This jewelry blog shares live images of the Redbalifrog Joyful Traditions collection.
Friday saw the launch of the brand new Redbalifrog Joyous Traditions collection and this is the Christmas 2021 release. There's always something a little bit special about Redbalifrog Christmas collections. For many of the brands out there, I'd imagine Christmas causes some problems. After you have been designing Christmas beads year after year after year, things can begin to feel a little repetitive. For this reason we'll sometimes see releases more focussed on the winter season as it just offers a little deviation (and in fairness to the brands, more versatility too.)
Redbalifrog tend to focus on whimsical and traditional Christmas collections. They are unapologetically festive. They don't aim for a new angle or slant on the holiday. Rather they just embrace the wholesome side of it all and I think collectors appreciate that. It never quite feels like Christmas in bead world until Redbalifrog have launched their release.
The same applies to Joyous Traditions. You'll find traditionally festive motifs, mixed with designs that evoke memories, perhaps of a childhood and definitely of a time when the holidays weren't dominated by so much commercialization.
The collection consists of five new designs; Christmas Tree Pick Up, Gingerbread Man, Lantern Bright, Santa Claus and the Yule Log. It is worth noting that I'd consider the Yule Log, Christmas Tree Pick Up & Lantern Bright to be focal beads. In fact if you opt to treat yourself to the full set of beads, once you've added glass or gemstones, you are almost at a full bracelet.
The Redbalifrog Christmas Tree Pick Up is so endearing. These big, beautiful, live trees always sound so good in theory. Then comes the practicality of moving them around, the mess and the ensuing chaos from the cat. This bead not only beautifully captures the detail of the far too large Christmas tree but to add to the "aaw" factor, Amanda opted for an old VW bug too. This bead is 21 mm in length so as mentioned, it is quite a chunky, focal sized bead.
The Redbalifrog Yule Log draws its inspiration from Viking traditions however. This saw a particularly large tree trunk be brought inside to burn on the fire through the five days of Christmas. In more modern times of course, it's more commonly associated with chocolate roulade. This design is chunky and could be used on fall & winter themed bracelets as well as Christmas. The Yule Log is 15 mm in length so not quite as large as the Christmas Tree Pick Up but still easily large enough to be a focal feature on your bracelets or bangles.
The Redbalifrog Lantern Bright is another design with a lot of versatility. For reference the bracelet threads through the body of the lantern and not through the hanger that you see on top of the bead. It works beautifully with the Shaman Bell for a snowy, sleigh ride themed combination.
The Redbalifrog Santa Claus and Gingerbread Man are both a little smaller compared to the other beads, (though not by most bead standards these days.) The Gingerbread Man in particular could be used year round, especially for those with a love of fairytales or perhaps on childhood inspired bracelets. It works really well with the Christmas release from last year which centered around vintage toys.
For bangle wearers I've found the best option is to split these beads across multiple bangles. You're not going to get them all on one, even if you forgo any glass or gemstones. They make a really cute stack though and if you're on a budget, one or two of these beads is easily enough silver to give you a festive jewelry option, without spending huge amounts on beads you might find yourself not wearing come January.
Personal favorites are the Yule Log because I just see so much versatility here and then Lantern Bright for exactly the same reason. Styling them with grays offers a more winter themed vibe which will work well through January and February, Festive reds and greens will make them feel more apt for Christmas.