Wintery Bridal Nails

Blame it on the exceptionally warm winter weather that we’ve been having, but I’ve been dreaming of a frosty winter wedding theme: silver and white and sparkly.

This manicure only requires two polishes, a stamping plate, and some rhinestones.

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The stamping will be done with plate BPL-028 from Born Pretty Store. I used the design in the lower right hand corner, but you could use any lace pattern and still get a beautiful result.

I wanted a low contrast look, so I picked a glittery silver stamping polish to go over a pearl white base.

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Konad Special Nail Polish in Silver and mayfair by nails inc.

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Show us your pearly whites: mayfair by nails inc.

I used a squishy stamper and the silver nail polish to transfer the pattern from BPL-028 over to my nails.  I tried to line up the center of the design with the middle of my cuticle so that the circle would be in the same position on each nail.

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This metallic lace pattern could pass for snowflake crystals.

After adding topcoat, I used Kiss Nail Art Glue to secure a rhinestone to the base of each nail.

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All finished! I added a tiara ring for some extra bling.

If you don’t like the bling and would rather have a more subtle look, pearl studs would also work nicely in place of the rhinestones.

Whether you’re getting married or just want a wintry look for the season, this mani will get you in the mood.  Happy polishing!

Porcelain China Inspired Nail Art

Fancy a spot o’ tea?  I’m planning to dress up as Alice in Wonderland for Halloween, so I did my nails already to plan ahead.

This one was a pretty simple one to do despite the complexity of the design.

I started out by painting all my nails with mayfair by nails inc.  The color is a perfect porcelain white with a pearl finish.

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mayfair by nails inc.

I used plate BPL-003 from Born Pretty Store for the two designs.  This plate has a great variety of tile type patterns, so I chose a somewhat busy looking one for the middle two nails and thumb and a more understated one for the other two fingers.

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Plate BPL-003 from Born Pretty Store. The designs I used for this manicure are in the top row, 2nd from the left and the first one on the left in the bottom row.

The stamping was done with royal blue from b.m.c. nail lacquer.

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b.m.c. nail lacquer in royal blue and mayfair from nails inc. Doesn’t anyone capitalize their company name anymore?

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The stamped design with Seche Vite topcoat added.

I didn’t do a perfect job with the stamping on my index finger, so I created a distraction by added some pearl studs from Born Pretty Store to the middle of the bottom curve of my index and pinky finger nails.  Tricked you, didn’t I?  😉  Pearls make this manicure more sophisticated and ladylike, so I just went with it.

As an aside, I think I need to prime my stamper a little more.  I used my squishy head stamper for this manicure, and it has never been the best at picking up every detail.  Truth is that I was impatient to wait for the base color to dry, so I figured that using a squishy head would allow me to stamp my nails without having to worry about smudging the polish, so the stamper worked perfectly in that respect.

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Finished tile print nails.

I could have made more literal Alice in Wonderland nails, but maybe I’ll save that for another day.  So many ideas, so little time!

Hope you all have a fun and safe Halloween!  🙂  Happy polishing!

Review of BPL-029 Stamping Plate by Born Pretty Store.

If you love flowers, you will love plate BPL-029 from Born Pretty Store.

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BPL-029 from Born Pretty Store is full of floral prints.

Like all the long plates from Born Pretty Store, the metal plate is mounted onto a white plastic backing.  It also comes shipped in a cardboard envelope with blue film covering the image.  The blue film must be removed before you can use the plate.

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Protection of the plate is key, especially during shipment, and a cardboard envelope and some blue film are just what the doctor ordered.

The rectangular images are all 1.5 cm wide, but the 2nd row images are slightly taller than the 1st row measuring at 2.4 cm versus 2 cm for the top row.  Even the individual flowers on the bottom are fairly large, the smallest one being 0.7 cm wide and the longest one being 1.7 cm.  In any case, you should easily be able to find something suitable for your nail size.  The individual flowers are great for making patterns on extra long/wide nails.

The images are etched deeply into the metal and transfer easily to a stamper.  I find that you can use a lot of pressure to scrape the excess polish off the plate to get a clean image.  With plates by other competitors that are etched poorly, I find that I will end up scraping off all the polish if I scrape too hard.  With Born Pretty Plates, you don’t have to worry about the frustration associated with the aforementioned problem.

To illustrate the point, here is a rose print manicure I did that shows the most solid background in the image.

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Beautiful rose print nails done with Awaken by China Glaze and mayfair by nails inc. along with plate BPL-029 from Born Pretty Store.

The image transferred perfectly with no empty patches of polish.  It should be noted that I stamped the darker polish over the white one, not the other way around.  That is an impressive feat, indeed!

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A closer look at the stamping compared to the image on plate BPL-029.

Plate BPL-029 is full of spring flowers, but I made it fall appropriate using the right blend colors.

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Autumn foliage nails done with reverse stamping of an image from plate BPL-029 over a gradient base.

With a good color scheme, this plate is usable all year long!

Overall, I think this plate is well made and a great buy.  It will keep you coming back for more looks over and over again.

Diamond rating: ♦♦♦♦♦ (5/5)

If you are interested in purchasing this stamping plate (retail price is $5.99 USD), the link for the item is shown below.  Using code RSSPX31 will get you 10% off your order, and Born Pretty Store offers free worldwide shipping.  Happy stamping!

http://www.bornprettystore.com/tulip-pattern-nail-stamp-template-rose-image-plate-born-pretty-l029-65cm-p-21815.html

http://www.bornprettystore.com/

rsspx31

Hurricane Joaquin Inspired Floral Nails

NYC has been all abuzz about whether or not Joaquin was going to make an appearance here, but thankfully all we got was a Nor’easter, and I ended up with an idea for a manicure.

Looking through my plates, I found a floral image that looks a lot like a bunch of hurricane symbols.

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How does your garden grow? Plate BPL-029 from Born Pretty Store is all about flowers.

The roses in the 2nd row, 3rd image from the right proved to be the starting grounds for my stormy manicure.  Little did I know how tempestuous this design would end up being.

Here is the color palette I used:

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Silvery grays and blues. From left to right: Silver Bells by Finger Paints, Caviar Cocktail by nailtini, Sailor’s Lure by Finger Paints, and I Don’t Give A Rotterdam! by OPI.

I wanted the eye(s) of the storm to be in the center of the manicure, so I painted Silver Bells on my middle and ring fingers and I Don’t Give A Rotterdam! on the other fingers.  I figured that when I did the stamping, the flowers (hurricane symbols) would be glittery, something that is seldom seen because people can’t really stamp successfully with glitter polish.

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Very pretty start to a stormy manicure using I Don’t Give A Rotterdam! by OPI and Silver Bells by Finger Paints.

For the two outer nails, I wanted to do a gradient that darkened toward the two middle nails.  For this, I used a mix of Caviar Cocktail, Sailor’s Lure, and I Don’t Give A Rotterdam! and tilted the sponge at an angle for the index and little fingers while I kept the sponge vertical on the thumb.

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A gradient of blues and grays is applied with the darkest sections facing the glittery parts.

It should be mentioned that I didn’t realize that Sailor’s Lure is a textured polish.  It isn’t marked as such on the bottle, so I was wondering why it looked so clumpy on the brush.  It still suits our stormy purpose, so it was fine.

Here is where the storm truly begins.  I thought I was going to stamp with Sailor’s Lure, but the thought of trying to scrape the polish off the plate with all the texture in it was making my skin crawl.  I couldn’t stamp with Caviar Cocktail because the color is too similar to the silver glitter.  I tried using royal blue by b.m.c. nail lacquer, but the design didn’t show through well.  I tried layering noir black by b.m.c. nail lacquer over the blue color, but it looked like a mess.  Neither one looked good nor fit my color scheme, so I had to wipe those two nails clean and try a new approach.

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Nail fail: bad stamping because my blue polish wasn’t dark enough and the black polish didn’t match my color scheme.

I decided to use a white polish as a base instead of the glitter and decided to stamp with a chrome polish because the royal blue color would seem out of place.

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Enter two new contenders: mayfair by nails inc. and Awaken by China Glaze.

Luckily I used school glue as a base coat, so I scraped the glitter off the two middle nails and applied mayfair first.

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Newly revamped nails with mayfair by nails inc. in the middle.

I did the stamping with Awaken and was fooled again by the polish.  This is what I get for not swatching colors before I start.

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Stamping done with Awaken by China Glaze.

While the polish stamped better than expected, the color was not what I thought it was.  Even when I originally bought the color, I thought that it had more of a dark blue tint to it, at least from the look of it in the bottle.  Instead, it is more dark silver gray with a lavender hue, and now I got to be frustrated all over again that my stamped nails didn’t match the gradient around it.

Ultimately I scraped the gradient off and painted Awaken on those nails instead.  You can see a difference in the color of the stamping compared to the color of the polish in the bottle more clearly below.

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The final result- not exactly what I intended due to being misled by the color of the polish in the bottle versus the color actually being swatched.

So that’s how I weathered this storm.  It took a few unexpected turns, but all ended well.  Hope you all have been staying warm and dry!  It’s a great excuse to stay indoors and do your nails.  😉  Happy polishing!

Variations on a Color Theme- Easy Nail Art

For the longest time I have wanted to do a mismatched pattern on my nails united by a color theme.  I’ve been wearing a lot of cool tones lately, so I went with a turquoise blue, silver, and white color scheme.  I tried to pick colors that had the same glittery/metallic finish, so after digging through my stash, I came up with these colors:

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Pretty silver, blue, and white polishes all in a row. Left to right: Finger Paints- Silver Bells, Sephora by OPI- Who Let the Dorks Out?, Sephora by OPI- Bright as a Feather, nails inc.- mayfair, Kiss Nail Art Paint- Silver Glitter.

Next, I tried to plan out what the base colors would be.  I definitely wanted Silver Bells to be on my ring finger, so I painted the two different shades of blue on each side of that and switched the shades up so that no two adjoining fingers had the same color on them.

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Truly basic “nail art” for beginners. Still a pretty look.

Next, I tried experimenting with some polka dots.  I used dotting tools to make dots of different sizes (a key point if you don’t want your nails to look like dominoes).  I decided to also color block my pinky and thumb nails to jazz things up a bit.  For the blocking, I used the brush from the bottle of polish to paint on the contrasting stripe, and then I used a striping brush (really, this is the only reason I used the Kiss Nail Art Paint color- so I wouldn’t have to clean a brush) to outline the color blocked sections.  Add some more polka dots, and you’re good to go!

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Variations on a color theme. I’m such a music geek. 😛

Incidentally, I didn’t want to put any nail art on my ring finger because Silver Bells by Finger Paints is one of the sparkliest glitter polishes I’ve ever used.  It really looks best without anything else on it in my opinion.  I definitely recommend it if you want some bling on your fingers!

The look reminds me of Easter eggs and Christmas ornaments, so I might try doing this again around the winter holidays.

Happy polishing!  🙂