Trollbeads Inspiration: Cristi’s Weekend


This exuberant bracelet is intended to evoke a weekend of fun!  The colours are joyous, featuring rich blues, teals and a touch of lavender.

weekend2Lots of beads with clear glass have been chosen for their ability to reflect the light.  This makes them appear to be illuminated from within, an extraordinary trick that helps this bracelet to simply glow.


In addition, Cristi has selected silvers particularly for their meaning… In the photo at right you’ll see a tiny pair of sunglasses peeking out.  This could be a reminder of a day spent in sunshine, or perhaps a nod to a glamorous, exclusive evening out with the glitterati?  Either way it’s a memorable weekend…

weekend1This little stretch of the bracelet is designed to evoke music, and the key role it can play in enhancing a beautiful time… the black and white piano keys of “Amadeus” are the keyboard… the two deep blue uniques are a staccato rhythm section.

weekend3Other silvers on the bracelet include newcomers “Swarm of Butterflies”, (A day at the park?) and “Breakfast”..(A leisurely meal over a shared New York Times?).  The “Diamond Bead Blue’s” rich luxury is like a day spent shopping…even if it’s just for inspiration!


Clockwise from lock:  “Plain Lock”, “Diamond Bead, Blue”, “Universal Unique”, “Sunglasses”, “Universal Unique, “Universal Unique”, “Amadeus”, “Universal Unique”, “Green Flower Tassel”, “Universal Unique”, “Breakfast”, “Universal Unique”, “Swarm of Butterflies”, “Universal Unique”, “Universal Unique”.

We hope that you enjoyed your weekends, and that you have some nice memories to carry with you into the week!


Tartoofultoo online shop…

Trollbeads Inspiration: Joyful Frogs

We recently made up this necklace for display at the shop, shown here placed in front of a photo in the Trollbeads Coffee Table Book… It’s a sterling foxtail chain necklace, with three Denmark World Tour “Frog Princes” grouped together.

At first I thought that the frogs were joyful, then I realized that actually they look quite serious.  It’s simply that they make me feel silly and happy every time I look at them!


Trollbeads Inspiration: Dangerously Green

Inspired by some gorgeous greens that are glowing dangerously on the display at the moment, I decided to design an over the top bracelet worthy of a glam, fairytale vixen… (the bad guys always have such enviable style, don’t they?)

I recalled that “Snowflake Obsidian” looked edgy and cool in Trollbeads “Urban Jungle” design… and here, surrounded by other snake references it feels just a little reptilian.  Smooth yet mottled, it adds cool texture to the design, and of course a touch of black.

The verso side of the “Noh Mask” from Japan’s World Tour collection is fierce and menacing.  It’s also a nod to iconic theatrical villains, which are at the heart of the bracelet’s inspiration.  The glow and bubbles of the silver trace feel like potion, or something out of an evil lab….

“Black Flower Mosaic” has the one-two punch of feeling “snakey” and also offering a nice black tone for this part of the bracelet.  This particular example has all green and gold dichroic dots, a small detail which makes it particularly well suited for this composition.

There are a few different skull and skeleton references that could be drawn from the Trollbeads collection, but this one seems topical.  It’s the “Old West”, from the USA World Tour series, and not only does it feature the skull, but also a prickly cactus.

This is such a sweet and gently beautiful bead… “what’s a nice bead like you doing in a place like this?!”I couldn’t resist using this luminous design in the bracelet… not only is the colour perfect, but it reminds me of lit displays in a atomic era lab.

This is possibly the most important green bead in this composition… the glittering emerald green is the perfect shade, and the metallic edge makes it richer, sharper and even more complementary.  I’ve given it pride of place, close to the center of the bracelet to catch the eye.

What evil vixen worth her salt doesn’t have jewels?!  Of course, the “Diamond Bead, black” is a must on this bracelet.  The emerald green, bubble unique slinking alongside has a jewel like appearance.  Don’t the bubbles feel like little diamonds?

…and of course, the “Aboriginal Rock Painting”s snake curls smugly opposite it’s cousin, the “Midgaard Serpent”.

Clockwise from clasp:  “Double Lobster Clasp”, “Forest Anemones”, “Black Gold”, “The Midgaard Serpent”, “Turquoise Feather”, “Milan”, “Silver Trace, Green Turquoise”, “Noh Masks” (Japan World Tour), “Earth”, “Snowflake Obsidian”, “Green Wave”, “Old West” (USA World Tour), “Silver Trace, Green Turquoise”, “Black Flower Mosaic”, “Unique”, “Aboriginal Rock Paintings” (Australia World Tour), “Diamond Bead, Black”, “Unique”, “Family of Mushrooms” (Lithuania World Tour).

Isn’t it fun to imagine the character who might collect this bracelet?  I’m picturing an impossibly stylish and angular, evil space vixen with a penchant for poison and a little snake as a sidekick.  But perhaps I’ve said too much…



The totally official winner is…

Yesterday we had one of our lovely Trollies draw a winner for us from all the entries for the “Official, totally unofficial Canada World Tour Series” – and the lucky winner is the lovely N.O.!  It’s a good thing that we had an impartial individual make the draw, in front of a witness, so less – because so many of our near and dear Trollies had entries in the basket…

Congratulations to N.O., and thank you to all of you who took the time to enter.  We wish we could do ten prizes!  We’ll just have to do another one soon… perhaps for the Autumn 2012 Trollbeads collection?  Or the release of the Trollbeads Peoples Bead Spiritual collection 2012, which must be just around the corner?

Meanwhile, don’t forget that the World Tour is only available to us for a very limited time – it disappears July 31st, and the time is fast slipping away… be sure to pop in and pick up your favorites before they are gone!




World Tour Inspiration from Germany

I recently received a wonderful letter from a Tartooful Trollie all the way from Germany!  Such fun to know that our Trollie family reaches around the world.  She’s been playing with the new “World Tour” beads, and has graciously agreed to share her beautiful bracelets with the readers of this blog.

At top is her composition with the lovely “Sakura” bead from Japan…. she has created a soft and pretty bracelet with warm ivories such as “White Paper Fold”, “Chai Bud” and “Cream Armadillo”.  I particularly admire the oh so soft “Pink Desert”, which contrasts nicely with the second one of the same design.  You’ll find a few World Tour Silvers on here, as well as Limited Edition “German Clover” and “Dutch Tulip”.  M’s “Tulip” has special meaning to her, as she wrote:

“One of my favorites – or maybe it is my favorite- is the tulip bead. Not only I think it´s really pretty, also the story behind the bead is extraordinary. Like you know, I was too late to get so fabulous designs like the Trollstones or exactly the Tulip. But I saw it on the internet and was in love. So I tried very hard to get one, but without success.

Then my parents were on holiday with their tandem in the Netherlands. They made a list with all jewelers near their flat and everyday they ride to one or two ore three of them, searching for the tulip bead until they found one!! This story makes the tulip to a very special and much loved bead to me!”

In this second composition M has played with the exuberant, “Barrier Reef”.  She has toned down it’s bright colours by placing it among a collection of soft creams.  Other nods to the ocean include “Urchin” and “Azure Bubbles”… and the soft teal, Limited Edition Spring Flowers bead in the foreground at right is an inspired touch, integrating the blue from the “Barrier Reef” and “Azure Bubbles” perfectly.

M’s “World Tour” bracelet has a colourful array of designs, beautifully arranged… I could describe them at length, but I think M describes them so well…

“At last to the World Tour. I loved it so much to wait every month since the release of the new beads, thinking about what country will it be, or what beads would fit to this country:-) In this time, I started to work on my personal “World Tour-Bracelet”. Some of the beads I even get from friends, when they were on holiday in countries where the World Tour was already released. When I got the news, that the beads will be available in our own country, I couldn´t resist and choose the ones I love for my bracelet:-) It should be a colorful mixing, like the cultures and people all over the world, with their differences and equalitys.”

It is such an honor and pleasure to get to know all of you from all over the world – we truly are a “colorful mixing!”

Thank you, M for reaching out and sharing your lovely collection…


Trollbeads Inspiration: Tropical Punch

With the sun finally peeking through again today it’s the perfect time to show off another creation from the Tartooful Trollbeads Workbench.

This design owes its’ “Tropical Punch” to the juicy combination of the bright blue of “Sakura” and the citrus-y tones of both “Barrier Reef” and “Orange”.  I particularly like the combination of “Sakura” and this buttery soft yellow alabaster Amber Unique.

This “Orange” from the Netherlands World Tour collection simply glows in sunlight.  It’s an amazing persimmon colour – an orange which hints towards red more than yellow.  Viewed from the side one can see clearly all the gold that helps to give this bead its royal mood.

The “Barrier Reef” is a chameleon bead that cleverly works with so many colours… with white it feels modern and abstract.  With citrus tones it is right at home, feeling sunny and cheerful.  Here, it settles in happily near bright blue – and looks perfect, thanks to the tiny ring of blue that is found in each large dot….

The “Aboriginal Rock Paintings” silver bead features a distinctive pattern of dots and swirling figures… very reminiscent of its namesake paintings.  Here it nicely echoes the dots in both “Barrier Reef” and “Conch”, as well as several other Uniques, creating a satisfying rhythm to the bracelet.

We’ve all seen “Conch” many times before – but have you seen it quite like this?  Viewed closely one can see that it glows so beautifully thanks to a layer of clear glass that catches the light, making it appear to be illuminated from within.

Clockwise from clasp:  “Large flower clasp”, “Orange”, “Unique”, “Chinese Zodiac Limited Edition”, “Unique”, “Aboriginal Rock Paintings”, “Sakura”, “Unique Amber”, “Kangaroo & Joey”, “Belly Chakra”, “Unique”, “Mah Jong Tile”, “Conch”, “Barrier Reef”.

Enjoy that sun…


Trollbeads Inspiration: On Golden Mountain

We’ve always thought that somehow, Golden Cave and Silver Mountain ought to work together… but we’ve also always had a difficult time making them talk nicely to each other in a bracelet composition.  When we stumbled across this lovely image we decided to make a fresh attempt, with beautiful results!

When we analyzed the design at top, we decided that there were two elements that made the bracelet sing:  the repetition of the warm lilac and soft blue grey colours, and the blend of gold and silver beads.  Rather than exactly replicate the original bracelet, we instead took inspiration from it and created our own composition using a wide variety of our favorite beads.

The first beads we selected were, of course, “Golden Cave and “Silver Mountain”.  This design works best if you choose a “Golden Cave” that shows more lilac, and less of the bronze colour.

We also selected a “Happy Universe” to crown the center of the composition.  This bead design is large and dramatic enough to stand up to the two glorious glass that frame it, and its blend of 18k gold and sterling silver marries the cool and warm tones of the principal beads.  Next we began to choose a variety of glass that echo the lilac and ice blue tones of the two key bead designs.  This unusual swirled glass unique has a shade of purple that makes silver sing,  and makes me think of Venetian hand made paper..

For silvers we picked some of the recently released World Tour designs.  At left is the wonderfully complex and fluid Welsh “Love Spoons”.   I love the romantic meaning behind this bead, with its story of young suitors lovingly carving elaborate wooden spoons to prove the sincerity of their love, and the work that they were prepared to put into caring for their wife and family.

We couldn’t resist using this gorgeous “Blue Desert”, with its oversized glass and generous sprinkling of coppery pink gold.  Its quiet glamour is nicely set off with “Noh Masks”, a Japanese World Tour design that shows two opposing characters of traditional Noh theatre, as well as the small face of the actor, peeking between.

clockwise from clasp:  “Basic Double Lobster Clasp”, “Rosa Pearl”, “Love Spoons”, “Golden Cave”, “Blue Desert”, “Noh Masks”, “Lavender Jade” (retired), “Silver Mountain”, “Happy Universe”, “Golden Cave”, “Light Blue Shadow”, “Mah Jong Fortune”, “Unique”, “Silver Mountain”, “Midgaard Serpent”, “Lilac Unique”.

We’re so happy with this design that it has inspired me to rearrange my own bracelets to create something similar… it just feels joyful!



Trollbeads News: World Tour Contest

This from Trollbeads this morning:

“Where will you spend your summer holiday this year? Will you see any windmills? Maybe you will experience a stunning skyline? Or see a lion on a safari trip? Let the World Tour Collections inspire your holiday pictures and upload all the images you want with your Trollbeads at a location related to a specific bead or story. We will let it be completely up to you and your imagination to document your very own World Tour!”

Win the beads

Log in to “My Universe” at and submit your design before July 31, 2012. We will draw 20 winners who will each win a World Tour bead.”

Do share your entries with us at Tartooful – we can’t wait to see where your travels will take you this Summer!


Trollbeads Inspiration: World Tour Amber

We’re so enjoying playing with all the new beads!

Here we’ve designed a bracelet with all ambers and world tour silvers.  It’s a satisfying combination, as it showcases the intricate silver designs, and displays the wide range of colour and texture in the unique ambers… We included “Aboriginal Rock Paintings”, one of the Australia series, as well as “Drum beat” from South Africa.  I like how complementary these two silvers are; they are very similar in size, and the contrast in texture and pattern is very pleasing to the eye.

The World Tour collection includes two amber beads:  “Runes”, shown above at left, is from the Denmark series and has distinctive markings around it’s circumference.  Here we’ve placed it next to “Auspicious” from Hong Kong, and another amazing unique Amber that is so large, opaque and textured that it really feels more like stone!

The other World Tour amber is “Baltic Gold, from Lithuania.  This showstopper is a very clear, maple syrup coloured bead with large, even facets that shatter the light beautifully.  This style of amber is not found elsewhere in the regular collection, and is extremely rare among the uniques, so this is a great opportunity to pounce on a hard-to-find amber form.  Even better, for those of you who like to design bracelets with beads in sets of two – these ambers are very consistent in size and colour so it’s fairly simple to put together a matched pair.  Japan’s “Noh Mask” is even more interesting and finely detailed than it first appeared in photographs, with its two, opposing dramatic faces, and the face of the mask’s wearer peeking through at the side…

Clockwise from clasp:  “Fish Lock”, “Unique Amber”, “Aboriginal Rock Paintings” (Australia), “Unique Amber”, “Noh Mask” (Japan), “Baltic Gold” (Lithuania), “Viking Ship” (Denmark), “Unique Amber”, “Auspicious” (Hong Kong), “Runes” (Denmark), “Romulus & Remus” (Italy), “Unique Amber”, “Drum Beat” (South Africa), “Unique Amber”.

So many more ideas to come…


Trollbeads Inspiration: We’ve only just begun…

We’ve only just begun to play with the new World Tour beads, and see some of the exciting new design possibilities… but already today we’ve seen a gorgeous bracelet that now features Hong Kong’s Skyline.

This new collector is already off to a lovely start, with collection stars such as “Wisdom” and “Purple Wave” giving instant drama to her bracelet.

Wisdom of course includes a range of blue and purple stones, including Lapis Lazuli, Fire Opal, Turquoise and Amethyst, so it is a perfect centerpiece for a rich blue and purple composition.  Recent additions, “Midnight Flowers” and “Love Within” are thoughtful gifts from her husband… a romantic nod to the Cornflowers that graced their Summer wedding.

Clockwise from top right:  “Initial P”, “Purple Wave”, “Wisdom”, “Turquoise Prism”, “Midnight Flowers”, “Love Within”, “Hong Kong Skyline”.

Isn’t this the perfect bracelet for the rich jewel tone of “Hong Kong Skyline”?  It’s such a powerful blue, it could overwhelm a lot of designs… but here it’s absolutely in its element.

It’s going to be so much fun seeing all the new beads as they begin to find homes on our collector’s bracelet designs… do share!