comments on Review: Sweet Panda from Pandora Autumn 2017

    • Thank you very much, I’m so glad you like the bracelets! This one was surprisingly easy to style, given that it’s so heavy on the enamel detailing.

  1. It is such a cute charm, but I haven’t yet decided how I will use him. Right now he has an entire bracelet all to himsef. I like your idea about adding him to an Asian bracelet, but I have only enough room left for Luck and Fortune. I can’t wait for that one to arrive! Thank you for the review, Ellie!

    • Aha, well he’s a very cute little bead, so I’m sure he carries off a bracelet all of his own very well. My Luck & Fortune bead arrived on Monday, and it’s so cute! I got mine from Singapore so I got the sweet little gold box as well.

    • Oh no! I hadn’t even thought of that. I’ll have to keep an eye on how my panda wears, as I won’t be able to get him changed at the store if he breaks, because he’s not available here. :(

  2. Hi Ellie,

    To date I have taken a pass on purchasing this charm, partly because of the size. When I saw this charm in the store I found it to be a little to large to style. I wish I had your imagination though, the Panda looks lovely on both your bracelets. I do agree the enamel work is well done, and your photo of the “Pandora Bottom” is a hoot!! Made me smile!

    Cheers!
    Lisa K

    • Hi Lisa, he is a bit chunkier than some charms, I guess, but I find this becomes less noticeable if you style him next to Murano glass beads, which are bigger themselves. Glad you liked both the bracelets – he was much easier to style than you’d think, so perhaps give him another thought for a future design perhaps? ^^ And you’d have a panda bottom to photograph all of your own lol!

      Thanks for commenting! <3

    • My husband and I went to Chengdu, China during our early dating days. We had a very enjoyable trip as a couple spending a week together sightseeing. The highlights of the trip were the visit to the panda conservatory and Jiuzhaigou. This lovely panda will be an excellent reminder of our trip there.

  3. Hi Ellie!

    The sweet Panda resides proudly on my son’s childhood bracelet. He had a stuffed panda bear named Baby Oscar as a toddler.

    Photographing panda bottoms… hmmmm. Can honestly say that is something I have never done. Lol!

    I like the enamel charms very much. I have had the white daisies and primroses for a few years now, but haven’t had any problems with any yellowing. I do wipe my bracelets down with a polishing cloth, just a quick clean without taking anything apart, as I put them away. I am too lazy to do the big clean very often and this helps.

    Your bracelets, as usual, are quite lovely. Isn’t styling these things just too much fun?

    Thanks for the review. I’m waiting on your review of the pave lips. I’m guessing I shouldn’t hold my breath for that one!

    • Hi Deborah! Aw, that’s so cute! Oscar is a great name.

      I have the dubious honour of having photographed a few miniature bottoms in my charm blogging career haha! The Piggy Bank charm from a couple of years ago was another highlight 😂

      I’ve only had issues with the white ones. I take pretty good care of my beads as well, but when I wore my original Darling Daisy clip into store a few months ago, it was positively cream in comparison with a brand-new one they had on display. It wasn’t ruined or horribly ugly – just not crisp white anymore. I think Pandora used to have quite bad problems with white enamel yellowing and it’s improved since then, but it’s still not necessarily perfect.

      Haha, thanks! And no… you might be disappointed there, haha!

  4. I really like both your bracelet stylings. I think the panda looks particularly good with the red twinkle murano and lock of longevity – the color combination is quite nice and each bead stands out. I agree that the black and white coloring makes the bead more versatile.

    I’m a fan of enamel beads and I’m glad to see Pandora continue to produce beads with enamel, as they can really brighten up bracelets. (I’m quite pleased with the Christmas wreath and stocking dangles, and the Wintry Delight bead, too).

    • I love enamel, too! I often find CZs are a bit much, but enamel is much more to my taste when it comes to adding a little colour to a bracelet. For me, it’s murano glass > enamel > CZs, haha. I hope Pandora ocntinue to play around with their enamelwork as well, this bead is delightful!

  5. this Panda is great, had to use a favour to get this when it came out, another expence to blame on Ellie ( my fav get out clause = tnx Elli )but with red and other asian charms makes a great look for the New Year Meal, so I am not only looking forward to the day out, and the lovely meal to come, but getting out all my red, and Panda will come too. Tnx again ellie. Hope you all have a to great New Year on the 17th Feb, best wishes from a Fire Monkey – my stars for the new year is basical dont go out and look after yourself, but I am sure Pandora will call, my birthday is the 11th March, so will be asking for gift vouchers and looking forward to Ellie preview release for spring

    • Aha, sorry, Karen! But I quite enjoy my job as enabler. So many people do the same to me lol! I’m glad you like this one, too, I’m sure your bracelet looks beautiful and the perfect accessory for the new year next month :)

  6. I got mine on a trip to Paris with my bf in September he’s lovely one of my favourites, he’s on my main bracelet as a reminder of my trip :)

    • Ah, that’s lovely! That’s one of the fun things about going on holiday, haha. I’m always on the hunt for things I can’t get in the UK! I remember stopping in Paris on a holiday in 2012 and being so, so excited to find the Hongbao silver charm there. It’s still one of my favourite Pandora memories!

  7. Oooooh!!! Isn´t it cute!<3. I haven´t thought of adding him to my collection ( at least so far) because I don´t have many beads to do a proper design. However, now that I come to think of it, it could be the central piece for a mini design, with just a couple of all silver openworks at each side and two green spacers. Well, anyway I think I´ll wait and see how well yours wears;)
    Btw, is it me or are threaded beads really more consistent?. Anyway I like them.
    Changing the subject, you did a great job with his little bottom, lolll! It looks as if he were wearing a nappy, hahaha. I hope he keeps it "clean and white" for a very long time ;)
    For my part I´m getting ready for an Essence binge, since there´s not much I really "need" from Moments. I´m only waiting a bit longer because the online sale is running untill 31th January and I´m saving up a bit more.
    Well, looking forward to more reviews!
    PS. Frgot to mention that I like your bracelets above. The red one is my favourite. I like the TT flower clips, too.

    • So cute! You could definitely work a mini design around him. He’s a lovely little pop of colour, and would look good with a murano and one other bead, perhaps. I’ll let you know if I have any issues :)

      Hahaha, yes, I hope his bottom stays pristine, too! I only plan on wearing that bracelet during the warmer months, so hopefully he’ll stay relatively protected for most of the year round. ^^

      An Essence binge sounds like fun! I just got the moonstone Balance bead, which I’m so excited about! I think I might add it to my original Essence bracelet, which has pinks on it, or maybe even start a new bracelet. I’m not sure!

      Thanks for commenting Marie! :) More reviews are coming up!

  8. OMG I so want to photograph panda bottoms, lol ;-), I’ve just be photographing Ugg bottoms (and the rest) to list on eBay and I think photographing pandas would be way more fun ;-).

    I love this panda, I’m gutted that he’s not available in the UK :'(, I’d definitely have him if I could get one here. I always thought that they should have done more with enamel on Pudsey; he’s yellow, not silver, and I think he would have been more authentically Pudsey had they made him in yellow enamel and sitting down, like this cute panda.

    • Ahaha, well of course panda bottoms are superior to Ugg bottoms! You should diversify! :P

      I hope maybe one day they bring him out here, or perhaps you could pick him up on a holiday or via a friend some time. A proper enamel Pudsey would have been great fun! I can see Pandora being worried about him not being easy to style, but that would have been very very cute. They could have gone with quite a pastel, soft yellow perhaps…

  9. I have him, but I don’t wear him. He’s a cutie, but too much enamel not very well applied, like too much nail polish, it looks sloppy. He would have been a much better charm in silver, with just a few, small colored enamel accents.

  10. Olá . Lindo charm. Quando vai postar as imagens da coleção Spring 2018 and Mother Day 2018 from Pandora? Thanks.

  11. Hello . Beautiful charm. When will you post the images from the Spring 2018 and Mother Day 2018 from Pandora collection? Thanks.

    • Hi Nicola! Me too, I don’t understand why we didn’t get it! Don’t we love pandas as much as the next person? 😦 ;)

  12. I think he’s cute! I like how your teal muranos kind of pick up that green enamel and make it stand out! Isn’t there a panda head bead too? One could put together a really cute panda/black/white theme too!

    • Thanks Sarah! :D Yes, there is, it came out in 2015. You can definitely have a little miniature panda zoo if you were so inclined… there was a also a black/white yin yang charm from back in the day that might work quite well!

    • My boyfriend walked past my screen as I was editing that particular picture and was like, ‘…well, all right then’, which made me realise again what a weird way it was to be spending my time 😂

  13. I love this review Ellie, thank you!! I really like the animal charms and have some of the silver character ones. The Panda and Koala are charms that are on my wishlist. I hope the enamel on the Panda wears pretty ok. I haven’t many enamel charms so am not sure. I laughed so much at the miniature panda bottom photo. What else would you want to do on a Monday evening ha! It looks like he’s wearing a tiny diaper I thought lol.

    • Thank you, Pauline, I’m so pleased you enjoyed it! I love the animal beads as well. The Koala was one of the only things I got from the 2016 Pre-Autumn collection :) I’ll post a little update on this review if I have any issues with the enamel, but hopefully all will be fine!

      Haha, what better way to spend a Monday evening indeed! I don’t know why more people haven’t tried it! ;)

    • The two-tone flower clips are retired, so I’d advise that you join a Pandora selling group on Facebook to see if anyone is selling them. The Longevity Lock was on sale in Asia, Europe and Australia & New Zealand, but it went in the most recent sales, so local stores might not still have it.

  14. I already had this charm for a long time but just love reading your blog so much! I do appreciate how you appreciate things like the Panda’s cute little butt. You’re right it would have been improved with a tail but the sweet little bamboo stick makes it very adorable already! Can’t wait for your next review :)

    • Aw, that’s so nice, thank you! :) That’s the fun thing about doing reviews, it really makes me take a good look at the bead as I’m photographing it, and you start to notice all those little details. New review coming very soon – thank you very much for commenting!

  15. I was very discouraged after the pictures I saw in the survey I took and the in the juvenile rainbow preview pictures. But I have seen the spring summer catalog and all is not lost lol.there are many new lines coming including a a signature Pandora lock bracelet for those that are not a fan of Pink cz’s and hearts there is a line called enchanted with an adorable teapot and dangle teacup charm, nature line with ladybugs adorable, new leather items with tassels and turquoise, a round and a heart ring that will hold a petite charm the list goes on and on I am going to be so so broke. Sorry for the length of the post.

  16. I am hoping that this lovely panda will be available in the uk also for he looks so lovely and cute and I like to collect the animals charms especially.

    • I haven’t heard anything about it coming out here, but I wish it was! It’s so sweet, I don’t know why they thought it wouldn’t sell.

  17. Hi,
    Such a nice review of this little guy. Like both bracelet designs you have done with him.
    I purchased the Sweet Panda, without an idea of what I would do for him at the time. Just thought that he was so cute.
    I’m thinking I may do a black and white design with him. So far I have the Mystic Floral clips, and the black and white Swirl Murano.
    Hoping to see everyone’s design with him for inspiration.
    Thanks and have a great day!

    • Hi, and thank you! :D A black and white design would be lovely. You could try and track down the yin yang charm, that would be another great one. And there’s a black and white enamel Mystic Floral charm that would be good! Have fun designing it ☺️

      • You’re welcome and thank you for suggestions. I haven’t seen either of those 2, but will have a look. I spotted the clips and murano in local shop and thought this just may be the way to go. :D
        Thinking I may add Twice As Nice spacers for a little sparkle, and the design reminds me of leaves.
        Have good day!

        • Leanne, I just wanted to let you know that I took your suggestion on the camera and I love how it looks. Thank you!
          Ellie, I did purchase the Mystic Flower Black and White Enamel charms and they look so nice with him. My bracelet is coming along very nicely.
          I did add the Peaceful Panda as well.
          I would like to add the white with black flowers Murano as well. Hopeful to find a pair.
          Thank you again for all the suggestions.
          Have a lovely day!

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