Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Essie To Buy Or Not To Buy

When my nails are short, it's the perfect time to do some swatching and try some untrieds! Today, I have Essie "To Buy Or Not to Buy" from the Spring 2012 Navigate Her collection. I had too few purples in my collection, and this is part of the remedy.

To Buy Or Not To Buy is a light lilac with very hidden blue and purple shimmer. It leans a teensy bit more pink than in this picture. The formula was not my friend. It was streaky, and I had bubbling issues even though I waited well between coats. This took three.

The shimmer is so pretty! Now wouldn't it be nice if it actually showed??

Since I didn't get the shimmer, I added some glitter that was happily of the same colour. This is one coat of Kleancolor "Disco Ball". It has a coloured base that gives a sheer wash of blue along with the glitter.

Also, this is the first time in a long while that my fingers match my toes! I thought it was quite a momentous occasion. On my toes is Soulstice Spa in "Provence".

So the question buy or not to buy? What do you say?

Sunday, 26 August 2012

Nail Art: Breaking Bad

Hello friends, hope you are having a fine Sunday. I've been catching myself up with Breaking Bad, and I think the new season is off to a great start. Can't wait to see where it goes! Today's nail art is tribute to this amazing series. To anyone who hasn't seen it, I'd highly recommend Breaking Bad if you like a good drama with gripping suspense, tension, and top notch acting.

Also, this was my first attempt at water marbling. And it was not awful! It went much easier and smoother than I expected. I'll make a proper tutorial for it once I've got the technique down, more or less. I'm quite happy with how well the green swirls emulate the title credits.

Left to right: OPI "Jade is the New Black", Orly "Meet Me Under the Mistletoe", Sally Hansen "Grass Slipper", Sally Hansen "White On", Sally Hansen "Black Out"
This was my formula for the water marbling, in this order:
1 drop of OPI "Jade is the New Black" + 1 drop of Orly "Meet Me Under the Mistletoe" + 1 drop of Sally Hansen "Grass Slipper" + 1 more drop of  OPI

The gold shimmer in Orly didn't show up in the marbling, but it might have affected the way the polish spread over the water. I found I didn't need as many drops of polish as I thought, but I'll have to experiment a little to be sure.


If you already watch Breaking Bad, how do you like it? If not, do you think you'll check it out? How was your first attempt at water marbling?

Thanks for reading, enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Nude Gradient with OPI My Very First Knockwurst

I saw this look on Zoenails and I fell in love! Simple, with a pop of colour - and you might know how I love my gradients! I had a major nail polish haul this week, and OPI My Very First Knockwurst was one of them, so here's my version.

This was done with two coats of OPI My Very First Knockwurst, and then sponged with Sally Hansen Snappy Sorbet.

My Very First Knockwurst is a light pink putty creme from the OPI Germany Collection. It comes off as a dusty rose, leaning to lilac. The formula was an absolute pleasure to work with, going on easily in two coats. It doesn't quite look nude against my skin, but it's still pretty and very appropriate for the conservative-office.

I just may have to go back for the other nude from the Germany Collection, Don't Pretzel My Buttons. I'm more inclined to buy these "plain" colours, rather than the deep, metallic shades that are offered (though I love seeing them on other people's nails).

Have you picked up any shades from the Germany Collection? What is your perfect nude colour? I am still on the hunt for mine!

Monday, 20 August 2012

Saran Wrap Nails with Border

Happy Monday, friends! I decided to take a little break from the cartoon-y scenes and illustration manis I've been doing for the past couple weeks, and do something completely different. I've been wanting to try out saran wrap nails, as it seems easy to do, and easy to get really pretty results! Here's how my first attempt turned out:

I wouldn't say they turned out exactly as I'd hoped, but I still think they look pretty, especially with a bit of glitter. I also added a border with a silver striping polish, and I quite like the outcome! I was always kind of on the fence about border nails - it can look awesome, but I feel it can be a bit harsh for me. The silver is subtle enough to overcome that concern.

Left to right: Sally Hansen "White On", "Sally Hansen "Green Tea", Sally Hansen "First Kiss", China Glaze "For Audrey", Wet n Wild "Kaleidoscope", Jordana "Star Designer"
  • saran wrap or a plastic sandwich bag
  1. Paint a white base onto your nails.
  2. Work on one nail at a time. Drop on spots of your colours, making sure most of your nail is covered.
  3. While the polish is wet, gently press the saran wrap or plastic bag against it. The colours will be marbled together.

Easy right? I'll definitely try this again with different colours. Have you tried saran wrap nails yet? Do you like the border nails look?

Thanks for reading!

Friday, 17 August 2012

Nail Art: Sherman's Lagoon for Shark Week

After nearly a week of pointy teeth, blood, and chomp, chomped everything, I'm celebrating Shark Week by painting my favourite shark from Jim Toomey's Sherman's Lagoon. For friends who haven't heard of Shark Week, it is essentially a week on the Discovery Channel featuring the om nom nom-ing power of sharks. 

It's so fun playing with these nails. *cue Jaws theme*

Da da...

DA DA...

Sorry, a bit anti-climatic there.
Sherman is the cuddliest-looking shark out there. He still eats people though.

Left to right: Essie "Who Is the Boss?", China Glaze "For Audrey", Orly "Green With Envy", Joe Fresh "Teal"
If you need help with sponging a gradient, I have a tutorial here.

For my other hand, I used the same method: gradient background, black outline, then colour fill. You might even choose to skip the black outlines - I used them to keep the look of the comic. Have fun and be creative with your underwater scene! Paint different types of fish, colourful coral and rocks.

Looking forward to the last two days of this Jaws fest. Hope you enjoyed this and have a good weekend!

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Nail Art: The Cat in the Hat for Makeup Savvy Nail Challenge

My friend over at Lacqueerisa informed me about Makeup Savvy's 15 Day Nail Challenge previously, and while I enjoyed looking at her entries, the timing wasn't right for me to get in on the challenges myself. However, seeing as the theme for the last challenge is "Anything!", I thought, well heck, maybe I can squeeze in one entry before it ends. I know I'm late to the party, but better late than never?

I saw "The Cat in the Hat" on my bookshelf the other day and remembered how much I loved this book. So came forth these themed nails.

My favourite nails
Pages of inspiration

Left to right: American Apparel "Peacock", Sally Hansen "Kook-A-Mango", Sally Hansen "Blue Away", Sally Hansen "White On", Sally Hansen "Black Out"
If there's anything you'd like to know how I did, just ask! In general, I painted the outlines before filling in the colour. Everything was done with nail art brushes.

Possibly more Dr. Seuess themed nails to come? Mmm green eggs and ham. Any other Dr. Seuss stories you think would make a good nail design? 

Friday, 10 August 2012

Nail Art: Cinnamoroll Cupcake with Nails Inc Sweets Way

After my last cookies and milk design with Sugar House Lane, I was excited to try the other colour I picked up from the Nails Inc Sprinkles collection: Sweets Way.

I already had a cupcake in mind for the design, but what else? Here's a riddle: what's blue, pink, white, and ridiculously cute?

If your answer was Cinnamoroll, you are correct!
Most of you are probably saying "Cinnamo-who?" and I don't blame you. For the curious, here's some background info.

Sweets Way has a milky white base with blue, pink, and silver glitter. I love how the milky base changes the finish of the glitter, giving it a more muted look. The formula was smooth, but the glitter spread a little unevenly on the first coat. This fixed itself on the second coat once the glitter had something to grab onto.

Left to right: Nails Inc "Sweets Way", American Apparel "American Denim", OPI "No Room for the Blues", American Apparel "Coney Island", Sally Hansen "White On"
  • nail art brush

 Tip: When outlining, don't be too worried about any mistakes. You can always go back with your colour to "erase" or fill in any gaps you might have.


Hope you liked this cute little guy! OH and look what I found:

I collected a crapload of these 3D/foam stickers when I was younger. I'm proud that I actually used some.

Thanks for reading, have yourself a good weekend!

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

The Liebster Award: Discover New Blogs!

Thanks to my friend over at The Manicurette, I am happy to receive the Liebster Award, "given to up and coming bloggers who have less than 200 followers."
I think it's a great way to learn a bit about each other and encourage us to explore a bit of this big wide blogging community, so here we go!
1) The recipient must post 11 fun facts about themselves
2) The recipient must also answer 11 questions created by the award giver
3) The recipient must give the award to 11 new bloggers with less than 200 followers and post 11 questions for them to answer
4) These 11 bloggers must be told they have been given the award
5) They will in turn pass the award on to 11 new bloggers of their choice (no tagging back the award giver)
11 Random Facts About The Nail Artiste:
1) There was another Vicky in my class, so from Gr. 7 through high school, my nickname was my last name. Well, it still is.
2) My most loved possession is my Wacom drawing tablet.
3) I watch A LOT of television. My hard drive is full shows. Community and Arrested Development get special mentions.
4) I don't watch Korean dramas mainly because I find the series too long, and the pacing too slow.
5) I am a huge Miyazaki Hayao, Studio Ghibli fan - Spirited Away is my favourite movie ever.
6) I knocked my two front teeth out after falling down the stairs. Good thing they were baby teeth.
7) I like my glasses.
8) I love collecting art books. I came back from San Diego Comic Con with just art books.
9) I'm pretty tall for an Asian girl.
10) I like to sing Disney songs, especially in the shower.
11) I love food.
Questions for Me:
1) When and why did you start blogging?
My first post was made July 17, 2012. I'd been painting my nails and doing nail art for a few years now, but I mostly just posted pictures on Facebook. I never really had a good platform to show people exactly how I do my designs, so I thought it was high time to start my own blog. And I wanted to spread some nail polish joy.

2) How many bottles of polish do you own? 
I'm not sure, somewhere between 100-150.

3) What color do you have the most of in your collection?
I don't have significantly more of any one colour, but probably pink. It was the first colour I ever purchased.

4) What is your first memory of nail polish?
I was probably 10 or so and talking to my friend about people painting their nails. My friend said she doesn't want to paint her nails because nail polish turns your nails yellow. I said eww and agreed with her. Ironic, I know. 

5) What do your friends/family think of your hobby? 
My friends and family are super supportive of my nail art, and it really encourages me to come up with more and more designs. My dad has never seen my entire nail polish collection though hahaa...

6) What are your hobbies other than blogging?
I do a lot of digital drawing, little DIY projects, watching TV, and shopping.

7) What's your favorite nail polish color?
Deborah Lippman "Across the Universe" - it's not the colour I wear most, but it's the first colour that made my eyes pop out of my head.

8) What would be your dream polish?
A dark blue jelly with silver stars and little holo glitter - is there something like that out there?

9) What is something you love, but everyone else hates?
I can tell you what I dislike, but everyone loves - Uggs.

10) What trends do you love?
Gradient nails, galaxy print, paint splatter jeans, and polaroid cameras.

11) What trends do you hate? 
Uggs haha. 
If you read through this great wall of text, I thank you from the bottom of my heart. 
Here are 11 up and coming bloggers I'd like to pass this along to:

Same questions for you!
1) When and why did you start blogging?
2) How many bottles of polish do you own?
3) What color do you have the most of in your collection?
4) What is your first memory of nail polish?
5) What do your friends/family think of your hobby?
6) What are your hobbies other than blogging?
7) What's your favorite nail polish color?
8) What would be your dream polish?
9) What is something you love, but everyone else hates?
10) What trends do you love?
11) What trends do you hate?
Thanks for reading, friends! Even if you were not tagged, answer some questions in the comments anyways!

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Nail Art: The Giving Tree

Once, there was a tree…
And she loved a little boy.
And every day the boy would come
And he would gather her leaves
And make them into crowns and play king of the forest.
He would climb up her trunk
And swing from her branches
And eat apples
And they would play hide-and-go-seek.
And when he was tired, he would sleep in her shade.
And the boy loved the tree… very much…
And the tree was happy.

-Shel Silverstein, "The Giving Tree"
I read "The Giving Tree" as a kid, and even now, this sad, but sweet little story has not lost its charm for me. While there are many interpretations to the story, what I relate to most is the process of growing up - from a child's carefree play, to an adult's wants and responsibilities. What I find most beautiful is the idea that with love, you always have a place to come back to and rest.

Left to right: American Apparel "Crescent Heights", OPI "Jade is the New Black", American Apparel "Malibu Green", American Apparel "Poppy" (not pictured - black and white polish)
  • nail art brush


Base: Paint your nails a lime green.

Tip: When painting the tree trunk, just use the brush from the bottle.


What do you think of "The Giving Tree"? Any other Shel Silverstein stories you enjoy?

Thanks for reading!