Not that I would ever confuse what I do with art-art, but most people, when they draw or sculpt or paint, develop a pretty distinctive style. Lichtenstein had his pop art, Monet went through his Impressionist phase, Lisa Frank was all about candy-coloured laser unicorns.
As for me? I like to think my manicures are competently designed, but let’s make no mistake here – I’ve got one style, and that style is CUTE. It is neither within my purview, nor really my preferred wheelhouse, to venture into the realm of say, scary. Which is actually where this manicure started, believe it or not – my sad sack attempt at a scary clown to hopefully freak out an online friend who shares my belief that all my polka dotted manicures look like clown pants. So I thought I’d draw a clown to go WITH the pants, except he turned out all cute and charming and not at all like Pennywise or that big, slobbery guy from Zombieland, so who’s the joker now, huh? Bah, dastardly cute fella.
Here’s a clown collage, not to be mistaken with a clown COLLEGE. Wah-wah. 🙂
So 1 is the gold standard, 2 is the acid flashback, 3 is the one everyone loves, 4 (or World) is the one with Yoshi and then I stopped playing the Super Mario games. But some things stick with you forever, and it was high time I gave the nail art treatment to one of my favourite childhood video game franchises (bested only by the Donkey Kong Country games, which are a nail art subject for another day!)
The story of how I came by my tattoos (two basic black stars on each of my shoulders; nothing so vibrant as these colour-blended, tat-type nails, but I love them all the same) is a fun one.
Rather hungover from the former evening’s revelry, a multi-location mini-rager in honour of my 25th year of existence, and running off the perma-high that came from being merely within the same city limits as my new boyfriend (you know him today as Mr. Finger Candy), I met my 80-year-old grandmother for an early lunch (there is no other kind for grandma types, I think) at a cool downtown eatery. We ate fish and chips (surprisingly decent hangover food) and talked about boys, and afterwards we went prowling around the junkiest of the junk stores, my grandmother’s very favourite type of shopping. Somewhere in there she slipped me an envelope filled with birthday mad money, and before jauntily stepping onto the bus that would take her back home, she wished me a happy birthday and told me to do something silly with it.
I’m pretty sure she meant buy a bunch of clothes or makeup, but instead I turned right around and walked into the first tattoo parlour I found, a not-at-all-junky place I had spied on our walk to the junk store, and walked out four hours later with my first (and so far only) bits of body art. I love my stars intensely, but I think I love the memory of that day even more – it was a very good birthday.
Months later when I was shopping for my wedding dress I heard my grandmother say to my mom, as I twirled before them in a duchess silk ballgown, “What in god’s name are those things on her shoulders?!” Heh. 🙂
Ugh, not those kind of leavings, gutterface, although I suppose I should have clarified – here I’m talking about Easter Bunny leavings. Totally different thing! Doing a manicure inspired by one is adorable and festive. The other suggests some latent scatological leanings that I may need to address. Still, although I’ll paint all manner of subject on my nails (the Guacamonut still ranks up there as a random favourite), I can guarantee you that shit will absolutely never be one of those things. Sorry if you were hoping for this blog to take a deeply dirty turn at some point.
Okay, back to this end-of-the-day Easter manicure. Not Your Mama’s Easter Grass from Smitten Polish (now Dreamland Lacquer) is the star of this show, acting as a very artificial-looking base for a smattering of pastel-hued, eggy dots. I love this polish in the sun, its gold glitter twinkling prettily with every shift of my hands, but Not Your Mama’s Easter Grass does its very best work in the shade, taking on a look not unlike a Pointillist painting. Or, going to the other end of the cultural spectrum, Floam. I love it, I love it, I love it, AND it just happens to look great alongside some sweet and simple nail art. The Bunny would approve – a more than fitting spot to park his bounty. 🙂
I was going for a tiled sort of look here, like the intricately beaded lid on a trinket box or a small tabletop embedded with glass baubles. Instead I got the orange-green colour blindness test, with some red, purple and blue along for the ride as well!
These nails were not difficult, and although they didn’t turn out exactly as I had hoped, I like them all the same. But this manicure took an absolute eternity – so much picky dotted brushwork! – so I’m leaving it on for as long as I possibly can. Time is money. 😉
Well, this is a new level of random for me, a manicure inspired by the decorative rice bowls that sit on the top shelf of the left-side bookcase that flanks my television. So specific! But accurate, as this manicure IS inspired by those rice bowls, which I purchased years ago from ModCloth, and the top shelf of the left-side bookcase is indeed where they usually reside, along with a number of other family memory-type knick knacks.
Here’s a better look at our entertainment/decorative set-up, virtually all of it hidden because wires and DVD cases make me ragey, but family photos and pictures of our dearly departed kitty, Porky, do not. So in hindsight, between the nails and the sweet mementos, this is one shelf I would definitely not mind being put up(on.)
Coming at you this gloomy Sunday afternoon with another manicure inspired by the movie Beetlejuice, this time a super bright and graphic design honouring Miss Argentina, the droll, turquoise-skinned receptionist who mans the check-in desk in the Waiting Room of the Dead. The totally inappropriate joke (for any time but the 1980s, apparently) is that Miss Argentina, still garbed in her hot pink competition gown and sash and bearing two nasty-looking slashes on her wrists, is doomed to an eternity of bureaucratic civil service on account of what she terms her “little accident” – seems in the Beetlejuice world, if you check out early by your own hand, you’re condemning yourself to an afterlife of mind-numbingly stupid government work. It’s all pretty crass, but that was the 1980s for you.
Crassness aside, I love Miss Argentina – she’s overworked and profoundly bored, but also sassy and so. completely. over. it. And for a former beauty queen, it’s also important to note that she’s gorgeous. Turquoise and hot pink? That’s one of my favourite colour combinations! Here, check this out – this is Molly Tinkerpuff (and her cat, Stray) a Sim I created back in 2013 and modeled after Miss Argentina.
But let’s talk about this mani for a quick second. I love it. Like, loveity-love-love it. I’m sort of gobsmacked at how well it actually turned out, particularly the scroll work and the lettering in Miss Argentina’s sash. I also love how crisp and precise the outlining work is – it lends the whole thing a very comic book/tattoo kind of vibe. Neat!