Why so crabby?…

So I was originally meant to post these nails on Monday, but I just wasn’t impressed with them therefore I spent today re-visiting the design and trying to make them better. To be honest, I’m still not impressed with them but I like them more than my first try.

So where did it all go wrong?
Firstly I went wrong with using silver on holo – it just disappeared in to nothingness. Secondly the stamping plate itself is pretty pants (the crab image one). It’s images are shallowly etched and it’s a nightmare trying to pick them up, it also means there’s barely any polish which is why the crabs turned out to be so transparent.

So for the second try, I stamped the ‘waves’ in white which shows them up way better. Secondly I chose a different crab image from the same plate and double stamped it; black base, red on top. This does make the image stronger but does it make it a little too dark?…

The real question though is – which do you attempt do you prefer?

Koinobori…

So admittedly I had to google ‘japanese fish flag’ to find out what the proper name for these cute little wind socks were. Turns out, they’re not just decorative and actually help to celebrate ‘Childrens Day’ in Japan. Koinobori are displayed from April to early May, (appropriate timing for this nail design then) and each fish represents a different family member; the black and biggest is the father, the red is the mother and then the smaller fish traditionally starting with blue, then green, represent the children! Why carp? Well apparently carp symoblise strength and courage due to their ability to swim up streams and it is hoped that by flying these carp the children will grow up to be strong and healthy too. How interesting is that (Big thanks to wikipedia)!

It’s not my neatest stamping work, I was under a bit of time pressure so had to hash them out which was a shame as they deserved better. But they still look kinda cute! The largest koinobori image is from the Nee Jolie ‘Japan style’ plate that I’ve been addicted to lately, (sushi and blossom anyone?) whilst the smaller carp are from a Harunouta L002 plate  which I’ve reviewed previously.

koinobori

Spring Blossom…

So I purchased this stamping plate back in August, and it was most certainly bought because it was pretty: I mean cute, stereotypical Japanese images – who can resist! It is a great plate though, it has a lot of varied images and for $2.99 (price correct 31/3) it doesn’t break the bank either.

NeeJolie Japan Style Stamping Plate.JPG

SpringBlossom Nail Art

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.

BPSSiliconMatandBox

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).

StampingDecalPainting

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.

MatteVSGloss
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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!

BoxedStampingMatandNails

AZYW10

Party Spiders…

So this design isn’t spooky at all! I decided to go for a more family friendly, party look in contrast with some of the more gory stuff I’ve been painting. I bet arachnophobics could even wear this design right?…

I used my natural nail colour, flecked with gold and silver foil then stamped some spiders on them, finishing the design off with random dots and a top coat.

party-spiders

Rubber Duck Race…

So sometimes it’s a little strange what comes to mind when you’re looking through your folder of stamping plates isn’t it? This was one of these times for me. I reverse stamped the duckies and I painted the start flag on a stamper head. I felt this would give me a better angle to write the tiny letters, then transferred it on my my nail. As daft as it, I actually really like how they turned out!

RubberDuckRace
(P.s am I the only one who is kind of grossed out at the look of my thumb. It looks like a big toe in the above picture…) I’ve included a solo image of the start flag as I’m unashamedly proud of it, I’ve actually managed to paint letters neater than I can write them.

StartingLine

Goldfish Pond…

So I wasn’t in the mood for painting anything free-hand today so I cracked out my stamping folder and chose a pond themed plate by hehe. I have a few ‘ponds’ in my garden, just little container ones with plants only but they still attract plenty of wildlife! Last year I actually had a Dragonfly visit, I have no idea where it came from originally because there’s not any large bodies of water nearby.

To create this look I first of all stamped a water movement image in lighter blue on to my base colour, and it is pretty subtle so don’t worry if you didn’t spot it. I then tried to turn the fish into calico koi by splodging together orange, white and black polishes before scraping the excess off the image. The design was still looking a little plain so I then painted some water lilly pads and viola!

GoldfishPondNailArt