Archive | February 2014

Gradients Love/Hate Relationship

I don’t know if many of you are aware but I do love to do gradients. They look great on their own, as a mix and match or with art work over them. There are so many colour combinations and varying ways that you can always create something different……but ……In order for this gorgeous effect, there is the down side and that’s the mess to clean up …..I am quite slap dab when doing my gradients so at the time of sponging I don’t worry about the mess around my nails it’s the blending of the gradient that’s important to me….
As always preparation is important and i always use a base coat and a base colour. Either white or the lightest of the colours I am using to sponge, and then I personally add a quick drying top coat as I feel it gives a better finish with the blending but also stops the base colour becoming tacky again …..(I do get asked how I get the blending to go so well and there are a few tips you can find online but will give you a few pointers about these at the end of this post)…. Always finish your gradient with a topcoat as it helps to blend the colours even more.
Afterwards is a different matter ……oh what a mess !!!!! But it’s all part of our hobby or job so we roll are sleeves up and get on with it…..
Here is a typical example of my mess once I have completed sponging my gradient and am happy with the blending……

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As you can see there is quite a lot to clean up …..now usually I will use a cotton bud soaked in remover to remove the worst and then a clean up pen to do the rest. Occasionally if it’s very late I will be ultra lazy and after top coating will leave the clean up till the morning…..and this is where my easy lazy clean up tip comes in.
A bowl of hot soapy water and a flannel (face cloth) and gently rub around your nails to remove the polish off your skin….Do Not rub hard…..I find this method good for stopping any staining that you get with darker colours esp if your like me and have areas of hard skin on the free edge side of your nail….

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now that the worst is off you can do the final clean up and either leave as is or add some glitter or art work and topcoat …… and here is the finished result

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There are a few ways that have been suggested so you can minimise the mess ….
1) use cello tape around your finger and nail ( like you would for water marbles )
2) vaseline around the area …I end up getting this all over my nail when sponging so I don’t use this.
3) lip balm around the area….I haven’t tried this but for me would probably be the same as with vaseline. …
4) the most obvious ……be careful and don’t make so much mess …..haha

Right here are a few blending tips from you tube that I have found help me…
1) over lap the colours slightly on the sponge
2) roll the sponge with polish over the nail
3) dab not only side to side but very slightly up and down
4) more thinner coats are better than a couple of thick ones
I hope these tips help you with your gradients and if you do any based on this post then please post them to my Facebook page Lalalacquer as I would love to see them xxxx
Here are a few examples of gradients I have done.
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Bye for now my lovelies and hope you enjoyed reading this …..xxxx

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What I have achieved over 8 months

Hello again my lovelies.
I guess this post might seem a bit strange to some of you more experienced nail artists but I felt I wanted to show those who are new to nails and nail art what can be achieved.
My nail art and nail polish addiction started about 8 months ago after seeing my daughter doing nail art on her own nails and has continued into an almost daily hobby for me. She introduced me to instagram and after seeing all the amazing designs on there it fueled me on. I created my own account (over 800 followers now) and it also introduced me to the wonderful world of Indie brands of polish. This in turn has enabled me to apply and be asked to swatch for certain Indie brands. UK ones being Luv Polish, Belle Glamour Polish, Babyjanepolish and comming soon SJPolish. I have also been asked by the USA brand Nail Honey to swatch for them as well. 
I have met (online) and become friends with some wonderful people through Instagram and Facebook and earlier this year started this blog. I now also have accounts with Twitter, Google + and my own nail Facebook page (over 1500 likes). I have recently started making nail polish jewellery and made my first sale as well as my first customer for nail art.
I feel very overwhelmed at times as I still see myself as a beginner, but the support I receive from my boyfriend, daughters and the friends I have made is amazing and I can’t thank them all enough…
My name is Lisa and i am a Nail Polish Addict …..
Ok so I guess you want to see some pictures. I will start with a few of my very first attempts at nail art, and believe me when I say that I have had to put my “big girl pants on” to show you these. But we all start somewhere.

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Above is my very first attempt….and yes please feel free to have a chuckle. Clean up was non existent,  colours deffinately didn’t work together and the pose and lighting were to say the least not good.

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Above is another couple of very early attempts. But in my defence I do think these are abit better. Well i think so haha. But once again clean up, hand pose and lighting are not good at all

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Above are some from around August/September of last year. My colours,  hand pose and art are getting better as with the lighting as was nice and sunny out side. Cuticles and clean up need improving though.

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Above are from Xmas and i was entering a competition on Instagram. As you can see my hand pose and picture qualitity have really improved and my art work is developing well (I think so) by trying different techniques.

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These last few pictures are some of my most recent ones. I was very lucky to be bought a light box by my boyfriend for Christmas and it has improved my picture quality tremendously. My cuticles and clean up are so much better and I feel my art work is still improving as time goes by. I have also changed my hand pose once again and find this hand position works well for me.
I also sometimes do “inspired by” art work as it’s my way of complementing someone’s work who I admire and also to say thank you for their support and encouragement on my journey. Below are a few examples of some “inspired by”  art work I have done.
Below is my first attempt at an Ikat design inspired by ig @lieve91

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This next one was for a competition and inspired by ig @mentalmoma

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@phenomenail was the inspiration for my first attempt at a feather and dreamcatcher nail art

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And lastly the below picture was inspired by ig @deanne29

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These last pictures are some of my nail polish jewellery that I have made.

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I hope you have enjoyed reading this rather lengthy post and that it gives you all encouragement to continue with your nail art journey and know that you will improve and achieve your goal and dreams……. Don’t Give Up xxxxx

My instagram valentines contest entries

Sorry I haven’t been posting recently but  with things at home, a couple of valentine competitions on instagram and a monthly challenge things have been abit hectic …….so today’s post is going to be some of my valentines nails that I have been doing for the competitions on instagram
First up is a simple design using stripping tape to create the white area.

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Next is abit more complicated but didn’t turn out as good as it looked in my head but as they say practice makes perfect and i am learning constantly.

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Here we have a design all done free hand and i was happy with how this turned out as took a while to get the hearts how I wanted. Deffinately something I will practice more

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Another all free hand design. I found doing the lettering much more difficult than I imagined but its all a learning curve and something I deffinately want to get better at.

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And last but not least is my last entry and i must say it’s my favourite out of my entries so far. I do love doing animal print designs especially the zebra type. So combining that and valentines hearts was perfect for me.

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Well that’s all my entries for the nailsagogo valentine contest on instagram. I hope you wish me luck but at the end of the day creating these was immense fun and sometimes challenging so in that respect it was very worth while and enjoyable …..xx