Thursday, November 24, 2011

Inspired by a Pattern

I am on Day 26 of The Challenge, which is a manicure inspired by a pattern. I just Googled "vintage pattern" to find a pattern to base this manicure on. Here's the pattern I started with:

The one in the upper right. Minus the birds because I am lazy.

I started with three coats of Pixel's Naughty Bit Nice. This is a really pretty soft cornflower blue, and it's clearly a jelly. I adore this on its own. It's a unique color and finish, yet not too attention grabbing. Perfect for when you want a palette cleanser, but don't want to do something nude. I think this would be great for creating your own dupe of Lippmann's Glitter in the Air, and a great polish for a jelly sandwich.

Next I used a dotting tool to apply OPI's I Eat Mainly Lobster, which is a shimmery pink-leaning coral. Not my usual type of color, but I was drawn to it for some reason. For the leaves, I used Open Seas by Sinful Colors. I knew I wouldn't be able to make circles for the petals, so I went with simple dots. I also would have liked to stick with the orange color palette, but didn't have a color that matched it quite right. And I wasn't even about to attempt the birds! But I still think it turned out cute. It's a simple way to create something adorable.

For those of you in the US, Happy Thanksgiving! I don't eat meat, so I won't be partaking in turkey, but I will be eating the shit out of some side dishes!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Inspired by Fashion: Model's Own Blooboo

I'm all the way up to Day 25 of The Challenge! So close to being done! Day 25 is a manicure inspired by fashion. I chose to base my nails on a Elvgren painting. In case you haven't been paying attention to this blog at all, I love all things vintage. Especially pin up girls. And Elvgren is the king of painting cute gals. Nails first, Elvgren second.

For this manicure, I used Blooboo by Model's Own, sent to me by Nicole. I love this color. It's such a pretty sky pastel blue. In the bottle you can see a pretty shimmer, but that gets lost on the nail unfortunately. Luckily it's still really pretty even without the shimmer. Application was a pain though. It's thick and applied unevenly. I used three coats, and it was still a bit uneven. It does dry fast with some topcoat though, which was nice. I did also get a fair amount of air bubbles. But all in all, it's a really pretty polish, and I see myself using it a lot in the future.

Here's the Elvgren painting I based my nails on. I covet a cute vintage bathroom, with blue walls like this (I'd take pink, too). So, yes, I based my "fashion inspired" nails on the color of walls in a painting of a girl whose not even wearing clothes. WHOOPS.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Inspired by a Book: ManGlaze Mayo

Day 24 of the 31 Day Challenge is a manicure inspired by a book. I chose the book Trout Fishing in America by Richard Brautigan. Brautigan is a post-beat generation hippie novelist and poet, and his work is seriously amazing. Brautigan's work is often satirical, and it often deals with some hippie counter-culture shit (such as living in a commune). I also love that his work, particularly his poetry, is about banal, everyday life. He's kinda like the writer version of William Eggleston. Anyway, he once said, "I have always wanted to write a book that ended with the word 'mayonnaise'." And that he did. Trout Fishing in America's last chapter is called The Mayonnaise Chapter.

So, without further ado, I present Mayo by ManGlaze.

Like all of ManGlaze's polishes, Mayo dries to a matte finish. One thing I love about the brand is that they add some shimmer to the polish, so they have a bit of dimension, instead of just drying flat. Unfortunately, the stark white freaked my camera out, so it looks pretty flat. But I assure you there is a nice shimmer. Everyone raves about ManGlaze, so I don't think I need to tell you how amazing they really are.

I used three coats here, but I should have stopped at two. The third coat turned a fast drying polish into an extremely slow drying polish. I went to bed about an hour after applying this, and got sheet marks on every nail. And mattes are known for their speedy dry times! So, take note, stop at just two coats!

Here's The Mayonnaise Chapter in it's entirety:

"Feb 3-1952

Dearest Florence and Harv.

I just heard from Edith about the passing of Mr. Good. Our heart goes out to you in deepest sympathy Gods will be done. He has lived a good long life and he has gone to a better place. You were expecting it and it was nice you could see him yesterday even if he did not know you. You have our prayers and love and we will see you soon.

God bless you both.

Love Mother and Nancy.

Sorry I forgot to give you the mayonnaise."

Like I said, I highly recommend reading some Brautigan. My favorite book of his (and one of my favorite books period) is In Watermelon Sugar. So good! I want to get the word mayonnaise tattooed on me someday in honor of him (and also another of my favorites, Vonnegut - in a chapter of Cat's Cradle, I believe, he references mayonnaise). Brautigan also reminds me of my dad, so if there are more of you out there with hippie dads, you might be especially interested in him.

Happy weekend!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Inspired by a Movie: 17 Fury

I'm up to Day 23 of The Challenge, which is a manicure inspired by a movie. Being a lover of the 1950s (aesthetically), I naturally have a thing for greasers. I'm automatically attracted to someone who is wearing rolled up jeans and a leather jacket, with hair slicked back (bonus points for traditional tattoos and a vintage car). So, as a result, I love any movie that features greasers. And probably the best one of them all is "The Outsiders" (I also love the novel by S.E. Hinton). Probably the most well known quote from the book/movie is, "Stay gold, Ponyboy," a reference to Robert Frost, of course. And that inspired me to put on some gold nail polish!

The gold I chose is Fury by 17, sent to me by Nicole at Top to Toe. Fury is GORGEOUS! I can't get enough. It's the kind of polish that glows in any type of light. I love the way it shifts in the light, too. It's not a duochrome, but the gold can go from looking bright and shiny one moment, to a darker, more antique-looking color the next. If it had some green, it could be quite similar to Peridot by Chanel.

The application process was a breeze! It went on in two coats, but I probably could have gotten away with one. It flowed really well, and dried to a nice shiny finish.

I am so glad Nicole sent this in our recent swap. I think it has become one of my favorites!

I dare you not to cry!

The next few are some screenshots I've had saved for years. I don't know the original source, unfortunately.

If you haven't watched or read The Outsiders, I encourage you to get up and fix that! Amazing stuff!

Inspired by a Song: Ruby & Millie Red

Day 22 of The Challenge is to create a manicure inspired by a song. The song I chose is "Rebel Girl" by Bikini Kill. Are you all up to date on your Riot Grrrl trivia? (Cricket noise.) No? Well, here's your chance to get started! Bikini Kill changed my life. They are THAT BAND for me. Kathleen Hanna, one of their members, is my hero. Listening to this band gave me that sense of belonging, and let me know I wasn't the only person feeling this way. In short, it made me realize there was a word to describe what I was feeling, and that word is feminism. Well, feminism is the movement that supported my feelings.

Anyway, first up: nails! Then: Bikini Kill related things.

I chose the cleverly named Red by Ruby & Millie. I chose a red polish for this because red is a prominent color in the "Rebel Girl" music video, and also a prominent color for photos and other things related to Bikini Kill. That could just be because I love the color red and I'm drawn to it. At any rate, this polish is a really pretty and shimmery. It would make a good Christmas color. It applied incredibly smoothly, and I needed just two coats for opacity. I also think the bottle design (which admittedly I did not do a good job of showing) is really nice. My only issue is that it took FOREVER to dry. I smudged it multiple times in the few hours after I applied it, which I attributed to my clumsiness and the fact that I did yoga about 20 minutes after slappin' on some top coat. However, the next day it was still not dry! I could easily dent my nails with the slightest movement.

I'm still pleased with it, despite the drying issues. I love that the color shifts depending on the light (in the bright light, some of the pink tones come out; in darker lighting, the red looks deeper). Maybe I'll try it with a different top coat and see what happens.

Now, on to some Bikini Kill!
The video for "Rebel Girl". The song is only a couple minutes long, so give it a listen!
Members of Bikini Kill recoding. See what I mean by the red?! Also I'd kill for a faux leopard print jacket like that!

I love Kathleen's red streaks!

So, what do you think? Did you listen to "Rebel Girl"? I realize feminist punk rock is perhaps not everyone's cup of tea.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Inspired by a Color: Borghese Menta

Now that Halloween is over and November is here (wahh!), I am officially back to working my way through the 31 Post Challenge. Post 21 begins the Inspiration part of The Challenge, and today's theme is Inspired by a Color. The color I chose is cascade green, like the old cars in the 50s and 60s were painted. I did a similar post to this with Sinful Color's Mint Apple, but I just can't get enough of this retro color.

Here's Menta by Borghese. This is such a lovely color. It's a mint green, which is gorgeous enough on it's own, but add some shimmer, and it's damn near perfect! It really does remind me of a shiny vintage car, cruising down the highway. The application wasn't ideal, but it was manageable. This stuff is quite thin, and as I started to apply it, I worried it would never reach opacity But with three coats, you're good to go. And it would work well as a layering polish (I'm interested to try one coat over black). It's a lovely color, but probably not worth the $8 considering the thinness of it. I'm glad I found it used. This is the only Borghese I've tried, so maybe the formula on this color is just bad. Anyone have any thoughts?

Now, onto some images of hot cars!

Original (not restored!) interior of a 1960 Corvair. Gorgeous! Click the image for a link to more photographs.

I painted my walls cascade green in the first apartment I lived in when I moved out. I still miss those walls. This is four-ish years old.
I hope everyone's week is going well! Are you in a candy-induced coma?