|In my previous article, “All
That Glitters is Sometimes Electroplated with Gold”, I began a
study of the replica jewelry available online and in stores. Some of it
is wearable, and some is merely for collecting and display. In this article
I will continue with updates on several of the items and companies previously
mentioned as well as discuss some of the new jewelry that is becoming available
with the release of the second film in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, The
Two Towers. I will also give you a peek into some other new non-jewelry
merchandise that is on its way.
I have met few Tolkien or Peter Jackson fans that don’t have thoughts
of owning their very own One Ring complete with Tengwar inscription of
the Ring Poem by J. R. R. Tolkien. As discussed in the previous article,
several companies have made their own versions of the One Ring, including
New Line Cinema. However, they range in price and quality, but even the
poorest elf or hobbit fancier can afford some version.
Jewelry continues to create and sell their One Ring replicas in metals,
ranging from silver to platinum. Paul Badali, Master Jeweler and President,
has had a long love affair with the works of Tolkien and he shows his
appreciation in the form of his wearable art crafts. He also creates other
fantasy and Elven jewelry.
The One Ring replicas range in price from $89 US for Sterling Silver
to $1250 for platinum. Badali is still offering “Gollum Gold”
replicas, which are 24k gold plated bronze and come with a plated chain.
These start at $39.95 and are probably the most affordable ring replicas
that can actually be worn.
He seems to have improved his technique in lettering somewhat and continues
to offer a variety of options of lettering color.
The greatest improvement to the Badali line, however, are the new “Rings
of Power” set which include Vilya, Nenya, and Narya ring replicas.
Vilya (the ring of Elrond) is a handsome ring of swirling air patterns
set with a very large lab-created sapphire and comes in a variety of metals
starting with sterling silver at $119 US up to platinum at $1080 US. Star
sapphires and antiquing are also available.
Nenya (the ring of Galadriel) is daintier in a Beach Tree leaf pattern
set with a nice size cubic zirconia to represent the Adamant or Diamond.
This ring can also be set with a moissanite, which is said to have more
fire and luster then actual diamonds, and is even more durable. This ring
can also be designed with a “tracer” band, which is a thinner
version without a stone and can be used as wedding set. Prices start at
$99 US for Silver up to $1285 US for the Platinum double tracer/ring set.
Tracers start at $20 US. Antiquing is also available.
Narya (the ring of Gandalf) is similar in size and design to Vilya but
instead of air, it uses the element of fire on the shaft. The red stone
is represented by a lab-created Ruby and can also be set with a Star Ruby.
Additionally the flame pattern on the shaft can be designed with color
enamel to emulate real flames, and as with the previous rings, antiquing
is also available. Prices start at $119 US for silver up to $1080 US for
These rings also comes in a variety of box sets that can include the
One Ring replica and beautiful display boxes starting at $269 US up to
$1533.75 US for the complete set in 14k gold (4 Rings)
Badali has also added an Elven
jewelry collection which includes Silver bands with a vine pattern
over green enamel, and an Elven leaf broach which can also be used as
a cloak clasp in silver and green enamel. The collection also includes
a variety of Elf and Faerie inspired rings.
Gold also continues with their production of exquisite One Ring replicas.
In my estimation this appears to be the best wearable ring replica available,
though I’ve never actually seen one up close. The pictures give it the
appearance of weight and detail that is not evident in some of the other
less expensive replicas. Prices start at $261 US or 25,000 Rand and are
available in 14, 18 and 24K gold. Each ring comes with a certificate from
Last year Applause
came out with a collection of the Rings of Power representing Vilya, Nenya,
Narya, The One Ring, and also the ring of the Witch King. I’ve read many
posts and emails regarding these replicas where people have worn them
for extended periods of time and now the finish has worn off or turned
color. I would like to take this opportunity to remind everyone that the
intention of these rings was not really to have them be worn as regular
jewelry but kept in their display boxes, each of which lights up. These
are not real gold or even plated with gold. Neither are the One Ring bookmarks
I’ll discuss later.
year Applause is offering Light Up Key Chains and Pendants with the
icons of the Horse of Rohan, The Eye of Sauron, and The One Ring. They
have also produced a new One Ring replica with light up base. This time
it is in the form of Mount Doom and the ring is set amongst the fiery
depths, which light up as in previous replicas. They also have additional
mini character replicas including Treebeard, new mugs, and leather and
metal key chains.
press, makers of the One Ring beaded bookmarks is coming back again
this year with even better bookmarks. This time instead of One Rings,
each character or type of character sports its very own special icon bead.
For example, Eowyn and Eomer come with Rohan Horse icons, and a Lizard
identifies Grima. This year several characters left out of the original
Fellowship set are now represented in pairs, such as Frodo & Sam,
Pippin & Merry, and Legolas & Gimli. Galadriel is also represented
with a golden swan bead. The artwork is just as wonderful if not more
so then the original set, and the new beads give each bookmark its own
unique flair. It also makes them even more collectible. Again, they will
retail for $2.99 US and $3.99 Canadian, and if you can’t find them in
a local book or collectibles shop, you can purchase them directly from
Antioch. Watch out for people selling them online for $10 a piece; it
really isn’t necessary to pay that much, especially when these items are
new and available directly from the publisher.
This year, so far, has promised much in the way of more collectible and
displayable jewelry. Now even Jasmine
Watson, designer of some of the great Elven jewelry of the film, has
created a Silver Leaf Pendant that you can buy and wear and is reminiscent
of her Art Nouveau style used in the reproduction of the items for the
film. It is sterling silver, complete with matching chain and velvet “presentation”
case for $125 US plus shipping. You can even pay through paypal.com, which
for those of us who buy a lot of stuff online and use paypal.com (because
we get cash back, yippee!) makes for fairly easy and convenient purchasing.
Noble Collection continues to forge ahead with lovely, wearable reproduction
jewelry inspired by the film and works of Tolkien. They are still selling
their wonderful Arwen pendant (which I actually covet, shhhh) and enameled
Green Leaf pin. This year they are rolling out a sterling edition of the
One Ring replica, Elrond’s Ring (Vilya) set in 10K gold with a “genuine”
sapphire, and a Rivendell inspired sterling silver necklace set with green
crystals which is actually quite lovely. They are also selling Galadriel’s
Ring (Nenya), which is so close to the one worn by Cate Blanchett in the
film, you’ll feel like the Lady of The Wood yourself! Last year also sported
the Ring of Aragorn (Barahir) and the Witch King; this year they’ve covered
all bases with additional rings such as the Ring of Men in silver set
with a blood red cornelian, and the Ring of Dwarves in gold plated silver
and set with a huge blue crystal. There is also a new Rohan Horse brooch
in silver and a Saruman Brooch in the form of what could be a lizard or
salamander with tiny gold tipped feet.
Most items come in a wooden presentation box and certificates of authenticity.
The great thing about Noble is that you can pay in installments, which
is always great for those of us living on a budget but who still want
to play Elf Lady or Mortal Hero.
Last time, I told you about Todd
Alan Studios, where Todd has created a couple of “Elfin Crowns”.
Recently he added a new crown to the collection, still featuring his hand
wrought silver technique of twisting and flowing strands of silver, complete
with an 8mm Moonstone set in front. As with the previous crowns, it can
not only be customized for size and metal, but Todd offers 9 stone options
including topaz, garnet, onyx, amethyst and London blue topaz (my favourite
stone besides sapphire). The new crown is $150 US and is definitely a
piece of wearable art to be enjoyed for a very long time.
And as if all that lovely Elf repro jewelry wasn’t enough this year,
you can also buy things like LoTR
Bobble heads, and Collector Knives in Gandalf, Nazgul and Frodo from
The Franklin Mint. They are also offering “The
Band of Power,” a Tolkien-inspired Ring that although it doesn’t
look like a One Ring replica, is intricately carved and set with a large
black stone, intended to be worn by men and is more reminiscent of Rings
worn by Aragorn or the Witch King. The Mint (an American Collectible institution)
also has many other items inspired by Fantasy, Myth, and Lore.
Other items to look for are FoTR and TTT Medallion Coin sets, complete
with books to place your coins in with pictures and helpful information,
the Mini Sting in the Rock (kinda like King Arthur Sword in the Stone),
and the new Fossil limited edition Two
Towers Watch. To be released in conjunction with the film, this collectible
yet functional watch comes with a distressed leather band, a map of Middle
Earth in red on the face, and a gold band around the face etched with
runes. It will also come with a wooden box engraved with the Lord of the
Rings logo. MSRP $99 US.
So there is more then enough stuff to put on your Holiday or Birthday
wish list, and some of it is and will be available through our store.
Although it seems like a shameless plug, we do need your help running
this site. Every purchase made through our store helps in a small way
to keep us going by defraying the cost of hosting and domain fees. We
want to keep CoE advertising free and through our store not only can you
buy something collectible and fun, but you can also help us out and not
have to be hassled by pop-up ads or garish banner advertising splashed
all over the place.
This year it seems the companies creating the jewelry and other collectible
items are beginning to realize that LoTR fans don’t throw their money
around easily and want items that are tasteful, well designed, and manufactured.
We pay attention to detail and cost, and I think by the time Return of
the King comes around there will be some really stunning stuff available.
For the money, I still say Harmony’s One Ring is the best looking reproduction,
especially if you’re going to wear it. However, it does come at a high
price and costs even more then my own antique Art Deco diamond wedding
Noble still offers some of the best reproduction works for beauty, variety,
price, and you can’t beat a payment plan to help keep you in silver and
The new Fossil watch is probably the most functional item that still
looks great and will make an excellent gift for the Two Tower enthusiast
in your life.
Personally, I’m looking forward to the beaded bookmarks again this year.
If only because they are quite pretty and if you read quite a bit, like
me, it’s nice to have a variety of favourite faces to keep you company.
I think the new beads are a great added touch and I certainly intend to
collect them all.
If you have any comments, please feel free to add them to this article,
and if you find any new items that were missed in this article, please
feel free to PM or email me.