Acorns Inspired

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Trollbeads Inspiration: Hidden Garden Bracelet

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The arrival of this stunning “Glass Trolls” made me want to create a bracelet matched its dewy and light as air mood.

With delicious shades of apple green, to golden honey, to aqua and forget-me-not blue, the dichroic glass acts as an inspiration and focal point for the whole bracelet.

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This allows me to pull together a diverse set of blues and greens that include turquoise, teal, sage, birds egg blue and even this gorgeous Emerald that takes the center position in the composition.

A pair of newer design uniques come in handy for knitting together the palette as well… these swirled glass patterns hide every shade in the bracelet, with periwinkle to teal and all shades of blue between.  I love the dimension of pattern in these glass; they invite the eye to dive right into their cerulean depths.

I find that “Tropical Travels” is a good match for the size and lush mood of this “Glass Trolls”, and I’ve added a slightly smaller “Royal” and “Ornamental Flower” to complete the set of silvers.  To me, the overall mood of this bracelet is a Summers afternoon in a rich garden.  Perhaps this verdant place is in an exotic locale, like a Florentine Palazzo’s courtyard, adorned with vines and fountains….

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Clockwise from clasp:  “Small Fish Lock” (Summer 2016 Release), “Unique Glass”, “Ancient Palace”, “Royal”, “Blue Agate”, “Florence”, “Traces”, “Glass trolls”, “Unique Glass”, “Blue Agate’, “Emerald”, “Blue Agate”, “Unique Glass”, “Tropical Travels”, “Florence”, “Blue Agate”, “Silver Mountain”, “Ornamental Flower”, “Turquoise Ribbon”, “Unique Glass”.

C.

Trollbeads Inspiration: Day to Day

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Everyone needs a couple of “Day to Day” jewellery designs.  I have rings that are worn so often that they feel like part of my hands… a couple of necklaces that are daily apparel, and of course a few bracelets that are  particularly beloved and useful.  If you are a die hard Trollie, you immediately know which of your own designs fall into this category… it’s the bracelet that always travels with you… the one that just seems to go with everything… the one that perhaps you are wearing right now?

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The appearance of that bracelet will of course vary according to your taste and needs, but for me it always seems to be some combination that features soft greys.

blog4So today, I decided to dive into the case of current bead stock and see what sort of “Day to Day” bracelet design I could play together.  I’m quite delighted with the result.  I started by combining two “Triple Pearl” beads, one an inky blue-grey and the other a perfectly clean white.  These are large-scale beads that combine both pearls and detailed silver hydrangeas for lots of drama, so they needed companions that could stand up to them.  I centred a silver “Big World” and framed it with a nicely marked “Dendritic Agate” and a stunning Sapphire.

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I rounded out the silver component by adding the design siblings of “Spiritual Adornment” and “Spiritual Ornament”.  A handful of well-chosen and complex uniques help to complete the look.

I like to think that this is the sort of bracelet that one could reach for several times a week as we go into the warmer months… The substantial silvers, the beautiful stones, the fascinating uniques – it would never be humdrum.  Best of all, it would feel “just right” with everything from a little black dress to jeans and a white t-shirt.  C.

 

Trollbeads Inspiration: Spiced Lilac

IMG_0963Today’s bracelet was inspired by a couple of fun uniques in a distinctive palette of lilac, buttercream and coral.

IMG_0960They’re not unusual patterns, but today their cheerful colour combination caught my eye.  Perhaps it’s because now we’re starting to look forward to Spring, and those pretty colours are just the tonic for the dark months of the year… (don’t they make you think of purple crocus?)  Perhaps it’s because I’m a little sad to see “Coral Bubbles” out of the collection, and these two lovelies are such perfect companions for that design… or perhaps it’s just because I was in a purple mood.  Troll is so easy to toss together on a whim!

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IMG_0961This bracelet really was so simple to tease together.  Funny, isn’t it – some bracelets are a struggle from beginning to end, and others practically design themselves.  This one was very cooperative, with beads just jumping out at me from the racks, begging to be added.  I was particularly delighted with the addition of the unique flower shown above, as it included both the oxblood and the lilac found in the “Small & Beautiful” unique at left.  The clear glass overlay in the above unique is lilac, making it a good companion for “Golden Cave” as well.

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IMG_0962How serendipitous that the Aurora Flowers that we have in stock at the moment have such a strong garnet colour in the base!  I just love how these look in the light, particularly with the very light, lemon-y “Golden Quartz”…. Just perfect for this spiced lilac combination.  The thing I like best about this palette is how simple it is to create with a wide variety of bead designs…. Most of us have collected some golden hued beads and some aurora glass.  Perhaps your purples were in play with other jewel tones through the Autumn and Winter, but they can be rearranged into this palette for early Spring in a snap.

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Clockwise from Clasp:  “Stories of You” limited edition clasp, “Unique Glass”, “Etruscan” (retired), “Coral Bubbles” (retired), “Unique Glass”, “Unique Glass”, “Cherry Blossom”, “Goldstone” (retired), “Spiritual Ornament”, “Aurora Flower”, “Golden Quartz”, “Aurora Flower”, “Swarm of Butterflies”, “Limited Edition Carnelian”, “Zanzibar” (retired), “Unique Amber”, “Unique Glass”, “Unique Glass”, “Starry Night”, “Unique Glass”.

C.

 

 

 

Trollbeads Inspiration: Limited Edition Blue Quartz

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IMG_0065Goodness… what a party that was!  Thank you to all you amazing ladies who came out, messaged, tweeted and phoned in to help make our Trollbeads Day 2015 so much fun!  I hope that all of you had a great time at the event, and are now happily ensconced, playing with all your beautiful new treasures!

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IMG_0063Melanie and I were having such a lovely time, chatting with so many of our favorite Trollies, that we almost were distracted from the new releases… (*Almost*)… With not one, not two but three new releases in June, there’s a lot to keep track of.

IMG_0059First came the City Series of beads with complex and fabulous silver designs for Amsterdam, London, Rome, Shanghai, Seoul, New York, Tokyo and Capetown.  These delightful treats are only available worldwide until the end of June, after which you will have to find each bead only in its home country.  We have some of these lovelies in stock, and

IMG_0060can still fill your wish lists, but time will run out quickly, so let us know if you’d like any of these and we will be sure to save you some!

Next came the immediately legendary Trollbeads Day 2105 Limited Edition Glass.  We are currently out of stock on those lovelies, but let us know if you are still searching for that elusive creature and we’ll do our best to fill orders if at all possible!

IMG_0057Finally, the Limited Edition Summer Stones series launched for 2015… and there are some great beads in this set!  We’ve taken some time to play this week, and there are so many colour combinations that benefit from the addition of one of these stones.  The Citrines are gently lovely, and blend effortlessly with everything from pastels to

IMG_0055Ambers.  Howlite is a welcome addition to the collection of White Trollbeads.  Often in all-white combinations, texture and clarity become the focus, so Howlite with its distinctive grey veining and shape offers a fresh new option.  Orange Agate is brilliantly beautiful and will be drop dead gorgeous with jewel tones such as turquoise, emerald green, lapis blue or rich royal purples.

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Carnelian shows a wonderful range from light honey to nearly blood red, all of it so natural and warm.  It is particularly well suited to earth toned bracelets, but is surprising and so beautiful with peachy pinks as well.  The matte finished Green Agate will play perfectly with all the beachy tones that we West Coast ladies love… and some of the less-patterned examples have a subtle, teal look to them that will be wonderful with favorite beads such as Black Flower Mosaic and Azure Bubbles.

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Clockwise from clasp:  “Swn Lock”, “Unique Glass”, “Art Deco” (retired), “Aqua Edge Petals”, “Blue Quartz”, “Florence”, “Shanghai Dragon”, “Labradorite”, “Whitecap”, “Green Jasper”, “Dragon Egg”, “Aqua Edge Pumpkin”, “Blue Quartz”, “Organic Bubbles”, “Royal”, “Azure Bubbles”, “Unique Glass”.

Finally, there’s the Blue Quartz… which is precisely the colour I like to call “Beautiful Blue”… not quite Tiffany, not quite Bird’s Egg… it’s perfect with the Aqua Edge series of glass and just sings here among mossy greens!

All beads shown here are currently in stock at Tartooful.  If you see something irresistible, drop us a line at tartooful@gmail.com!

C.

30 Day Challenge: Day 22

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Today I looked around for inspiration and found… Teemo!

teemoThe photo at left was taken in the garden yesterday morning. Looking at it once again, I was struck by the sweet face of our dog Teemo.  Teems has the classic “Merle” colouring of her Australian Shepherd Mom,  which means she has a dizzying pattern of freckles in shades of grey, black, walnut brown and white.  I thought that a “Merle” bracelet – or at least one with the colours of merle… would be a wonderful, neutral bracelet that I would enjoy wearing every day.

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IMG_9712…But how to give it that little extra touch that says “Teemo”?  In the end I decided that the most distinctive feature of Teemo, (other than her dangerously good looks – lol) is that she is always tuned in and ready to work.  She listens constantly, trying to figure out what she can do to make her humans happy.

IMG_9713She guards us against squirrels and raccoons that might dare to tiptoe on our fence… she fetches balls for us, she does all sorts of useful tricks, she greets all the customers at the shop.  Work, Work, Work.  She is the hardest working dog in the dog biz.  So I thought that the best way to say “Teemo” with this bracelet was to exceed your expectations, and go the extra mile, making a second bracelet to pair with the first.

IMG_9718Simple silvers and a peacock pearl…

IMG_9714These two bracelets could be worn together or apart… on their own, or stacked with an armful of other modern silver pieces.  They would make a great everyday combination, which would work with practically everything I own.  Lots of my favorite beads ended up in this design, including my three Labradorites.

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You can see straight away how much I wear some of these beads – look how worn my very first Labradorite is now!  It’s practically become a cabochon.

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Clockwise from clasp:  “Chess Lock”, “Unique Glass”, “Labradorite”, “Blue Desert”, “Brown Dot” (retired), “Labradorite”, “Spot” (retired), “Unique Glass”, “White Steel”, “Sapphire with silver core”, “Switzerland World Tour Mountain Crystal”, “Brown Desert” (retired), “Shortcut” (retired), “Labradorite”, “Black Spot”, “Smoky Quartz”, “Sparrow” (retired), “Blue Desert”, “Scot Bouwens Artisan Bead”.

What a good dog, Teemo!

C.

Trollbeads Inspiration: Watercolour Pink & Green

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IMG_8568Often I find inspiration for a bracelet in the colours locked inside one tiny glass bead.  Today I was mesmerized by an exquisite, aqua and peach, water coloured unique.  The colours are so delicious, the and the shimmer of the light on the patterns simply magical.  The rest of the bracelet design came together in a flash!

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IMG_8569It used to be quite tricky to find warm toned pink glass in the Trollbeads collection, but over the past year there have been a number of lovely new additions to the production collection.  The new warm pinks, such as “Desert Flower”, “Pink Petals” and “Engraved Romance”make it easier than ever to create a pink design that glows.

IMG_8567I also utilized some of the designs that have long been favorites… “Pink Gold” and both faceted and round “Rose Quartz” help to complete this design.  To complement the aqua green tones in our unique inspiration bead, I placed a beautiful “Amazonite” at the heart of the design.  Other touches of spring green are dotted about the bracelet…

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IMG_8570I reached for one of the stars of the new Spring Collection, “Seabed”, and balanced it with “Desert Rose”,  another sparkling murano glass design on the opposite side of the bracelet.  A wonderfully budded unique gives textural interest, and seems to be echoed by the “Spiritual Adornment” nearby.  I found a delicate little iris patterned unique to balance the original inspiration unique, and completed the bracelet with a pair of prisms in perfect shades of pink and green.

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Clockwise from clasp:  “Large Flower Lock”, “Green Prism”, “Unique Glass”, “Desert Rose”, “Spiritual Ornament”, “Engraved Romance”, “Seabed”, “Rose Quartz, round”, “Narcissus of December”, “Amazonite”, “Pink Petals”, “Spring Wave”, “Violet of February”, “Pink Gold”, “Unique”, Rose Quartz”, “Spiritual Adornment”, “Seabed”, “unique”, “Pink Prism”.

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.

Happy Mothers’ Day! – Challenge Day 10

IMG_5656Easy…

IMG_5653Happy Mother’s Day, everyone…

we have such amazing ladies out there, and so many mothers of all different kinds.  There’s women who have a slew of

IMG_5652kids of their own for whom they would do anything.  There’s women who care for an entire community of children who need her mothering more than we can imagine.  There’s women who see need within their own extended family,

IMG_5655and step in to provide a level of caring that the child’s own mother can’t always provide.  We have women who are now mothering their own parents… making sure that they are safe, well fed, cared for, and feel loved… and of course, those Mother-in-Laws and Grandmothers who in turn support and love more than one generation of their extended families.  We even have women who step into the gallery just to check in on us, and support us to make sure that we are cared for as well!

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A pretty and easy mix of “Unique Ambers”, “Golden quartz”, “Chalcedony”, “Rose Quartz”, “Smoky Quartz” and “Faceted Aurora”

A special thank you is due to the Mom in my life… thank you Linda for all you do for our crazy little family… we love you!

C.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trollbeads Inspiration: Everyday Beautiful

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I adore this bracelet… everything about it appeals to me, from the soft and wearable palette, to the seductive glass and stones… to the rare, retired silvers that give it its rhythm.  it’s wonderful!

IMG_5492This remarkable “Labradorite” feels to me like a keystone element of the bracelet.  The brilliant, aqua flash in the stone is just stunning and perfectly sets the tone for the entire bracelet design.  Tartooful customer RC has artfully picked up the colour refrain across the entire bracelet, but also utilized muted neutrals to maintain a calm, subtle and sophisticated palette.  “Labradorite” is a perennial favorite for us at Tartooful and this design displays just how breathtaking this natural stone can be.

IMG_5489RC’s collection boasts some gorgeous, elusive designs… as this “Tourmalated Quartz” can testify.  This stone was acquired by many serious collectors with a black & white design theme in mind.  However, we’ve

IMG_5483found over time that it is most successfully deployed as a grey bead, in softer palettes, where its unique texture can stand out and be appreciated.  In stark black and white designs it feels unsatisfyingly muddy, as it’s simply too organic.  Here it shines among other greys, oysters, taupes, plums and delicate, celadon blue.

IMG_5484RC has chosen a few, perfectly on palette uniques to help gel the overall colour theme.  The unique above features what we call “Beautiful blue” – not quite Tiffany, Turquoise or Bird’s Egg – as well as the most subtle imaginable plum.  It beautifully ties together all the key colours.  The unique at right nicely draws in the more olive tones that are found in the Labradorite and the glitters…

IMG_5491I love how RC’s plums are so understated and natural.  This is not a purple bracelet.  Note the iridescent haze of plum that shines on this Limited edition “Peacock Pearl”… the plum undertone in its neighbouring unique,  and the hint of plum in her unusual specimen of “Blue Desert”.

IMG_5487It’s a wonderful reminder that fabulous beads can come from all parts of the Trollbeads collection – regular stock items often offer fascinating diversity of appearance.  Each glass truly does show the hand of its artist maker.

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Everyday design… but far from boring!

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All beads from RC’s private collection.

IMG_5485I can’t sign off on this entry without mentioning the Limited Edition, Mint Jasper Stone bead.  It’s a lovely creamy colour of celadon green, and, of course, very rare, desirable and elusive.  Here RC places it near the center of the bracelet, where it can shine in the spotlight.  The very green “Urchin” next to it basks in its glow!

C.