Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Iron Butterfly & Gems

I am so excited... my Orly Iron Butterfly arrived today from the States. I have only been waiting for about 10 days but still I was very pleased when it arrived this morning. Iron Butterfly is part of the Metal Chic collection and is a stunning matte charcoal grey.

I havent seen this shade available for sale in the UK so although I had to purchase from the States it was still only £7 including postage. Totally worth every penny.

Iron Butterfly no top coat
This polish dries uber quick so I built up the coverage with three very thin layers and it dried to a perfect metallic matte grey. It reminded me of suede - almost like it would be soft to the touch! The polish contains lots of silver shimmer which became even more obvious once I added a layer of top coat.

My accent nail is Models Own Utopia which is a pretty pale pinky grey and I could not resist adding these beautiful little square pink gems to create a different dynamic to my usual stamping patterns.

Iron Butterfly with Seche Vite top coat

Excuse the rain drops - I wanted natural light!

I am really pleased with this look and I hope you enjoy the pictures. I would definately purchase more of these matte type nail polishes in the future. In fact there are two other gorgeous colours in this Metal Chic collection that will find there way into my online shopping basket at some point later in the night.

Louise xx

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Love is Pink

After reading over my posts I have realised that I need to spread my wings a little and experiment with all the gorgeous new polishes I have purchased recently rather than relying on my trusty Barry Ms for everything. Tonight marks a new chapter for me and I intend to spend the next few weeks using lots of new brands with lots of new nail art ideas.

Here we have Color Club Nomadic in Nude as my base colour and Color Club Hot Like Lava as the stamping colour.

Hot Like Lava is from the Foiled collection and whilst it was good to stamp with it wasnt as good as I had hoped and dare I say... not as good as the Barry M foils.

This LOVE stamp is taken from BM 311. Its a really cute little design and will be ideal for future Valentine's Day or Anniversary manicure.

I hope you have enjoyed my first adventure into non Barry M nail polishes, hopefully this will be the beginning of a new LOVE affair with many brands.

Louise xx

Friday, 27 July 2012

Go Team GB

Tonight sees the start of the Olympics 2012 held in our very own capital city, London. There is a huge amount of excitement surronding such a massive occasion, not to mention a three hour opening ceremony that has just kicked off on TV.

In tribute to such a monumentous occasion I decided to create a mani dedicated to our very own team GB.

Of course I used red, white and blue as my colour scheme and I couldnt resist throwing in another braided accent nail for good measure :-).

My trusty Barry M polishes were perfect for this nail art and of course I also added a little stamping using BM 317. I picked the pattern for my little finger as it reminded me of fireworks and the heart pattern for my middle finger to show my LOVE for all things British.

Polishes used: All Barry M - Cobalt Blue, Bright Red, Matt White, Silver Foil, Gold Foil

In the above and below pictures you will see I am holding a gorgeous but limited edition glitter polish called Jewel Britannia. I ordered it online as part of quite a large haul of hard to find Barry M's which arrived this week. Of course I will be featuring them soon but couldnt resist a little teaser by ay least showing you the bottle of this glitter packed with silver, red and blue. I added just a teeny dab to my thumb Team GB nail.

I know it seems like I must only own Barry M polishes - trust me that simply isnt true - but I just love the formula and amazingly bright colours.

I'm off to watch some more of the opening ceremony. I hope you all enjoy it (especially given the millions of £'s it cost to produce).

Come on Team GB - Bring home the GOLD(s).

Louise xx

Thursday, 26 July 2012

A Mani of Firsts

As I was looking back over my posts to date I realised that I haven't featured purple as a colour so I decided to put that right by featuring five different shades in one mani. I also decided to try a technique that is new to me although I understand it has been a favourite of many established nail bloggers long before now - the braided accent nail.

This was my first attempt at a braided manicure and I have to say I am loving the results. It was easy (if a little time consuming) to do and I managed to get the design to stay in a central line running down my nail. I picked three shades of purple to complete the design but next time I would try three totally contrasting colours for a much bolder result

The colours used to create this mani are from the Barry M range (surprise I hear you yell) and are as follows:
Little finger - Vivid Purple
Ring finger - Braided with Lilac Foil, Vivid Purple and Bright Purple
Middle finger - Boots Limited Edition (no colour name)
Index - Bright Purple
Thumb - Berry Icecream

I also added a few accents using my stamping plates:
Index finger - BM 05 and rhinestone from eBay
Thumb - BM 309 (fast becoming my favourite plate)

Another fun little one day mani that I will remove tomorrow as I plan something special for our girls trip to the Polo Festival on Saturday. Take care.

Louise xx

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Five (not Fifty) Shades of Grey

As you may have heard recently there is currently a bestselling series of books sweeping the book charts called Fifty Shades. It is a trilogy of books written with women in mind and they are categorised as either 'romance' or 'adult comtemporary fiction' depending on who you talk to. The book industry is buzzing about these books and if rumours are to believed they will single handedly be responsible for a baby boom in approx 9 months time and a huge surge in 'underwear for special occasions' sales.

The jacket images of the books gave me a great idea for a quick mani and photo shoot tonight.

Using my lovely new Diamond Collection from Barielle I started with a basic skittle mani using Five (not Fifty) shades of grey.

In order to make this skittle relevant to the book series I needed to add a tie, a mask and a key to the mix. I debated trying to hand paint something onto each nail but I just knew that I wouldnt achieve the detail I was looking for. Then a wave of inspiration came over me and I grabbed a couple of props and stamping plate BM 301. I hope you like the results as much as I do.


I had so much fun with this tonight. I will definately be keeping my eyes peeled for props to add to future nail photo shoots. My neighbours must think I am crazy but I don't mind as its all in the name of art... well nail art anyway!

I have not read any of these books but I know plenty of people who have... will you be tempted? Let me know what you think of tonights little venture into themes and props.

Louise xx

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Cute as a Button... Damn Right

This colour is from Essie and is called Cute As a Button. It is one of those colours that I am just drawn to and although I know I have very similar shades in my collection I just had to have it. Once I realised the name of this polish is Cute As A Button it was a given that it would end up in my shopping basket as I very often say that same thing to my lovely husband :-).

I could not get the application of this polish as perfect as I would haved liked it so I ended up stamping with quite a full design in order to cover up more of the colour than I had first anticipated.

I cannot decide if this pattern is bows or butterflies? It is very pretty and suits this gorgeous corally pink perfectly. The pattern is taken from BM 205 and I stamped using Konad Special Polish in White.

Everything about this mani is cute so it suits the colour name perfectly. I hope you enjoyed todays post - thank you for reading.

Louise xx

Monday, 23 July 2012

Flippy Floppy

It is true... Summer is here! Well at least it was today and the forecast looks great for tomorrow. That will do for me given that all we have had so far is months of rain and cloud.

I bought these W7 neon nail polishes months ago and they sat untouched until now. As with most neons it is recommended that you use a base colour of white to allow the colours to really pop. And pop they do! You cannot quite appreciate how bright and summery these colours are as my camera just couldnt cope with the intensity but here goes...

Nothing says welcome to summer better than gorgeous neon nail polish and flip flops!

This cute little design is taken straight from BM 309 and I stamped using Konad Special Polish in Black to ensure the pattern was as contrasting against the neons as possible.

I am so pleased with the results and have decided that I will recreate this mani as a pedi later tonight. Dont worry I will spare you the pictures of my toes and leave you just to enjoy the simple effectiveness of this design and colour combination on my fingers.

Just for the cute factor...

While mummy paints nails... we sunbathe :-)
Thanks for reading

Louise xx

Sunday, 22 July 2012

Sweet Like Candy

Is summer here at last? Man its been hot this afternoon which put me in the mood for one thing... Ice Cream! What better way to satisfy my craving than with the Ice Cream collection from Barry M.

Barry M Pastels:

Mint Green on my little finger
Strawberry Icecream on my ring finger
Blueberry Icecream on my middle finger
Peach Melba on my index finger

I started by painting this gorgeous pastel skittle mani which I then enjoyed for a couple of hours before the temptation to stamp took over. The sweet treats on BM 306 were just crying out to be added to this gorgeous selection of pastel colours.

Using Barry M Silver Foil I stamped this sweet candy design on each nail and then stood back to admire the finished results. What do you think... good enough to eat?

Apparently we are expecting more sunshine this week, so whilst it is a shame to be at work it does at least inspire some great summer manicures. Look out for them over the coming days.

Louise xx

Saturday, 21 July 2012

Competition at Pretty Digits

Competition over at Pretty Digits in honour of Anna reaching 600 followers.

For your chance to win everything in the picture below plus your choice of ONE Nails Inc Sprinkles please head on over to http://www.prettydigits.blogspot.co.uk/ and enter via the rafflecopter widget.

Good luck! :-) xx

Minty Madness

Today I would like to share with you NYC Mint Macaroon. I previously mentioned this polish as I got it for 20p as part of an awesome promotion in Superdrug. This gorgoeus minty green is an easy to apply creme that achieves full opacity with two medium coats. Here is a little shot of the minty goodness on its own...

NYC Mint Macaroon

One of my favourite colour combinations is pink and green so I could not resist stamping over the top of this lovely colour with a mani inspired by the Polished Perfectionist. I used pink and silver to achieve these striking stripes. 

You may recognise this stunning pink from my one of my previous posts, its a Konad Special polish called Psyche Pink and I wouldnt be without it in my stash. I couldnt resist adding some subtle silver highlights using Barry M Silver Foil.

The stripes were achieved using plate BM 301. I really like this look and it was so simple to achieve. This is the perfect mani for those times when you only have 5 minutes to dedicate to a quick nail art session.

I hope you enjoyed my moments of minty madness - see you soon.

Louise xx

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Perfectly Peachy

After my recent bright and bold manicures I decided to opt for something pretty and elegant using only one stamping plate. I chose Barry M Peach which is a really pretty polish that is surprisingly, given how light the colour is, almost a one coater. However as always I am much more comfortable with two thin coats.

I also decided to try stamping with one of my gorgeous new greys from the Barielle Diamond collection. I picked the darkest shade called Coalest Day of the Year and I am really pleased with the results. I think my usual Konad Black would have been too strong against this pretty colour.

This pretty flower design is taken from BM 306. What do you think? Do you like this kind of mani where all nails are the same colour and design? In the past I always preferred an accent nail (usually my ring finger) but after seeing the close ups of this mani I'm loving the simplicity of keeping all nails the same.

Check out all the pretty little shimmers in the Barielle grey bottle below. This will look lovely as a base colour stamped with a nice silver foil (another idea for the 'to do' list)

Thanks for reading

Louise xx

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Inspired By... Skulls

Not only did I have a huge nail polish splurge in TK Maxx recently but I also bought several new tops, all of which have given me inspiration for some up and coming nail art. First on my list was this striking black and white skull print top. I wore this to sunday lunch with my in-laws. It may sound strange to some that I would pick a skull print for such an occasion but my in laws are unique in that way and very into all things rock music, tattoo related and skull printed.

Close Up
Monochrome nails are always effective but with the addition of a simple skull print I really felt like these nails had a little something special. What do you think?

To create this design I turned to my tried and tested Barry M's for the base and Konad special polishes for the stamped design.

Thumb, Middle and Little - Base colour Barry M Matt White, stamped with BM 225 using Konad Black
Index and Ring - Base colour Barry M Black, stamped with BM 225 using Konad White

Really that simple! I was really pleased with how they turned out especially as I was still top coating them in the car in the way to lunch.

One of the other tops I purchased was a really pretty butterfly print with creams, lilacs and muted gold tones. Check back to see the nail art I create to match very soon.

As ever please feel free to leave comments or if you like my blog so far please sign up to follow me and tell your friends.

Louise xx