• 1862: Daniel Swarovski is born in Bohemia into a family that owns a crystal-cutting company. The region, now part of Czech Republic, has a long history of crystal craftsmanship. As a young man, Swarovski also completes an apprenticeship in metal work.
• 1883: Swarovski meets his future in-laws, the Weis family, and together they form a jewelry company. By 1886, their Bohemia-based company has 70 employees. Couture clients include the House of Worth, which makes clothing for Queen Victoria.
• 1887: Swarovski marries Marie Weis, and the couple has three sons: Wilhelm, born in 1888; Fritz, in 1890; and Alfred in 1891. All three boys would eventually go on to run the business founded by their father.
• 1891: Swarovski registers a patent for a crystal-cutting machine of his own creation. As a young man, Swarovski is inspired by the inventions of Thomas Edison and Werner von Siemens and he aims to make crystals more democratic.
• 1895: Swarovski and his partners move from Bohemia to Wattens, in the Austrian Tyrol, in a bid to distance themselves from competitors and imitators. Swarovski is also attracted to the local river — and snow-capped mountains — as a source of future hydroelectric power.
• 1905: By 1905, the company has 200 employees, purpose- built company housing and a hydroelectric power plant.
• 1907: The Swarovskis finish building their family villa near the company headquarters.
• 1911: Swarovski builds its own glassworks and is able to produce premium-quality glass. From 1913 onward, it has no further need to import glass from Bohemia.
• 1919: Shortages during World War I force the company to produce grinding materials in-house. The new tools division, Tyrolit, goes on to become a leading manufacturer in the sector.
• The business flourishes in the glittering, postwar decade of the flapper, the Charleston and the new fashions of the time. In 1931, in response to women’s shorter hairstyles, Swarovski comes out with — and patents — crystal-embellished fabric headbands, which are also used as trimming for clothing.
• Production comes to a halt during World War II, but thanks to canny partners in America — who had stockpiled the crystals — sales remain robust in that region. The American costume jewelry label Trifari, as well as designers Elsa Schiaparelli and Hattie Carnegie, continue to buy stones during those dark days.
• 1949: With the end of the war comes new opportunity. The company founds Swarovski Optik, initially producing ophthalmic lenses and binoculars, rifle scopes and telescopes. The company is a market leader in precision optics.
• The postwar years once again usher in a boom time for Swarovski. Designers including Coco Chanel and Christian Dior snap up the crystals, as do Hollywood costume designers. The crystals appear in films like “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” and “Sabrina.”
• 1951: Swarovski launches the Swareflex brand, which produces roadside safety reflectors, based on 20 years of research and technology.
• 1956: Shortly before he dies at age 93, Swarovski, the ever-restless inventor, creates the “Aurora Borealis” cut, which allows crystals to shimmer with the colors of the rainbow.
• 1961: Audrey Hepburn wears Swarovski jewels — not Tiffany ones — in “Breakfast at Tiffany’s.”
• 1962: Marilyn Monroe sings “Happy Birthday, Mr. President” to John F. Kennedy wearing a Jean Louis gown that shimmers with 2,500 Swarovski rhinestones.
• 1960-62: Swarovski’s three sons, Wilhelm, Fritz and Alfred die in quick succession, and the next generation, led by Daniel Swarovski II and Manfred Swarovski, take over the company management.
• 1966: Swarovski becomes part of a major cultural and diplomatic mission. The company’s crystals adorn the “Sputnik” chandeliers designed by Hans Harald Rath that Austria gives to the New York Metropolitan Opera in gratitude for American aid following World War II.
• The oil crisis and prevailing hippie-chic mood in fashion spells a difficult decade for the brand. To combat this mood, Swarovski comes up with a new creation: collectible miniatures. The “Ur-Maus,” designed by Manfred Swarovski from chandelier parts, is the first of these.
• 1974: The company also develops its HotFix technology, allowing crystals to be applied directly to fabric and other materials without settings.
• After years of supplying jewelers, the company starts creating in-house collections, such as Daniel Swarovski Paris and The Jewelers Collection. Today, jewelry is the company’s biggest division, generating 75 percent of all crystal sales.
• 1983: Michael Jackson’s famous white, crystal-embellished glove makes its debut as the singer moonwalks during the “Motown 25” TV special.
• 1989: Swarovski introduces a new logo, the swan, which remains visible on the company’s packaging and storefronts worldwide.
• 1993: Swarovski creates crystal mesh fabric.
• 1995: The company unveils Swarovski Crystal Worlds in Wattens, a cross between a museum and a theme park that allows visitors to experience the universe of crystals.
• 1998: Swarovski introduces the Nirvana cocktail ring, the company’s first fully faceted ring that gives an optical illusion of a concealed heart shape.
• 1999: The Swarovski Collective, the brainchild of Nadja Swarovski, launches with help from stylist and muse Isabella Blow. The collective aims to support emerging and established fashion designers, such as Lee Alexander McQueen, by providing them with crystals and financial support.
• 2000: Swarovski introduces a pearl element with a crystal core, giving it the weight, texture and shine of a natural pearl.
• 2001: Nicole Kidman wears a Swarovski diamond crystal necklace in the film “Moulin Rouge.”
• 2002: The brand launches its “Crystal Palace” initiative, asking Swarovski designers including Tom Dixon, Tord Boontje and Yves Béhar to elevate lighting to an art form.
• 2007: Atelier Swarovski, a collection of jewelry collaborations with ready-to-wear and other designers, launches. Among the collaborators are Zaha Hadid, Jason Wu and Viktor & Rolf.
• Swarovski begins making the crystalline curtain for the annual Academy Awards Ceremony in Los Angeles.
• 2012: Swarovski gems, designed by Stephen Webster, appear in the James Bond film “Skyfall.”
• 2013: Swarovski makes a fresh foray into Hollywood, as coproducer of its first film, “Romeo and Juliet,” with a screenplay by Julian Fellowes and directed by Carlo Carlei.
• The Swarovski family continues to innovate, with a new, multibrand jewelry retail concept known as Cadenzza, which principals believe will play a strategic role in the fashion jewelry business.
• 2014: Swarovski continues to work with architects and creates the giant illuminated arches at the entrance to Monditalia, one of three main exhibitions at the International Architecture Exhibition at la Biennale di Venezia, which was curated by Rem Koolhaas.
• 2014: Swarovski’s “Tiuterra Crystal” a combination of crystal and meteorite fragments, is created in collaboration with the Austrian Space Forum. Three of the crystals are sent to the International Space Station.
• 2015: Swarovski marks its 120th anniversary.
• In Las Vegas, Swarovski and Grand Bazaar Shops host a Swarovski Midnight Celebration, featuring a 14-foot Crystal Starburst designed with 924 custom-cut sparklers and 1,800 points of LED light.
• The company’s renovated Crystal Worlds is set to reopen after a 34 million-euro renovation.