Thursday, January 31, 2013

New31DC: Day 31 - Recreate a Challenge Mani

Hey hey, beauties!  So here we are on the last day of The Crumpet's Nail Tarts' New 31 Day Challenge.  I am sooo proud of myself for completing this, without missing any days!  For the final day's theme we are recreating another participant's mani from the challenge.  I chose to recreate this beautiful cherry blossom mani by my fabulous friend Danielle from Polish. Glitter. Rock & Roll!  I am lucky enough to be friends with this lovely lady in real life, she was one of my first blogger friends, and I just love her.  When I saw her cherry blossom nails I just fell in love with them.  So here is my best recreation!

I used 3 coats of H&M Go Green!, which is a mint green polish with a gold shimmer.  The formula on this polish was ok, it was a bit sheer but it was self-leveling so that was good.  The shimmer really wasn't very noticeable on the nail though.  The branches were done with OPI Suzi Loves Cowboys and a small brush.  The flowers are done with OPI Pink of Hearts 2009 and China Glaze Fuchsia Fanatic and a dotting tool.

This is such a spring-y mani, and made me look forward to my first spring in Stockholm.  There is a park here with tons of cherry blossoms in the spring and I can't wait to go take photos there when they are in bloom!

I hope you have all enjoyed this journey with me for the past month.  I will try to keep up with my posting, but I doubt it will be everyday.  I do have a special surprise coming up in February though, so get ready for that!

Let's see everyone else's recreation manis!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

New31DC: Day 30 - Your Favorite Nail Art Technique

Hello there!  For today's theme in the New 31 Day Challenge we are all going to show you our favorite nail art techniques...  I bet you couldn't have guessed before hand what mine would be!  Of course it is water marbling.  I actually feel like I haven't done one in forever, so I was glad to have the chance.

Since I've already informed you of my obsession with pastels at the moment, I thought I would do a pastel marble.  These colors all worked so well together, so this was an easy marble.  I used my usual base coat of OPI Funny Bunny.  I just did one coat of that before marbling over it.

For the colors in the marble I used Depend Nr. 354 (my new go-to lilac), Depend Nr. 347 (a lovely pastel peach), China Glaze Refreshmint (the pastel mint green), and OPI What's With The Cattitude? (a baby blue).

I chose to do a random marble instead of a regular pattern across all the nails... I think this is a fun change sometimes and is interesting to look at.  I also threw one coat of Orly Prisma Gloss Silver, a silver holo micro glitter similar to China Glaze Fairy Dust, over top.

Yay for water marbles!  I missed doing these.  Shall we see what everyone else's favorite techniques are?

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

New31DC: Day 29 - Inspired by a Blogger

Good evening, darlings!  (Or good morning, depending on where you are!)  We are almost finished with the New 31 Day Challenge now... I'm both relieved and sad about this, haha.  Today's theme is to be inspired by a blogger, and I chose the amazing Sarah from Chalkboard Nails!  Sarah does some seriously kick-ass manicures (Have you seen her bacon portait of Ron Swanson?! I freaking died over that one!) and she is such a sweet, funny, and down-to-earth girl.  I am lucky enough to have become friendly with her through one of my polish groups, and I'm so glad I had the opportunity to get to know her.

I chose to recreate her Betsey Johnson style skittle nails.  I love Betsey as well, so this one has always been one of my favorites from Sarah.

The base color for this mani is Depend Nr. 346, which is a medium pink cream from their new spring collection.  The nude color is OPI Let Them Eat Rice Cake, and the black accents are MASH Nail Art Polish in Black.

I didn't have any round black rhinestones, so I subbed in my square ones from Cult Nails, and I am really loving the look of those.  The rest of the nail art was freehanded using my dotting tools and a small paint brush.

This was such a fun theme for me, and I hope you think I have done Sarah's work justice in my recreation!

Check out what bloggers inspired everyone else!

Monday, January 28, 2013

New31DC: Day 28 - Inspired by Your Favorite Color

Hello dears!  Here is Day 28 of The Crumpet's Nail Tarts New 31 Day Challenge, a mani inspired by your favorite color.  Of course by now you are probably painfully aware that this is purple for me!  I decided to dig out the rhinestones I got last year from Cult Nails and do a purple gem design.

My base polish is 2 coats of Depend Nr. 354, a beautiful lilac color from their new Spring collection.  I am on a pastel kick lately, so I hope you aren't sick of seeing them yet!  354 (I hate that these don't have names!) actually has a hit of greenish shimmer in the bottle, but it doesn't show up on the nail.  Still a lovely shade though, and I didn't have anything in my collection similar!

I added the rhinestones on to my nails after I did my 2nd coat of polish while it was still tacky.  I put a dark purple on the center of each nail at the cuticle, and then on my ring finger I did a harlequin pattern with dark purple and light purple.  I did put a layer of top coat over everything when I was done.

Let's see what everyone else did for today!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

New31DC: Day 27 - Inspired by You!

Hey lovelies!  Today's challenge theme is do a mani inspired by yourself.  I thought this would be an easy theme but I was actually a bit stumped about this one.  I attempted to do a purple water marble, at which point I realized that I had one 1-2 purples that actually worked in the water and they didn't go well together so I scrapped that idea.  I ended up with a jelly sandwich base, and some bright animal print stamping.

I started off with one coat of Cult Nails Nevermore, and then I layered one coat of Hits Afterglow over top.  (The Hits was untried, yay!)  Next I did a thin layer of China Glaze Creative Fantasy over that.  Can you tell I'm loving that polish?  I've been using it so much!

I thought this looked so freaking awesome, Creative Fantasy did some magical things to that glitter!

I love animal print of any kind, but especially in some eye-searingly bright colors.  I added the leopard print to my ring finger using OPI You're A Pisa Work and Mash-40 stamping plate.  The rest of my fingers got the tiger print, using Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Lickety-Split Lime and Mash-38 stamping plate.

For not knowing what to do at first, I'm really happy with how this turned out.  I definitely think it represents me well... I love purple, and I love the purple and green combo.  I also love glitter, and like I said earlier, animal print.  The animal prints I used are also large cat markings, and I'm a major cat lover!

So what would you put in a mani to represent yourself?

New31DC: Day 26 - Inspired by Your Country

Hi there!  Today is day 26 of the New 31 Day Challenge and our theme is Inspired by Your Country.  To be honest this was probably the day I was least excited about for this challenge... I just am not the most patriotic person, and I didn't have a clue of what to do.  So here is my mani inspired by America...

So I took this opportunity to use a new polish that I won in a giveaway recently, Picture Polish Ruby Blou, which is red, silver, and blue glitter.  I layered 2 coats of RB over 2 coats of H&M Snow White.

On my accent nail I painted a hamburger, as was suggested by Mr. Sparkles.  Also, one of my sisters linked me a cute hamburger mani a while back that was done by the Nail Nerd, and what she did was so simple,  but definitely looked like a burger!  The polishes I used for this nail are 2 coats of Ciaté Cookies and Cream as a base (which made the bun), then China Glaze Gaga For Green (lettuce), Ciaté Mistress (tomato), Cult Nails Feel Me Up (cheese), OPI Suzi Loves Cowboys (meat), and OPI Let Them Eat Rice Cake (sesame seeds).

So, there you have it!  USA nails.  Let's see what everyone else did for their country manis!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Red Dog Designs: Ol' Blue Eyes Collection

Hi guys!!  I'm excited to share some swatches with you today of a few polishes from the indie brand Red Dog Designs.  I've got three polishes from the Ol' Blue Eyes Collection, which are all named after Frank Sinatra songs!

First up we have Let's Fall in Love, which is described by Gina as "holo silver and gun metal hexes, with various shades of purple squares and purple micro-slices, with microfine pink holo glitter and purple hearts." I've shown one coat layered over China Glaze Dance Baby.

This polish is so gorgeous!  Of course I am a purple lover, so what's not to like?  There are lots of holo bits, and it is very blingy.  I just love those micro-slices... I normally hate bar glitter, but teeny ones?!  Yes please!!!  The hearts are matte.  I am still loving matte glitters and I like seeing them mixed into a shiny, bright polish like this.

Unfortunately for me, I could only manage to get one heart out!  I think that this was mostly due to the travel from the US.  I could see lots of hearts in the bottle, I just couldn't get them!  I am clearly the only one who had this problem, all of the other bloggers that swatched any of the polishes from this collection said how easy it was to get the hearts out.  I heard from Sheila of Pointless Cafe that if you take a paperclip or a toothpick and scrape the sides of the bottle you can loosen up any stuck glitters.  I tried this after the fact and it does seem to have made it easier to find the hearts, so I would recommend trying that if you have the same issue.

Next up is Besame Mucho, described as "purple shimmer based, with purple, rose copper, and copper glitters in various sizes and microfine pink holo glitter."  I've shown one coat layered over Depend Nr. 354 (a Swedish polish brand if you are not familiar).

This one was hard to photograph because the shimmer was reflecting the light so much, but it was very pretty in person.  The mix of colors is great, I am really loving copper and purple together!

The shimmer complimented my base color perfectly, I think this combo was fabulous.  The pink holo micro glitter adds some extra sparkle that is very nice.  Overall, a lovely mix.

I've saved what, in my opinion, is the best for last!  This is My Funny Valentine, described as "various red, gold, and black glitter, including circle shapes, with red holo hearts."  I've shown one coat layered over Ciate Dangerous Affair.

Oh my god, I just die!! Those circle glitters (which I am obsessing over lately), holo hearts, and matte black glitter??!?!?!  Swoon worthy!  As you can see I had no issues at all getting the hearts out of this one, I have at least one on each nail.

Gah, I can't even seem to put into words my love for this polish.  It is just the most perfect Valentine's Day polish.  Trust me when I tell you, you NEED this polish in your life!

All of these, plus several more, will be available tonight at 9 pm EST from Gina's big cartel shop:

Each full-size polish is $8.75.

You can also follow Red Dog Designs on Facebook for more info about upcoming collections and releases here:

*These products were provided to me for review.*

New31DC: Day 25 - Inspired by Your Childhood

Hey guys!  Today's theme for the New31DC is Inspired by Your Childhood.  I chose to recreate some characters from one of my favorite cartoons.

The Snorks!  Did any other 80's babies watch this show?  I used to wake up early from my naps as a kid to go ask my Mom if I had missed it!

My base color for this was 2 coats of OPI Ogre the Top Blue, and then the characters were done mostly with acrylic paint.  I did have to use a bit of polish because I don't have a magenta or a pink acrylic, and I couldn't get the right colors from mixing.  For Occy the octopus I used OPI Miami Beet.  For Casey Kelp, the light pink girl, I used China Glaze Dance Baby.  And for Daffney Gillfin, the darker pink girl, I used a mix of Miami Beet and Dance Baby.

This is my first time attempting to recreate characters or anything like this on my nails, and I am pretty happy with how I did!  They aren't perfect, but I will keep trying and hopefully my skills will improve.

What was your favorite cartoon as a kid?

Thursday, January 24, 2013

New31DC: Day 24 - Inspired by a Game

Hello loves!  So today we have Day 24 of the Crumpet's New31DC.  Our theme of the day is Inspired by a Game.  My favorite game ever is Monopoly, so I didn't have any trouble deciding to use that as my inspiration.

For my base color I used 2 coats of Layla Mercury Twilight, a silver holo.  I used this as a nod to the Monopoly I usually play, which is the Millennium edition.  This one has a holographic silver board instead of the normal green one.  Believe it or not, I don't actually even own the classic Monopoly!

The rest of this design was done with a small paint brush and my acrylic paints.  Let me tell you, those letters would have been impossible for me with nail polish... I just know they would have spread out into a bunch of blobs!

I hope you like these if you are a Monopoly fan!  What is your favorite game?

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

New31DC: Day 23 - Inspired by Nature

Hi guys!  So today we have some Inspired by Nature nails!!  Now that Mr. Sparkles and I are living in this frozen tundra we call Stockholm, I get to see this really beautiful thing happen.  Sometimes, when I wake up in the morning, I look outside my window to see all the bare trees encased in a sparkling, white frost.  It is a very amazing sight, and I enjoy it so.  I knew I had to try to replicate this effect onto my nails.

Isn't is so ethereal?

For the base of this mani I used two coats of H&M Peppermint Fusion, which is a very pretty periwinkle blue with a subtle electric blue shimmer.  I came across swatches of this color recently and onto the wishlist it went!  Good thing H&M polishes are relatively inexpensive and easy to find here in Stockholm.

This polish was hard to photograph correctly... I actually think it is a touch dustier looking in real life.  I would actually compare it to China Glaze Electric Beat, with an added shimmer of course.  The color seems very similar, though I haven't done a comparison swatch yet.

So, on to the nail art!  I freehand painted the trees with a short striping brush.  I first painted them on each nail with OPI Suzi Loves Cowboys, and then went back over each with H&M Snow White for the frost.  I like how the thumb nail turned out the most, but overall I'm quite happy with these.  I think I managed to capture the essence of my inspiration photo.  What do you think?

What part of nature inspires you?