BornPrettyStore: Origami Stamping Plate…

So I am seriously in love with this plate! (Sent to me by BornPrettyStore) Please tell me that you guys are too? It has such a variety of cute images and they’re so darn versatile – you could honestly use it for any mood or season. It has it all; flowers, hearts, animals, patterns. Because of the variety of images and endless designs that could be created by using all the different stamping techniques too, I spent a few days creating four completely different looks with it.

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But first up lets have a look at the plate itself. How satisfyingly shiny are new plates once you peel off the blue film! It kills me to have to do this as I’m a bit of a freak, I still have the protective film on my phone screen and one of my watches…

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I’m really digging bees at the moment so the origami image of one was irresistible. I decided to do some ‘reverse stamping’ with it and pair it with an origami tulip. I used one of the patterns from the clouds as a subtle background.

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As you can see the plate performed incredibly well – the images are very crisp and even without a stamping polish, the background pattern worked too. A cute and simple design to start off with!

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Even though the plate is full of origami designs, I chose to avoid them for my next mani. I picked out the little strings of hearts and dots and rather sickeningly paired them with red. It’s no where near valentines day which is maybe why it made me feel so sick but it was to demonstrate that you can use the images for any occasion. Again credit where credit’s due the images are crisp and bold. This time they are stamped with black Konad stamping polish.

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The next image I chose to focus on was the origami star. If you look at the plate, it’s very close to the sting ray and frog so I wonder if it’s intended to be a starfish but I chose to use is an actual star. It would work either way! I kept it very simple, an easy ‘stamp and go’ design. Sometimes I feel, especially with stamping, people show you magical designs that aren’t in everyone’s skill range (or time frame). This is do-able for everyone! Linking back to the seasonality, this would be a suitable design for christmas or the new year?

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For my final design from the plate I went back to reverse stamping, by this I mean stamping the image, ‘colouring’ it in whilst still on the stamping head, then transferring it on to my nails. Roses aren’t really my thing but I thought I could make them cool by placing them on an ombre and using a rough background pattern. I couldn’t get over how crisp the rose picked up, those lines are on point! (That’s what cools kids say yeah?)

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So out of all four designs, which one turned out to be your favourite? Surprisingly for me, my favourite turned out to be the rose design closely followed by the bee! If you would like to try the plate out, BornPrettyStore offer free shipping and the plate is currently on sale – hooray! If you add anything to your basket that’s full priced, use my code ‘AZYW10’ at the checkout to receive 10% off.

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BornPrettyStore: Silicone Stamping Mat

So up for review today is this ‘Silicone Stamping Mat‘. It arrives in a cardboard tube, which is pretty cute but also handy as it will keep the mat dust and damage free. It’s not overly large, 21 x 15 cm, but gives you plenty of room to work on and it’s compact enough to be rolled out on a messy desk or even a lap tray.

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The mat is perfect for creating either hand painted decals or stamping decals due to it being made from silicone. This lets the decals be effortlessly peeled off and any residue removed with ease by nail varnish remover – which causes no damage to the mat!

To begin with you must apply some sort of base, be it clear coat or colour, as without one the stamped image has nothing to stick to. I chose to use a clear coat as this was in keeping with my design.

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Then it was time for the fun bit – making the decals! Previously I’ve made my decals on two or three stamper heads, it works but it’s a bit of a faff as I can’t make them all at once and there’s also the precariousness of them falling over at any point. The mat made it so much easier. With the mat, I was able to work on all the decals at the same time which meant less colour switching, less brush cleaning and less time spent on them in general. I chose to use an image from stamping plate ‘BP-80‘ (previously reviewed here).

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Once you’ve painted all the parts and it’s dried a little, carefully peel off the decal with some tweezers and apply it to your nail. The mat allowed me to remove my decal so smoothly! (You need to have a tacky base on your nail for the decal to stick) Trim off any excess decal and use an acetone soaked cotton bud to create a clean edge.

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Which do you prefer, the gloss coat or matte nails? I’m not sure, the gloss really makes the colours pop but there’s something more delicate about the matte.

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The mat cleaned up nicely, there was barely any polish left on it and the scraggly bits that were left, were easily cleaned off with an acetone soaked cotton pad. I then rolled the mat back up and popped it back in the tube.

Does anyone already own a silicon mat?

The mat, does come in different sizes and some slightly different styles, but I thought this one was a very practical size as it can easily fit decals for 10 nails with room for practice ones too. If anything in your Born Pretty Store order isn’t on sale, you can use the code ‘AZYW10’ to recieve 10% off those items. And remember free delivery!

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BornPrettyStore: Magnet Flower Charm…

So today I’m reviewing something very playful but a little strange: it’s called a ‘Magnet Flower Charm‘ from BornPrettyStore. It’s available in 21 different colour and style options, I chose #19.

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It’s a ruffled, cloth flower with dangling beads glued to a magnet which pairs with a base magnet that you attach to your nail. It’s a lovely colour, not very weighty and about the size of a 10 pence coin.

I started off by painting my base colour and then pressed on the magnet base whilst the polish was still tacky. It has a slight curve to it, meaning it sits on the nail a little better rather than if it were flat, but I thought it best to secure it further by painting gel top coat around the sides.

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The below collage shows that even though the base does sit quite flat, there are no gaps after the gel is applied and it felt even more secure. (Also less risk of catching!)

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It’s so important that the base is filmy secured to your nail as the magnetic attraction between the flower and base is surprisingly strong for such little magnets. If it’s not, you run the risk of pulling off the base magnet when your try to remove the flower.

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The flower does sit up quite high off the nail, but it’s to be expected due to the two magnets involved. There’s only so much magic in the world and I suppose making ultra thin nail magnets isn’t part of it. At least it’s decorative in it’s on way from side on.

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Just in case you don’t believe me how well the magnets work, I had great fun creating this short video. I played a game of ‘how close can I get to the magnet before they stick together’. (I’m very easily amused and I find the ‘click’ noise fantastically satisfying too.)

It’s a clever concept because it means you can take it off to wipe your bottom and wash your hands without it getting dirty or wet. It also allows you to travel to a destination without it on, and then when you arrive you can place them together reducing the risk of losing the flower en-route. (I mean I’m sure we’ve all been there when we’ve attached charms or gems for a special occasion only to get there to find out they’ve dropped off at some point.)

As usual, I tried a second look. I wasn’t too happy with how my first one turned it – it just didn’t feel pretty or delicate enough for the flower. I much prefer the second look, what’s your preference? I do think, as cute as it looks, that it would be more suited to long nails as it’s kind of engulfing my (almost) nubs. It is very fun though, and would certainly be a conversation starter. I can’t make up my mind as to wither it’s one of the most ridiculous or most clever things I’ve seen. Thoughts please?

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If you would like to try out a ‘Magnet Flower Charm‘, head on over to BornPrettyStore. It’s free shipping, and if you use my code ‘AZYW10’ at the checkout, you’ll receive 10% off all the full priced items in your basket.

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Buds and Blue…

So this design was directly inspired by a design from Neiru, but I changed it up a little by adding some accent studs and also a large bud. I think it’s a really sweet and delicate design – something a little more feminine compared to my past few designs, and I really enjoyed wearing it too.

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Purple Centaurea…

So I attended Gardening Scotland with my mum today, and it was wonderful! The weather was fantastic (I’m sunburned even though I had lotion on), the food was good (especially the fresh oysters) and there was a great selection of exhibitors (I came back with loads of stuff).

One of the plants my mum was trying to hunt down was ‘Centaurea’, it’s like a thistle but with no jaggy bits, and a little bit more ornamental. So the flower that I painted on my nails, is a Centaurea!…
But now it’s confession time, I tried to paint a thistle as it’s part of the Gardening Scotland logo however it just didn’t turn out as I’ve got the proportions all wrong. Top tip – always use a picture for source material. Weird how they kind of look so similar though right? Am I pulling it off?…

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Ridiculously, my mum only bought 2 Centaurea plants after wanting them so much. Fortunately they’re self-spreaders if they’re allowed to seed. The only plants I came back with were a mini-orchid, 3 bunny tail grasses and 3 ladybird poppy plants, the rest was all food stuffs or garden ornaments!

BornPrettyStore: Pink Flower Stickers…

So today I’m bringing you a review of some ‘Pink Flower Stickers‘ from BornPrettyStore. Aren’t they pretty!

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The stickers have lots of delicate, pastel colours and are semi-transparent so I was pretty stumped on what to do with them – did I go bright and busy, quiet and minimalist or even blinged up. I settled with a subtle base, in hope that it would show off the stickers better.

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They weren’t too sticky so tweezers weren’t 100% necessary  (I’d still recommend using tweezers anyway) and they weren’t thick or brittle meaning they hugged the nail well. Unfortunately, once applied, the edge of the sticker was pretty obvious, at a distance not so much but it still kinda bugged me. I’m not sure who’s to blame as maybe it was just the base colour I’d chosen or possibly the stickers themselves. So more testing required!

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With the stickers being semi-transparent, a really cool thing to do with them is to layered them up. I think it really gives a look of some depth and dimension and I bet they’d look smart in a ‘pond mani’. It’s nice that the sheet includes flowers of all sizes and shades – I tried to stick with the pink and purples for this design.

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It may not be one of my most inspired designs but it’s delicate and I think it helps to convey how pretty the flowers are. To bling them up a little I added a pearl to the centre of the flowers (I think we’ve all done that move no?), and a slight tickling of glitter top coat.

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If you fancy trying out these stickers, or anything else from the gazillion of nail art items that BornPrettyStore supplies, you can receive 10% off all full priced items by using the code ‘AZYW10’.

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