Trollbeads Design Challenge: Day 1


IMG_5300Here we go!

Day one is a gentle easing into the process… First, the initial rush of taking apart all the bracelets and seeing the colours beautifully laid out in rows on the playtray… Like an artist’s palette.  Looking over the beads I really couldn’t wait to toss together this combination.

IMG_5296I admit, it practically built itself.   I’ve had a super soft blue bracelet composed for a little while, and a darker, slate blue and gold combination that is probably my favorite ever bracelet.  (“I’m going to miss you most of all…”) Today I got to mix the two of them up, and play with all my favorite blues together in one satisfying design.

IMG_5298This is the colour comfort zone for me, and it’s such a pleasure to be able to play with some of my newer beads that I’ve chosen over the course of the Spring uniques releases.  The harder it is to find a bead, the more careful ladies tend to be in designing with it.  The little oyster unique at left, for example… it graces

IMG_5297many beautiful blue to green to grey designs, and it gives me joy every time I see it.  However, I am looking forward to taking it out for a spin, and seeing what it can really do.  How does it work with apricot?  With pink?  Or golden ambers?   Somehow, I don’t think that I would nestle it into any of those arrangements as a long term plan – but until I try it I won’t really know!


IMG_5295I do love my Azure Bubbles… and I could easily have added a few more of these beloved beads to this bracelet, but instead I tried to incorporate some of the beads that I reach for a little less often.  For example, the Kimono Series blue and white design can stand out a bit due to its opacity – but in such an ephemeral design, why not toss it in?


Clockwise from clasp:  “Basic Double Lobster Clasp” (retired) “Limited Edition Peacock Pearl”, “Unique”, “Carved Flowers”, “Magical Lamp”, “Limited Edition Kimono Series”, “Zanzibar” (retired), “Azure Bubbles”, “Silver Mountain”, “Trinity”, “Labradorite”, “Blue Desert”, “Sapphire”, “King & Queen”, “Chalcedony” (retired), “Unique”, “Ball of Yarn”, “Light Blue Shadows”, (retired), “Deep Bubbles” (retired), “Auspicious” (Hong Kong World Tour), “Limited Edition Peacock Pearl”.

What have you designed today?






Feeling Inspired? Time for a little Design Challenge…


Ladies, dust off your bead trays… it’s time once more for a the 30 Day, Trollbeads Design Challenge!

IMG_5283Some of you may recall that around a year ago, I decided to take all my bracelets apart, and for a full month I created a new design each day using my own collection.  To my delight, a group of our Trollbeads friends from all corners of the Earth played along!


I am hoping that even more of you will join me this year, in unleashing your beads and discovering the creative potential that lies in your jewel box.  Trollbeads are so much fun to play with – let’s play!

IMG_5515Here’s how it works: 

1.  Choose which bracelets and necklaces you’re willing to take apart.  For some ladies, it might be the whole collection.  For others, some designs are sacred while others have never sat quite right and can easily be shaken up.  No pressure, do whatever you are comfortable with.

IMG_55332.  Photograph the designs you plan to disassemble.  This is a key step, as it saves confusion and heart ache later if you decide you’d really like that have that certain design all back together again.  The photo is your insurance policy that “you can always put it back”.  This is totally a no risk venture.  The photo doesn’t need to be art, just make sure you can tell what each bead is.

IMG_5523Now the really fun part.  Pull out a play tray or bowl, take a deeeeep breath, and let those beads fly free.  (don’t forget – you have photos!).  It’s a wonderful feeling!  Imagine if you wandered into your favorite Trollstore and came across all those gorgeous beads… what would you design with them now?  This is your chance to discover the

IMG_5539potential designs hiding amongst your collection.  Each day, take just a few minutes to tease together a fresh combination – necklace, bracelet, or whatever makes you happy at that moment.  Try to do something original each day, and don’t simply rebuild what you already know.  Stretch those creative muscles and take risks!

IMG_5513…Because here’s the kicker:  each day you make a bracelet, only to take it apart the next morning and start fresh again.  This frees you from designing only compositions that are easy, practical or wearable.  These are not meant to be long term commitments – these are ephemeral designs that can be fully enjoyed in an uncomplicated way, just for

IMG_5546the span of a few hours.  It’s this final element of the Challenge that really frees one to be a bit outrageous and mix colours that are far outside one’s comfort zone.

I am hoping that lots of you will want to play along with me, and share your designs with me.  Please send me photos of what you create!  Don’t just show me the victories – be sure to let me know what confounds you as well.  (Last year I really struggled to build an all-silver bracelet…).

Either send images to or share photos with the Tartooful family of Trollies on our facebook page.


But wait – there’s prizes!

IMG_5513Oh yes… the prizes… At the end of the month we’ll carefully comb through the facebook files and find the top few Trollies whose images have created the greatest chatter online.  So post away, and be sure to share your post with your friends online and ask them to like & share in turn.  The more chatter on your post, the more likely that we will be sending you Tartooful treats.  There will also be a prize awarded for the Trollie who offers the most support to the designers, sharing, liking and encouraging the ladies as they go through the month.

I can’t wait to get started, and I can’t WAIT to see what you will create.