I was immediately drawn to both her lovely beads and the stunning way that she displays them; it was the photo below of some of her amber beads that made me pluck up the courage to ask her if she'd consider writing and photographing the second Guest Spot of the blog. Much to my delight she agreed, and here she is!
"My name is Pauline and I first started collecting trollbeads around September 2009. My husband was looking to buy me some jewellery for my birthday and my local Beaverbrooks had just started stocking them. Well from the moment I saw them I was hooked. That day I came away with a bracelet, dichroic flower lock, the now retired brown kit, chocolate parrot, silver Buddha, Indian elephant and koala! Quite a haul, but my lovely husband decided that I was not allowed to have them all, he was going to put some away for Christmas.
I then begain to search on the web for anything I could find out about troll and stumbled on upon the website www.trollbeads.com which allowed me to follow them on facebook. At this point I was buying a couple of beads per month, and my collection was growing quite nicely. From finding that site, it led me to the facebook page "My Trollbeads" and indeed facebook pages all over the world, i.e. trollbeads the official page and trollbeads Australia. Just seeing other peoples collection inspired me so much. I didn't really contribute much to these pages at first; it was just enough for me to browse and wonder at so many great beads.
In December of 2011, I noticed that another trollbeads site, www.trollbeadsuniverse.com had a project going to get people all over the world to send Christmas cards to each other; I was just too late to enter as you had to subscribe by the end of October. Basically you emailed your address, got up to 10 other peoples addresses and sent them a Christmas card, when you received a card you emailed the site and yours and the senders name was placed in a draw and everyday from the 1st to the 31st December a name was picked out to win a bead. Some won just production beads, some won gold beads! Wow, it was then I realised what a community troll collectors really are, the warmth displayed in those Christmas cards was amazing.
I also entered the peoples bead competition, but sadly did not make it through to the top 100, but I will have a go again next year! I started to submit more photos on the facebook pages and began to receive lovely comments on my designs! When Troll released the world tour beads, I was desperate to get my hands on some of the beads that were not available in the UK, so because of the people I met on the facebook pages, I just posted a status on the US and Australia sites asking for a "troll fairy" to purchase these beads and I would get them a UK bead in return. It paid off, and I have 2 fabulous facebook friends, one in Hawaii and one in Australia. We have continued to be friends since the swap. At the time it didn't occur to me to think they would be untrustworthy and not send a bead to me after I had bought and paid for one for them. That is the nature of Troll addicts... we really are a little community.
In February 2012 I found the most amazing site, www.trollbeadsgalleryforum.ning.com and this is where I found some amazing people, with some outstanding collections, AND they could take some truly amazing photos. My little point and shoot camera really wouldn't cut the mustard, so after much pleading, and a little blackmail, haha, I finally persuaded my husband that he really needed a decent camera. Hence my new hobby... photography, BUT only of trollbeads. Now I feel I can capture the beauty of my beads perfectly. After all, they are all individual works of art.
Since joining the forum I have met so many fabulous and warmhearted people, people who will bend over backwards to help you get the bead you really need but can't find. Be it a specific unique, or a retired bead, or simply beads that are generally harder to find in the UK. My latest beads have come from a special lady from the USA who knowing I was looking for specific ambers, was going to a "trunk show" as they call them in the States, and spent time and effort looking for specific coloured ones and ones that had some beautiful inclusions, and didn't want paying until she had secured the exact beads she thought I would like.
As my collection grows I find I have bracelets that reflect moods or seasons, I have family bracelets representing my family, in particular my two new lovely grandsons, bracelets I wear in summer, or Christmas and even a Halloween themed bracelet. One of my favourites is the all white and silver bracelet pictured above; perfect for winter or even a wedding.
Well this is MY story... hope I have inspired you to start yours!!