Tuesday, July 31, 2012

NOTD: Olympic Medals


Today's challenge in PFC's Summer Challenge is 'Olympic Medals'. I missed the Olympic Rings theme, so I wanted to make sure I did this one, and I'm coming in just under the wire. :)

Here's what I did:

It's probably fairly self-explanatory, but what I did was try to make my index finger look like the ribbon that the medals hand on, then the middle finger was the gold medal (in boxing), the ring finger the silver medal (in gymnastics, doing a floor routine), and the pinkie is the bronze medal (whichever martial art you like).

For the base colors (left to right), I used Color Club Fashion Addict, Revlon Gold Coin, Pure Ice Silver Mercedes, and Revlon Copper Penny. I painted the ribbons using a-England Avalon (which is AMAZING, btw), and stamped the figures with Color Club Revvvolution in the hopes it would look metallic-y. It did, in the sun, but the other metallics were so shiny I couldn't get a good shot, lol. I used  Red Angel plate RA-113 and plate QA22 for the stamping

So there is my interpretation of olympic medals...Hope you like them.

Also, after midnight tonight, I will be choosing the winner of my 100 follower challenge--stay tuned!

Thanks for looking, and please check out the other ladies in the challenge, linked below via thumbnails. :)


Monday, July 30, 2012

MSMD NOTD Before & After: Shadow Houndstooth


A while back, I saw a double-stamped houndstooth manicure that I love, done by A Girl And Her Polish; the houndstooth pattern is stamped twice, so it looks kind of like it has a shadow. I thought it was so pretty, and had to try it out for my Monkey-See-Monkey-Do Monday manicure...you can see the original post by clicking here.

I started with a base of China Glaze's Tree Hugger, which I wore for a day:

China Glaze Tree Hugger in the sun

Then, to make the shadowed houndstooth design, I stamped over it first using Ulta Army Of One, and then again using China Glaze Holly Day. I used the pattern on plate Bundle Monster plate BM322. Here is how it came out:

As you can see, some nails came out better than others. I think I got the best effect on the middle finger and the pinkie finger...it's harder than it looks to line these up! If you try to do this look, leave yourself time to makes some mistakes and re-do your nails. I tried the layer-of-topcoat-below-the-stamping trick, and I still had to completely redo a few nails.

All in all, I like this look. Houndstooth is nice on its own, but I really love the depth this double-stamping brings to it. I'll certainly try this again, especially with different color palates--how cool would this look with black, white and red??

Thanks for looking, and please check out the other MSMD manicures, linked below. :)


Debbie at The Crumpet - http://thecrumpet.blogspot.co.uk
Missy @ Gnarly Gnails - http://gnarlygnails.blogspot.com
Nayade at Toxic Vanity - http://www.toxicvanity.com
Alyssa at Fancy Phalanges - http://fancyphalanges.blogspot.com/
Misha @ Enigmatic Rambles: www.enigmatic-rambles.blogspot.com
Carrie @ LeSamowen:Life, Love, and Nail Polish: http://lesamowen.blogspot.com/
Basia (or Bazzia) @ polish my mind: http://polishmymind.blogspot.com/
Isabel - Little Fairy: http://isaspinods.blogspot.com/
Stella - My Wet Nails: http://mywetnails.blogspot.com
Michelle-Lacquer Or Leave Her!: http://lacquerorleaveher.blogspot.com
Angi @ Angelina´s Nails & More www.angelinaswelt.blogspot.de/
Kia @ Lacquered Libra  http://lacqueredlibra.blogspot.com/

Sunday, July 29, 2012

WARNING R-RATED: NOTD inspired by 'Fifty Shades of Grey'


Right off the bat I want to warn you that if you are offended by the topics raised by the book 'Fifty Shades of Grey', this manicure may not be for you, and you might want to skip this post and come back tomorrow. I'm going to put a warning up front here, in the title, and put up a warning picture as my first picture here, so that any thumbnail shown in Bloglovin' or elsewhere won't give you a surprise you didn't want to get, lol. I respect that this topic might not be for everyone.

Okay, now let's get to it! Like every other red-blooded American woman out there who doesn't live under a rock, I'm aware of the controversy that has been raised by the book 'Fifty Shades of Grey', and I've been involved in a number of discussions about the type of content it contains with various people. In the course of one of those conversations, I was challenged to do a manicure that reflected that content when I mentioned I enjoyed nail art challenges because they get me to stretch my artistic legs. How can I turn down such a challenge-related challenge!

Here is what I came up with:

Full manicure

Close-up on the fingers

Close-up on the thumb
For my base colors, I used China Glaze Adventure Red-y on my ring finger, and Milani red sparkle on the rest. I stamped using Pure Ice's Silver Mercedes, and used Bundle Monster plate BM12 for the chains, and Red Angel plates  RA111 and RA113 for the women.

No matter whether you like the book or not, it certainly raises interesting and important questions about what should be considered acceptable in this particular realm of our lives!

Thanks for reading. :)


Saturday, July 28, 2012

NOTD Before: Hits Mari Moon Dreamer (Or, Into The Way Back Machine :) )


Yesterday I showed you the 'after' potion of what I did with Hits Mari Moon Dreamer (one of the polishes I got in my swap) and said that I'd show you the 'before' part today, so I could give the polish the full attention it deserves. So here goes. :)

Dreamer is, at head-on first glance, a blue-purple duochrome. But even at this head-on glance, it's not typical. It has little micro-flecks of teal-blue and purple glitter that catch the light; you can see some below:

Hits Dreamer straight on, full sun

But then, when you start moving it around, it starts to shift, and the color intensifies. Not just through blues and purples, but through wines and golds, and finally into a full-on coppery red:

There it is! I can't take a picture of a manicure without a cotton fiber sticking to a nail...>.<

Hits Dreamer in the shade

Hits Dreamer...Never get tired of that rainbow of colors

Hits Dreamer--yes, it really is that pretty.

Yes, it really is that pretty. Every color that you see in the bottle shows up on your nails. Every time the  light changes or you move your finger, a new color appears. The colors contrast and combine as you watch--it's mesmerizing.

I don't know what else to say except...man, I gotta get myself down to Brazil. With a really, really big empty suitcase. :)

Thanks for reading!


Friday, July 27, 2012

Preview: China Glaze's Wicked Collection

Hello everyone!

Now that China Glaze's Bohemian collection has hit shelves, I thought I'd post the publicity photo for their upcoming Halloween collection: 'Wicked'. Take a look: 

Something about this collection reminds me of the opening sequence for PBS's 'Mystery'--I used to love watching that. :) Here are the name of the colors, from left to right:

Cast A Spell
Bizarre Blurple
Glitter Goblin
Roguish Red
Make A Spectacle

I'm not as excited about this collection as I have been for the other two, but there are several polishes I like here. Glitter Goblin looks like a lot of fun, and you know I have to have something called 'Bizarre Blurple'. I'm not sure how different Cast A Spell will be from Zombie Zest and It's Alive!, but let's fact it...I'll probably get it. :)

Keep 'em coming, China Glaze! :)

Thanks for looking,


NOTD: Hits Mari Moon Dreamer + Olympics Opening Ceremony Challenge


Today I have a NOTD for you that was actually a Before & After, but I'm not going to present it that way. The reason is that the base polish is Hits Mari Moon Dreamer, one of the gorgeous Brazilian polishes I got in my recent swap, and it needs a whole post of its own to do it justice (it needs that many pictures, yes, lol). So, I'll just show you the After part here, and then we'll hop in the way-back machine and do the Before. :)

The challenge in PCF today is to create a manicure with the theme 'Olympics Opening Ceremony/Flag'. I opted to focus on the opening ceremony side of it...One of my favorite moments from any opening ceremony comes from the 2010 Winter Olympics, when they unveiled the stadium torch. Although there was a malfunction and the torch didn't work right at first, it was still exceptionally beautiful, and I thought the symbolism, color, and shapes were a moving tribute to the torch:

So, I set out to do a manicure that captured that moment somehow, to the best of my ability. I decided on a stylized representation of the torch in this moment. Here's what I did:

I started with Hits Mari Moon Dreamer as my polish, since it seemed to have similar colors to the ones I love in the picture. I stamped a firework with Shany Plate SH13 using Color Club's Fashion Addict, to reflect the fireworks, and using the same polish I stamped part of a geometric pattern from Konad plate m64 to mirror the geometric intersection of the bars in the torch. Finally, to capture the glow, sparkle and color of the flames, I dabbed on Lush Lacquer's Cheetahlicious glitter on the designs, and covered up the whole thing with Seche Vite.

The best part is that for once, the sun came out when I stamped with a holo, so the glow that I was hoping would come with the holo actually did show up in the sun, making it (in my opinion) even more like the play of colors in the original:

And finally, as a preview for the swatches I'll be showing you of Dreamer, look at this beautiful duochrome color shift that happens even with all of this stamping on top of it! That's some impressive duochrome...:

So, there is my tribute to the Olympic Opening Ceremonies. I'll certainly be watching on Friday--will you?

Thanks for looking, and please check out all the other Opening Ceremony/Flag manicures done by my fellow bloggers, linked below!


Thursday, July 26, 2012

NOTD Before & After: China Glaze's Fast Track


Today I bring you China Glaze's Fast Track, which I believe is the unsung little step-sister of the Hunger Games collection. Riveting and Electrify are flashy and eye-catching; Luxe & Lush is a flakie, and that's all that needs to be said about that; Smoke & Ashes has a night-sky feel that calls out to you, even if it's a bit disappointing after it dries. Agro and Foie Gras grab the attention of the 'ugly pretty' lovers...And Dress Me Up is a beautiful pink neutral that grabs both the pink lovers and the neutral lovers and even has -me- almost willing to wear it.

Unfortunately, one that tends to be forgotten, but that shouldn't be in my opinion, is Fast Track, a taupe-y neutral with a gold flash. I myownself overlooked it the first 5 or 6 times I considered what to buy from the collection. When I did finally get it, it was in an 'eh, why not?' sort of way; I'm not a big fan of neutrals, but every girl needs a few, and this looked like it would at least have a little sparkle to it.

I was pleasantly surprised with glass-fleck-like flakes of glitter that make the texture of this polish complex. When you look at the polish, it seems to have flakes of white, silver and gold; this gives the polish depth I didn't expect. Neutrals can be necessary but boring--but Fast Track is definitely not boring.

See for yourself:

China Glaze Fast Track in sunlight

China Glaze Fast Track in the shade

Like any over-looked Cinderella in a fairy tale, Fast Track deserves to be dressed up on occasion and taken out. Here is what I did with her:

I decided to do a Funky French chevron design with China Glaze Champagne Bubbles on one side, and Barielle's Make It A Latte on the other; Make It A Latte also has gold flecks, so I thought these would be a good match. I delineated the areas with gold nail tape, which I'm still learning to work with effectively (pay no attention to that pinkie!). If you look closely you can see I overdid it with the topcoat to try to keep the nail tape in place (ugh that cuticle on my middle finger!!).

I love this polish alone or with decoration. I hope I've made you like it a little, too. :)

Thanks for reading,


Wednesday, July 25, 2012

NOTD: Under the stars :)


Today's challenge in my stamping group is 'A Day At The Zoo'. While I know this is a fun thing meant to have cool animal prints and things, I'm not a big fan of zoos, so it's been a little difficult for me to get behind the theme. So what I thought I'd do is post a challenge manicure I did a while back for the theme 'Under The Stars', which never made it onto my blog. It hasn't made it because I haven't had a chance to put it up, not because I don't want too--I think it's a fun manicure that makes me laugh every time I look at it. Anyway, here is what I came up with:

Under The Stars Manicure--Eeekkkk!!

For the base color, I used Orly's Galaxy Girl (of course, how could I not!). At the top, I put China Glaze's Fairy Dust to look like the stars. On the index finger and middle finger I used Mash 33 and Mash 34 to stamp the planet and the shooting star; on the pinkie finger I used Bundle Monster plate BM14 to stamp the stars. For all of these I used Pure Ice in Silver Mercedes. On my ring finger I painted my little alien guy using Hot Topic Blackheart Beauty polish in Jealous Type, and put his eyes and nostrils on with Wet n Wild's Ebony Hates Chris. 

To make the alien, I cut out an alien-shaped head out of painter's tape, and painted the base color over that. Then I removed the tape and painted the green into the blank space it left behind. :)

So there's my 'Under The Stars' manicure. It's whimsical and fun, and I love it. Hope you do too!

Thanks for looking,


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

NAIL MAIL!: My first swap (or, OMG, OMG, OMG, such pretty polishes!!!!!)

Hello everyone!

I never do haul posts, mostly because my hauls are not that interesting. However, today I got my very first swap package in the mail!! Of all the wonderful things that have come out of this blog, I never expected to meet so many cool people, and the coolest by far is Janaina; after we found a number of things in common, she suggested we do a polish swap. I've never done a polish swap before, and I didn't know quite what to do or expect. I got my package today, and I have to say, before anything else...I'm sorry Janaina, the package I sent to you is nowhere near as cool as the one you sent to me! You really did an incredible job, and I'm going to have to make it up to you next time!!

I am so excited by these, I just had to share them here. I told her that I love jewel-toned polishes the best, and adore duochromes and flakies. Look at the amazing goodness she sent to me:

Swap Haul!!! Holla!!

Ana Hickmann: Escandalo!

She knows I don't like pink, but she took a chance on this one, because it's a pink she loves. Believe me, if I didn't like it I would say it--but the truth is, I absolutely love it. I own ONE item of clothing that has pink in it--only ONE--and it's *this* exact pink. It's rich enough and close enough to red that I adore it. Janaina--get outta mah head!!!

Hits: Can Can

OMG, a flakie. A flakie a flakie a flakie!!! And not just a flakie, but a freakin' gorgeous multichrome green-blue-purple flakie. When I hold this, I can't help but stroke it like Golem with his One Ring...my...precioussssss...

Hits Multigirl: Dreamer

Hits duochrome!!! I've been lusting after this for ages. It's amazing and it's awesome and it makes me do the happy duochrome dance. In case you didn't know, it's sort of like the lambada, but with jazz hands that flash around your nail polish for everyone to see.

PanVel Make Up Stars: Cleopatra
How incredible is that metallic purple! I bet that it would be great for stamping but I'll never know 'cause I am not going to waste a drop on anything but pure base color. The color is actually even prettier in person (you know how that problem-child purple is to photograph) than it is here if you can believe it. Another absolute home-run.

Risque Niasi: Besouro
And last alphabetically, but certainly not least, Risque Niasi Besouro! This didn't pick up well in the bottle, so I'll have to swatch it for you soon. I've never seen anything like this, ever. It's like a silver-black duochrome that flashes a jewel-toned rainbow at the edges, primarily purple, but with some blue and green and yellow. This is the most unique polish I've ever seen, and I can't believe I get to own it. I didn't find anything anywhere close to as unique as this for her so I owe her big, big, big. All I can say about this polish is...WOW.

For any of you out there who have been thinking about a swap, as you can see, I highly recommend it! I was warned it is like Christmas for adults who love polish, and it really is. I haven't been so excited to open a package in...I don't know how long. :)

Thanks so much, Janaina. I cannot express how much you rock! And now I must go put on some of these polishes, I can't wait another second!!!

Thanks for stopping by,


Monday, July 23, 2012

UPDATED: Review: Cheeky plate N


Argh! Once again I did something wrong and an incomplete version of my post posted without me being finished! So again, I apologize if you saw this but didn't get any commentary. Here is what the post is *supposed* to look like. >.<

Recently when browsing on Amazon hoping the new Cheeky plates might have been released early, I found something I hadn't seen before: Cheeky XL plate N. Of course, being a crazy stamp horder, I had to order it immediately! Okay, that's only half true, once I saw how many cool designs it had on it, I had to order it immediately. Here are the images, followed by my comments:

I was pleasantly surprised to find that these images are wider and taller than Konad, and are wider than the other Cheeky XL plates. Here are the dimensions:

Konad: 1 inch wide X 1 1/4 inches tall

Other Cheeky XL images: 1 1/4 w X 1 1/2 t

Cheeky N images: 1 1/2 w X 1 1/2 t

This means that if you have a problem using Konad image plates across the full width of your nail, and even the Cheeky XL images are usually too small, this plate gives you more room to play with.

In terms of stamping, these images stamp beautifully. The engraving is high quality; I have done several manicures with them, and I have had no problems at all. You can use a regular stamper or an XL stamper with them--I recommend an XL squishy stamper for easy placement of the French tips.

If you're interested in getting one, I found mine on Amazon, and it was $11.99, with free shipping if you're an Amazon Prime member.

Thanks for reading, and sorry for the glitch! If any of you out there have had this happen and know why it's happening, any tips you have would be appreciated. :)

M. :)

(the products reviewed in the post were purchased with my own money.)

Saturday, July 21, 2012

100 Follower Giveaway!


I can't believe I'm already at 100 followers! That means it's time for a giveaway to say thank you to everyone who reads and supports my blog. I appreciate the time that you take to look over my silly ramblings and crazy designs. :)

I haven't done this before, and I don't have a sponsor, so I'm going to have to keep this small and simple. Here is what I'm going to do. First of all, the prize! The winner will receive a $25 gift certificate to EITHER:


OR to shop.llarowe.com. 


Second, here's how you enter. on July 31st, 2012, I will draw a name from the list of entries. Anyone who is a member of my blog by that day, July 31st, will get one entry into the drawing. Also, anyone who leaves a comment in response to this post saying what they like about the blog (or what else they'd like to see, or what they'd like to see more of) will get an entry in the drawing. If you are a follower of the blog AND leave a comment, you will get two entries. 

I chose these two companies because they both ship internationally, with reasonable rates, so this contest is open to anyone who feels they can use this gift certificate.

Please let me know if you have any questions, and thanks so much for supporting my blog!!!!!


NOTD Before & After: Orly Galaxy Girl + Goth challenge part 2


I just came to check on this post and realized it posted my old draft! So if you saw it earlier and wondered why there was no explanation, I apologize. :(

This is the second of two goth manis I made recently for a goth challenge in one of my stamping groups. It didn't come out quite the way I liked because I stamped with a holo and the light didn't come out! So it turned out a bit too subtle.

I started with a base coat of Orly Galaxy Girl:

Orly Galaxy Girl--on of my favorites :)

Then on top of that, I stamped in Color Club's Wild At Heart, using Bundle Monster plate BM-206 full image on my accent nail and part of the image on my tips on the other nails (you can see the purple holo in the background). I stamped the chandelier images using BM08, and the cross image using BM13, all with a mix of Sally Hansen Going Grey and Silver Sweep:

I added that bottom picture in an attempt to show the purple holo background stamping a little bit better; honestly, the tips on the non-accent nails were probably just too subtle even if the sun had been out.

I love these kinds of goth manicure and even though this one wasn't a huge success, I still enjoyed it and I hope you do too!

Thanks for stopping by,


Friday, July 20, 2012

NOTD: Golf challenge (or, the difference between plaid and tartan)


My manicure today was inspired by another theme in my Purple Crumpet Fairy group--Golf. Yep, golf. I don't really play golf much, and I wasn't sure what I could do to make golf cute. I had almost decided to skip this challenge when I did a free association that saved me. I thought about golf, and how it makes me think of Scotland, because it originated there. I then started to wonder if that's why a lot of golfers wear plaid, as a sort of tribute to Scottish tartan. And then I started thinking about how I'm not sure how much of a tribute it would be, since you see some crazy ugly plaids out there. 

And that's when I got my idea. A crazy ugly plaid. 

(And yes, I do know that my mind is a very scary place to hang out.)

So here's what I did for my manicure: 

What I decided to do was paint my accent nail to look like the green of a golf course, complete with the golf ball going into the hole. The base on all my nails was Ulta's Once In A Chameleon; on my accent nail I put Zoya's Rina (a beautiful green bar glitter) over this. With a dotting tool, I put a dot of Wet n Wild's Everybody Hates Chris on the nail, and then a dot of Sally Hansen's White On. For the other nails, I wanted to do a cheesy sort of plaid, so I stamped them using Konad m60 as a guide with Color Club's Pure Energy. Then I went over the plaid in several places with Pure Energy, Everybody Hates Chris, White On, and a Kiss gold glitter striper. I finished up with a coat of Seche Vite, and voila! My tribute manicure to golf!

Thanks for taking a look, and please don't forget to check out the other bloggers who participated, below. :)


Thursday, July 19, 2012

NOTD Before & After: Once In A Blue Moon


Today I am excited to showcase my third franken as the centerpiece of my NOTD. After the success I had creating my own holo topcoat and my first franken holo, I decided to try again. I took a bottle of Wet n Wild's Blue Moon and tossed in some Spectraflair, and got results better than I dared to expect. Since I got results I love after my very first addition of the Spectraflair (after putting it in only once), I've decided to name it 'Once In A Blue Moon'. (Get it, 'cause I only had to put Spectraflair in once! hahahahaha...Okay, it's not that clever but you have to admit it's kinda cute. :) ).

Franken holo goodness...


In the shade

I wore this for a day just staring at it. In the sunlight, it's spectacular. In the shade, it looks like blueberry jelly bellies, one of my most favoritest flavors. So I stared and stared and stared. And finally, I worked up the courage to stamp:

I used Color Club's Worth The Risque, one of my favorite holos to stamp with, and Drk plate-A. I isolated one strip of the scroll instead of stamping full nail so that part of the color would remain.

I can't really take much credit for the creation--all I did was look at the bottle of polish and say 'yeah, this might look good with some Spectraflair'. It's not like I slaved and stirred to get it just right. But still. I love it, and I love it just a little more because I made it, sort of, myself. :)

Happy polishing,