Wednesday, April 30, 2014

My Most Expensive - Deborah Lippmann

Hi, my name is Tina and I am a polishaholic.  I know I have a problem.  If I forget, my family reminds me.  I am once again on a strict no-buy.  (Bria is graduating in a few months, so we are saving up some money for a great graduation party and gift.)  I am not really sure if going cold turkey is productive or not.  When I fall off the wagon, I get very polish drunk, buying everything I wanted and couldn't during my abstinence.  This dry spell will, unfortunately, have to be a little longer as there is no tax return in the near future and my hours at work have been cut.  Fortunately, I have so many untrieds that I should be least for awhile.  Another reason to love the Never Ending Pile challenge.  This one is a few days late, but beautiful none the less....and there will be more coming tonight.  *sigh*  The difficulties of loving nail art challenges.

With Flash (nice finger print, eh?)
Artificial Light
This is Deborah Lippmann Through the Fire.  I have always heard amazing things about Deborah Lippmann, but with a price of $18 - $20, it was not on my list of polishes to acquire.  I mean, I am willing to pay $15 for a foreign indie holo, but $18 for a cream?  Ridiculous, right?  Then I discovered a site that just happened to have them on sale....don't even know what site it was.....Maybe  They were 50% off and I figured if I paid $9 for OPI occasionally, I could splurge and get some at $9.  By the time I discovered the sale, most of the highly desired polishes were sold out.  Unfortunately, Through the Fire was the only color left that called out to me.  Now I wish I had purchased more.  It is true, sometimes you do get what you pay for and I will definitely have Deborah on my radar now!  Not only did this have a vibrant garnet red shimmer with all kinds of depth, it also had the perfect formula!  Not too thin, not too thick and not a cuticle flooder, which is important for such a saturated red.  Speaking of saturated, this is two coats, but I could have, without question, only used one.  It has been added to my "Try for stamping" list, although I almost hate to waste this beauty on stamping!

I did some nail art with this. It was HORRID and totally ruined the exquisiteness of Through the Fire.  Maybe you will see it some day in a "Nail Fail" post, but today I don't want to ruin your palate with it!  What to take away from this?  Sometimes you ARE paying for more than just a name!  See if others feel the same way with the links below!

Coming in Under the Wire with Some Guardians

*This post was started on April 30th, but Tumblr sucked me in while searching for gifs.  *does not feel ashamed*

April 30th and time for the last installment of The Nail Challenge Collaborative Music/Movies/TV prompt.  I feel I just scratched the surface with this one....especially since I didn't even touch music!

Can you guess what this is for?  Do you have kids?  If not, you may have no idea.  It is actually inspired by one of my favorite animated movies (one of many), The Rise of the Guardians.  If you enjoy witty kids movies, you will love it.  Right up there with The Incredibles, Monster Inc, How to Train Your Dragon, etc.

 Yep, Jack Frost's infamous hoodie!

 I started with two coats of Avon Suede Blue Royale.

Then I added some Different Dimensions Selene with a fan brush.

I can imagine a better interpretation, but then I almost always do.  Love it anyways.  Plus it seems perfectly appropriate since it has been snow showering here for the past three days!  *rolls eyes*  I will leave you with some Guardian love and then some NCC links.  Thanks for looking!



Sunday, April 27, 2014

Pirates of the Caribbean Nail Art

The third installation of The Nail Challenge Collaborative's TV/Movies/Music theme is inspired by The Pirates of the Caribbean.  I recently purchased Messy Mansion's pirate plate and knew that this would be the perfect use for it.

I started with three coats of Dandy Nails Bound to Fail on all but my thumb.  Love this blue iridescent grey!  It is a staple of my stash.  Just search for it over there > in the search box if you want to see it swatched.  On my thumb I used Maybelline Bold Gold.  Can we take a minute here to discuss Bold Gold?  Bold Gold is my go to gold stamping polish, but I have never used it as a base before.  Never will again either.  The formula on the perfect stamping polish is atrocious!  It clumps and drags and goes on as smooth as a monkey's bottom.  In other words, not smooth at all.  This was fine for this application, as I was going for a gold coin type of thing, so it fit.  Can't see it fitting for anything else though.  However, Bold Gold is still a treasured polish in my stash....just for stamping though.

Image Source
Here is Messy Mansion MM37, otherwise know as the pirate plate.  Pirate perfection right there!  Julia makes some of the most glorious stamping plates and although this one has what I would deem "limited usage", I couldn't resist adding it to my cart.  Hubby looks at this and says, "Look, there is even a sexy woman pirate!"...Men!

 Index and pinkie are the map image.  Middle and ring is the sinking ship.  After stamping the ship, I added some stormy waves Essence Dive Deeper, Mentality Hero and Cult Nails Tempest.

 My beloved cursed pirate was made as a stamping decal using Rimmel Stilleto Red and NOPI Yoga then Yogurt.  Isn't he a handsome fellow?


Just a word about the sinking ship image.  I kept having this part of the image scraped bare and had to try several different angles.  I finally ended up scraping from the bottom right corner to the top left, but not at such an angle that the rigging lines were gouged.  Just know that it may take a few tries before you get the scraping angle right.

Have to say that I really ended up liking this one!  Just one more mani left for the theme...which kinda makes me sad :(  I have really enjoyed this month and could have easily come up with another four designs!  Thanks for looking and feel free to peruse the other manis from this month!

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Easter a Little Late

I know it is late, but the Easter mani I did for Bria ended up too cute to not show you.  I originally was going to post this for Adventures in Stamping, but life got in the way.  Better late than never, as they say.

I know that there were lots of similar manis floating around last week, but I knew Bria would love it, so originality was set aside to make my girl happy.

I started with two coats of Julep Emerson on index, ring and pinkie.  There are a lot of black spotted crellies out there, but I happen to love this one!  The spots are small and plentiful and the crelly is a beautiful blue tinged grey.  So purdy!

The ring is two coats of NOPI Ladies in the Limelight and thumb is two coats of Cult Nails Tempest.  I added some more Emerson to the tips.

Stamping was done on all but the thumb with Cult Nails Tempest and Winstonia W212.  Thumb was done with Sally Hansen Silver Sweep and MoYou UK N14 as we celebrate the christian Easter and wanted to emphasize the true meaning of Easter for us.

Bria wanted to pose with some of her Easter candy.  Isn't she sweet!

Ever have one of these Lindt chocolate carrots?  They have hazelnut flavoring and are delicious!  It is a good thing they are only out at Easter....just like Robins Eggs!

Thanks for looking and commenting!  See you tomorrow!


Sunset Nail Art

Couple of posts will be up today.  I mean, if I had time to do my nails, but no time to post, does that mean I shouldn't show them to you?  NO!  You WILL see them, late or not!

This is for the Popular Summer challenge.  The prompt is cool sunset nails.  I have tried a couple of sunsets before, but have never been happy with them.  Not this time!  I love this one like my first serious boyfriend!

Night time summer fun!

I started with two coats of the gorgeous LynBDesigns Nobody Knows.  

With Flash
Artificial Light

Next I did a gradient from the cuticle down with Colors By Llarowe Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.  Perfect night sky polish!

Finally, the most awesome summer grass image from MJ XIX (click for larger image).

So, let's recap before we get to the pic spam.....The gorgeous, perfect, awesome, night sky summer sunset fun.  Get all that?  Here comes the spam!

Yup, just a little proud of how this turned out!  Check the other cool sunsets at the Pinterest board HERE.  Oh, and thanks for looking and commenting!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

NEP Boutique Cult Nails

Today's prompt for The Never Ending Pile challenge is boutique.  There was a lot of talk in the group about what defines "boutique".  It was generally understood (at least by me) that boutique was like an indie, in that it is one persons vision, was not hand poured but created in small batches by a lab or producer.  Several names were passed around.  Cult Nails was one of them in addition to Picture Polish, Deborah Lippman and Femme Fatale..  I have several Cult Nails and a couple of Picture Polish in my stash, but all of have been used.  Luckily, I just recently preordered Cult Nails Refined & Polished collection, so I had three new Cults to choose from! 

I only used one though.

With Flash
Artificial Light

 I started with three coats of Cult Nails Intriguing.  Intriguing is a periwinkle very loose linear holo.  I could have used two coats, but I always add an extra for the DMP.  Also of some note is the fact that my top coat (Seche Vite) dulled the holo.  Still like it anyways.

Here is a pic in full sunlight with top coat.


This lovely blue was just calling out for some delicate lace, so I stamped the tips and full nail on ring and thumb with MJXX.  Then I added some silver detailing.  I used the rose image from QA46 on thumb and ring with Sally Hansen Silver Swift.  Finally, I stamped along the french tip border with the wavy lace edge from the same QA46 plate and Silver Swift.

I ended up really loving this, despite my poor stamping and some image smearing.

I am definitely warming up to the accent nail thing, although it still is not my preference.  Sometimes it is totally appropriate, like with this mani, where I want to use a full image but don't want to totally cover up a beautiful base.  I think the silver along the french tips added a lot too.

What do you think?  Does the black lace emphasize the delicateness of Intriguing?  Feel free to check out the other boutiques and thanks for looking!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Jelly Butterfly

It is nice to be back after taking the weekend off.  My mother-in-law came into town this weekend.  My mother usually hosts Easter, but since they are out of town, we celebrated at our house with my sister, sister-in-law and their families.  Not too huge a gathering, just enough to keep the conversation hopping....when we weren't stuffing our face :)

Today's prompt for The Never Ending Pile challenge is drugstore.  When I think of drugstore polish, Sally Hansen immediately comes to mind.  I have a decent amout in my stash...maybe 25-30?  I don't count my polishes because I am in denial about my obsession.  Most of them are Insta-Dris used to stamp with, but recently Sally has come out with some interesting finishes and glitters.  Unfortunately, with my indie love, they tend to be neglected.  Not today!  Just a little side note....most of the pics today will be with flash, since the stamping was not showing up without it.

I started with three thick coats of Sally Hansen Indi-Glow.  This is a beautiful cobalt jelly filled with small irridecent glitters that flash every color in the rainbow.  I discovered I have a love/hate relationship with this polish as a base.  It is undoubtedly beautiful, but for someone who does not like VNL, the formula is a PITA.  It applies easily, but even with Seche Vite, which usually makes polish dry and undentable in 5-15 minutes, my polish was still unset after a full 45 min.  Due to the slow drying, you can see that I had a huge amount of shrinkage, both at my cuticles and tips.  That is okay with me.  I figure I will probably never use this as a base again, but it will get a lot of use in lead lighting stamped manis.

Because of the squishiness of the polish, I waited a to stamp until the next day.  I used BM-424 and Finger Paints Black Expressionism to create iridescent butterfly wings.

The problem with this was that the black was not very distinct against the blue, which is why you get so many flash pics.  One of those "good in theory" manis.

After wearing this for another day, I added some black to the tips to cover the shrinkage and some matte top coat.  I really need to invest in a good matte top coat as I am not wild about the results I am getting from my cheapy NYC.  Matting it took away from the squishy jelly, and I wasn't really wild about it.  

So there you have it....not my favorite mani from the challenge, but not a fail.  Like I said, this is definitely staying in my stash for lead lighting, especially since my only other dark blue cobalt jelly is not quite jelly enough for my liking :)  Thanks for visiting and commenting!