The Return of RedFlag



Good things come to those who wait…

…and we’ve been oh so patiently awaiting the return of RedFlag.  We’re delighted to report that these essential totes are now back in stock at Tartooful.



Meticulously designed and crafted here in Vancouver, each piece is created with great care.  Their pure lines immediately please the eye… Over time one comes to appreciate the myriad details that conspire to create a great user experience.  From home to work to shops to boat or cottage and back home, these are hardworking partners in daily life.


Come enjoy these West Coast design classics while they last…




A Very Tartooful Christmas

We have had such an exciting time the last week or so at Tartooful…


Our long-awaited Maileg Pixies, mice in matchboxes and Princesses have finally arrived…( they’re a little jet lagged from Denmark, but can’t wait to go home with our customers!)


We just received beautiful new sparkles from the Mollard Collection, with rings, necklaces, bracelets and earrings from every era over the past century… platinum, gold, diamonds and coloured stones are shimmering in the shop, ready to bring smiles to faces on Christmas Day!


Don’t miss the subtle and lovely Pyrrha, made with care right here in Vancouver.  Using reclaimed sterling silver with designs from wax seals from the 19th century, these pieces carry deep meaning are will become treasured talismans.


Fresh new RedFlag bags and accessories with exclusive colours and designs also just arrived at the gallery.  Be sure to take the time to savour the meticulous details on each piece while you choose just the right item for your loved ones who are passionate about great design.


Anyone who has walked past the shop at night has stopped to gaze at the new pieces by Steelwood Design, glowing in the window.  This local atelier creates beautiful, functional pieces created from recycled wood and metal sourced from the North Shore.  Their lamps, benches, tables, servingwares and so much more are inspired by the raw beauty of the West Coast, and are perfectly designed for the way we live here.


There’s so much more in the shop than I can list here… delicate Shamila jewels, sweet hand beaded bracelets, and of course – lots and lots of gorgeous Trollbeads!

Come see us and let us help make your holidays magical this year… we’ll cheerfully help you find just the right thing for each of the people on your list, and have you wrapped and ready to go in a jiffy.

See you in the village!





Tartooful News: RedFlag Sail Sale

Vancouver atelier RedFlag Design meticulously creates beautiful and useful objects for everyday life using alternative use materials.  Their bags and accessories that you will find at tartooful are made of repurposed sailcloth, with extraordinary details such as hand knotted pulls and waterproof zippers.

The former life of the materials gives each piece a unique feel, texture and appearance.  The pure aesthetic and functionality of Red Flag Designs are simply perfect.

Now, for a very limited time, their coveted designs are available at perfectly irresistible prices… A fresh array of stock has just arrived at unheard-of SALE prices.  However, they won’t last long, so please drop by soon for best selection.

See you in the village…


Roadtrip Kit…

With so many of you getting ready to travel this holiday season, we thought it was a good time to offer a few suggestions for a kit of functional luxuries to help you feel at home while on the road…

Start with a perfect shave kit:  these ones are made by Vancouver’s own RedFlag Design.  They are sewn from rugged recycled sailcloth that has been overdyed in a myriad of soft grey blues.  Each unique piece is beautifully finished with well made zippers, hand knotted pulls and functional leather tabs.  Best of all, this clever design louvers open with more contents, but folds neatly back on itself when emptied, to take up a minmum of precious suitcase space.

You’re particular about your bathroom luxuries at home, so why settle for nasty drugstore brands when you need a lift the most?  At Tartooful we have lots of beautiful treats for all your senses… Pretty new resin toothbrushes by Alan Stuart of New York, each one tucked in a reusable travel container… Gourmet Marvis toothpaste from Florence, and of course  lotions, soaps, travel candles and lip balms by Tokyo Milk.  (Airplanes are such dry places… keep your hand lotion and lip balm close…)

Now that your cosmetic kit is packed, you’ll want to think about your carry-on luggage.  Ideally it should be a bag that is flexible enough to be your “everything” bag once you reach your destination as well… I like to suggest Astrosatchel’s Medium Tote as a great travel bag.  It’s compact enough to be a handbag on your trip, is open plan to accommodate all sorts of unexpected finds, very secure and very comfortable, with it’s wide adjustable strap.  This bag is feather light – just the thing when every ounce counts!  I would also suggest that a wallet by Astrosatchel is ideal for travel: durable, secure, easily stores multiple currencies, coins, cards galore and even space for your passport.  Naturally, these designs are as beautiful as they are functional – very tartooful.

(photo courtesy of

Now, all you need is a book to keep you company… Don’t settle for an overpriced bodice ripper at the airport – instead stop into our neighbours at 32 books and pick something simply wonderful.  You’ll be supporting a local independent bookseller and will find something so much better.

Bon Voyage…

Ideas for your “Ruggedly Handsome” one…

At tartooful we’re in the calm before the proverbial storm… these quiet rainy days at the shop are abuzz with “behind the scenes” activity, as we finalize our orders for new stock, craft window designs and plan our next big event.  The first shipments of fresh stock are already arriving…

We’ve begun to create magic in the shop -just for in time for shoppers who are nervously looking over their loooong holiday lists.  Over the next week or so we are expecting boxfuls of brilliant solutions for all the most challenging people on your list.  New goodies for kids, pampering body treats, sparkling jewelry designs, and so much more is on the way!

…But we know who the really tricky person is on your list… and for *Him* we have a few brilliant ideas.

The Timo glass will please even the most discerning design-phile.  Created by the legendary Timo Sarpaneva, this is quite simply one perfect glass.  Made out of tough-as-nails borosilicate glass it may be used for everything – both hot and cold – from coffee to beer, wine, water or icecream.  It’s satisfyingly comfortable, smooth and substantial in the hand, and it stays glossy and clear even after years of use.  It holds more than meets the eye, as well:  a whole beer or pop will fit in one easy pour.  Glassware may not be the first thing that springs to mind for your significant other, but truly, Guys love the Timo.  The Timo is en route to Tartooful once again – phone in to reserve yours in advance, as these will sell out quickly.

Fresh pieces by local design geniuses, RedFlag are now in stock.  My better half loves his new RedFlag Shave Kit.  More than just a pretty face, it cleverly expands as it is filled, to take up only as much space as the items you pack.  He wouldn’t think of traveling with anything but their egg-shaped duffels which are capacious yet compact and may be carried over the shoulder, in the hand or even as a backpack.  Don’t miss RedFlag’s ruggedly handsome key hanks which feature pieces of vintage boat hardware, beautifully pickled and buffed to a sueded, pink gold finish.

Lego Architecture has proven to be a huge hit with the picky Dudes in the crowd… so many engineers, designers, architects and construction professionals come in and drool over this Lego series!  Think of it as a model kit, or a three dimensional puzzle for grownups. We’re expecting a big, beautiful shipment of Lego any moment…

We have so many other ideas in store, and so many other goodies we can’t wait to share with you… stay tuned for ideas for little ones, and the ladies in your life!


Redflag Design: The genius is in the details

I’m just back from another inspiring trip to RedFlag design’s Vancouver studio to stock up on all their beautiful new designs for Autumn 2011.  I always leave their space having refreshed my design palate, and with an inevitable urge to come back to the shop and tidy up.

Autumn 2011 at Redflag is all about “grey on grey on grey”.  It’s very Vancouver, with its subtle and moody shades of charcoal, misty grey, soft aqua and even the odd indigo.  The over dyed recycled sailcloth has a wonderful hand and texture, with lots of natural colour variation.  They’re so lovely that a glance is enough to fall in love… but as with all the RedFlag products, it’s on closer inspection and hard, day-today use that the real genius of the designs becomes clear.

For example,  Inside each tote you’ll find a suspended zippered pocket, just the right size to safely contain all your valuables.  The top of the bag can remain open and easily accessible without compromising the security of your essentials.  Looking about the bag you’ll notice a series of circles, stitched either to the inside or outside of the bag.  They’re pleasing to look at, and might be mistaken for a decorative element until one notices that they are all reinforcing  stress points.  The grommets, zippers and pulls are sturdy, well-made and selected to not only function properly, but enhance the appearance of each piece.  The straps are hand made sennett knots that feel satisfyingly firm in the hand, and stay snug on the shoulder while in use.

The same meticulous attention to detail is applied to all  RedFlag products large and small, from duffels to shave kits and even key hanks.

Once you finish admiring the gorgeous range of colours on the shave kits below…(meet my new evening bag.  Truly.) …you’ll notice waterproof zippers, hand knotted pulls, leather tabs for ease of entry, and a gusseted design that allows the bag to expand with the size of its contents and contract with smaller loads.   With so much love put into the details, it probably goes without saying that the main construction of each bag is impeccable, with only perfect sailcloth being incorporated and the seams and construction being unbelievably strong.

RedFlag Design Autumn 2011 collection, now at Tartooful.


(Header photo & Top Tote Photo:  Redflag Design)

Summer Comes Softly…

“Bird Stories Again” by Anne Griffiths 36″x36″ oil & resin on canvas $1800

Summer comes softly here on the West Coast… in other places, Summer may arrive with a bang of bright turquoise water and lemonade yellow sunshine, but not here.  Here we have soft warm grey sand, velvety bone-white driftwood, teal water and beach glass coloured skies.

It’s not surprising that some of our favorite things this season are in soft tones that are perfect for our sun bleached summer.  Take this gorgeous RedFlag design bag:  It’s re purposed sailcloth that has been over dyed a subtle shade of grey.  The previous life of the material shows in the gradations of grey, which are distinct to each piece.  Most importantly, it’s roomy, simple and tough – perfect for carefree Summer days spent near the water.

We’re enjoying the softest of blue grey tones in the Trollbeads at the moment, and so many of our Troll ladies seem to be collecting in this palette as well… Beads like “Light Blue Stripe”, “White Petals”, “Silver Trace, beige-blue” or any of the beautiful, dichroic glass beads… These designs seem to glow from within, with a soft cool light that somehow just suits this time and place.  Try one of the Trollbead leather bracelets, and add just a few of your favorites, for an even more casual, summery feel.

It’s the soft time of the coast… enjoy…



Fathers’ Day Tartooful Gift Guide

“Trollbeads “Big Earth” is a great choice on a leather neckband.

We’ve had lots of ladies popping into the shop looking for the perfect gesture of appreciation for the special Dads in their lives,  so we thought we’d compile a few of our favorite suggestions…

Trollbeads always seem to be our go-to suggestion, but they really do offer something for everyone.  My top Trollbeads pick for Dad this year is a saddle brown leather neckband with a clean, simple silver accent.  I like “big Earth”, but there are so many that look great – pick the one that works best for your favorite Dad.

The smartest thing in the whole shop has to be the Timo Glass.  This brilliant, practical piece was created by legendary Finnish glass designer Timo Sarpaneva for Design House Stockholm.  He selected borosillicate glass for it’s clarity, toughness and amazing resistance to extremes of heat and cold.  This makes the glass perfect for any kind of beverage:  coffee, tea, water, wine, scotch, a whole can of beer or pop (ice cream!)  It also keeps the glass clear and glossy even after countless trips through the dishwasher.  He made the rim imperceptibly thicker to resist chipping, and just a little thicker in the middle as well, for comfortable hands even when holding a hot drink.  We’ve noticed in the shop that even the toughest guys stop and comment on this glass – it just feels good in the hand.  One customer bought a box of four one day, and was back for more the next day, having caught her tough-guy husband sheepishly taking one out of the dishwasher and rinsing it, because he preferred it over their old mugs for his morning coffee.  Truly, this is one, perfect glass.

A lot of the Dads who have been in Tartooful lately have admired the original art by Rob Zylstra that is currently on our walls.  The brightly colored, retro feeling robots and aliens feel like the cartoons we grew up with, and a great addition to any “man cave”

Now this is seriously cool:  the black, hypalon series of bags from Vancouver’s own RedFlag are not only cutting edge design, but also resistant to chemicals, extremes of heat and ultraviolet light.  Made from a high grade of rubber that is more commonly used in boat construction, these ultra tough bags are the perfect size for workout gear or short trips.  The sueded finish will slowly smooth to a satin, in a pattern that reflects how the owner wears it.  RedFlag also makes other alternative use material pieces, such as brass key hanks, recycled sailcloth wallets and super-functional shave kits.  These designs will please the pickiest Dad…

This list wouldn’t be complete without talking about Floorball equipment by Salming of Sweden.  These beautifully designed, affordable sticks and balls are for a brilliant form of off-ice hockey that is increasingly being played here on the North Shore.  The carbon graphite shafts are lightweight and strong, and the blades are curved for great ball control.  They’re a blast to play in the driveway with the neighbours, but are also great at the beach, at the park, at the cottage… programs will be running this summer at the North Shore Winter Club, West Van recreation, and the Olympic Oval..  For more information about programs, contact Modern Hockey at

For more smart Fathers’ Day solutions, come visit us in person at the shop!