Saturday 20 September 2014

Fabulous Friday vs Saturated Saturday

So who else has new collection news exhaustion?!

Bravo to all the "Hot Off the Press" Bloggers and Retailers alike as I was pretty much glued to my mobile and then my computer screen for most of yesterday... what a Friday!

Trollbeads Gold Love Art Collection and the People's Bead Winner "Perfect Balance"

Trollbeads Christmas Collection 2014

From Trollbeads we had the previews of the new Gold Love Art Collection, the announcement of the People's Bead Winner (Congrats Mirjam!) and previews of the Christmas Collection, all available to buy on the 1st, 10th and 17th October respectively.

Then came an unexpected preview of the new X by Trollbeads Christmas Collection entitled Glow X Amaze - available 5th November.  Initially when I read the title I thought there might be a glow in the dark link (my mind works in weird ways) but when I saw the new red Limited Edition links I got a little bit excited!  Black & Red, Red & Bronze, Silver & Red, Red & Silver & Bronze, oh my!!

X by Trollbeads Christmas 2014
Glow X Amaze

So, now, on Saturday, I'm sat with my coffee mulling over the choices... what on earth do I do next with my current budget - I am determined to try and make good my promise to myself to spend less on jewellery this year, as well as my "upgraded" New Year's Bead Resolution to have saved more than I spend on jewellery.  I am well on my way with the former and hoping to meet the latter with 3 months left ticking on the clock.

So back to the beads...  What are my top picks from the affordable?  I say affordable as whilst I am very taken with the Gold Love, Live and Forgive bead and the Silver and Gold dangle Lucky Love, these are way out of my league unless I have some unexpected dramatic change of fortune.

Trollbeads Gold Love, Live and Forgive and Silver and Gold Lucky Love Beads

X by Trollbeads Visible Path

There isn't a price point for Visible Path yet from the Christmas X release but I've not yet bought any of the X pendants and I'm assuming this one will also be unaffordable on my current budget.  I do see some X pendants in my future but not my immediate future!

Initial thoughts are again I favour a lot of the X links... I'm beginning to see a pattern here, not bad for a brand that are barely a year old!

X links Flash of Light and Single Lots of Love

Limited Edition Red Rubber X Links for Christmas!!

X double link Slide Ride and Bronze My Star

From the Trollbeads Christmas release I've been a lot more choosy, there aren't individual pictures of the glass yet and I know I don't want either of the two kits in full.  So they are very much a wait and see, and also a see in person for actual finish - I liked a lot of the glass last Christmas, but found the finished designs could be a lot less like their perfect stock photo examples.

Trollbeads Heart 4 You and Holly Bush

Trollbeads Snowballs

Just 3 of the silver, unusually for me I really like one of the heart offerings, definitely want to see the other side but from the "front" I do like this.  I'm also so glad to see Holly in silver, being a bit of a fan of Holly in a nice hedgerow!  Finally I've chosen Snowballs as a possible contender, I wasn't sure at first but the more I look at this bead the more it grows on me!

Finally the People's Bead was announced and again I like the simplicity of this glass bead, I'm not a fan of black and white beads normally, but I think this is nicely done and as long as the quality control is handled well I think it will work beautifully on a bangle for those of us who've never quite mastered those black and white combos!

People's Bead Winner 2014 - Perfect Balance from Mirjam Seling

Right I don't know about you folks but I need another cuppa and possibly a lie down after that little lot!

What do you think of the new previewed Collections?  Splurge or Save? 
How do you decide what to get first if your wishes exceed your budget?

Thursday 18 September 2014

Beads, Budgets & Collection Conundrums!

Well last month it appears was all about breaking the budget... I should have known I was tempting fate because just as the last "naughty" parcels were dropping on my doormat and I'd been chatting with a friend over coffee about savings; my electric toothbrush and then my washing machine went kaput!

So, there was one last naughty parcel to come before I reached the "no more orders expected" point.

Time to look at what I'd got left to spend on the new collections... which now, as you might have guessed (or know if you've read yesterday's post), was a lot smaller than my original proclamation of "Ooh how exciting I have a bigger pot than usual for new collections!"

When I first started to draft this post it was small; by the time I came to publish this post it was zero... oops! (Make that two last naughty parcels to come)

So that means I not only need to pick the absolutely must have, want to use them right away pieces from my wish list, but I must also wait until next month.

Given that we are then edging towards Christmas releases, do I wait even longer to make choices out of all of the collections yet to come, ignore new ones completely and pursue an existing project (taking advantage of the US 4 for 3 promotion running in October), or dabble in the available collections now and risk no funds for anything else - argh!  

This is before I even think about the Elfbeads launch and superb offerings from Great Lakes, or get touched by his noodly apendage offering from Ohm Beads.

So, before my brain implodes with the possibilities; today I am going to concentrate on the just the collections I mentioned yesterday:

Based on what I like and would most likely use I have a short list of the most favoured contenders... okay so this is actually a long list... I've not added up the cost of this little lot as I already know some of these pieces represent my whole budget by themselves - but these are my top picks!

Redbalifrog Frog Lock and Trollbeads Giant Lotus

Trollbeads Lapis Lazuli 

Trollbeads Lotus Top and Tree of Awareness

Trollbeads Sleeping Bat and Spooky Bats Lock

X by Trollbeads Bronze DNA and Bronze Flow Links

X by Trollbeads Bronze Lovers Bond and Zip Me Lock

X by Trollbeads Hanging Around and Protect Links

X by Trollbeads Royalty and Skull Me links

As you can see both X releases scored very highly on my wish list, I love *all* of the Halloween release and I'm a big fan of the new bronze links!

For Trollbeads, again Halloween was a winner with the bats, which along with X I would wear all year around, bats & skulls are not just for October you know!

Out of the huge offering from Trollbeads for Fall, I favour just 3 key silver pieces, although they are quite substantial and 1 of the stones, from Redbalifrog it's the Frog Lock; I think that is one of the nicest locks I've ever seen.

So what to choose?  Y'know what... I still don't know!

Out of my top picks which would you choose if you were me?

Wednesday 17 September 2014

Past the Watershed - New Collections from Redbalifrog, Trollbeads & X by Trollbeads

We are now 4 main collection release dates into Fall, and another due in 9 days and I've yet to blog any of them!

In early August we saw Redbalifrog release their Me'lange Collection a small eclectic mix of silver, onyx and brass and also featuring a new necklace.

L-R: Redbalifrog Me'lange and X by Trollbeads Strong & Free 2014

A couple of short weeks later this was followed by the X by Trollbeads Strong & Free Collection featuring 3 new bronze decorative links, a new heavily detailed lock and a range of 9 silver decorative links.

Early September saw a huge offering from Trollbeads with the release of their main Fall Collection, this included 2 new glass kits, 2 leather bracelets, 1 lock, 2 stones and no fewer than 17 silver pieces!!!

Trollbeads Fall Collection 2014

On the same day Trollbeads also released a much smaller Halloween Collection, just 3 pieces, a Bat Lock, Bead and Earrings.  Although small this generated a huge splash across the Internet with collectors eagerly awaiting this release!

Trollbeads Halloween Collection

X by Trollbeads will debut their Halloween Collection later this month (26th) featuring 4 new links and pre-ordering is now available.

X by Trollbeads Halloween 2014:
Stormy Vs Alive

So 4 new collections released, and pre-ordering open for the 5th... what did I get?

Well so far... nothing!

My crazy August spending on preloved pieces and clearance sales reduced my original new collection budget to zero, so I have to wait until I get paid later this month before I can indulge in anything else.

This has forced a gap between the release dates and any buying/pre-ordering I might do, so I have the thinking time that I often don't have the self-discipline to grant myself; which is not a bad thing.  I have a very strong "ooh shiny" impulse so what I get isn't always what I would use straight away.  I'm curious to see how this pans out come pay day...

What do you think of the new collections?
Have you indulged and how did you make your choices to indulge or not?

P.S. Happy Anniversary to X by Trollbeads! 1 year old today!!

Friday 5 September 2014

Love - X by Trollbeads

Well as everyone else was gearing up for the new collections, I was going retro with one of the brands, X by Trollbeads!

X by Trollbeads silver Love link

Yep, you've guessed it, a preloved opportunity struck again.  This time it was for one of the larger links in the Collection; Love.

Now I was already *way* past the breaking point on my budget at this stage, but as I've said before, there are just some things that don't come up on the preloved market very often - and big X by Trollbeads links fall into that category.

You have to remember that the brand has still only been around for a smidgen less than a year since it launched last September, so the preloved market with X is still very tiny by comparison!

My plan was to incorporate this in a much more busy bracelet by breaking down the others, however when I put it with just plain links and no lock to try it out I fell in love with Love on it's own!

X by Trollbeads Bracelets

So for now I have 4 X bracelets made up, my randomly collecting rubber links when I have the opportunity seems to be working well; it gives me so many options on more bracelets with a few key links!

My Simply Love X by Trollbeads Bracelet

I still gravitate to the black links by choice with X, despite having two bracelets worth of blue.  I think I have to accept I definitely favour the darker side to X!

Monday 1 September 2014

X by Trollbeads - A Bit of Spit & Polish!

I honestly didn't think my X were that dirty until I started giving them a polish this evening; that was a completely new pristine jeweller's cloth before I started!

Of course once they were all nice and shiny I couldn't resist a few new combinations!

X by Trollbeads bracelet play - new (to me) bronze and silver decorative X links!

I've recently picked up some more bronze single links preloved as well as some silver ones.  I mentioned in the comments of my first X blog post that I thought the Forget-me-knot link is one of the single links that would really stand out and not get lost on a bracelet.

My new (to me) Forget-me-knot X link

It's taken me many months to test this theory; but I think I was definitely right!

I was not overly keen on the direction X went in during the Valentine's and Spring releases earlier this year, whilst I thought the links were beautifully executed and would be great when I decided to branch down a more floral/nature route with X, it wasn't what I wanted to see for the brand at that stage.

The one link I did like from that period straight away was Love Bugs!

My new (to me) Love Bugs X link

We had a wonderful year living in the Welsh countryside a few years back and amongst many favourite memories of that time was the abundance of lady bugs (or ladybirds as we call them in the UK).  We did accidentally bring back a breeding colony of them to Yorkshire... but that's a whole other story!!

These 3 X bracelets are using all bar 1 metal link in my collection, although I predict they may be broken down sooner than is usual because I'm expecting yet another preloved X link, which is currently winging it's way across the pond as I type!

So much for saving it all up for the two new X by Trollbeads Releases!

Flower Cloud didn't make the cut this evening in case you were having problems with spotting the missing link!