Metallic Wreaths

metallic-wreaths-fingers

Glitter placement takes centre stage in this pretty pastel manicure.  For the blissfully unaware, glitter placement is a fancy nail art term for fishing around in a bottle of polish until you find THE perfect assortment of glitter, which you then painstakingly apply to your nails in a manner not intended for anyone with places to go or things to do – you’ll never get there and you’ll never do them, because you’ll still be at home fighting to get one tiny speck of holographic glitter off the end of a tacky, lacquer-covered toothpick and onto your nails.  Frustrating!  But sometimes you’ve got plans in mind for that megawatt glitter bomb – here KB Shimmer’s Toast-ess With the Mostest – that don’t involve just brushing it onto your nails, like arranging all of those lovely rose-gold circles into a charming metallic wreath, perfect for adding a bit of sparkle and shine to your beauty-ful holiday decorating.

Pink Poinsettias

pink-poinsettias

I’ve had a poinsettia now for three, maybe four years.  It’s a deeply misshapen thing, taller than it is wide, and hasn’t produced a single blossom since all but five leaves fell off it the first Christmas I brought it home.  You’d never know that it started off existence as a plump little mini, because these days it’s tall, thin and spindly – it’s the Jack Skellington of Christmas plants!  I won’t go so far as to say it’s unkillable, though – the beautiful summer’s day I very optimistically placed him outdoors, feeling quite pleased with myself that he was getting so much lovely sun, very nearly did him in, and he’s been an indoor kitty ever since.  It’s kind of sad!  But these poinsettia nails are not sad, and make me happy because pink poinsettias are the best!

Such Charming Trees!

charming-trees-fingers

Look at me, making great use out of the assortment of holiday-themed nail charms my husband sensibly gave me before the big day, because blogging. 🙂 He is so wise sometimes!  And so was I for pairing these charms with KB Shimmer’s All Decked Out, a once-a-Christmas polish that I like more in theory than in practice.  It’s weirdly muddy (it’s the dark green moss jelly; it dulls the rainbow glitter) and benefits greatly from a bit of added shimmer.

charming-trees-bottle

Starbucks Festivus Cup!

festivus-holiday-cup-collage

Combining two great flavours of Whimsies in one with this manicure featuring Whimsical Ideas by Pam’s Festivus glitter topper over Starbucks Holiday Cup, a pitch perfect recreation of the colour of last year’s “controversial” Plain Red Cup.  I think these two polishes go together beautifully, to say nothing of their mutual minimalism – plain metal pole, plain red cup…it just fits!

festivus-holiday-cup-fingers

Delicate Drifts

delicate-drifts-fingers

It might be a little early in the cold weather season for my mitts to be looking quite so chapped, but the condition of my hands, as well as the inspiration for these nails, is perfectly in keeping with the crazy (and crazy cold) weather we’ve had lately.  Drifting snow, freezing rain, bitterly cold temperatures, maybe a bit of hail – we’ve had it all, and somehow all at once. It’s a horrible weather miracle!

I think this manicure is really pretty, particularly the flakes on my index and pinkie fingers, which I created using the pond manicure technique, which is when you free-hand a nail art design between layers of a super sheer jelly polish.  It a cool technique that makes everything look soft and diffuse, perfect for designs of fluffy, sparkly snow gently piling up on the windowsill.

RAWR to the World!

roar-to-the-world-collage

Here’s some festive dino nails (also grumpy, confused and deeply suspicious of that little heart springing off his tail) to match this Santasaurus bubble bar from Lush’s winter holiday collection.  The bubble bar itself was nice (is nice – he’s reusable) but smelled nothing like the toffee scent noted in its description.  Unless its sharp, almost tingly scent is actually Lush’s idea of toffee – I don’t find that the descriptions of their products ever really match up to the realities, so it’s entirely possible!  All the same, one pass under the tap for a minute or so created an absolute mountain of mint green bubbles, AND inspired some fun nail art.  Happy rawr-idays!

In Winter It’s a Marshmallow World

snowmen-bottle

Oh my gosh, so much snow yesterday. And perfect snow, too – downy, fluffy, sparkly bits of icy lace falling straight from the heavens. Beautiful and festive, yes, but also a royal pain in the arse to navigate – on snow days, if you don’t need to be out on the roads, you really shouldn’t be. Best to leave the marshmallow world to the snowmen, like these cute little charms my husband recently gifted me from Daily Charme, here atop KB Shimmer’s snowstorm-in-a-bottle, Snow Way. At least with their cute little scarves and jaunty hats, they’re warmly attired!

snowmen-fingers

Christmas Trees: A Tutorial

Tree Tutorial Collage.jpg

Easy, glittery trees, the Finger Candy way!

Step 1: (We can have lots of fun!)  Paint your nails to opacity with two polishes, a simple dark creme on your middle two fingers (this can be any shade you’d like, although I like the tree detailing as against this basic black) and a festive glitter bomb on your index and pinkie fingers, here KB Shimmer’s sELFie.  Once dry, top with a layer of quick dry topcoat.

Step 2: (There’s so much we can do!  Okay, I’ll stop with the NKOTB jokes now.)  Apply striping tape to your two middle fingers in the shape of a wide chevron from the centre of your cuticles down to the edges of your nails. Don’t worry if the small point up at your cuticles doesn’t come together perfectly – you’ll be adding a tiny little star charm at the end that will cover up any boo-boos.

Step 3: Fill in the taped-off space on your two middle fingers with a Christmas tree green polish, here Enchanted Polish’s Lost Boy.  Depending on the polish you choose for your index and pinkie fingers, you may be able to use it (skipping over step 3 entirely.)  But super thick glitter bombs like sELFie can be difficult to wrangle in nail art, and are best used as megawatt accent polishes over a complimentary-hued base.

Step 4: Top the now-green trees with two light coats of the glitter polish.  Or omit this step altogether because the polish you chose for the trees covered it up just well enough in the first place, thankyouverymuch.

Step 5: Once dry, carefully remove the striping tape, pat down any errant bits of glitter with the point of a toothpick and top with another layer of quick dry top coat.

Step 6: With the topcoat still tacky, place a star upon the highest bough of each of your trees, here a couple of little golden charms I purchased from Daily Charme.  You could also paint on your stars using yellow polish and a small detail brush, or do what I did last year and fish all the golden stars out of another bottle of polish and top your tree designs with those!

Et voila, glittery Christmas trees, if you please.  I hope you find this tutorial helpful. 🙂

christmas-tree-fingers

Popcorn Garland

popcorn-garland-shade

My mom and I attempted to make popcorn-and-cranberry garland when I was a kid. It…did not go well!  I mean, it went very well in the sense that at the end of a frustrating couple of hours I was packed full of antioxidant-rich cranberries and popcorn, but actual garland production was completely unsuccessful – what pioneering nitwit came up with the idea to SEW POPCORN AND BERRIES, may I ask (still better than the dude who looked down at a spiny artichoke and said, “Yeah, that might be edible.”)  Perhaps best to limit these kinds of things to your nails. 🙂

Christmas Town

christmas-town

Sing it with me, friends, you know all the words!  Ooooooohhhhhhh, it’s the MOST com-pet-i-tive tiiiiimmmmmme of the yeeeeaar!  There will be nail artists freaking and skill levels peaking and so many teeeeaaarrrrrs, it’s the MOST com-pet-i-tive TIME OF THE YEAR!

So I’m not sure what it is – something in the frozen-over water, I suppose – but nothing brings out the competitive spirit in a nail artist like the winter holidays.  T’was a time not that long ago that you could enter multiple nail art contests during every holiday of the year, from Halloween to Easter, but I only now see them pop up around Christmas.  Like we don’t have enough on our plates platters at this time of year!  Also, how very festive – “Hello, happy holidays, fellow nail artists!  BUT SERIOUSLY, I WILL BURY YOU WITH NOTHING BUT A CUTICLE PUSHER IF YOU DENY ME MY GLORY.”

I kid, of course. 🙂  These contests are always super fun and very inspiring – I love seeing what the far, far bigger guns than I bring to the festive table every year.  It also gives me an excuse to bust out my own big guns, like this incredibly detailed design I recently did featuring Sandy Claws’ Christmas Town from The Nightmare Before Christmas.  And holy cats, did this manicure take FOREVER!  So fussy.  Like, at one point I time traveled into the future just to make sure that it WAS eventually going to end, such was my incredulity at the (many) passing hours.

Anyhow, this manicure is my entry towards Nail Polish Canada’s fourth annual Holiday Nail Art Challenge! Should you like it (or maybe even love it) and should you like me (or maybe even love me – hi, Mom and Dad!) you can vote for my entry here.  As always, thank you for your kindness and support, dear friends – I appreciate it greatly.