Monday, March 31, 2014

Reviews and Swatches: Philly Loves Lacquer - Avenuers

It's yet another Monday, and I seem to be back on schedule! (knock on wood). That means that it's time to bring you another nail polish from an indie maker.

I know that I've already shown you a few polishes from Philly Loves Lacquer, including Fancy Brigade earlier this month. For today's episode of Indie Spotlight, I'll take a look at another of PhLL's, with another polish that continues the Mummers theme. Esther makes some pretty holos, and Avenuers, a pretty, silvery grey scattered holo polish with subtle rainbow microglitter is a nice addition to the collection.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Nail Art: FingerFood's Theme Buffet #12 - Freestyle (Triangles)

There's something about the effect you get when you combine flakie polishes and black that I absolutely love. It gives you such a dramatic - and somewhat dark - look. It just seems to fit my personality more than a whole lot of the manicures I do.

This week's theme for FingerFood's Theme Buffet was "Freestyle." I took this to mean that we were free to do whatever we wanted, so this is what my mind came up with. Simple, but I love it!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Nail Art: Beetle-Inspired Duochrome Stripes

While swatching OPI's Kermit Me to Speak, I was struck by how beautiful and strong the duochrome in it was. The lavender-to-golden-olive chromatic shift in the polish reminded me so much of a beetle's wings.

"So," I thought, " why the heck don't I make some beetle wing inspired nail art?!"

I didn't want to go for a literal interpretation, so I tried to do something with lines and color to invoke the image.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Nail Art: Tri Polish Tuesday - Pastel Plaid

I want to apologize for my posting schedule these  two weeks. I've missed half of my usual weekly features and haven't had the chance to visit friends' blogs or comment on things I've seen out there. being busy + missing my camera battery charger = no new posts ;_;

That said, I found myself with a few extra moments in which I could make another attempt at the Tri Polish Challenge this week. Two out of four weeks this month isn't bad, right? Enjoy my attempts at putting together a green, blue and purple pastel plaid look... even if it is a day late for the Tuesday challenge...

Friday, March 21, 2014

Reviews and Swatches: OPI - Kermit Me to Speak

I'm usually not one of those people who runs out to buy the brand new collection  from OPI  or China Glaze or Essie or whoever. (Indie brands, however, I DO tend to get excited for... even if I don't always  purchase them right away).  With big, mainstream brands, I tend to wait for sales or clearances or auctions or whatever way I can get them for less than $9 a bottle.

After a job interview yesterday, I elected for some retail therapy and wandered Ulta. I came across a display with the newly-released Muppets: Most Wanted collection and this polish, Kermit Me to Speak, grabbed my eye immediately. Somehow, despite my usual patterns, I found myself buying a brand new polish almost immediately after its release!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

NOTD: Interview Nails... and a question

If you didn't know, I've been searching for work for...a while now. The job market may have improved out there, but it's still difficult getting a job. The process tends to be longer and more arduous than it was when I last did this years ago, and I find myself with layer after layer of interviews and screenings.

One of those things that goes hand-in-hand with applying for jobs is interviewing for said jobs. This also usually means toning down the bright nailpolish colors a bit. Interviewing forces me to go through my selections of taupes and beiges and nudes and other "safe" colors.

I took this photo while on the train on the way to an interview yesterday. (The houndstooth pattern was the dress I had on). These were my INOTD - Interview Nails of the Day - featuring Butter London's Yummy Mummy. I LOVE the way this polish looks against my skintone.

I'm curious... What nail polishes do you / would you wear in a corporate office or to a job interview?

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Nail Art: FingerFood's Theme Buffet #11 - Super Sparkly Green and Gold...St. Patrick's Day

I think today's manicure might be the glitteriest, shiniest one that I've done to date.

This started off as a bit of an experiment for St. Patrick's day nail art for FingerFood's Theme Buffet. I knew I was going to miss getting this done for the holiday, so I wanted to throw something together that didn't scream "St. Paddy's" but still fit the theme.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Reviews and Swatches: Cult Nails - Baker

Indie Nail Polish makers come in all shapes and sizes, from tiny operations run by a single person bent over bottles and scales in their home to larger operations that employ a lab to manufacture their products.

Cult Nails is one of the larger names out there in the indie/niche polish market, but the polishes are developed with love by a great designer as part of a family-run operation. Today, I'm bringing you one of the polishes I picked up in the recent Cult Nails clearance sale - Baker, a warm light tan polish with a soft gold shimmer.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Nail Art: Nude and Green Zigzags / Chevrons

With a freshly-swatched coat of polish on my nails and a couple sheets of Nail Vinyls laying around, my nails were dying for some nail art. Combine the two together and you get this manicure!

Perhaps it's a bit pedantic of me, but it drives me crazy how the term "chevron" has come to be used in the nail art and design community. I know, I know. It's not really a big deal, but a part of me wants to scream "They're not the same thing!!!" Come on in and take a look at my chevron zigzag nail art!

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Nail Art: FingerFood's Theme Buffet #10 - Dots and Stripes

Sometimes when I participate in nail art challenges, I have no idea what to do. I'll hem and haw and finally decide to just do SOMETHING. A lot of times, I'm not necessarily happy with the results, but I did it <3

The theme for this week's FingerFood Theme Buffet was "Dots and Stripes"  and of course I had TONS of ideas. The problem wasn't lack of inspiration, this time, but instead a complete lack of time.  There are only a few more hours left to submit this week's designs, so I threw something together really quick.

Reviews and Swatches: Sinful Colors - Cinderella

This week was crazy and I've been behind the entire week. Between job interviews and applications and a migraine that last two days, I barely got anything done. I really need to write up some posts that I can throw on the blog when I have these kinds of weeks instead of leaving you with radio silence.

Anyways! Here is your Budget Friendly Friday polish... once again on a Saturday. This time, I'm bringing you a sweet, delicate, spring-ey pale blue shimmer called Cinderella

Monday, March 10, 2014

Reviews and Swatches: Philly Loves Lacquer - Fancy Brigade

Living in the Philadelphia area, you grow up with the Philadelphia Mummers. Every New Year's Day, you watch the Mummers Parade on TV, or you brave the bitter cold to stand along Broad St. and watch the comics and the string bands and fancies march their way up to City Hall. Maybe you even head down to 2 Street afterwards.

In today's Monday Indie Spotlight, I'm trying out Fancy Brigade from Philly Loves Lacquer, a gorgeous deep teal holo polish inspired by our beloved Philadelphia Mummers and released this past holiday season .

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Reviews and Swatches: Butter London - No More Waity Katie

I was trying to figure out what purple colors I have that I could use for the next Tri-Polish Challenge entry, when I remembered that I had picked up this polish during one of the Butter London Last Order clearance sales.

No More Waity, Katie is definitely a strange polish: strange color, strange formula, strange choice for a polish meant to commemorate the Royal Wedding.

But despite that all, somehow I actually like it.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Reviews and Swatches: Sinful Colors - Berry Blast

Welcome back for a new installment of Budget Friendly Friday Saturday! Yeah, sorry for skipping out on yesterday. You know how it is, sometimes, when you fall in love with a manicure and just don't want to take it off to swatch....

Believe it or not, when I look at my blog stats, the number one search term that gets people from Google to Fledgling Nails is for this polish: Sinful Colors - Berry Blast. I haven't swatched it yet, but it DOES show up in my collection list. I picked Berry Blast up in a polish haul from Walmart about 2 months ago, but haven't had a chance to swatch it until today.

And is this one ever a beauty ...

Friday, March 7, 2014

Reviews and Swatches: Zoya - Tomoko Pixie Dust

Yeah, I know, Friday is usually when I do my Budget-Friendly Polish feature.The problem is that  I'm still wearing the manicure I did for this week's Theme Buffet and I love it too much to take it off yet!

Luckily, I've started building up a collection of polish swatch photos that I haven't posted yet. Unfortunately, none of the photos in my reserves are of budget or drugstore brands. Instead, I'm going to give you swatches of a lovely, sparkly, textured polish from Zoya called "Tomoko." This is one of their "Pixie Dust" nail polishes, and was my first foray into textured polish.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Nail Art: FingerFood's Theme Buffet #9 - Flowers

 The theme for this week's installment of FingerFood's Theme Buffet was "Flowers." There's a million different directions you could go, in a million different styles. Something dark and broody? Something cute? Roses? Daisies?

I tend to gravitate towards bolder, darker colors and jewel tones with graphic nail art elements. This week, however, I decided I wanted to try and do something a bit more subdued and subtle.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Reviews and Swatches: Julep - Lizanne

So, March Julep Maven boxes have started arriving and I was happy to find mine waiting in my mailbox yesterday afternoon. Even though I'd just painted my nails the day before (I'm not usually one of those "change your polish every day" type people), I decided I just had to try one of the  polishes out.

I expected Margaret, a bright cornflower blue, to be my favorite of the three polishes I got this month. However this deep green shimmer, Lizanne, called to me as soon as I saw it.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Nail Art: Tri Polish Tuesday Challenge - Lovely Spring Gradients NOTD

It's Tuesday. It's also the first week of March, which means...

1. It's Tri Polish Tuesday!
2. It's time for a new set of Tri Polish colors!

So what color-filled goodness does March bring? In the spirit of Spring (oh, PLEASE say spring is coming soon!), we're going to be doing Green, Blue and Purple!

Last week, I had to skip out on the challenge. but I was eager to give it a try again this week.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Reviews and Swatches: Enchanted Polish - December 2013

Ah, Monday. Dreaded Monday. Miserable most weeks, but particularly so when it's been snowing. But at least Monday also means that it's time for me to review another indie nail polish and nail polish maker!

In this week's Monday Indie Spotlight feature, I'm going to take a look at the December 2013 color from Enchanted Polish. This is a nude-colored polish with a very subtle linear holo effect.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

NOTD: Chevron Nail Art in Blue, Yellow and Black

I know that I've mentioned before that I like actually doing something with my nails once I swatch a color. After painting my nails with Sinful Colors - Ocean Side  last week, I loved the color too much to take it off.

I wasn't in the mood to do stamping or anything too involved, so tried to think of what kind of design I could do. What I came up with was this look - a blue, yellow and black chevron-tipped design <3

Saturday, March 1, 2014

NOTD: Beach-like Gradient

I was working on swatching Julep - Kennedy the other day (I'll probably post my review next week sometime). The color was COMPLETELY wrong for me and looked pretty horrible on my skintone.

I hate wasting the polish and work I put into a swatch,  (I know, some swatcher I am) so I tried to salvage it by using the color in a gradient. I wasn't entirely happy with the results, and originally wasn't going to share this manicure, but in the end I figured why the heck not?