Trollbeads Inspiration: The Calm Between Storms…

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IMG_0855Well, here we are in the very busiest time of year… the gallery is hopping with holiday shoppers, the streets are bustling, and the sound of live music can be heard drifting through the Village.  Most of us are dashing from one errand to another, busily preparing our homes for the upcoming gatherings, and attending various holiday celebrations that are already underway.  It can all be a little overwhelming… but it’s part of the rhythm of the seasons and what fun to have a such a joyful time as this in the very darkest time of year.

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The key to maintaining sanity seems to be to take little breaks, and enjoy those moments of calm between the storms…

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…So enjoy dressing up, designing and wearing your most extravagant bracelets ever – but today, on this quiet Sunday before Christmas, take a moment with a cup of tea and savour this calming bracelet…How fitting that it features a number of beads from the “Balance of Nature” kit.

IMG_0856This Autumn 2015 series has intrigued, delighted and, at times baffled us at Tartooful.  On the one hand the designs are absolutely gorgeous – exactly the sort of subtle, natural tones with which we love to play.  On the other hand, we are, at times, hard pressed to determine which bead is which – many of the designs can mimic each other in their extreme forms!  Rainbow of luck, Power of Hope and Shades of peace are close relations.  No matter – we love them, whatever their names are…. (“A bead by any other name would look as sweet…”)

IMG_0860 (1)Today I teased together a soft and pretty plum, grey and celadon composition that is designed to be that moment of calm… While it could be seen as hinting at the Spring to come, the subtly earthy tone of the plum, makes me think that this could be an all season bracelet.  I’ve included “Pink Conch” in the crew, as it is surely a cousin to the “Balance” family.  Recently the “Pink Conch” examples that we have been receiving have a lovely olive tone to the stripes that open up new possibilities for that already lovely design.

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IMG_0857I’ve included generous helpings of sparkle in this bracelet – nearly half of the beads in the design are ones that dance with gold.  For me, a large part of the appeal of this bracelet is the way these subtle colours play with each other.  On the other hand, I think that without the contrast of the deeply patterned silvers, the distinctive texture of the natural stones, and the brilliant light of the “Dichroic Ice”… it might be too homogenous and fall a little flat.  I’ve found that before when trying to design with all deserts or all azures – they are lovely but they benefit from the addition of contrast.

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Clockwise from clasp:  “Lace Lock”, “Purple Prism”, “Dichroic Ice”, “Mothers Bouquet”, “Shades of Peace”, “Unique Glass”, “Pink Conch”, “Spiritual Adornment”, “Power of Hope”, “Dendritic Agate”, “Rainbow of Luck”, “Tropical Travels”, “Purple Flower Mosaic”, “Ruby Rock”, “Purity”, “Eidelweiss (Switzerland World Tour)”, “White Petals”, “Grey Prism”.

Savour the calm – and then dive into the glorious chaos!

C.

30 Day Challenge: Finale

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IMG_9818Day 30.  Can you believe it?  The month has passed in a flash.  I have so many more ideas now than a few weeks ago… my collection will likely stay in a state of flux for some time, before my bracelets settle into new semi permanent arrangements again.

IMG_9817As expected, I haven’t gone back to my “before” photos even once, and have no interest in trying to recreate old designs.  I have too many things I want to try!  Of course, the 30 day challenge is an extreme situation… daily pressures and timetables prevent most of us from creating an entirely new composition each day.

IMG_9821Even if we did have the time, some beads simply sing too beautifully together to take them apart!  The distilled wisdom to take away at the end of this month long exercise is to go play and have *fun*.  There’s absolutely no wrong way to do this!

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IMG_9820Finally, a heartfelt thank you to all the ladies who have played along with me over the course of the past month.  (If you haven’t been to our facebook page to see their gorgeous designs, be sure to take a peek at the album… ) Ladies, your encouragement, support and beautiful designs have inspired me more than I can say.  Thank you to each one of you for all your time and energy!

I hope to seem lots of you in person at our upcoming Trunk Show – if you are in our area on Trollbeads Day – Saturday June 6th – be sure to come by the shop from 10-2 and say hello!

C.

 

 

Change is Hard.

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IMG_4593What a ride we have been on the last few years.  Together Cristi and I have had many adventures, and we’ve experienced huge changes in both of our lives.  So much learned, so much achieved.   After today, Cristi is going to be heading off for a new adventure with her quirky, underbitten hound Remi in tow… at least for now.

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IMG_4589Cristi, thank you for all the friendship, hard work, inspiration, encouragement and laughter.  I’ve been honoured to become a part of your life… and look forward to seeing where you go, and what you do next.  You are beautiful, smart, and so caring.  I love you dearly, and already I can’t wait for our next project as a team together.  xo C.

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