Monday, June 10, 2013

The Digit-al Dozen Book Week day 1 - Catcher in the Rye nail art

Hey friends! Today marks the beginning of another Digit-al Dozen week, and this week's theme is BOOKS! I was nervous about this week because most of the manis I do are patterns, not actual pictures, and I wanted to be able to do some book-based manis that involved pictures. I've done two for this week so far and I'm actually really happy with how they both turned out! The first one I did was based on this cover of The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger.

 

Dressed Up Nails - The Catcher in the Rye freehand nail art

I started these nails with a base of OPI My Boyfriend Scales Walls, still the most perfect almost-white there will ever be. I use 3 coats, but if you do thicker coats you could definitely get away with two (my sister only uses two!).

Dressed Up Nails - The Catcher in the Rye freehand nail art

My little detailing brush that I usually use met an untimely end when a bottle of white polish spilled inside my travel nail box and solidified all over the brush bristles. So for this mani, I took a little detailing brush from Born Pretty Store and cut it down smaller. I used that brush to freehand the orange shapes that form the horse and his mane in Essence Wake Up!. I wanted to hold onto the general flowy feeling of the horse image on the cover, but not stick exactly to the image... I'm sure you can tell that the image doesn't really flow perfectly from nail to nail haha.

Dressed Up Nails - The Catcher in the Rye freehand nail art

When the orange was done, I was tempted to call it a day because I liked the way the weird abstract orange and white shapes looked. But instead I took the same tiny detailing brush and Super Black Lacquers Murdered Out and painted on the patterns of the horse's face, body, mane, and the sketchy cityscape in the background of the book cover.

Dressed Up Nails - The Catcher in the Rye freehand nail art

Here's a ~*~convenient~*~ pinnable image for you guys! I've never done a collage thing like this with my nails and their inspiration but I felt like these probably deserved it because I'm really happy with how they look compared to the cover of the book!

Dressed Up Nails - The Catcher in the Rye freehand nail art

As y'all know, I very rarely freehand paint things like these and I was pretty nervous about the way they'd turn out. Butttt I'm so happy with them! And they were really fun to do, which is an added bonus. What do you guys think?


Thursday, June 6, 2013

Girly gradient and studs nail art!

Hi everyone, happy almost-Friday! Sorry I've been such a bad blogger lately. I've been so busy at work that by the time I get home and go running and have dinner and do all the other life things that one has to do when one is a grown-up I don't have much time or motivation left for nails and blogging. I've actually been painting my nails fairly frequently, but mostly just one color. Booorrrinnggg.

But! Last night while marathoning Borgia on Netflix I decided to just get out my nail stuff and lazily do my nails while we watched, taking lots of breaks and just generally not putting too much effort into it. And this happened!

Dressed Up Nails - girly gradient and studs nail art with Lime Crime Parfait Day and Lavendairy and China Glaze Fairy Dust

Ever since I got two new mixed packs of studs in the mail from Winstonia, I've been daydreaming about doing a gradient with some kind of stud pattern on top. I decided last night that I would make that dream a reality! (cue epic music). Once I had the thought in my head I also couldn't stop thinking about doing the girliest gradient ever using Lime Crime Lavendairy and Lime Crime Parfait Day.

I started with a base of two coats of Parfait Day, which, let me just stop here and be like, HEY! This is a flawless pastel pink that only takes TWO COATS. Like, if you enjoy pink and you don't own this I'm not sure what you're even thinking. Get it right now.

Dressed Up Nails - girly gradient and studs nail art with Lime Crime Parfait Day and Lavendairy and China Glaze Fairy Dust


I'm still new to gradients and I didn't really care how long I took since I was watching TV, so I did the gradient in a sort of weird, roundabout way that I don't think is what a normal, gradient-competent person would do. For some nails, I used a makeup sponge to apply Lavendairy from the tips working toward the cuticle to make a gradual change. Then I put a drop of Lavendairy next to a drop of Parfait Day on my placemat and smushed the sponge into them and sponged both colors on to blend them on the nail better.

On some nails I did these same steps but I did them in the opposite order. I repeated them, I don't know, eighty times per nail before I was fairly satisfied with the result. I still kind of hated it, but guess what I forgot... glitter and topcoat forgive a lot of sins.


Dressed Up Nails - girly gradient and studs nail art with Lime Crime Parfait Day and Lavendairy and China Glaze Fairy Dust

Once my gradients were done, I put on a coat of China Glaze Fairy Dust and immediately fell in love. Fairy Dust is seriously MAGIC for blending gradients, I don't know if I'm eventually going to have to give up my soul or something for having partaken of this wizardry but I don't even care because it will have been worth it.

While the Fairy Dust was still wet, I used my Rhinestone Pickerr-uperr (yes, that's really what it's called) from Sally to apply the studs from Winstonia set 2. I had played around with a lot of different stud designs/configurations before starting on my nails and this one was the winner as soon as I tried it. Something about it just makes me so happy!

Dressed Up Nails - girly gradient and studs nail art with Lime Crime Parfait Day and Lavendairy and China Glaze Fairy Dust

I really like these studs - they're so shiny and nice, and the variety of shapes that come in the wheel is on point. Both shapes were easy to put on and the big studs lie flat because they're so thin. I didn't use nail glue or anything and the studs have held on for a full 24 hours so far, which is way longer than most studded nails I do. Usually I start losing them the morning after I do my nails unless I use nail glue. Bravo, little studs!

Dressed Up Nails - girly gradient and studs nail art with Lime Crime Parfait Day and Lavendairy and China Glaze Fairy Dust

My lovely friend and coworker Erin looked at my nails today and was like, "Oh my god, are you like a Disney princess or something?" and once she said it I realized that these are pretty Disney-princessy nails. So yes. I am a Disney princess and I'm totally cool with that because I love these so much! What do you guys think?

If you want some sweet studs of your own, you can get the set I used from Winstonia and use coupon code DRESSEDUPNAILS for 10% off through the end of July. Woohoo!

Some of the products in this post were provided for review.