This charming…rip off

I’ve noticed these necklaces at Urban Outfitters for awhile. They don’t exactly have a track record of being original people,

so it wasn’t all that surprising when I realized they have totally been ripping off this UK designer.

Her necklaces are really cute and handmade. Theirs are overpriced, unoriginal pieces of crap.

See for yourself:

Hers: Theirs:

Posted by BlueJedi  |  10 Comments  |  in Uncategorized


  1. LiLi 02/29/2008 7:42 am

    Oh, oops, when I clicked properties, it says that I’m seeing the UO ones. That’s too bad, I would have liked to compare the two.

  2. LiLi 02/29/2008 7:41 am

    Which photos are missing for me here? I’m only seeing 1 each of the tusk/envelope necklaces. Is it just me?

  3. Cathy in Seattle 02/09/2008 4:37 am

    I’ve had oneof those gold-colored envelopes for at least 15 years, and I got it in a vintage shop. I think the original design for this piece of jewelry is much much older than that.

  4. PopPunk 02/06/2008 6:57 pm

    Nope. not a rip.

  5. Isha 02/06/2008 2:25 pm

    “Bulk ordering parts and hand CONSTRUCTING not hand MAKING them.” It does seem that fully hand made is hard to come by in the cottage jewelry trade, a amount seems to be a lot closer to Hand Assembled.

    Like on consumer goods, when the label states: “Parts made in INDONESIA, Assembled in CHINA, Box made in the USA.” Plus it’s how you can get cheap pottery that’s labeled “Hand Made” they just don’t add “in mass production, factory conditions by hundreds of workers.” Not that there’s anything wrong with that as you’ve got a ton of people with jobs and roofs over their heads. But I seem to digress.

    Scroll through Etsy, ebay and a vast amount of cottage jeweler sites and you’ll see glimpses of very pretty and unique hand assembled stuff, as well as good (and terrible) examples of reconstructed/deconstructed stuff and also examples of fully Hand Made stuff.

    But back to this specific example. Even though I’ve seen the envelope/note pendant concept before these two specific examples are surprisingly alike and serve to illustrate that UO is what it is, cheap, in all meanings of the word.

  6. Sarah 01/29/2008 8:49 am

    No no no, sorry SPARCS, this is definitely NOT a rip, they are both just as unoriginal as each other, and no, they did not take a cast of THAT UK designers envelope, they both have very subtle differences. Also – the ‘roughness from the casting’ is not what you say, it is a very standard weathered texture on mass produced brass crap. I currently work full time as a manufacturing jeweller also (fine jewellery not craft jewellery) and have had previous experience working with numerous jewellery stores and indy jewellers, so I know the business aswell.

    Why would Urban Outfitters bother recasting the UK designers pendant when they are so readily available from hundreds, if not thousands of manufacturers mass producing them for that exact market worldwide? That is exactly where the UK designers would have come from. Most have the faintest differences like whoever UO purchased theirs from produce them with a texture, whereas the UK designers come plain. Google the description for hundreds of examples.

    She clearly didn’t make hers herself, you can tell because of the way she made her other pendant, bulk ordering parts and hand CONSTRUCTING not hand MAKING them, if she made the pendant herself she would have more skill with making the second pendant rather than ordering crap parts, sticking some jump rings on and threading them to a chain, the techniques used in the production of things like the tusks and the other charms have HUGE differences to how the envelope have been made. The methods used to produce both her pieces are completely different.

    Most indy jewellery designers work this way. Bulk ordering and constructing parts, therefore they label them ‘hand-made’.

    I’m not sure what sort of jeweller you worked for but I’d hate to think what they’d teach you if they use methods like ordering and recasting other jewellers work.

  7. SPARCS 01/29/2008 5:17 am

    The whole manufacturing jewelery industry is like this. A place I used to work as a jeweller wou8ld buy a silver charm (to tight to buy the silver one) and then cast it, and thats exacly what UO have done with the top peice, you can even see the roughness from casting…its a rip bc they took a cast of THAT i love you envelope..

  8. mindy 01/28/2008 3:57 pm

    My mother gave me a similar envelope pendant when I was a kid about 20 years ago. It’s hardly original. While Urban Outfitters can be blamed for stealing the work of many artists, this isn’t one of them.

  9. Sarah 01/28/2008 5:30 am

    BTW – Google “I love you envelope pendant” or anything along those lines and you’ll find hundreds.

  10. Sarah 01/28/2008 5:27 am

    1. Sorry to say but the little letter envelope pendant thing has been around for years, I think it’s a 70′s thing, I’ve seen them plenty before. Of course it’s very convenient timing for a wee Urban Outfitters revival and sure this chicks design probably gave them the idea, the UO version is almost identical, but it’s not an original idea in the first place.

    2. The second one is a fairly generic type of tusk/charm pendant, every indy jewellery designer, cheap little costume jewellery store and most of the standard womans fashion stores are making them. I’ve seen versions by all sorts of people a lot closer to this UK designers then what UO are selling.

    I’m definitely not saying Urban Outfitters are in the right by any stretch of the imagination – they are rip-off scum of the earth, but in this case they are just producing what the majority of other crap cheap fashion labels are producing, nothing original at all but can’t be labeled a rip-off.

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