Monday, June 25, 2012

Lacquistry Custom "Sand & Sea"

If you have followed my blog or FB page at all, you know that I absolutely adore Jenna @ Lacquistry!  She is a freakin' polish-making goddess, and is a total sweetheart to boot!  So, when I had the opportunity to request a custom order from her a while back, I jumped on the chance!  

I have already posted about one of my customs, "Hawaiian Sunset".  Next up is "Sand & Sea".  
Jenna says, "First up, you asked for something involving the beach and sand. I came up with something for you combining 9 different shapes, sizes and colors. We have the ocean represented by a "salty" cool oceanic blue (hey that rhymed!) sprinkled with mini holo sea green hexs' and light blue holo hexs'. The sand meets the sea with an "un-gold" true shimmering sand color- achieved by blending 3 different fine sand colors and a sand colored mini-hex for size interest. I kept it more of a cool-toned, misty day as opposed to a bright sunny day, if that makes sense."

 I think it makes PERFECT sense!!
I mean, look at that freakin' BLING!!  And it is totally the SAND & SEA.  Well, technically, this is the Ocean (Newport Beach, CA to be exact), but whatever!  These are the cool colors of the Pacific, as opposed to the bright aqua's of like the Carribbean, and I LOVE it!  I am totally amazed that she was able to get the color of the beach into a bottle!!  

The other polishes in my mani are Zoya's "Charla" and a water marble fail of a gold & silver Pure Ice polish (I'm too lazy to find the names, and I'm too bitter to care).  I actually painted "Charla" over the other failed water marbles, since I've heard she stains like a beeotch, so hopefully this layering will help avoid that.

Here's another pic in the sun, cuz that's how I roll!

For a little more drama to this story, this is actually the 2nd version of "Sand & Sea".  The first exploded in the mail, and arrived like this:
We think it was due to the heat, since it was like 110 degrees in Arizona, and about that here in Cali during the transit time, and it actually had to bake in my metal mailbox all day until I got home from work.  It was obviously well-wrapped, so it doesn't seem likely that was the culprit.  At any rate, Jenna promptly made a replacement one, which made it home safe & sound (obviously, duh!).

Sorry, it seems like I gush whenever I have something to say about Lacquistry, but I've loved every single polish of hers I've gotten (I'm up to 20).  She's also the one that got me hooked into this nail community; I accidentally stumbled upon "Autumn Flurries" in an Etsy treasury and the rest is history.  Also, Jenna is a true artist who really cares about her craft, and I deeply admire her talent.  Did I mention she's also like the coolest person ever?

Jenna is currently finishing up her custom orders (she's not taking any more at this time), and has announced that she will start stocking her Etsy Shop soon.  Keep an eye on her Facebook Page for updates, and to also check out the other custom polishes she's made for other lucky customers.  I can't wait to get me more Lacquistry!!  

Strawberry Toes & Flower Nails

This Saturday (yesterday), I actually had time to do my nails.  So I spent almost an hour soaking/scrubbing glitter off my toes & fingers, and then, coincidentally, decided to do a glitter-less mani & pedi.   ;-)

Here are my strawberry toes, and I think they came out soooo cute!  I made the leaves with a striper, and dotted the yellow seeds on with a pointy dotting tool.

I also had a really cool vision of a pastel flower mani in my head.
I was less than impressed with this, so I didn't even bother taking a proper "mani" pic...this is the only documentation of that total fail.

But, I do have a new mani on, and it also didn't come out the way I wanted it to.  So, I'll be re-doing that one too!  If at first you don't, it gives me a chance to try out a bunch of stuff! ;-)

Friday, June 22, 2012

Elixir Lacquer "We Sisters Three"

I've been wanting to change my mani all week, but I've been soooo tired when I get home from work that I can't bring myself to do go through the whole ordeal of acetone, cuticle removal, filing, buffing, moisturizing, base coat, etc, etc.  So I cheated and swiped a coat of an untried Indie I've had for a while over my old mani:
This is Elixir Lacquers "We Sisters Three".  It's a super-holographic glitter with a faint  greenish-aqua sheen.  Very cool in person...I couldn't quite capture that sparkle in my pic.  

I am wanting to try so many techniques and colors, I can barely decide what to do next.  But I need to do my toesies, too, so I'll have double the decisions for tomorrow.  Can't wait! :-)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

"Try It On Tuesday" - Zoya Edyta & Trixie

So Jillastic Nail Design is sponsoring a super-fun "Try It On Tuesday" for those of us who may have a few "untried" polishes languishing and frustrated, their beauty bottled up in ;-)

But enough melodrama!  I have been wanting to try these beauties together for a long time:

These are Zoya's "Edyta" & "Trixie".  And they are so much more gorgeous in person than in these pics!  They went on sooo smoothly, as per usual with Zoya.  Edyta's shimmer is kind of gold-ish green-ish...very beautiful.  And Trixie is just pure bling!  These are 2 coats of each over base coat & topped with Seche Vite.

And my favorite shot:
Who says short nails can't be cute?!?  

I totally feel the need for stamping coming on...I wonder what I'll come up with ;-)

Monday, June 18, 2012

Playing Catch-Up!

I feel so badly for neglecting my poor little blog!  But I have been very busy painting my nails, and spending waaay too much money on new nail polish that I can't fit into my current storage situation...guess it's time for a new storage situation ;-).

Anyways, here's a quick look at what I've been up to since my last post...

I entered this mani into the "Wedding Belles" contest hosted by Dazzle Dry Quick Dry Polish.  I used China Glaze "Dress Me Up", then stamped and painted pointed french tips with CG "White on White", then hand-painted roses with CG "Fifth Avenue" & Pure Ice "Love".  This is the first time I actually did a mani with a particular contest in mind.  I think they came out mah-velous, but the other entries are pretty awesome, so we'll see how I do...

Anyway, those didn't last long, cuz I wanted to use some of my newest Darling Diva Polish "Sugar and Spice".

This is the Pure Ice "Love" with a Pure Ice purple shatter (sorry, I'm too lazy to look it up right now), and of course the others are covered with Sugar & Spice.  I LOVE the butterflies in this polish!! And they were actually pretty easy to get on to my nail...I only had to go fishing for 2 nails.  2 nails even had multiple butterflies.  Anyway, this was a SUPER-girly mani, which, I guess, is appropriate for this polish :-)  BTW, I love her little saying on the bottle: "The Happiest Girls are the Prettiest Girls. Be Happy!"  AMEN, Sista!! 

My current mani is going to be removed as soon as I finish this post.  I painted Cult Nails "Iconic", and then topped it with Essie "Shine of the Times" flakies top coat.  Then, I took off to the Colorado River for a weekend of fun.
It was pretty in the sun, and reminded me of red dragon scales.  But, the River is not the place for a nice manicure, and this is how my nails look now:
Yup, I ripped my thumbnail off, and my ring finger is chipped.  And this is my "photo" hand!  And I was planning on entering a "Star Spangled" contest.  Grrrr.  Anyway, I've cut them all down, although not as short as that thumbnail.  Short nails make me want to do dark mani's >:-)

I've also hit Sally's, some blog sales, and Zoya's website lately, so now I have Orly's "Dark Shadows" collection, some more China Glaze "Hunger Games", 9 more Zoya's, another Lacquistry (woot-woot), and some other Indie's.  I also discovered Utopia's Polish on etsy, and she is my newest favorite indie!  Her glitters remind me of Lacquistry, so there you go! ;-)

OK, that catches you all up.  I'm not sure what I'm doing for my next mani, yet....

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Epic Polish Haul Day...Budget Style!!

I'm off work on Mondays, which frees me up to shop, and that seems to be a bad thing for my wallet.    Today, I was going to restrain myself.  Somewhat ;-)

So I had to stop by the Dollar Tree to see what they had.  Turns out, they had quite a bit:
I got the Insta-Dri's for stamping, and the NYC's are 2 per package, so $.50 each!  So, 15 polishes for $13...I was happy! 

Then I stopped at the mall.  While there, I ducked into Hot Topic and snagged a couple of Black Heart polishes in their awesome skull bottles!  I admit I really wanted them just for the bottles, but the colors are actually pretty spectacular, too!  Glow-in-the-Dark pale blue and a gorgeous dark puple with blue shimmer.  These were my priciest polishes of the day at $5 each and NOT on sale, but I also got a War Paint matte top coat for $1, so it evens out ;-).
I popped into Claire's, cuz they were having a BOGO 1/2 off, and I got 2 "mood" polishes.  Not sure if they work, but sure sounds fun...$7.50 for the pair!
I also hit Forever 21 and for $3 got a Love & Beauty multi-bar glitter that looks like pastel southwest colors to me...very unique! 
Then finally onto Ulta (I had a coupon).  In the clearance bin I scored a China Glaze "Broken Hearted" for $2 and OPI "Navy Shatter" for $3. 
Lastly, I stopped into a cheap shoe store, and saw some $2 NYX polishes, so I got 2.  One is full of little stars!
Super-fun haul of 10 polishes for $30.50!

When I got home, my Windestine order was waiting
Star Bright, Spica, Jeweled Sand, Hydrangea, Sweetener, Star Light.  As you can tell, I'm a sucker for star glitter.  I kept taking the cap off the Star Light to see how easily I could get those cute little stars out, and every time, there was at least one on the brush.  YAY for no fishing!  I love Windestine's polishes, and Freda is an absolute sweetie!  She pro-actively contacted me to let me know that there are zinc mixing balls in these polishes, and offered a refund.  I don't see any issues in my bottles, though, so I declined.  But she still sent me stainless balls, so I just need to change the balls out (using a magnet to get them out of the bottle), and VOILA, problem solved!  You can check out her shop HERE...she's got her stainless mixing balls now, and has a new collection in the works!

A truly epic polish day that didn't break the bank!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Lacquistry's Custom "Hawaiian Sunset"

So, if you've followed my FB page at all, you know that I LOVE Jenna at Lacquistry!  I actually got hooked into this polish underworld when I stumbled upon a bottle of Lacquistry "Autumn Flurries" in an Etsy treasury.  I was amazed that people could make their own nail polish!!??!!  And it was so beautiful!!  So I bought a bunch of her polishes.  And then another 6 a few weeks later.  This was in Feb/March, 2012, back when she actually had stock sitting in her shop.  Trying to get a Lacquistry now-a-days is nigh on impossible.  But I've grown my collection to a respectable 17. :-)

So when Jenna announced she was taking custom orders, I jumped right on it!  I requested 3 polishes, and felt all star-struck when I made my request, like I was talking to a rock star!  But Jenna's the sweetest person ever!!  Anyway, my polishes were all based on the beach, as I am enamored by the sand and the recharges me to sit on a blanket on the sand and listen to the waves crash.  Nothin' like it on earth! 

This polish is inspired by my birth-state and is based on a description I gave her of a...Hawaiian sunset!  Here's what Jenna said went into this lovely creation:  "a raspberry base with orange, gold, pink, red, and purple. I used 10 different glitters in varying sizes in the requested colors to come up with something that really glows, and almost reminds me of some kind of fruity tropical cocktail..."
  This is the pic she sent me!

Fan-friggin'-tastic, right?  So, after my recent black & white marble mani, I was ready for some glitter and color on my fingers!  I dove into my stash, and found 4 Zoyas that match my HS perfectly!
From bottom to top: "Arizona", "Myrta", "Reagan", "Valerie".  Gorgeousness!

I did a gradient with my Zoyas to mimic a sunset on 4 fingers, and layered "Hawaiian Sunset" over Reagan on my ring finger.

Then, of course, I had to add a palm tree shadow.  But not just any palm tree...a coconut palm!  I live in Southern California, so I see a myriad of palm trees every day.  But never coconut gets too cold here for them at night in the winter.  So, to me, coconut palms scream "tropical, gorgeous, warm, fantastic Hawaii" ;-)  It was at this stage in the game that I realized that I had done my gradient upside down!!  So, my trees will have to face ME...which I guess isn't that bad after all ;-)

I'm most-proud of my thumb was my very first, and I think it looks the best.  I LOVE this manicure!  And look at how awesome it matches my Lacquistry!!  It makes me soooo happy, I'll be keeping this on one for many days to come!!

You can follow Lacquistry's FaceBook page HERE, and her Etsy shop is HERE.  She recently announced on FB that once she's done with her list of customs, she will be stocking her shop again...I can't wait!! :-D

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Black & White Water Marble

So I have seen all of these nail art contests, and I've wanted to enter some, but I was doing the Plasma thing, so I never did. 

But on Thursday, May 31, I saw's Black & White Mani contest.  I figured black & white would be easy to do.  The only thing was that the deadline was midnight on the next day, June 1.  So all day long at work, I daydreamed of what I would do.  Black & white glitter?  Nail stripers and dots?  Flowers?  Skulls?  Then it hit me...water marble!!

So what kind of water marble?  This one I had done before immediately came to mind:
Click HERE for the YouTube video I first saw with this technique.

Cool, right?  So, I started at 8:00 pm. And after about 3 hours of nail prep, base coat, white coat, marbling, dotting, then matte top coat, I ended up with this:
Not too shabby!  I may have over-done the dots, but I was having fun! :-)  So, anyway, I barely met the deadline, but got it entered.  Once I had sent my entry, I went ahead and clicked on the photo album to check out the competition's entries.  They're all great, and creative, and I'm glad I didn't look at them before I entered, or I may not have even tried.  But as I go along, what do you think one of the entries was?  Of course, it was a black and white water marble with dots!  What are the freakin' odds?!?

Ours are not exactly the same, of course, but still!!  My heart sunk, and I felt like people would think I had intentionally copied her.  How cheesey does that seem? 

Anyway, I had already entered, so I guess it's up to the judges at this point!  So from now on, I'll be checking the entries ahead of time the next time I enter a contest...I just hope I don't psyche myself out doing it! ;-)

UPDATE:  I won 2nd place!!  Wooo hooo!  :-D