Monday, 28 February 2011

Storage hell.

I have none. Literally NO storage space.

My polish is still in plastic bags and the thought of having to rummage through all of those bottles just fills me with dread. For months now, I've been saying that I don't want to go and buy an Ikea Helmer...

...which seems to be the preferred method of storage for many nail polish bloggers. Looking at it here reminds me of the bulging filing cabinets at work *shudder* (in my mind I am 'Bruce Almighty' being attacked by one of these metal monsters). Surprisingly, when I got Hubby's measuring tape out to check the dimensions, it turned out that they were a lot smaller than I'd anticipated. There I was thinking that the bloody thing would be up to my neck - it would only reach just higher than mid-thigh! That and the fact that they cost £20.42 (where'd the 42p come into it??), has nearly made up my mind.

Sooooo, I'm off to Ikea tomorrow, to wander around with a huge trolley and a massive grin on my face. If the Helmer looks cool in real life, I may just have to indulge myself. Oh joy!


Sunday, 27 February 2011

Shirley's image plates

Evening all!
This is my first installment of my dalliances with Shirley's image plates.

From the A series I got 4, 9, 15 and 16. From the B series, 1, 3, 8, 11 and 19. I tried so hard to take a decent photo and I failed miserably. These things are so difficult to photograph without a reflection :-S. Even with the light box; which is now in tatters after it got battered and my kiddie's foot went through it, couldn't do the plates any justice.
Yup, that's me.
Look at the size difference! On the left is the Bundle Monster plate and on the right is Shirley's plate (SdP)

 These are from Shirley's site...a lot better than mine, lol!


Hmm. I was a bit heavy handed with the stamper and also smudged the pinkie nail with a non-Konad topcoat...but I love this design. The images are deep and precise; no mismatched patterns or bumps lie I have found in some of my BM plates.  Unfortunately, this manicure doesn't do the design justice, so next time I'll ditch the Konad polish and use a normal one (I have better luck with those). 

I'll be posting manicures with the rest of these as often as I can.  Sorry if I've fed your plate frenzy folks...

Oh and by the way, I bought all of these plates myself. :-)

Saturday, 26 February 2011

Half moons and roses...

 My Friday fingers...

The other day I was over at Nail Art Express and I saw this gorgeous design:

If you haven't already seen Ying's blog, I suggest you take a look.  She has some serious talent. So much so,  I had to ask her if I could try the design out for myself. 

I tried to replicate the design:

 I used Beauty UK's Glam Nails in Soft Grey.  Three coats made it opaque and I didn't have to wait long; this polish dried very quickly. 

 My acrylic paints come in handy.

I put dots of paint next to each other and swirled them around until they looked like flowers; I'm still learning how to make them look less like blobs! My half moons aren't great either, but I did them free-hand because I didn't have any french manicure guides.

I hope you likey :-)

Oh, and I had a great time at the circus yesterday, but my phone has no flash and my pictures came out too dark.  My hubby has some nice ones so I'll try to steal them and put them up at some point.


Friday, 25 February 2011

Tip wear, parcels and mags.

Hey friends.

I've noticed that there are a few more people subscribing now.  Hi to you all and I'm so sorry that I haven't updated much. I'll make it up to you :-p

This was my first, full week back at work. Okay, so I work part-time but my schedule is still nuts.  Please observe:
Getting up very early, getting myself and the two kiddies ready, dropping them off, going to work, working, leaving work, picking them up, bath, dinner (for me), bed (for them), ironing, tidying, chatting with hubby, sleeping and then doing the whole thing all over again the next day.  Culture shock? Ya think?!

After the end of the three days my Nubar mani looked like this:

Yeah, there's a piece of polish actually missing from my index finger :-S
I received a couple packages this week too. When the postie asked me to sign for them, she was concerned that I was over the age of sixteen. Seriously. I was wearing black cigarette pants, black kitten heels, a white t-shirt and this:
Okay, so you may not know what I look like, but I don't believe for a second that I look any younger than sixteen!!

I was rushing with the pictures so they look rubbish. Sorry!
I got these image plates from Shirley. I am really looking forward to using them because the images are bigger than Konad and Bundle Monster so I won't have to double stamp or turn the images sideways.

 See? Those images will fit the width of my nail (finally!)

She also sent these water decals as a little freebie. The ones on the left will look wicked on a white base.

I got this from Vivalanails...remember I said I was going to order one?

It's half-term this week and the hubby and I are taking the kiddie to the circus as a surprise. She thinks she's going to Burger King because the hubby told her that this was her surprise. She was still pretty happy though - poor thing!  If I can set up the mobile blogging before we go, I might take some photos with my phone.


Saturday, 19 February 2011

On a Saturday night, the polish comes out.

Hi friends.

A big welcome to my new readers - thanks for visiting me :-)

If I still have the energy after the kids have gone to bed, I like to play with my paints and polish. As you've seen before, sometimes my experimentation doesn't always work, but I feel no way about showing my successes and failures.

Here are a few nails that I've been toying with.  First, I will warn you that at the bottom of the post will be some pictures of my current pedicure...and that of my daughter's design on one toe. I'm not a 'foot person' and I know that they gross some people out, so I tried to distract your attention a little bit.

 I was just trying out new things - they are not supposed to be proper patterns.  I've just plonked things in random places because I was running out of tips (which I'd stuck to some wooden skewers).

I saw this black pattern somewhere on-line and the rest were just inspired by other pictures floating around in the ether somewhere. If you've seen them somewhere too, let me know. I'm not trying to plagiarise!

 These tulips were something I actually I thought of myself and the hearts were commissioned by the little one. She actually indicated that she wanted polka dots because she made me a heart fridge magnet with the same pattern on it today.
She's a romantic, my little girl *rolls eyes*.

Here are my tootsies. I'm sorry if I offended anyone, lol!

BTW, if you are wondering why there are so many dots, it's because I was playing with my new marbling/dotting tool.


Thursday, 17 February 2011

It's Blog Follow Friday (BFF)!!

For a few weeks now I've been trawling the blogosphere for new nail and beauty blogs to follow. Whilst I'm still a sucker for polish, my interests have been focusing far more on nail art and make-up recently. I will say though, I'm pretty fickle and I swing backwards and forwards all the time!

When new polish collections are released, some fantastic bloggers are so informed and they swatch those colours so well that I don't even need to buy to the polish, lol! I totally enjoy this, but I also like to look for something a little different from time to time.

My blog hunt seems to happen more on a Friday night, so I am henceforth coining Friday as Blog Follow Friday (BFF). By doing this, I've found some great nail art blogs...but I want to see more.

If you have any suggestions for any great nail art or beauty blogs that you think I should be following, please let me know?

Thanks luvs

Vivalanails stickers and Famous polish

Today was my first day back at work. Admittedly, I was a little anxious, because the work can be pretty intense at times. Thankfully, today was filled with a little gossip, some welcomes and some promises that I'll be eased in gently.  We'll see what it's like next week :-0!

In my last post, I mentioned that I was sent some water decals for review by Vivalanails.  As it happens, I was a little wrong (lol). After painting my nails, I had my little pot of water ready to go...and then I realised that the packet that I chose to use were actually stickers. The packaging only has the site name on it (no instructions or description), so because I didn't take plastic off the packaging to have a proper look I was a tad confused! So I actually have three packs of stickers and three packs of water decals!

I also found a polish I haven't tried before too...huh. Can't find anything when I'm organised, but I find new polish when everything is languishing at the bottom of a plastic bag. The story of my life.

 This has little gold particles of glitter in it. Very Christmassy.

The stickers have a 'rhinestone' in the middle of the larger flowers.

 They are pretty sturdy actually and there are 58 individual pieces.

I only used one layer of top coat and the stickers laughed at my nail polish remover when it was time to take them off. Like I said. Sturdy.  I really like these actually. What do you think? Would you wear them yourself?

By the way, I thought I should mention that this is the first European website that I have seen that sells such a large range of nail art supplies including nail art magazines. I intend to buy one of these soon so I'll keep you posted about my findings.


Tuesday, 15 February 2011

I got some nail mail

Hi friends, how are you all doing?

I've been MIA (again) and it seems to be getting worse.  In addition to this, I'll be returning to work on Thursday of this week and my schedule is now going to change drastically.  I've enjoyed my maternity leave for the last seven months, but now it's time to go back to reality :-(.  How else am I going to fund my polish habit if I don't?

I've had a few packages through the post recently:

 Some lovely new goodies that I bought for a bargain and swapped with amused Polish.

 Some water decals that were sent to me from Vivalanails. I'll be doing a review of these as soon as I get an opportunity to paint my nails (which I gave a massive trim today).

 Here is the prize that I won from Nail Art Express  after taking part in the Chinese New Year contest. If you are interested in entering any contests, Ying is actually running another contest with three fantastic prizes to be won. I don't know if I'll even have the time to enter myself, but I thought I'd share with you just in case you are game.

 I picked up these little beauties at Brent Cross on the weekend. Fenwick's have a little Barry M stand in the front of the store.

I'm also having a little change around at home. The polish trolley that I got for a Christmas present is now too small to hold everything so I've put it in the bathroom so that the kid's rubber ducks have a new home.  I'm going to see if I can find something bigger tomorrow.  So for now, this is what my polish will living in; two Asda shopping bags!

Thursday, 10 February 2011

My first attempt at 'one stroke' nail art.

I really wanted to post last night but wow, I had so much trouble using my acrylic paint. Well, not trouble exactly, but I'm no artist and using the paints didn't come naturally.  To get some tips on how to create different effects, I watched this 'one stroke' tutorial and tried to apply the technique to my nails for two evenings straight. Tonight, when I was about to pack it in, I came up with something passable!

 As I was just practicing, I painted directly onto my nails - without a base coat :-0!

 My naked nails are pretty bad at the moment - stained in a major way. But as I never wear french manicures, it's not too much of a problem. I only have this on my left hand so it's coming off in a sec...just thought I'd share it with you.

I'm going to keep working at this technique!!!!

 I forgot to show the brush I used (thanks RM!)

 I bought the 'one stroke' flat brush on the right specifically to use on my nails, but the hair felt a little too long.
I tried to trim it and subsequently ruined it by making the hairs too blunt and thick :-(.  Luckily I managed to find one of my old gel brushes (left) which worked pretty well.

  I think I need to look for a smaller, shorter haired flat brush in future but I reckon you can get such brushes in any crafts or art supply store.

Rachel Marie's having a giveaway!

Hi friends!

So I'm having a look at my dashboard updates and spotted this fabulous and very generous giveaway being run by Rachel Marie.

Why not visit her blog?  :-)

Monday, 7 February 2011

Mani with acrylic paint. Finally!

Hi all! How's it going?

Today I am showcasing my newest acrylic paint pots!  I got them from HobbyCraft and they weren't expensive at all.  I felt I had to buy some 'real' paint, because polish is not always easy to work with because it dries so quickly.  Now that I have them, expect me to be posting my trials (and errors!)

This design was actually inspired by a shower curtain! We all went for dinner at our Aunt's house last night and she has the cutest curtain in her bathroom. Less talk, more polish...

Inglot no.969 which is a mint green and slightly pearlised.

 They are supposed to be dots, but I'm seeing some that look a little 'leopard-ish'.  That's something you won't see here I don't like leopard print on myself.

Verdict? I love my new paint pots :-)  Do you like this pattern?

Saturday, 5 February 2011

More hearts on the horizon, but not a smile in sight.

Hi Friends. 

Do you ever get that feeling that there is so much that you need to do, but it's just not humanly possible? Welcome to my life.  Every day I feel as if I'm playing catch-up.  I feel guilty sitting down or even posting, because there is ALWAYS something that needs to be done. Ugh. Enough complaining.

Here's the manicure I've been wearing for the past couple of days:
I seldom use these mini pots, but I thought I'd try to make use of them. Henrietta Street and Bruton Street.

I used BM plate 09 for the hearts and added my own little bits to it.

 I also put a little Zoya Astra in for a little glitter. Yup, the top coat smudged the polish so I'm going to try using acrylic paint next time to see if that makes a difference.

I'm sorry if I'm coming off as grumpy today but hey, I'm human. I might feel better if I eat some chocolate.

Right, I'm off to go and eat chocolate.