Trollbeads Inspiration: Dreamy

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IMG_0700Today I once again went searching for a little colour inspiration in the beutifully illustrated pages of the Trollbeads book “Trollbeads: An Icon in Jewellery Design”.  Of course I found a great many images with wonderful palettes to consider, but in the meditative mood of the quiet gallery today I was attracted to one that

IMG_0704featured a patch of Black Mondo Grass.  The light surrounding the inky grasses is misty and blue in hue, a delicate palette into which I couldn’t wait to dive.

I started with a stunning “Blue Desert” that is a dark slate blue, with an area on one side that lightens to a subtly transparent claret.  The generous dose of glitter in this bead helps to further warm the overall look.

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IMG_0705This is currently a tricky bead to partner, (although when the Autumn Collection launches it will find lots of beautiful companions), but I placed it opposite the “Flowers on Indigo” as it also has that delicious combination of deep sapphire and claret.

IMG_0698To ensure that the mood of the bracelet stayed light and airy I added multiple dots of white:  a “Denritic Agate” that is nearly pure white, one of the Summer Stones “Howlite”s, a couple of wonderfully shimmering “Dichroic Ice”, and of course a “Diamond Bead, White”.  The Two faceted “Chalcedony” further add to the light, glowing look of the design.

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IMG_0703I love the way the light plays in this particular Azure Bubbles – it has taken me great restraint not to add it to my own personal collection!  I find it fascinating that in some lights I can see a clear layer of amber glass, yet when I look directly at the surface of the bead, it’s not green at all.  It’s a wonderful example of why I always Look at a bead sideways, and into the light….

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Clockwise from clasp:  “Large Flower Clasp”, “Unique Glass”, “Azure Bubbles”, “Spiritual Ornament”, “Dichroic Ice”, “Azure Bubbles”, “Chelcedony”, “Silver Whorl”, Diamond Bead, White”, “Flowers on Indigo”, “Howlite”, “Blue Desert”, “Dendritic Agate”, “Spiritual Adornment”, “Chalcedony”, “Azure Bubbles”, “Dichroic Ice”, “Angels Feathers”, “Azure Bubbles”, “Grey Prism”.

All beads used for design currently in stock at Tartooful.  tartooful@gmail.com 604-924-0122.

C.

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Trollbeads Inspiration: “Just Like Heaven”

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IMG_0571“Show me, show me, show me how you do that trick
The one that makes me scream” she said
“The one that makes me laugh” she said
And threw her arms around my neck

“Show me how you do it
And I promise you I promise that
I’ll run away with you
I’ll run away with you”

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IMG_0570Spinning on that dizzy edge
I kissed her face and kissed her head
And dreamed of all the different ways I had
To make her glow
“Why are you so far away?” she said
“Why won’t you ever know that I’m in love with you
That I’m in love with you”

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IMG_0564You
Soft and only
You
Lost and lonely
You
Strange as angels
Dancing in the deepest oceans
Twisting in the water
You’re just like a dream
You’re just like a dream

IMG_0567Daylight licked me into shape
I must have been asleep for days
And moving lips to breathe her name
I opened up my eyes

And found myself alone, alone
Alone above a raging sea
That stole the only girl I loved
And drowned her deep inside of me

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IMG_0565You
Soft and lonely
You
Lost and lonely
You
Just like heaven.”

“Just Like Heaven” is track #1 on the album “Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me”, by The Cure.  It was written by Smith, Robert James / Gallup, Simon / Thompson, Porl / Tolhurst, Laurence Andrew / Williams, Boris.

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Clockwise from clasp:  “Golden Flower Clasp”, “Rosa Pearl”, “Unique Glass”, “Art Deco”, “Unique Glass”, “Limited Edition Mothers Rose”, “Unique Amber”, “Three Siblings”, “Unique Glass”, “Unique Amber”, “Summer Dot”, “Flowers”, “Dichroic Ice”, “Unique Amber”, “Light Blue Stripe”, “Scarab”, “Silver Trace, Beige Blue” (retired), “Limited Edition Blue Quartz”, “Desert Flower”, “Trinity”, “Diamond Bead, White”, “traces”, “Paradise Birds” (retired), “Unique Glass”, “Limited Edition Howlite”, “Rose of June”, “Limited Edition Howlite”, “Rose Quartz”, “Maternity 18k & silver”, “Unique Amber”, “Silver Mountain”, “Moroccan Cushion”, “Unique Amber”, “Engraved Romance”, “Limited Edition Blue Quartz”, “Spiritual Ornament”, “Limited Edition Howlite”, “Silver Trace, Beige-blue” (retired), “Dichroic Ice”, “Scarab”, “Pink Petals”, “Unique Amber”, “Unique Glass”, “Unique Amber”, “Scirocco”, Unique Glass”, “Unique Amber”, “Happy Fish 18k & Silver” (retired),  “Unique Glass”, “Unique Glass”.

All beads pictured are currently in stock at Tartooful.

tartooful@gmail.com  604-924-0122

C.

30 Day Challenge: Day 12

IMG_9455A cooler shade of blue…

IMG_9453Today’s bracelet is a re-imagining of one of my semi permanent designs… I say “semi” because if there is one thing this Challenge has taught me, it’s that no design in my bead box is entirely sacred.  However, my deep teal blues and golden amber and stones have drifted back together countless times, and it’s one of the palettes that I like to be able to reach for several times a week – so it’s definitely a fixture.

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Today I decided to rework that design and take inspiration from the navy glitter and white longevity symbol bead shown above.  It’s a favorite bead, and one that I feel is a little lost on the teal and gold design.

IMG_9450I centred the Longevity, and then worked my way out, focusing on teal, deep blue and white.  I used the same array of silvers as before, as they are satisfyingly heavy and subtstantial, without taking up too much length of the bracelet chain.  I was pleased to see how much more prominent my blue and white Kimono beads are in this revised design…

IMG_9454Navy Glitter is almost copper!

IMG_9451The deep dark navy “Blue Desert” shown above is so very glittery that it almost reads as copper!  I couldn’t resist its charms, so I thought I’d better put one other deep blue and warm toned bead on the opposite side, just to provide balance and make sure it didn’t look mismatched with the other cooler beads.  I used this Azure Bubbles – which I

IMG_9452normally “read” as purple and vicuna – but somehow I think it works in this application.  Finally, I tapered both the glass and silvers, trying to place the larger beads closer to the middle of the design, and popping the tiniest “Small & Beautiful” glass right at the very end.

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Clockwise from clasp:  “Sterling Double Lobster Clasp” (retired format), “Limited Edition Peacock Pearl”,  “Limited Edition Auspicious” (World Tour Series Hong Kong), “Unique Glass”, “Blue Desert”, “Jugend”, “Sapphire”, “Limited Edition Kimono Series”, “Azure Bubbles”, “paradise Birds”, “Labradorite”, “Unique Glass”, “Artisan Labradorite”, “Rolling Troll”, “Azure Bubbles”, “Limited Edition Kimono Series”, “Labradorite”, “Carved Flowers”, “Blue Desert”, “Unique Glass”, “Limited Edition Chinese Zodiac – Rooster”, “Unique Glass”.  Artisan Labradorite Tassel by Melanie Matthews.

C.

30 Day Challenge: Day 11

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Today’s bracelet is another twist on my Pomegranates & copper colour combination – but this time instead of going light, I’ve gone dark!  Today is decadent Raspberry and rich Chocolate for a delicious bracelet.  The saturated clarets, berries and reds of this bracelet

IMG_9443could be overwhelming for me – I usually lean towards the West Coast water colour tones.  However, when I teased this combination together I was delighted to find that the addition of the deep natural browns seems to soften the impact of the cherry tones, making it much more wearable for me!  This will very definitely be back together again after the end of the challenge…

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IMG_9442It all began, of course, with a Ruby.  (as so many happy Troll Tales do…) I placed it right in the middle, where it could hog the spotlight the way Rubies like to.  I framed it with a couple of interesting, muddled up browns for texture and shimmer… Hard to believe that the bead at right is an Azure Bubbles – and then just took it from there!

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IMG_9441Funny thing… I like to try to imagine the artisans who make our beads… and I have an imaginary scenario that I play with in my strange brain, where some artist is slightly disgruntled about the retirement of “Brown Desert”.  After that lovely bead was retired I noticed quite a few ultra-dark examples of “Blue Desert”, as if somewhere there was a glass artist who just wouldn’t let go of the brown!  Continuing in my silly fantasy story:  perhaps after he was told to stop making deserts he decided to start making “Brown Bubbles”, and the above bead is the happy result!  Silly, I know, but it makes me happy.

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Clockwise from clasp:  “Sterling Double Lobster Clasp” (retired format), “Red-Pink Prism” (retired), “Unique Glass”, “Bee on Hive” (retired), Scott Bouwens Artisan Glass Bead, “Unique Glass”, “Tigers Eye”, “Shortcut” (retired), “Unique Glass”, “Ruby with Silver Core”, “Azure Bubbles”, “Spot” (retired), “Smoky Quartz”, “Unique Glass”, “Brown Desert” (retired), “Bee on Hive” (retired), Unique Glass”, “Unique Glass”.

C.

Trollbeads Inspiration: Quiet Moment

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IMG_8878Today’s bracelet was one that I designed at the end of a very busy and challenging week… it was in the quiet hour at the close of the day, and I was reveling in the calm of our little gallery in the middle of the bustling village.  Outside, people were rushing past in the rain, carrying groceries and hurrying to get home to cooking and family time.

IMG_8881I, however, had a few minutes to just play and then capture my calm time through the lens of my camera.

I started by picking a few key colour elements.  Rich plum, softest grey, a blush of pink, a hint of gold.  Placing those colours together on a play tray rod, they felt a little too “floaty”,

IMG_8885so I added a trio of earthy cinnamon tones to visually ground and warm the composition.   I placed the “Red Tigers Eye” at the heart of the design, right in the middle of the bracelet.  Then I placed a balanced pair of rounded, unique cherry coloured ambers on either end of the bracelet.  I chose an intentionally mismatched pair of “Blue

Screen Shot 2015-04-01 at 5.32.26 PMDeserts”, as they are both lovely examples of the design, and are fascinating to me in their extreme diversity.  One of the two deserts is nearly celadon green in colour, with a pinkish blush that is very interesting.  The other is a perfect slate blue with a generous dose of golden glitter and a rich coating of clear glass on top.

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IMG_8879While it is the rich clarets and golds that immediately capture one’s attention in this bracelet, the “meat” of the design is really the grey neutrals.  Without those soft, quiet colours this would be a very different design.  The rich jewel tones would sing much louder, and be much more formal in their mood.  The addition of the two “Ruby Rock”, “Blue Deserts” and “Grey Prism” creates a neutral envelope which could be used with so many different jewel tones for a wearable, everyday design.

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Clockwise from clasp:  “Freya Lock”, “Grey Prism”, “Unique Amber”, “Black Gold”, “Gentle Waves”, “Engraved Romance”, “Ruby Rock”, “Unique”, “Transformation”, “Blue Desert”, “Red Tigers Eye”, “Blue Desert”, “Trefoil Knot”, “Third Eye Chakra”, “Ruby Rock”, “Unique”, “Heart Conch”, “Unique”, “Unique Amber”, “Pink Prism”.

One final thought… The pale pink feels to me as though it’s the part of this that makes it all work.  It’s only a little tiny touch of pink – two pink beads and a little blush on the pale blue desert – but it’s an essential part of what appeals to me here.  It gives the whole thing a shimmer of light and makes me smile…

C.

 

 

Trollbeads Inspiration: Bracelet Envy

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IMG_8553It’s happened to all of us… there are so many beautiful bracelets out there, it’s inevitable that one see a bracelet that belongs to another Trollie, and and fall  head over heels in lust with it!  Online there is a feast of images available to view for design ideas, and the key is to run with the inspiration, and create something that is uniquely yours.

IMG_8581My Refreshed Purples

IMG_8554The topic arose this week as I decided to refresh my teal and purple bracelet for Spring, lightening and softening to a lilac and mossy aqua combination.  I had it with me at the gallery and more than a couple of our ladies lamented that they would love a bracelet like that – and what a shame that the beads were from my private reserve…

IMG_8559but the truth is, a similar combination can easily be created using an array of current production and unique pieces.  Most ladies have a number of beads already in their collections that they could use as the base of the composition, and would only have to tweak the design with a few new additions to create a very similar look!

IMG_8555To build a soft lilac and cool green bracelet for Spring I reached for a nice soft Labradorite and a starting point.  Like eveyone, I do love the Labs that show a big diva flash, but even understated ones are a gorgeous shade of greyed blue green that works into nearly everything that I design.  Two labs firmly set this design’s mood.

IMG_8560I placed one of the newest designs in the collection right in the middle of this bracelet… I love the new Mother’s Garden pendant, and think it’s fabulous either on a necklace or on a bracelet such as this one!  With a soft oval shape and an appealing vine pattern, it’s a beautiful centerpiece for this design.  I cradled a “White Petals” (Which isn’t white at all, but a misty lilac…) in the new pendant, and I do like the effect the petal shapes give, allowing lots of light to come through and show off the silverwork.  Working my way out from that beginning, I blended and handful of soft lilac uniques with beloved production beads such as “Purple Flower Mosiac”, “Purple Prism”, “Grey Prism” and “Magical Lamp”.  It took no time at all to build a doppelganger for my own bracelet that has its own distinct personality.

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Clockwise from Clasp:  “Large Flower Clasp”, “Purple Prism”, (such a pale, water colour version – isn’t it pretty?) “Unique”, “Hearts Galore”, Unique”, “Limited Edition Kimono”, “Purple Flower Mosaic”, “Dandelions”, “Labradorite”, “Limited Edition”, “Mothers Garden + White Petals”, “Unique”, (LOVE this one…) “Labradorite”, “Mothers Bouquet”, “Purple Flower Mosaic”, “Magical Lamp”, “Unique”, “First Signs”, “Unique”, “Grey Prism”.

C.

Trollbeads Inspiration: Mother’s Day Rose

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IMG_8396This past week saw the release of an absolutely stunning, Limited Edition glass Trollbead.  Designed by Japanese glass designer Nozomi Kaji, the Mother’s Day Limited Edition Rose bead is quickly being snapped up by collectors. The Trollie in the know is already familiar with her amazing creations.  You may remember her as the

Screen Shot 2015-02-24 at 12.08.54 PMinnovative designer of the subtle and lovely Limited edition “Kimono Kit”, released in 2011.  In that case the beads were inspired by the patterns and colours of traditional Japanese Kimonos and were made from velvety soft Japanese Glass.  Even now the designs stand out in their simplicity and elegance.

zen-1Since that time Ms Kaji has come to our attention again with the release of various amazing Limited Edition glass releases.  “Blooming Sakura” was one of the most desirable of the World Tour Limited Editions of 2012.  It’s one of those beads that one simply has to have… but can be quite tricky to use!  With a combination of sky blue, white, yellow and a dash of lavender, this bead sets the tone for whatever composition upon which it is placed.  I usually find a good home for mine with lilacs and pinks, but many of our talented ladies create lovely designs with crisp white and yellow as well.

Screen Shot 2015-02-24 at 12.43.16 PMNext, this past Autumn we fell in love with “Ageless Beauty”, a showstopping diva of a bead that features rich blue flowers with hearts of delicate celery yellow, all set on a field of crimson.  Again, not a bead that blends in – in a good way!  I have enjoyed playing together various compositions with my Ageless Beauty, usually with lots of rich ruby toned amber for a warm and sophisticated palette that matches the mood of the Beauty.

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IMG_8398Finally, here we are in early Spring, and the latest creation by Ms Nozomi is just exactly what we are craving!  After the long, dark, wet winter we are finally starting to see the first flowers here on the West Coast, with pink cherries, cheerful narcissus, crocus, snowdrops, forsythia and so many more now bursting into bloom.

IMG_8395It feels like the perfect time for my Trollbeads to come into bloom, too!  For today’s necklace we have created a frothy pink concoction, with the silver “Cherry Blossom Bead”, the new limited edition “Rose”, “Desert Rose”, and “Wild Cherry”, all on a polished sterling and pearl Fantasy Necklace.  Bright and beautiful for Spring!

C.

 

 

Trollbeads Inspiration: Candy Heart

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Happy Valentine’s Day!

IMG_8347I thought long and hard about what kind of bracelet to feature today, as our little Valentine’s treat to you… After all, there are so many fabulous design options for Valentines.  Hot pink and rich chestnut brown for raspberries and chocolate… Classic red, with gold, white, pink, black or even grey as an accent…. Pink and white… pink and gold… Diamond, heart or all sorts of “love” images…. really the choices are endless!

candy-heartsIn the end I decided to take a happy, joyful colour approach and take inspiration from classic Valentine’s candy hearts.

IMG_8348Tiny, sweet, with adorable messages and a quintessential Spring palette of purple, pink, white, green and orange… these little sugary treats only appear this time of year and are instantly recognizable icons of a childhood Valentine’s day.  They may not be sophisticated, but they are utterly charming.

IMG_8350In the newest waves of uniques to appear at Tartooful there have been so many very fun and fresh designs with lots of hearts, florals and just the right colours to built this sweet and flirty bracelet.  It’s packed with creamsicle orange hearts,  minty fresh flowers, buttercup yellow petals, pink polka dots and and plum perfect patterns.

 

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IMG_8351In my bag of Troll Tricks this might be a bracelet that only came together for a few weeks over the Spring – but wouldn’t it be the perfect thing then?  I would rearrange all the beads for other times of the year and recycle them into Summer, Fall and Christmas compositions.  The Love themed silvers are easy to play with all year round!

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Clockwise from clasp:  “Cherry Blossom Lock, “Unique”, “Unique”, “Organic Hearts”, “Valentine’s 2015 Ltd Edition”, “Unique”, “Valentine’s 2015 Ltd Edition”, “Heart Conch”, “Valentine’s 2015 Ltd Edition”, “Unique”, “Forget me not”, “Unique”, “Unique”, “Heart”, “Valentine’s 2015 Ltd Edition”, “Unique”, “Valentine’s 2015 Ltd Edition”, “Neverending”, “Unique”, “Unique”.

I hope you have all had a sweet and lovely Valentine’s Day!

xo

C

 

 

Trollbeads News: Christmas Uniques Now at Tartooful

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IMG_7724We just received the prettiest little kits of Christmas Uniques!  So. Much. Fun.  Each kit contains three glass that coordinate nicely to play together on your holiday bracelet… and many of them will linger year ’round, too, as there is a good blend of abstract patterns as well as Wintery themes.  We’ve also uploaded individually photographed Christmas Limited Edition glass for 2014, with Christmas Trees, Snowflakes, stunning three dimensional florals and rich red bubbles to tempt you.  Take a peek at them all on our online shop!

C.

Trollbeads Inspiration: Double it up for Christmas

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IMG_7712I was playing with all the beautiful, rich red Trollbeads uniques here at the gallery and it occurred to me that they were just stunning grouped together as a pure red expression.  Then I thought…. I would wear this with a green bracelet over the holidays,

IMG_7713to create an instant Christmas themed arm party without actually combining red and green in one bracelet!  What do you think?  Would you layer a red bracelet with a green one to say “Christmas”?

The brilliance of the plan, of course, is in its flexibility.  After Christmas the red could be combined with

IMG_7706black and gold for a gorgeous New Year’s display… Next one could add pure white to the green for a fresh start that feels like Snowdrops for the austere month of January.  In February the red bracelet could really shine with the addition of a few well chosen pinks or perhaps some heart themed silvers to celebrate Valentine’s.

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A collection of rich reds, recklessly blended…

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Glittering greens…

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Clockwise from clasp:  “Bow Lock”, “Unique”, “Unique”, “Christmas 2014 Limited Edition”, “Water”, “Unique”, “Unique”, “Christmas 2013 Limited Edition”, “Snowball”, “Unique”, “Christmas 2014 Limited Edition”, “Unique”, “Mistletoe”, “Christmas 2013 Limited Edition”, “Unique”, “Unique”, “Winter Berries”, “Unique”, “Unique”, “Unique”.

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Clockwise from clasp:  “Bow Lock”, “Organic Bubbles”, “Unique”, “Apple of Wisdom”, “Unique”, “unique”, “Unique”, “Eternal Love’, “Unique”, “Green Jasper’, “Unique”, “Crystal Heart”, “Unique”, “Unique”, “Unique”, “Heart 4 you”, “Unique”, “Unique”.

IMG_7705So this is my new holiday approach: play with beads and bracelets that you already have, give them a fresh twist with a few additions, and see how they can be artfully combined to create a festive look!  Red and green may be the most traditional, but fresh colour combinations such as pink and gold, black white & gold or sapphire and white would all sing during this holiday season.

C.