Saturday, October 20, 2012

Design Seeds Water Marble Series: Autumn Brights

 OPI Bullish on OPI, China Glaze Cross Iron 360, H&M Lime, and CND Dark Ruby

Hellooooo there!!  Exciting news!  I have decided to do a water marble nail art series for you guys and gals! A while back I read about this awesome website on my friend Cris's blog Let Them Have Polish.  (She was also planning on doing a nail art series from inspiration there, so I'm tweaking her idea to be water marbles exclusively.)  That website was Design Seeds.  Maybe you guys have heard of it, but I had not before reading Cris's post.  They have so many awesome color palettes, and I love that it gives me some combos that I would not normally try on my own.

Here is the first palette that inspired me.  It is called Autumn Brights.  I have been loving experiencing fall again here in Sweden.  I really missed season changes while Mr. Sparkles and I were living in Texas.  I am partial to cozy sweaters and bundling up, so fall is exciting for that reason.  And of course, who doesn't love to see the leaves change?

When I did this design I tried to get a sort of leafy shape onto my nails.  The colors I used for this all cooperated surprisingly well, even China Glaze Cross Iron 360 (the shimmery orange), which I thought would be a trouble maker.  Shimmers are usually the trouble makers in my marbles.

The other colors that I used are OPI Bullish on OPI (a red-orange creme), H&M Lime (a yellow-y chartreuse with just a hint of shimmer) , and CND Dark Ruby (a maroon creme).  I think this series will be a really interesting experiment, because not all polishes work for marbling.  I will be challenged to see how I can closely match the pre-chosen palette with polishes that will actually work together!

Also, I have decided to start watermarking my photos for a more professional look.  I hope you guys don't mind.  I tried to place them where they would not interfere with viewing.  Give me your thoughts!  And, the blog got a mini makeover this weekend, so please let me know what you think of that!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Halloween Nail Art Challenge, Day 3: It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!

Essie Braziliant, MASH Nail Art Polishes in Black and White, China Glaze Paper Chasing

Hey all you Witches and Warlocks!  Ready for another round of Halloween nail art?  Today's challenge was to make some Jack-O'-Lantern nails.  I actually had a tough time with this... because my nails are so short right now it is difficult to have enough room for proper nail art!  So, what seemed like a good idea in my head didn't translate quite how I wanted onto my nail.  (I liked these better when they were just pumpkins, before the designs!)

I started this off with 2 coats of Essie Braziliant.  Next, I used the MASH Nail Art Polish in Black and a small paint brush to outline the pumpkin shape.  I used MASH Nail Art Polish in White as a base for the stems, so my green would pop.  The green I used is China Glaze Paper Chasing.  I mixed a tiny bit of the black polish with Braziliant to make a custom color for the shadowing of the lines on the pumpkins.  Finally, I used some stamps to add 3 of my carving designs, and free handed the one on my ring finger.  The stamps I used were from Bundle Monster plate BM13, and MASH plate 29.

Well, I hope you guys enjoyed my pumpkins at least, I was proud of that part!  Check below to see what everyone else came up with.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

My Bundle Monster Fright Night Contest Entry

Hi everyone!!  I have entered this mani into the Bundle Monster Fright Night contest and need your help to get to the finals!  My entry is titled: The Bloody Black Widow.

For this look I did 2 coats of Finger Paints Papier Mâché then did some blood splattering with China Glaze Velvet Bow.  I did my splatters by adding a drop of thinner to a few drops of polish, then dipping a toothbrush into that and running my thumb over the bristles.  I chose to do it this way because I didn't have a straw handy to do that method!  I was quite happy with how the splatters came out though.  Next I stamped my index and pinkie fingers with designs from the plate BM13.  I hand painted on the thread the spider is hanging from with a striping brush and my MASH Nail Art Polish.  I also stamped with the MASH polish. Finally, I added the black widow marking to my spider using Zoya Sooki and one of my dotting tools.

There are a lot of awesome entries and the 13 people with the highest votes will get to move on to the guest judging round, I hope you will all like my entry enough to vote for me.  You can actually vote for multiple entries, so please feel free to vote for any other people you like as well!  Voting is open from today until 11:59 HST October 19th.  You can vote once per day.  Please vote and share!

If you have Facebook you can vote here:

If you do not have Facebook I believe that you can follow this link to vote:
-Click on the tab that says: Vote Now
-Find my entry (Should be on page 2) The Bloody Black Widow
-Click Vote Now under my photo!

Thank you all so much for your help!  Hopefully I can win some more stuff to bring you all more awesome manis! :D

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Halloween Nail Art Challenge, Day 2: Sugar Coma

Orly Au Champagne, Essie Braziliant, Color Club Almost Famous

Hello!! Its time for another Halloween mani!  Today our theme is our favorite candy.  On an everyday basis my favorite candy is chocolate, BUT my favorite Halloween candy is Candy Corn.  A couple years ago Mr. Sparkles and I even made our own Candy Corn at home using Alton Brown's recipe from Good Eats.  It was really fun and we customized the colors to be purple, green, and white, since purple and green are our favorite colors.

Since there were a lot of Candy Corn mani's going on last year, I wanted to try to figure out a new approach to set mine apart.  I actually did the "basic" one first, but wasn't really happy with it.  So today I redid them with this method!  I used a stippling technique to get a gradient look.  I did this with the smallest dotting tool I have, but you could do this without a dotting tool using a pencil or a needle.

The colors I used are Orly Au Champagne, Essie Braziliant, and Color Club Almost Famous.  I put a coat of regular top coat over everything, and then added one coat of my MASH Nails Matte Polish.  I love that the matte top coat gave my nails a very similar finish to real Candy Corn!

What is your favorite Halloween candy??

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Blogger Collaboration: Most Expensive and Least Expensive Polishes

Cosmetic Arts No Name

Hi everyone!  Today I am participating in a collaboration with a bunch of my blogger friends.  We are all showing our most expensive and our least expensive polishes.  I am starting off with my favorite least expensive one!

I found this beauty at Ross a while back.  The brand is Cosmetic Arts, and from what I understand, all of their polishes are dupes of Color Club shades.  The annoying part is that none of them have names!  This one is (I believe) a dupe for Color Club Red Velvet.  I can't say for sure though since I don't own that one.  Anyway, this polish was $1.99, not too shabby!  I've shown 3 coats here... I think you could probably get away with 2, but I like 3 just to add a bit more depth.  It is a black jelly base with tiny red glitters in it.  It dries a bit gritty on its own, but only one coat of top coat is enough to smooth it out.

(direct sunlight) 

(direct sunlight)  

(direct sunlight)  

And a macro shot for your viewing pleasure!

(direct sunlight)  

Next up, my most expensive polish.  This is Make Up Store Mariann, a light cornflower blue holo.  Almost everyone is a sucker for holos, right?!  I definitely am.  I must say though, when I bought this I was expecting a stronger holo, because there are a few other MUS polishes that are well known for a strong holo.  I've shown 2 coats, no top coat.  I tried top coat on a couple fingers on the right hand, and it definitely dulled the holo, so I opted not to do the rest.  I didn't have to use any special base coat, just my usual CND Stickey.

(direct sunlight)  


(direct sunlight)  

(direct sunlight) 

So, what are your most/least expensive polishes?

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Halloween Nail Art Challenge: Day 1, Fall into Fashion

China Glaze Riveting, China Glaze Senorita Bonita, and Orly Goth (over a base of OPI Funny Bunny)

Hey guys!  So, I have decided to participate in another challenge.  This one was put together by my pal Danielle over at Polish. Glitter. Rock & Roll!  It is a Halloween themed challenge for the month of October, and it only requires one post a week so hopefully that will be easy enough for me to keep up with.

The first day's theme is Fall Into Fashion.  Since I am not a big fashion follower, I just chose to use some fall colors to inspire a water marble.  I used my usual 2 coats of OPI Funny Bunny as a base for my marble.  In the water I did a bull's-eye with China Glaze Riveting, China Glaze Senorita Bonita, and Orly Goth.  I went for a spiral pattern when I was making my design.  I was quite happy with how these turned out, but surprisingly enough (this never happens to me), I thought my right hand looked so much better.  So I am giving you guys a rare glimpse of the elusive nail blogger's right hand as well! ;)

Hope this gets you guys in the Halloween spirit!  I'm interested to see what Halloween is like over here in Sweden, since I have read that they don't get into it quite like Americans.  Maybe I will get some funny looks at my nails during this challenge. :)

Check out the other talented people participating in this challenge with me!