Trollbeads Inspiration: Dear Yellow


IMG_8575Dear Yellow,

I get it.  I really do… and I’m just sorry that I didn’t see how amazing you were earlier in my time as a Trollbeads collector.  Don’t get me wrong – it’s not like I haven’t fallen in love with the odd shade of yellow… (Remember that custard yellow baby nursery?  And then there was the short lived sunshine yellow kitchen?)

IMG_8574However, I think if I was honest I was just a little nervous of such a strong colour.  I do like my nice safe misty greys.  Not too long ago I came across an online photo of an incredible yellow bracelet.  It was Chinese Royal Yellow, and completely unapologetic about it.  None of this “Complementary colour”, “Blended in” nonsense… it was just pure, unadulterated and gorgeous… yellow.


IMG_8576What’s more, there was very little pattern on the beads themselves… no cute florals, animals, polka dots or stripes.  Very clean, modern and almost tribal in its aesthetic, it was powerfully beautiful.  It took my breath away, and made me begin to rethink yellow.  I’ve begun gathering big bold yellows and plan to place them together onto a bracelet design once I’ve found enough that I truly love.  Today I’m playing with a range of yellows that I found among Tartooful’s stock… including some surprising candidates, that I don’t usually think of as yellow… “Black Gold” in this case shows more gold than black… an extraordinarily light and bright “Luminous”, and even a “Blue Desert” that is really a “Yellow Desert”!


Clockwise from clasp:  “Freya Lock”, “Black Gold”, “Neverending”, “Silver Trace, Beige Blue” (retired), “Unique Amber”, “Live Love & Forgive”, “Dewdrops”, “Unique”, “Heart Conch”, “Orange Steel” (retired), “Transformation”, “Lucky Clover”, “Flowers on Indigo”, “Unique”, “Path of Life”, “Luminous”, “Trefoil Knot”, “Third Eye Chakra”, “Unique Amber”, “Midgard Serpent”, “Unique Amber”, “Blue Desert”, “Lucky Knot”, “Unique Amber”.

So.  Sorry Yellow, I won’t underestimate your allure ever again….



Trollbeads Inspiration: Double it up for Christmas


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.


A collection of rich reds, recklessly blended…


Glittering greens…


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”.


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.


Trollbeads Inspiration: Transition


IMG_6933We’ve all been there…

this morning I stood before my open closet, completely bewildered as to what to wear.  Today was the first day of school for our North Vancouver kids, and right on schedule, we woke up to a grey and rainy day.  After what felt like an unusually long and beautifully war and clear Summer, we are

IMG_6934finally, really, settling in to Autumn.  So.  What to wear?  It’s not really cold yet, and the sunshine of the past season hasn’t quite faded from mind yet.  On the other hand, the leaves are starting to turn around the edge, the dark is coming earlier and earlier, and the shop windows here in Edgemont Village are filled with Autumnal treats.

IMG_6936I will never understand how I can be so flummoxed by this every time the seasons change.  It’s as though I completely forget what I used to wear.  What felt good this time last year?  Surely those pieces must still be hiding in my wardrobe?  I envision myself updating them artfully with a well chosen accessory, and sailing out the front door a vision of seasonal style… and one day that may actually happen.  Today however, I do have a few good ideas on how to transition one’s Summer bracelet to a wonderful, early Autumn composition!


Screen Shot 2014-09-22 at 12.23.41 PMMost of us have fallen in love at some point or another with some of Trollbeads’ gorgeous turquoise toned beads.  Here I showcase a range of beads in that lovely colour, including the Spring collection’s “Ancient Palace”, a couple of yummy uniques and the

IMG_6939very tricky, limited edition “Daydream Blossom”.  I took the cue from the blossom bead, and added a range of spicy tones.  For these I reached for my favorite golden and cherry toned ambers, as well as the new “Brown Yellow Chalcedony”.  Two of the new faceted beads for Autumn of 2014 offer complex pattern and a touch of sparkle.  The overall look is still warm and full of sunshine, but the rich chestnut tones and deeper teals mark this as an Autumn composition, not Summer.


Clockwise from clasp:  “Spiritual Temple Lock”, “Turquoise Prism”, “Unique”, Unique Amber”, “Rolling Waves”, “Luminous Facet”, “Unique”, Brown Yellow Chacedony”, “Transformation”, “Unique Amber”, “Daydream Blossom”, “Unique Amber”, “Trefoil Knot”, “Red Tigers Eye”, “Ancient Palace”, “Unqiue”, Lotus Top”, “Unique Amber”, “River of Life Facet”, “Turquoise Prism”.

All beads currently in stock at Tartooful.


Trollbeads Inspiration: Red China


IMG_1913At Tartooful we often are inspired to create an entire composition by just one bead, and that’s exactly what happened here… Cristi has always been fond of the now-retired “Red China”, and when one arrived at the shop she couldn’t wait to play!


IMG_1909Trollbeads romantically described “Red China” this way:

“Spring festival in China, or Chinese New Year, has inspired this bead.  Fireworks and glowing man-made comets alight in the rosy sunset.”

IMG_1910One can see at a glance that this is an older Lise Aagaard design.  When I first got to know Trollbeads it was still in the collection, perfectly current.  Now this sought-after bead, with it’s simple style, and basic pattern arrayed across the surface of the bead, seems charmingly naive.  It’s a beautiful reminder of how far Trollbeads design has evolved.

IMG_1911It’s amazing that after all this time, its colours are still perfectly in tune with current fashion trends… with jewel tones showing strongly in the Autumn collections, one is sure to be wearing ruby red, teal and vicuna.


Clockwise from clasp:  “Large Flower Lock”, “Unique”, “Turquoise Prism”, “Ladybug”, “Unique Amber”, “Forget-me-not”, “Universal Unique”, “Red China – retired”, “Three Flowers”, “Coral Wave”, “Green Flower Mosaic”, “Eidelweiss – world tour Switzerland”, “Golden Quartz”, “Mountain Flower”, “Unique”, “Belly Chakra”.