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: Golden Light

IMG_6813IMG_6812Have you seen the change? 

As we lazily drift towards the end of the Summer, the light is subtly changing.  The shadows stretch a little longer as the sun dips lower in the sky.  Perhaps you are reading this from a point further South, where the change of season is not as noticeable – but here in Vancouver, Canada we enjoy long Summer evenings that remain light until late… often the sun is still tinting the sky at 10:30pm.  As the Autumn approaches our sun disappears into the Pacific much earlier, and we are now lighting the lanterns in our gardens and on our patio tables as early as 8:00pm.  Despite the languid heat of the days, the sun is just a little less blindingly clear and has taken on a hazy, golden hue that is unique to this season of transition.  The gilding that this Autumnal light gives my surroundings made me think of the cognac, toffee and honey colours of amber!



IMG_6806The diversity in Trollbeads’ amber is always inspiring to me, so it never takes a lot of prompting for me play together fresh amber compositions.  I find them to be the most adaptable and useful of all the Trollbeads categories.  I place the buttery alabaster ones with whites, pastels and natural stone textures.  The cherry ambers are the jewels of my pomegranate and copper bracelet, and the cognac and honey tones ones light up every kind of green and blue.  Their glowing golden tones can offer the perfect complementary note to practically any colour, it’s just a matter of selecting the right one for the job. 

In today’s bracelet I selected a range of mossy greens and slate blues that are inspired by the natural beauty of the woods and beaches in my part of the world.  These are the colours of our ocean, our lakes, our mountain streams, our lush forests and our sky. 


IMG_6814IMG_6816Just as the late Summer sun gilds our trees and mountaintops, these familiar colours come to life with the addition of warm, golden amber.  What could have been a coolly blue and green bracelet now simply glows.  I love the way that the greens now seem more brilliant, and the blues more intense.  Note how rich the “Organic Bubbles” is… Always a beautiful and fascinating bead, the contrast with the neighbouring golden peach amber makes the blue undertones in the green come rushing out!  I set the natural tone for the bracelet with a trio of faceted stones in the center position:  “Labradorite”, “Golden Quartz” and “Sapphire” make a powerful starting point.  I wanted the attention to be on the colour range in this composition, so I selected a series of silvers that all share a knotwork theme… “Three Siblings, “Lucky Knot”, “Trefoil Knot” and even “The Midgaard Serpent” have a simple and elegant aesthetic that allow the eye to focus on the palette.



Clockwise from clasp:  “Freya Lock”, “Unique Amber”, “Magical Lamp”, “Three in One”, “Organic Bubbles”, “Unique Amber”, “Aqua Edge Pumpkin”, “Three Siblings”, “Blue Desert”, “Trefoil Knot”, “Labradorite”, “Golden Quartz”, “Sapphire”, “Trefoil Knot”, “Blue Desert”, “The Midgaard Serpent”, “Aqua Edge Petals”, “Unique Amber”, “Organic Bubbles”, “Lucky Knot”, “Dewdrops”, “Golden Cave”.





Trollbeads News: In with the New…


The launch of the gorgeous new Autumn 2014 collection of Trollbeads is fast approaching… and at Tartooful we have been hustling, getting ready for the new arrivals. 

spiritual-ornamentThe Autumn collection is always the biggest Trollbeads event of the year for me… I find that the Fall collection is a welcome start to the cultural year, and an inspiration to redesign and tweak all my favorite bracelets so that they feel fresh for the new season.  The very strongest bead designs always seem to come from the Autumn collection, and this year is no exception. 

I am quite thrilled with both the silver and glass beads this year… complex, finely wrought designs such as the “Spiritual Ornament” and “Adornment” beads, or the new “Labyrinth” are on my wishlist.  They are so beautiful in their detail, and yet with their relatively clean overall form will be very easy to use with other favorite silvers such as “Silver Whorl”, “Angel Feathers” and “Sun Circle”.  I particularly like working with spherical silvers, so naturally, I’m especially delighted by the pair of “Spiritual” silvers. 


AppleOfWisdomI’m also looking forward to adding this beauty to my collection:  the “Apple of Wisdom”.  I love it for it’s simple form, and I can imagine it settling in perfectly with my clean lined, simplest silvers such as retired “Sparrow”, the large “Heart” and “Smiling Cylinder”.  It will suit both super modern designs, and garden or nature themed bracelets.  In addition, this Fall I could see many of our clients who are teachers choosing to treat themselves to this bead as a “Back to School” treat.  It will of course be a perfect end-of-year thank you as well! 

There are so many beautiful new silver designs, both from the Northern Forests collection and the Eastern Spirituality series… we have spent the weekend loading the entire collection into our online shop, Tartoofultoo.  To take a more detailed look at all of them, and place pre-orders to reserve your favorites, take a peek into our gallery there…


2014-Autumn-Red-Yellow-SNorthernForestKitThe glass this year is particularly exciting, with two very distinct sets of designs that will be so inspiring and so easy to integrate into existing collections… the Northern Forests glass series features classic forms interpreted in rich peacock blue and green tones, as well as a hit of coral red.  Bubbles, waves and flowers form a familiar family of designs, but in such beautiful fresh colours!  With the emergence of the peacock unique, lots of our ladies have created peacock inspired bracelets this Spring… these new glass will help to beautifully complete those compositions.  I can see the coral designs playing their way onto bracelets made up of warm auburns, coppers organic stone and finely detailed unique black accents.  We really are going to have so much fun experimenting and exploring all the possibilities for these glass designs!  (it’s a tough job, but someone’s got to do it…)



EasternFacetKitFinally, the “Eastern Facet Kit” is made up of a stunning array of sparkling glass designs… for the second time this year, Trollbeads has created a set of six beads that many of our collectors will choose to purchase as an entire set.  Over the past couple of seasons we have seen the evolution of this style of glass design, with the Limited Edition Mothers Day faceted bead, and several two-layer faceted glass in the Spring collection as well.  However, in this series Trollbeads has once again outdone themselves, exploring and marrying new techniques with old, and ultimately creating an entirely new look in glass.  I can’t wait to hold these designs in my hand and examine them closely…. but it appears that they have begun by creating complex base layers of swirls, smudged stripes, deep bubbles and even millefiori images.  Next a deep layer of crystal clear glass magnifies the base image.  Finally, the clear layer is faceted, shattering the appearance of the base and giving a fabulous sparkling finish.

Autumn-CloseUp-FawnAren’t they amazing?  I’m already a little dizzy with the thought of it all, and I haven’t even mentioned the new stones – Golden Chalcedony and Lapis Lazuli (eeeeeee!)… and I haven’t even mentioned the BATS?!!.  Yes, bats.  Time to dust off your Halloween bracelets and give them a fabulously creepy new friend.  We will talk more about the bats once we are out of flip flops… I’m still in denial that Fall is so close, so I’m taking a few more days of Summer first….

Meanwhile, do peek in on TartoofulToo for all the new goodies…and mark your calendar for a trip to Edgemont on September 5th for the grand launch.