Tartan

Tartan Hand

Always mad for plaid.  Or is it driven mad by plaid?  Because these nails were fussy!  I’m not quite sure why I always decide to freehand my more geometrically-inclined manicures – strikes me striping tape could be beneficial in such situations.  Then I think about all the times I’ve just wound up with little bits of striping tape stuck to my face and arms, and the road (less precisely) traveled suddenly seems like the better option!

Tartan Fingers

Hamming It Up

Hammy Bottle

This polish, Hawaiian Ham, my first – and so far best – homemade creation is the lacquer equivalent of a snuggly security blanket.  Its mix of pink, brown, copper and marigold-hued glitter is warm and homey-looking, and its name conjures up fond memories of holiday meals past.  I can also always count on adoring whatever manicure Hawaiian Ham touches, but then again, I’m rather biased.  The Ham just completes me.

It may also be because I’m still in total awe of the fact that I made a nail polish.  And not just A nail polish either, but one that’s pretty, applies nicely and has remained goop-free and colourfast for two years now. Like, that’s some advanced DIY-ing right there! Looking forward to trying my hand at some glittery presents for friends and family this year; if they turn out half as well as Hawaiian Ham, I’ll be a happy little polish maker indeed.

Hammy Fingers

 

 

All Decked Out

All Decked Out bottle

I suspect there are quite a few people who use the day after Thanksgiving to dig out their holiday decorations and double down on this Christmas business in earnest.  I’m not even American and I’ve got the big time jones to haul my dusty artificial tree out of storage and commence my yearly mini lighting-induced breakdown.

And what better nail adornment to be sporting for the occasion than another KB Shimmer polish, this time Deck the Halls, a moss green jelly studded with rainbow hex glitter and tiny gold stars?  It’s Christmas tree in a bottle, and the perfect finishing touch if you want your nails to be as pretty as your holiday tablescape.

I purchased this polish last year, and much like the mossy green colour of the jelly base, it’s one I’ve had to let grow on me.  I adore jelly-based glitters, but I find they work best in crisp, clear colours that let the (typically) holographic glitter shine through the shimmery depths.  Dark jellies, like this blackened green, dull that shine considerably, and tinge anything gold (like All Decked Out’s gorgeous little stars) a burnished, muddy hue.

So I wasn’t a big fan last year.  And while I can’t say that my feelings towards All Decked Out have changed all that much this year, I’m warming to its Christmas tree realness – I like to see a tree-inspired polish in an actual shade of tree as opposed to, say, the more common (and plastic) electric neon green.

031

The Leftovers

Happy Thanksgiving, American friends!  In honour of your big day (already gave myself away as Canadian with that O-U) I have put together this gallery of nail art featuring some of my favourite feasting foods.  Foods you probably shoved into your faces some hours ago, which naturally means you are all now in the throes of your post-feast comas, which means I’m talking to myself! Again.

We’ll start at the top with the king of the Thanksgiving feast, the turkey. This manicure actually features chicken drumsticks, but semantics, yeah?

Chicken Marsala

Although I would do no such thing myself (CARBS FOR LIFE!), we’ll skip over the carbohydrates for now.  I’ve yet to tackle a mashed potato mani, and I’m not about to start!

Pigs are the other animal to get the shaft at Thanksgiving, with ham featuring prominently on many a holiday table.  For this years’ old manicure, I used a favourite homemade polish, Hawaiian Ham.  In retrospect, it’s kind of sick that I have the pigs – jumping the gun a bit on the Christmas thing there, lads – overseeing the ham on my thumb. Those are some hard truths to be covering in nail art.

Christmas Ham

Don’t forget to eat these.

Eat Your Veggies

Somewhere, there will be a plate of Deviled Eggs.

027

And a dish of cranberry sauce, hopefully still in the shape of the can and bearing its rings (as a small aside, this is one of my favourite manicures ever!)

Cranberry Jelly Fingers

Some jerk will bring one of these.

Fruitcake

They might even bring two.

Frosted Fruitcake

You may have very optimistically started one of these in the afternoon. DO NOT EAT IT – you’ve had enough today!  Some things have to be off limits (gingerbread houses should always be off limits.)

003

If your uncle won’t shut up about Obamercare, you may need to consume one or two (or 12) of these candy apple martinis.

Candy Appletini

After which the guacamonut may start looking like a real viable option.

Guacamonut Hand

Or this.  Not sure which one is more frightening!

A-Dubs

Then you’ll come home, pass out on the couch and the circle of Thanksgiving will be complete!  But whatever shape your holiday took (I certainly hope it didn’t go down the guacamonut path – no good can come of that) I hope you had a happy one, friends. 🙂

Merry Pinkmas!

Pinkmas Bottle

Today I have another seasonal pick from KB Shimmer, this time Merry Pinkmas, a blogger collaboration shade from their 2013 winter holiday collection.  Created in conjunction with Cristina of Let Them Have Polish, a blogger and nail artist probably best known for her all-pink approach to the holidays, Merry Pinkmas is a bright pink crelly loaded (and I do mean loaded) with hex, square and circle glitter in an eye-popping assortment of green, pink, white and red hues.  It’s super sugary sweet and reminds me of beautiful Christmas ribbon candy.  I purchased my bottle last year when KB re-released Merry Pinkmas as part of a greatest hits holiday mini collection.

But a word about all that glitter.  It’s plentiful, and can make application a pain.  Even going slowly and polishing carefully, I had issues with the glitter bunching up on itself.  Two thick layers of topcoat will be necessary.  I used only one for this manicure, and you can regrettably tell – my index finger in particular looks like it might actually be coated in crushed ribbon candy.  Which is a look, sure, but not quite the one I was going for, no matter how much I might like it when my nails look like candy!

Pinkmas fingers

Nuh-Uh, Snow Way!

Snow Way bottle

I woke up this morning to weather that looked a lot like this polish, KB Shimmer’s blizzard in a bottle, Snow Way.  At first I thought it was fog. The weather’s been all over the place lately, and as I live right on the edge of a river, fog is an all-the-time possibility.  But upon closer inspection, the fog revealed itself to be softly drifting snow – the first of the year, save for a few flakes last month.  And I’m not ashamed to admit that standing there in the dark of the morning’s very earliest hours, staring down the barrel of four or even five more months of icy, slushy, snowy weather, I cried.  In my city, the winter months are a time to be endured, and I don’t know about you, but I feel like I’ve done just about enough enduring this year already, you know? Smooth sailing needs to be the order of the day from here on out – easier said than done when the water’s all iced over.

But you can always, ALWAYS, have pretty nails…assuming, of course, you haven’t lost any extremities to frostbite.  And this polish goes a long way towards the pretty, even if its icy blue base and smattering of matte white glitter is more North Pole than Hawaiian beach.  KB Shimmer released Snow Way as part of last year’s holiday collection, but you can still find this blizzardy beauty at Harlow & Co. and, of course, KB itself.

Snow Way fingers

Pink Peppermint

Pink Peppermint Hand

This manicure is sweet as candy, and scented like it, too – the red and white glitter topper I layered over a sugary pink gradient, KB Shimmer’s Candy Cane Crush, smells like peppermint!  Sweeeeeeeeet.

Pink Peppermint Fingers