Month: November 2013

33DC: Featuring three patterns

I have to say this one was done in a bit of a rush and without much of a plan. I divided my nail into three parts with striping tape and then used the first three patterns that came into my head with the first couple of colours I grabbed that wouldn’t look strange with the pale blue I already had on.
For such a rushed job I don’t think it looks too bad. A bit chaotic with three clashing patterns but in some ways that was the idea (or so I’m telling myself!!!) it was quite fun to do and a relatively quick mani, which we all need now and again!

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I used: Play it Blue – Catrice, Artificial Sweetener – Orly, Where’s My Chauffeur? – Essie

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Something Blue… Catrice – Play It Blue

I remember this Catrice Candy Shock collection coming out earlier in the year and thinking the blue would be great for the wedding and waiting for it to come to the shop near me that stocks Catrice products. Of course it never did. So I ordered it from the internet but even then I had problems getting it as the delivery company held onto it for a couple of weeks saying they had left me a voice message asking me to contact them. Finally I got my hands on this polish and was keen to try it as quickly as I could!

The texture was quite different from the other blues I’ve tried and I needed 3 coats for it to look nice. It dried fairly quickly and had a semi-matte finish but not in a chalky way as I sort of expected it to. I quite liked the finish but want shiny nails for the wedding so put a topcoat over it for the photo here and for ease of comparing all the blues I’ve tried later on. I like the colour – it’s quite a cool icy blue but not in an unflattering way. I’m not sure if I like it as much as the Essie but I’ll wait til I do a proper comparison before making my choice. I still have a few more blues to swatch before then!

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33DC: Something from my Inspiration board

I’m not really into Pinterest – I’ve tried using it but it just isn’t my thing. I don’t have an inspiration board as such either. I’m more of a list maker and I do have lists and lists of things I want to try, links to blogs, pictures, ideas that I like so this is my version of an inspiration board. One of the things on my list was to buy a matte topcoat and to try a design that contrasted matte and shiny textures in one colour. I’d seen a lot of people do this with black polish but not that many in other colours. I was going to an important work dinner on Friday so I thought this would be a nice subtle manicure for the event. I didn’t feel that black was right for it though and chose a dark purple instead.
In hindsight I should have chosen a simple pattern like dots or stripes but went with something a bit floral which just didn’t work that well. I don’t think the purple polish helped either. I didn’t really like the result and think I should have spent a bit more time thinking this one through.
A bit of a disappointment but something that will stay on my inspiration/to try list for another day.

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I used: Franklins Row – Nails Inc.

33DC: A new technique for me

Oh dear, still a week behind on my posts. Next challenge I’m going to be so much more organised!

Anyway, a technique I’d been meaning to try for ages was water spotted nails. I probably should have used a nice bright base colour with black over the top like most of the tutorials I saw showed but I’d seen someone do a dark blue over light blue that was really pretty. By this point I had had blue nails for well over a week and was just craving a completely different colour so decided to go with pinks.

I think the colours were a bit too close and not contrasting enough to really make this technique work plus I struggled to get big water spots and either got tiny ones or the whole lot disintegrated! I don’t think it was a complete disaster and I quite like that there’s a way of using this technique in a more subtle way but next time I’ll try fluoro colours under black! It’s a technique I definitely want to return to and experiment with getting interesting patterns and bubble sizes with the alcohol spray.

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I used: Grosvenor Street – Nails Inc, The Last Trial – Anny.

33DC: Featuring the colour I own most of

Well the colour I own most of is easily blue. Not only has my collection of blues increased rapidly with my recent mission to find the perfect blue for my wedding but it’s always the colour I feel I need more of and am missing shades that are essential to my collection!

Doing the gradient manicure a few days previously reminded me how much I enjoy gradients but also how much I need to work on getting them smooth and perfect looking. I think I should have used a medium blue in the middle of this gradient as the pale to dark looks a bit grainy and isn’t as smooth as I’d hoped for.
Still, I think the gradient was fairly successful and let me use one of my favourite techniques as well as my favourite colour.

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I used: My Boyfriend Scales Walls -OPI, Dreamer – Revlon, Southwark – Nails Inc, Belgrave Place – Nails Inc.

33DC: Geometric

This one was a challenge! I didn’t have a clear idea of what to do so simply looked up the word ‘geometric’ on google images.This image was the first to inspire me and I set about trying to recreate it on my nails. It was not an easy task by any means and all the lines and angles in the pattern started to make my head spin.
Although the finished mani may not look all that much like my inspiration image I quite like it – it reminds me of stained glass and a 1920s Art Deco inspired mani I did for the Time Periods challenge earlier in the year.

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I used: Borrowed and Blue – Essie, Miss Grey – GOSH, If I were a Boy – Essence, Nein Nein Nein OK Fine – OPI, Lady in Black – OPI.

Something Blue… Essie – Borrowed and Blue

Next on the list for my wedding nails is Essie’s Borrowed and Blue. It’s very similar to the Zoya Blu which I tried a couple of weeks ago but maybe a little cooler in colour whereas the Zoya had a pinkish hint to it which just made it a bit warmer feeling.
In terms of usability the Essie polish wins hands down – it dried so quickly which is exactly what I need when I’m getting ready for my wedding and has a very nice smooth finish. I also felt that the first coat felt a lot less streaky than the Zoya maybe because it wasn’t as thick.
Anyway – as you can probably tell I’m quite a fan of this polish and there’s a good chance that it might be the one coming out to Finland with me at the end of December!

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33DC: 3 Colour Gradient + Pattern

I’d seen these stunning nails by Coewless Polish a while back and thought of them immediately for this day of the challenge. I recently bought a matte topcoat and thought this was the perfect opportunity to try it out.
After my disaster with tribal nails earlier in this challenge I was really pleased with how these turned out and I love the matte top coat and can’t wait to use it again soon!

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I used: Westferry Circus – Nails Inc, Mojito – Rituals, Pineapple Juice – Rituals, black acrylic paint, matte top coat – OPI

Something Blue… Essence – If I Were a Boy

Continuing with my quest to find the perfect blue I thought I’d try the palest blue in the range of Essence polishes. I could see it was a lot darker than the Zoya polish I tried last week but thought if the tone was right I might not mind it being darker.
The formula was a little nicer than the Zoya polish and it was almost opaque in one coat – hardly any streaks at all and quite a nice shine to the finish. I gave it a second coat just to make sure it looked good and even on every nail. It dried fairly quickly but the colour reminds me of blue tack. That’s not necessarily a bad thing and I’m sure I’ll use this polish loads in nail art but I don’t think it’s the one for the wedding. You can see that compared with the dress fabrics it’s a bit too bold and doesn’t have the pretty icy qualities needed for a blue snow wedding!

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33DC: Europe

Here’s another reason I fell behind in the challenge – this one was a bit of a disaster and I had zero motivation to post about it.
I couldn’t think of anything which shouted Europe to me – only ideas for specific bits of Europe but in the end thought of our currency and decided to use euro banknotes as inspiration.

It didn’t turn out as I’d hoped and I literally took a photo and wiped these off my nails. I should have gone with my boyfriend’s suggestion of taking inspiration from Europe, the long haired rockers of “Final Countdown” fame – it would have been a far more entertaining mani.

Anyway, enough negativity, here’s the pic…

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I used: Blue Collar – Orly, L’Orange – Catrice, Pearly Peacock – Kiko, Richmond Terrace – Nails Inc, Hook Up – Orly, Great Tichfield Street – Nails Inc, You Don’t Know Jacques – OPI