Squirrel Themed Nail Art

Anyone who knows me also knows that I love squirrels!  I might even be considered something of a squirrel whisperer.  Here’s a video of me interacting with a very tame squirrel at the park a few years ago.

And here’s another one of me getting the opportunity to pet this wild squirrel!

But whether or not you have a fondness for squirrels, these cute little furry rodents also happen to be quintessentially associated with fall, the time when you can see them gathering and burying nuts all over the place.  Squirrel themed nail art has been a long time coming for me, but I’m glad that I waited until my skills improved some more so that I could do the animal some justice.

Let’s start with the nail polish palette:

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Left to right: I’ll Take the Cake! by OPI, I Think I Cayenne by Sephora by OPI, Espresso Your Style! by OPI, and Rich Gold by Sephora + Pantone Universe Jewel Dust Nail Lacquer.

For the acorns and the squirrel, I used acrylic paint by craft smart.

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Acrylic paint by craft smart in Black, Dark Grey, White, Golden Brown, and Brown.

I almost never use sheer polishes, but I wanted a neutral looking background for everything.  I’ll Take the Cake! has a nice shimmer to it while providing a hint of color to smooth things out.

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You can get a gorgeous nude shimmery mani from I’ll Take the Cake! by OPI.

I planned to paint a squirrel head on my ring finger, but I wanted a fall colored gradient on the tips of my other nails.  Using a sponge, I applied one color at a time.

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In order for the acorns to show up clearly, I had to start with my darkest color first. This rich brown is Espresso Your Style! from OPI.

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I continued to sponge on I Think I Cayenne from Sephora by OPI, a beautiful russet color, over the dark brown.

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The last layer of the gradient was Rich Gold from Sephora + Pantone Universe. The glitter is holographic when it catches the light, so the picture really doesn’t do it justice.

The gradient on its own makes for a lovely fall manicure, as it looks like piles of autumn leaves swirling in the wind.  I was tempted to leave it alone, but I wanted my squirrel to have some nuts!

The rest of this manicure was done with acrylic paint so I could clean my brushes easily.

The acorns were pretty simple to do.  I used Brown to create the bottom half of the acorn, swiped Golden Brown across the top and added a stem to the hat of the nut, lightly applied a cross hatch pattern across the top with Brown, and finished by outlining the major sections of the image with Black.

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How to paint an acorn.

I couldn’t afford to take so many pictures while painting the squirrel because I was blending colors together to get different shades and had limited time to use the paint before it dried.  To get the general shape, I painted an outline of the head with Dark Grey and tweaked the shading from there.

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Looks like an locked item from a video game! The squirrel is but a shade of itself.

Blend different amounts of brown and grey, brown and black, and white and grey to get the shading right on the face and ears.  I outlined the head with a combination of grey and black to give my guy a softer look.

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I get super happy whenever I see that cute face on my nail!

Operation Squirrel Manicure accomplished!  Hope you have all your nuts gathered and accounted for over the upcoming holidays!  Happy polishing!

Autumn Foliage Nail Art

The crisp autumn air is something else.  It’s the perfect weather in which to take a walk outside and enjoy the wonderful golds, reds, and browns of the season.

For this manicure, I started by painting all my nails with Keep Me On My Mistletoes by Sephora by OPI.

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Beautiful shimmery gold nails courtesy of Keep Me On My Mistletoes by Sephora by OPI.

To make the leaves in the design change colors, I added a gradient to the gold base with a sponge.

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The colors I used for the gradient pictured below are Keep Me On My Mistletoes, S-age Is Just A Number, and I Think I Cayenne, all by Sephora by OPI.

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Gold, green, and orange gradient. I mixed up the direction of the fade to make things more interesting.

The next part of the manicure was stamped with plate BPL-029 from Born Pretty Store.  I used the design in the top row, 2nd from the right.

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Nature lovers will love plate BPL-029 from Born Pretty Store.

The color palette for this next part incorporates red, copper, and brown to complete the quintessentially fall spectrum.

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Pictured from left to right are Olivia by Julep, New Year’s Red-solution by Sephora by OPI, and Don’t Be Egg-nogious by Sephora by OPI.

To color in the flowers, I used the reverse stamping technique.

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The stamping was done with Olivia by Julep.

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I lightly brushed on New Year’s Red-solution by Sephora by OPI to the flower petals in the design using the brush on the bottle.

At this point, I should have taken a photo, but I have to admit that I was half asleep and forgot to do so.  -_-  Needless to say, I stamped the colored in pattern directly onto all of my nails, varying the position of the image for a more random look.

For extra shimmer magic, I swiped Don’t Be Eggnog-ious by Sephora by OPI over only the leaf parts of the design before I applied a topcoat.

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Autumn foliage nails!

Even though there is a lot going on in the design, it was fairly simple to do.  Hope you all get your fill of pumpkin-spice goodies while the season lasts!  Happy polishing!