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Hello everyone! It’s nearly the weekend – I hope you’ve had a great week and have been energetically powering through your to do list. Now this new challenge has already caused quite the stir in the group of nail artists involved, mainly because I think it is VERY different from other challenges but in essence this is about exploring inspiration and alternative sources for ideas.
The first week has ended up being two weeks long because after A2Z ended a couple of people needed to catch up with other projects etc (I was busy with interviews and work work), from here on out I think we are going back to the Thursday once a week system but I always want there to be the flexibility in my challenges for those involved which means they don’t get too stressed out but hopefully I can keep you up to date as we go on. ANYWAY, the theme randomly selected from Wikipedia for this week was: Tattoo.
I went back and forth on what I wanted to do for my manicure – I had ideas of looking at the origins of tattoos and all sorts of things but when I sat down to do this mani (surrounded by different nail art bits and bobs) the stamping plates just kept calling to me and I kind of wanted to do a “modern” tattoo look on my nails. I have no tattoos or piercings but a lot of my friends have a small tattoo here or there – usually something connected to travel or important people in their lives and I think it is pretty common for most people to have a small amount of inkwork somewhere.
I really wanted something feminine and understated for this mani (I think my brain is still very much in interview land), which is almost the opposite to the attitude that traditional tattoos have had – statement manly creations. I considered adding the tattoo designs that I would hypothetically like to have myself but in the end I just went with images from my MoYou plates that kept calling to me.
I started with a nude(ish) base – I decided against going full mannequin hands but that would totally have worked with this concept – my choice was OPI Steady As She Rose which is a super pale super dusty pink. My bottle now gives great coverage in 2 coats but when I first got it, it did need 3 coats – some polishes do “age” really well with use, my Alpine Snow is now very nearly a 1 coater but as I keep complaining it is also very nearly gone.
For the stamping colour I used Nein Nein Nein, Ok Fine! which is a very dark grey with a touch of green in the base that in my mind looks like a classic tattoo ink colour. For the images, I have used a swallow from Hipster 01 which is very classic tattoo image and then these little hibiscus flowers from Tourist 17 (aka the Hawaii plate). I was so pleased with how the placement of these images on the nail turned out too *pat on the back for me*; my Cinderella hand stamping placement was a little bit ermmm squiffy but in a way that’s kind of ok because this mani is all about representing art on the large and amorphous canvas that is skin #excusesexcuses. I actually am a little bit scared of individual images usually because I am not the best at placement – all over designs can be so much easier especially if you’re working with an XL design on smaller nails (because it’s very hard to miss) so this was definitely a good chance to practise my technique.
If you have trouble placing smaller images I recommend switching to the smaller stamping head OR turning your images into decals with a little bit of topcoat as these can make precise placement much easier. Another option is pushing your nail onto the stamper head rather than the stamper head onto your nail – this does however depend on what sort of stamper you have as to how easily this will work.
Everything, of course, was top-coated with Glisten&Glow HK Girl for a glossy and super quick dry finish. Had I not been doing my usual of painting nails really late at night I would have liked to have mattified this design for that extra effect but usually if I use matte topcoat I do leave it a long time to fully set – whilst matte topcoats do dry quickly to effect, I do find they dent/sheet mark for quite a while afterwards.
Click on the inlinkz below to see what everyone else has been up to for this first challenge!