Projects: 19 October 2014 – Eclipse nails

OH. MY. GOODNESS. I did it! I finally had a successful nail jobbie and I really like it, even if I say so myself. It may have taken me longer than I’d like to admit, but I got there in the end. Not sure whether or not it was my imagination, but it seemed to go a lot smoother and even Leftie was being cooperative.

Considering my soaring ego, I decided to flaunt my nails by posting it on every web platform available. I’m just kidding, I know I’m still a nail novice, but I thought I’d share a step by step with whoever wants to try it too.

I’m calling it the Eclipse nail, because it sounds all mysterious, but mainly because it looks a bit like an eclipse. Obviously.

Before we start the tutorial, I’ll just go through what I used to achieve the look. I used Seventeen nail polish in true blue or peacock, sorry I can’t recall which one it was, but it’s blue either way alright? I also have a white varnish form the Rimmel Mardi Gras collection. Sally Hansen’s Hard as Nails is on my MUST HAVE list – this stuff is just amazing and it works as a top coat, base coat or just give your nails a nice shine. Oh, AND it strengthens big time. Anyway, I’m not a Sally Hansen ambassador, so let’s carry on. The only other thing I used was some French manicure tip guides – you can get these off eBay for £1. So let’s get started.

 

Step 1:

This may have been the part I struggled with most, because I’m not great at symmetry, but I mostly just worked parallel to my cuticle. So stick the tip guides on at an angle to provide a clear crescent at the start of the nail. Like so…

 

Step 2:

This is easy enough; paint a white layer over the whole nail. You don’t have to paint over the tip guide, but if you do, it won’t really make a difference anyway, so go wild. I did two layers, because I wanted the white to be prominent, but if you wish to do one layer only, that’s A-Okay.

 

Step 3:

After the white varnish has dried properly – and I mean 100% – otherwise the tip guide will take some of the white along with it when you peel it off. So once you’re sure it’s dry, remove the tip guide and use the shape of the white polish to place the guide on the edge of the white. I reused the same guide, but you could use fresh ones if that takes your fancy. I’m probably not explaining this properly, so take a look at the picture

 

Step 4:

After placing the guides down, paint a layer of blue. I chose to do one coat only, because the blue is nice and dark. Again, if you want to paint more than one layer, go ahead.

 

Step 5:

Let this dry thoroughly and peel the guide off. You should now have a white rim around the blue. Paint a layer of top coat to seal it and you’re done.

Drumroll… the finished result. Ta-da!

That wasn’t too hard, right? Remember you can use any colours you fancy – a black base with pink or red will look super cute too!

Tell me what you think of this look and if you’ve tried it let me know how it went!

Till next time.

Projects: 14 October 2014 – Geometric nails

Since my last post on Nail Art, I’ve been feeling really enthusiastic, lulling myself into a false sense of confidence. ‘Of course I can Picasso my nails,’ I said and ‘it can’t be that hard’. Well, that all came tumbling down (metaphorically of course) on Saturday.

Overcommitting to number 7 on my list, I set out with conviction. I started with the left hand, taking snaps as I went, because I was that sure it was going to be a huge success. My blog post was already taking form in my mind – I was going to share my tips on how to achieve the look with nicely bordered pictures for effect. But this stupid left hand of mine had other things in store.

Anyway, so I used all my newly acquired tools; I mean I even bought chevron manicure guides to make sure all of my lines are exactly straight – or not straight. I first stuck said guides in their positions and then went a-painting over them. Little finger (not a Game of Thrones reference) was white with a chevron; ring finger white; middle black with a cool triangle cut from the side; front finger white with chevron running down the middle and thumb was plain white. Okay, now for the fancy bit, I had to squiggle out a square from the polish on the ring finger. FAIL. Thinking I could still work with it, I painted the whole thing white and added a black french tip. It looked okay.

Next, I waited for thumb to dry and then stuck a chevron guide about halfway down. The reason for this being that I needed to paint a black upside down triangle on the white. After doing that, it didn’t look too bad for a first try, BUT then I had to peel the stickers off. Now, I suspect that I didn’t let the base coat dry properly and so the stickers ended up sticking and peeling some of the colour off and just left me with a mess in general.

I was feeling a bit despondent, but had another light bulb moment. AHA, said my mind and I grabbed my new nail pen and just used freehand to make all the lines more prominent. Let’s just say it wasn’t exactly the sleek, geometric look I wanted. Oh and then, painting my right with my left was just a nightmare. Fullstop.

All and all though, I don’t think it was a horrible first attempt. Let me know what you guys think by commenting or tweeting. And stay tuned for the next nail project, because I think I figured it out. Aim low and you may just land the punch.

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Projects: 06 October 2014 – Nail Art

Today I want to talk nail art. As a trend that’s really taken off this year (I’m not talking about a decent mani, think more along the lines of each nail being a canvas) I’ve really tried exploring what I can do with my own. Unfortunately, due to a rather stupid left hand, I really (and I mean really) struggle to just paint my right, let alone do a Van Gogh on it. BUT, I shall persevere and I’m sure the more I practice the easier it will get. Fingers crossed.

So anyway, I thought I’d make this a little project  for the remainder of the year. Try something snazzy every week, or whenever my nails need a do-over and to be able to do that, I’d need some inspiration. So I scoured the far corners of the internet and by that I mean Pinterest and found these beautiful techniques. Some of which I’ll be trying and some I’ll leave to the experts and envy from behind my computer screen.

1. I’m a major geekazoid (yes, I just made that up) so I’m totally in love with these and I’m sure they can’t be too difficult, so definitely one I’ll be trying in the near future. Now, to sniff out some nail varnish pens – I’m like a virtual bloodhound.

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2. If this lass actually painted those on, then my hat’s off to her, but I’m pretty sure those are store bought and shall remain that way. No way I’ll even attempt this, but it is SUPER cool for halloween and I may just invest in a stick on like this for the merry event.
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3. Again, these must be stickers or falsies, but they are just so adorable. I’m a wordy gal, so I love scrabble and would just about do anything for this, including robbing your nan. Not really. Promise.

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4. I don’t even have a clue as to how these were done. Perhaps painted with those metallic bits stuck over or do you get that kind of nail varnish now? Either way, they are pretty and I may attempt something similar. Maybe black with red french tips, or the other way around – just goes to show you don’t need to stick with the traditional white tips.

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5. This is just precious. Really cute idea and I’d love to try it, but know it’s probably way too ambitious. So instead, I’ll leave this one to the pros.

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6. OH. MY. GOODNESS. I’m a fan of all things nautical, so this is just beyond words. If I can get my hands on some varnish pens, I’m sure I can do this. The anchor may take some practice, but I’m on deck. See what I did there?

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7. This is definitely on my to-do list. Even if my attempt fails horrendously, I want to have a go. I’m sure with some manicure stickers, I’ll be able to do something like this. I could even do more manageable patters, but the negative space is just so hippity-hop cool.

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8. This is not only beautiful, but totally within my reach! I’ve done something similar to this just yesterday, which I’ll share at the end of the post. This one may very well be the only one I can do right, so take note of it!

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9. Squishy Octopussy! This is so creative and it looks bad-ass, but this may be another one of those cheating buy-this-at-the-store-and-tell-people-I-did-it-myself kits. Still, good on you for buying it!

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10. With mani strips, a lot of time and a gazillion different varnish colours, I think I may be able to do this one! I’m a huge chevron fan, so I’d be well impressed if I could pull this one off.

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11. This is really pretty and will be an easy way to liven any outfit up. I think I may be able to pull this one off. I suspect you paint one colour i.e. blue and then paint the other, i.e. pink and kind of smush it in the middle. That’s my guess, but some googling should show me the way of the varnish.

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12. I’m going to be cocky and say I can do this. I may need to buy the heart sticker, but may be able to draw the lines with a nail polish pen thingy. Who knows? I guess I’ll have to give it a go.

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Now that I’ve set my ludicrous goals, I’ll allow you a glimpse of the totally basic skills I have. So I painted my nails white, allowed it to dry and then dabbed on some purple eyeshadow. When I put the topcoat over to seal it, it created these cool lines which turned it into fairy dust nails (my friends words, not mine) and ta-da! Quite happy with the result, but would love to hear your thoughts!

I will keep you all posted on my nail progress or regress (whichever it may be) but in the meantime, please share your inspiration with me by posting in the comments below or tweeting me. Chirp, chirp.

Till next time then x

Trends: 29 September 2014 – Forever 21 Lookbook

I’ll be the first to admit that it’s been a while since my last post, but the truth is that I’ve been otherwise occupied. See, my incredible boyfriend decided to get me a Fictional Writing course for my birthday in September. I have just completed my first week of cyber college and I’m really excited to be writing and sharing with like minded people. Of course, dedicating 10 to 15 hours a week to my course work, on top of 42 hours of work and 10 hours of travel, doesn’t leave much time for much else. Maybe the occasional hour off to read, which quickly turns into a nap.

I suppose the point I’m trying to make is that although my blog has taken a backseat for the moment, I promise to dedicate as much time to it as I possibly can, but please bear with me if that’s not too often. Now, enough about me.

I have been so pleasantly surprised by Forever 21’s fabulous fashion and have taken three of their most recent and my favourite collections to share with you.

The first being the Capsule Collection, I absolutely adore the pastel colours combined with shimmering metallics and leather; and the faux fur, oh the fur. It all somehow creates this modern look with a quirky, vintage touch. I’m particularly fond of the fuax fur gillet. I’m picturing a pair of skinny jeans, torn at the knee, with a check shirt and the gillet, pair with combat boots. Perfection!

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My second chosen collection, Dark Romance is just that. It creates a romantic aura, but maintains an dark edge;  like a gothic love story. I absolutely adore the dark blue tones mixd with grey and the white combined with the burgundy. I love a good contrast. Oh and how amazing is the fringed jacket? Just gorgeous.

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Finally, Sweater Weather. We may not be there just yet, but I can’t wait to start layering my knits and what perfect inspiration to do just that. Grungy check shirt worn under a knit or around the waist creates attitude. Pair it with distressed boyfriend jeans and you’re all that this season! I especially love the long, heather grey cardigan.

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Think these looks rock? Or not? Let me know either way – I’d love to hear from you all!

Trends: 07 September 2014 – New in from H&M

I walked into H&M – Oxford Circus yesterday looking for something nice to wear out for a Birthday dinner with my friends. By something, I mean one item and what ensued was a shopping spree that ended in me leaving with 3 jumpers, 1 top, jeans, a dress and a pair of boots.

I’ll admit, I do love shopping, but I’m no sucker. I usually have a clear picture in my mind of what I want and I go in with a purpose and leave with a pat on the back for a job well done.

Yesterday, however, was something magical. As I looked around, there were about twenty different pieces of clothing all competing for my attention. “Pick me,” they all seemed to say and I did try them all! Took me about an hour to try and narrow it done to what I ended up buying.

So, I guess what I’m trying to say, is that H&M has come up with an amazing new range of clothes. The New Arrivals are practically from the wardrobe of my dreams. It features a lot of acid wash, a lot of distress, a lot of leather and lace, but there is also something beautifully feminine about the whole lot. And with prices ranging from £15 to £30, there is really no excuse not to get in on action.

Tag me on Instagram with your H&M buy or comment with a link below. I want to see what you’ve got in your wardrobe!

Runway: 03 September 2014 – Ted Baker AW14 Lookbook

Ted Baker’s latest, “Take the Lead” is a lovely offering for AW14. The women’s collection is fairly simplistic, showcasing mostly primary colours with a bright colour burst here and there.

The range boasts a beautiful array of textures – lace, faux leather, snake effect, chiffon and many more – each adding a totally unique and extravagant touch to an otherwise ‘down to earth’ collection.

I’m especially in love with the red and black coat. Whether it’s the lighting or actual design, it seems to have a beautiful gradient which only adds more va-va-voom to an already alluring piece.

“Take the Lead” is a graceful and exciting showing and almost recaps some of SS14 trends, i.e. sports luxe can be seen with the sweatshirt and jogger combination.

If this has left you longing for more, head over to the official Ted Baker website to stay up to date with new arrivals and share your favourites with me.

 

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Trend: 26 August 2014 – Distressed Signals

With celebs like Kendall Jenner stylishly rocking distressed boyfriend jeans, how could we do much else but follow in this fashionista’s footsteps?

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A pair of jeans is always a really versatile item of clothing, making it easy to dress up or down, which is why I almost always end up settling for a pair of skinny’s when I get dressed in the morning. I’m pretty set on buying drainpipes only, but  I have to say I’m dying to get my booty into a pair of these. They’re quite grungy, adding that edge to any outfit.

Browsing the web a bit for inspiration, I found the pictures below on Pinterest – the perfect examples of A) a dolled up version and B) a laid back look. I adore the check shirt against the blue of the jeans, as well as the leather jacket; a really nice touch to jeans and trainers.

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Image taken from http://www.bloglovin.com

Following my browse on Pinterest, I set out to Polyvore to create a mood board with a few of my favourites. If I had to pick between the lot, I think this pair will be my favourite, together with this pair, both from Revolve. I can imagine wearing it with a plaid shirt and leather jacket or layering a jumper and parka over it with a pair of biker boots.

Which do you like best and how would you wear it this season? Let me know below or via Twitter.

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