Monday, July 30, 2012

Chain Link Mani

For some reason it's taken me forever to find the right use for the chain design from Bundle Monster plate BM12. It's been one of my favorites since I got the plates, so I don't know why I haven't gotten around to it before.

For the main base color, I used China Glaze Stone Cold from the Hunger Games collection, which is matte on it's own. I stamped the chains with Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Silver Sweep. For my accent nail, I used a background of China Glaze Icicle and stamped it with KleanColor Black. I put a coat of Essie Matte About You on everything (including Stone Cold, to make sure the chains were matte too).

I really LOVE the way this looks! Sadly, it wasn't very durable. As you can see in the picture, just showering the morning after doing my nails was enough to give me some tip wear. By the end of day two, Stone Cold was coming off in big chips. I don't have many matte polishes, so I'm wondering - are they usually this fragile?

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Shawl Inspired Nails

I have to admit that I often dress to match my nails, not the other way around like normal people. However, there are some exceptional outfits that require a coordinating mani.

One of my friends knitted me this beautiful, light, soft shawl. We both love purple, and he started knitting shortly before I started crochet. So, we've been learning and sharing our work as we both progress in our skills.

To go with my lovely shawl, I chose two coats Maybelline Colorama Grape Crush for the main color and added an accent nail with two coats of KleanColor Vegas Nights over one of Grape Crush.

I felt like we needed another picture of the awesome shawl. I've been seeing people out and about where I live with an index finger accent nail. I don't know why, but I feel like it looks so different when it's just two nails over!

Any thoughts? What's your favorite accent nail? Or your favorite outfit to match your polish to?

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Summer Bright Water Marble

I've tried water marbling a couple of times before, and I have to say that I still don't have the hang of it. My biggest problem is that I end up with little dots where (I assume) there was a drop of water when I pulled my hand out of the cup. I'm determined to get this right some day, but sadly, today is not that day.

Left hand

I started with a base of Sally Hansen White On, then did the marbling with one drop Maybelline Colorama Cupid's Wing, one drop China Glaze Spontaneous, and two drops Sally Hansen Blue Me Away!. Cupid's Wing is a white shimmer, but it didn't show up much.

Right hand
 My right hand ended up with an interesting striped pattern. It's not what I was going for, but it looks pretty cool - it reminds me of Easter eggs. Since the shimmer in the marbling didn't show up, I decided to add a coat of Pure Ice Oh Baby! over the top. This was a fatal error. As you can see, it bubbled like crazy and didn't really add much shimmer. Grrrrr.

I'm not entirely certain what I'm doing wrong or if this is just a matter of practice. I would love some times from more experienced water marblers about how to make mine pretty and neat.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Dotted Nails

I finally got some dotting tools for Christmas, but so far, I've only used them to add detail to stamped manis and that kind of thing. So, I decided it was time to do something mainly using my dotting tools, and recreate a design by Pam of Girly Bits. You'll have to scroll down the page a little to see her original design here.

For my version, I started with a base of Revlon Autumn Berry.

Next, I used dotting tools in two different sizes to add dots of China Glaze Foie Gras, China Glaze Westside Warrior, and Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Gray by Gray.

I'm really happy with how this turned out, so I plan on doing more dot-based designs in the near future. 

Monday, July 9, 2012

Douchrome Hexes Mani

Sadly, this one turned out to be a bit of a Monet, just like my last mani. I'm going to use the excuse that I was in a hurry when I did it, and I also promise that the next one's much better.

For the base color, I used Orly Mysterious Curse, which was the only one of the Dark Shadows collection that cause my eye. It looks very douchrome in the bottle, but somewhat less so on the nail.

You can see that the bluer douchrome comes out a little, but it's subtle. On top, I added some decorative confetti that I got at the Dollar Tree. They came in sets of six for $1 in cute little glass vials, so they'll be showing up more in the future. Sadly, I was in a rush by the time I was finished and slapped on my top coat, which I think is why it bubbled so badly.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Sonia Kushik Fairy Princess

As I mentioned on my craft blog Athena Handmade, I've basically taken the month of June off from blogging because it's my very busiest at work. Now that things are slowing down, I'll hopefully be a little more present here. In the meantime, I have been taking some photos, so I'll start with sharing those.

I'm posting a small version of this picture first because, to quote Clueless, "From far away, it’s OK, but up close, it’s a big old mess."

See?! I absolutely love this color - it's mint green with purpley-blue shimmer - but it bubbled something horrible. I think it was because my bottle was pretty thick, so I ended up kind of pushing it around my nails instead of using a nice three stroke technique. Next time, I'm going to try thinning it to see if I get better results because I really want to wear this color and be happy with it.