25.7.14

the nail files: the black pearl (but with less pirates)


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Hello Lovelies! Thanks for coming by for the nail files! YAY FOR NAILS!

This week, I worked with some new goodies that arrived in my mailbox. I recently went on an eBay binge and the latest package included three different patterns of nail strips. I decided to try the simple chevrons and although there were some technical issues, they worked out pretty well. 



 Black rhinestones and wide chevron strips.


For the bases, there are two coats of the magnificent Lissa (seriously, I can't even talk about this teal) on all fingers but my pointer, which has one coat of Paper Mache. When my ring finger was very dry, I stuck on three simple chevron stickers and smoothed them down as best I could before applying two coats of Paper Mache (to really cover up Lissa, although it pains me to write that because it's the best teal ever, ha). I let that dry for a while and then added a coat of Sea Temptress to it, and my pointer finger. 


When Sea Temptress was dry, I peeled off the stickers and put on a good layer of top coat. The polish bled a little, but I blame the strips, not the polish. They're just so freaking thick! Why don't nail strip designer people use a different medium? The thickness of the sticker creates a literal wall of polish,  so even if you meticulously apply it along the borders, it still collects and takes FOREVER to dry. And when you peel it off, it almost always bleeds!! Why, nail strip designers, WHYYYYYYY?

*takes deep breath*

Okay, I'm better now. 

Haha!


After the strips were, well...stripped, I sealed it all under top coat, and then, when it was dry, applied the black pearls. (Truth time, they're actually rhinestones, but when I covered them with top coat, they lost their reflectiveness and thusly became more pearl-like. Ha!) I put three on my ring finger, and then one on my pointer finger. 

I've gotta say that Sea Temptress is prettier than I gave it credit for, in the bottle. The pearl shine is lovely and although I'm not totally sure that the small circular glitter pieces create a "mermaid tail" look, it's very pretty nonetheless. And overall, I love how it looks with Lissa (which I'm sure you're shocked about because I've only mentioned it twice in this post that I'm obsessed with the colour, ha!). The simple chevron stripes make for a great feature finger, as well. Almost like a fishtail, don't you think?

So what are you rocking this week? Link up and show them off! Have an awesome weekend, everyone!

23.7.14

the time i met gavin degraw (and then may have cried)

Last Wednesday, my pal, Allie Bee, and I went to see Gavin DeGraw and Matt Nathanson. 

Wait, what's that you're saying? Didn't Allie and me just seen Gavin DeGraw a few months ago? Well, yes. Yes we did. And it was after that concert that we decided to get tickets for this one because he was that freaking good. Even better than the very first time I saw him, about a hundred years ago when One Tree Hill was all the rage. Haha!

So, off to Ticketmaster, we went.


Now, when we first got the tickets, we thought the start time had to be a mistake. Because, you know, what concert starts at 6:00PM on a Wednesday? Without consulting anyone but ourselves, we decided that getting there at 6 was crazy, so we planned to arrive around 8. But then, thankfully, we told our plan to another pal who was all: DON'T DO THAT! I DID THAT ONCE AND I MISSED THE WHOLE CONCERT! And since this particular pal is late for everything, we took her on-time warning seriously. And it was a good thing we did because when we arrived at 7, the opening act was already finished and Gavin was setting up. If we'd gotten there at 8, we would have missed the whole thing!!

So thanks, other pal! Haha!

Here are some pics I took of what could arguably be called the Best Gavin Concert Ever (for reasons you have probably already suspected, considering the title of this post).

 For the record, in my iTunes playlist, his name is Gavin My Piano Lover. And no, I'm not kidding. Ha!

 I love this shot so, so, so much. 




Holy guacamole, did I ever dance up a storm. 

Just nearing the end of his set (like, 30 seconds), Allie Bee and I decided to hit up the washrooms, knowing that the second he finished, the line would be 100 ladies deep. We scuttled off to the side of the venue and, sure enough, when we got out, there were a whole whack of ladies waiting. Score!

We headed outside for some air, which is when the most amazing thing happened.

We noticed a cluster of people in a corner of the patio and then realized it was Gavin! He has VIP tickets you can buy to meet him after his shows, but for the extra $100, it just wasn't in the budget, so you can imagine how excited we got (okay, so it was mostly me who was losing her mind).

Side Story: Not three hours earlier, we were chatting with the awesome Daniela, and told her that we unequivocally wouldn't want to meet him. I've had brief brushes with singers before and it's just THE WORST when they end up being bad humans. You know, like using offensive language or being stuck-up, and since I love Gavin way too much to risk never being able to listen to his music again should he turn out to be awful, meeting him was something I never wanted to do.

That is, of course, until the opportunity presented itself. Haha!

Anyway, so I ran over to try and get close, but there were too many people and it wasn't really working out. I turned away, slightly disappointed, which is when little Allie Bee caught my eye and waved me over to where she was standing--along the fence that Gavin was working down!

Eeeee!!

Many very pretty and groupie-ish women later, he was actually in front of us. I'll keep it real and say that I don't totally remember what I said, but I'm pretty sure that he called me "darling," and he shook my hand, which I didn't even care about despite it being covered in random stranger germs. 

And then we took this picture! Eeeee!!


It's a little fuzzy, but one could argue that it's due to my jittery excitement. Ha!

He left after that, so we were seriously lucky to be the last ones. And then I may have had a mini cry in the corner because I was so overwhelmed. 

After all that delirium, it was time for Matt Nathanson, who was probably one of the best performers I've ever seen. I felt a bit bad because the crowd had thinned out, but Matt still put on a fantastic show. He has a few hits, which he saved for the end, but even so, we had an awesome time. He even came out into the crowd--all the way to the back! And the best thing about him is that he mixed other songs in with his own. He even included Fancy and You're The One That I Want! Awesome!

At first, I was all: Is he really wearing his own concert tee? What the what? But then he peeled it off and threw it into the crowd, making it way less creepy and way more awesome. Ha!



 So if you have a chance to get tickets for any of their remaining summer shows, DO IT! Who knows, maybe you'll even meet them!

But, uh, if the tickets say the show starts at 6, then you should probably get there on time. Haha!


18.7.14

the nail files: everyone's dotting it (okay maybe just me)


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So my obsession of putting hex glitter in dots continues, only this time, I upped my dot game. Haha!


For the non-feature fingers, I did two coats of I Sea The Point, which reminds me a lot of a lighter Finger Paints' Margritte's Masterpiece. The coverage was amazing and smooth, so if you have a chance to pick up a bottle before it's gone, I highly recommend it!


The feature fingers were a little more complicated. Uh, obviously. Haha! To start, I did two coats of Blu. Then, I added the dots with a large-sized dotting tool and Paper Mache. Doing so many rows of dots can be a bit of a challenge, but I find it easiest to start with a dot in the direct centre of my nail and then go up and down. That way, everything lines up. In theory, anyway. Haha! Once the dots were dry, I picked up one hex bit of all three colours in Don't Be a Flake and put them on the middle three dots. 

I'm pretty sure that I'll be into this style for a while to come, and it's been fun coming up with different ways to use the same technique. HEX GLITTER AND DOTS FOR EVERYONE! Haha!

What have you been wearing this week? Link up and show them off!



11.7.14

book club friday: the humans


I've been on a reading binge lately, mostly because I've been incredibly behind on my Goodreads Challenge. The good news is that I've read a ton of fantastic books recently, but since I've had such a good time reading, I'm behind on reviews. So the book I'm reviewing today is one that I finished a little while ago: Matt Haig's THE HUMANS.

The Humans

It's kind of hard to describe THE HUMANS because whenever I do, I find myself describing a run-of-the mill concept, which, although true, doesn't at all begin to describe the awesomeness that is this book. As far as concepts go, THE HUMANS is about an alien who's sent to Earth in order to (a) figure out who knows about some mathematician's recent discovery and (b) kill all those people. But, along the way, the alien figures out that humans aren't as awful as he thought they were. See? Doesn't that sound like something that's been done to death? Well, rest assured that's not even almost the case. 

Why? 

Because of Matt Haig's incredible writing.  

It's dry, funny, and insightfully smart without being pretentious--a SERIOUSLY hard combination to accomplish. I find myself shying way from literary-type novels because I find them somewhat condescending, but THE HUMANS isn't like that, at all. 

The observations that "Professor Andrew Martin" (the alien takes over his body so everyone thinks that it's the same old Andrew) makes are so quirky and unusual that it's hard to believe a human even wrote them. For instance, "Andrew" has a serious beef with noses, and every time he mentioned them, I'd have a hard time not giggling aloud at his very unusual critique of a very mundane characteristic. And it takes an extremely talented writer to do that-- to really make me believe what I'm reading, even if it's far fetched. Scratch that, ESPECIALLY if it's far fetched. 

So well done, Mr. Haig. Well done, indeed. 

If you're into smart, fast-paced, quirky, unique, and funny reads, then you'll be all over THE HUMANS. So go out and pick up a copy, okay? I'm extremely confident that you won't be disappointed.

Thanks to Heather and Katie for hosting!

the nail files: grandma's wallpaper


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A happy accident happened this week when I tried to do something cool but something even COOLER ended up going down. And isn't it just the BEST when that happens? Why, of course it is!


I started with one coat of Paper Mache, originally thinking that it's make the colours popWhen it was dry, I got a triangle makeup sponge and painted one corner with a line of I'm With The Lifeguard, and then applied the polish in three or four places, per nail, with a technique I like to refer to as "splooging," meaning that I gently dabbed the polish on, while changing the direction of the sponge so the pattern looked abstract.


Because this green is kind of transparent, I decided that it needed its own sponge or it would be totally overpowered by the other colours. When the green was dry, I used the same splooging technique with another sponge and I Sea The Point and Creative Fantasy. The only difference is that I used these two polishes on the same sponge, because purple and blue look good when they blend.


The interesting part was that the colours actually muted themselves when they went over the white, instead of making them more vibrant. So what I was left with was more of a pastel-y watercolour kind of deal than what I imagined. The good news is that I thought it was still super cool, and the even better news was that one coat of splooging got great coverage, but it needed a little something extra, so I got another makeup sponge and added a few splooges of Gossip Over Gimlets.

Note: I'm REALLY liking the word splooging, so, uh, let's make that a real thing, okay? Haha!

I freaking LOVE how they turned out, but had a hard time coming up with a name. First, I thought about the nails that Bailey did a couple of months ago, but another memory was picking at the back of my brain, as childhood memories often do. And then, it hit me! My nails reminded me of wallpaper that my grandma used to have, way back in the 80s! Haha! So not only are my nails awesome, they also remind me of grandma, which makes them extra, mega awesome. Because, you know, she's just the best.

What kind of pretty nails are you sporting this week? Link up and show em off!


8.7.14

the hateful haircut

Yesterday, The Remix came home at around 11:00AM because there was a mixup with the schedule at work. And because it wasn't The Remix's mistake, he got a paid day off. Woot woot! So, we decided to head up to Barrie, which is a pretty large city north of us. Mostly to go to Costco and get bbq essentials for a party we're throwing on Saturday, but also to hit up Sally's because there isn't one near us so whenever we're in a 30min radius of one, we go. 

And because it had been about four months since The Remix had a haircut, we thought we'd try to get that done as well, which is where this story really begins. 

Why? Because I'm not sure that I have ever had such a ridiculous hair-cutting experience.

So here's how it all went down: 

We walked into this place--an upscale kind of Sally's (sorrySally'spleasedon'tbemadatme) that has a hair salon. I figured it was better than SuperCuts, you know, because they sold all the big names in hair, and a whole which of nail polish. So obviously that would mean they were good at haircuts, right? And they took walk-ins, which worked for us since we didn't really want to wait.

Only a few minutes later, a gal came and collected The Remix, walking him around the corner to her chair. I followed, and showed her this picture, which I thought could be described as "swanky 50s dude." 

If only we lived in London, where Salon Cyan is located. *sighs* 

Her description, however, was a bit different.

And by that, I mean she called it "The Hitler."


Then, she laughed and corrected herself. What she had really meant to say was that The Remix wanted "The Combover."


I told her that I would call it The 50s Professor, which she not-so-subtly chuckled at. So, I guess you could say that we agreed to disagree, even though my description was the right one and hers sucked the big one.

The hair cut got going after that, and I had to admit that she was pretty good at her job. Within a few seconds, The Remix's mop began to take a new shape. 

But that brief moment of non-offensiveness ended when she took a piece of The Remix's cut hair, lifted it up, and said it would work as a Hitler moustache. 

Judge Judy Finally Hears Case Involving Grindr (x)

I'm pretty sure that neither The Remix nor I said anything, because what on earth do you say to that? She clearly thought it was appropriate--funny even! And if that was the point she started from, it would have taken about seven days of continual conversation for her to even start to understand how VERY VERY WRONG that was to say. Plus, I was hangry, so I decided to let it go because I would have probably ended up yelling at her about hot dogs, instead of inappropriate comments. 

The middle-part of the haircut went without incident, which was surprising considering what had happened in the beginning. But, she wasn't about finished yet. 

She stepped behind The Remix, ran her fingers through his hair, and then asked if he wanted her to make him a bald spot at the crown of his head, to justify his combover. 


Also?


I want to say that she was kidding, but I'm not 100% sure that she was because she was eyeing the crown of his head like nobody's business and not laughing. Maybe she was just making fun of his haircut for the fourth time in as many minutes. WHO CAN KNOW FOR SURE. 

Anyway, we said no. Because, obviously

And then, for her swan song, about one minute before she had finished The Hitler The Combover The 50s Professor, she hocked up a lougie, coughed with a non-covered mouth into the space around her, and then said that she couldn't shake the cold she had for the last few weeks. 

Naturally, that was my cue to sprint from the back walk briskly to the doors and wait in the car. Which is exactly what I did. The Remix followed shortly.

So although she gave The Remix a really great haircut, we won't be going back. Like, ever. 

Lesson learned? One probably shouldn't reference murderous dictators when one is taking a walk-in hair appointment. Also? One shouldn't cough their germs all over them. Or threaten to make a bald spot where a bald spot does not exist. So, basically, everything that happened in this story. 




4.7.14

the nail files: exclaiming my love for rhinestones!


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Woot woot! It's nail files time!

Me on my way to steal your man

This week, I just about lost my whole mind when my order of rhinestones finally came! There are blue ones and purple ones and black ones and pink ones PLUS an entire wheel of fun shaped silver ones! Eeeeeeeeee!

So, naturally, I spent the next few hours playing around and ended up with a really awesome, but pretty simple mani.



And here's the mani!


For the base coats, I did three coats of At Vase Value and Skinny Dip, and two coats of Paper Mache. Yes, I know, three-coat-base-colours are the worst, but sometimes, a great colour requires it so just make sure that you carve out enough time to let it dry. Or cheat a bit and throw on some quick-dry top coat, which I may or may not have done after the second coat (emphasis on the may, haha!).

Once that was dry, I put a drop of clear polish where I wanted the orange rhinestone (with a dotting tool) and then put the rhinestone on top. I used the same technique for the teardrop rhinestone. One coat of quick-dry top coat sealed it all in and made everything all shiny and awesome.

Sorry about the focus here. I didn't notice until I uploaded it here that it's way blurry on my ring finger. *headdesk*

The coolest part of this mani, is that the rhinestone combo looks like an exclamation point! And since that's my favourite punctuation ever, it's quite fitting that I'm rocking them. Haha! YAY FOR EXCLAMATION POINTS!

And on another note, a super awesome email got forwarded to me this week, which originated from the Highlands of Scotland. Apparently, there are some nail polish enthusiasts up there who were inspired by the nail files, and look what they managed to do!


So cool, eh?! Great job, Jessie (and assistant)! Hope you had a super fun time at the summer disco!

What are you rocking this week? Link up and show em off! And if you live in the US of A, Happy 4th of July! Yay fireworks!

2.7.14

my day without internet

Last week, due to continuous thunderstorms, we were without internet for a couple of days. 

never forget

I know. It was horrible. 

So, needless to say, I had the longest week ever. 

And because it was the longest week ever and I didn't have much to do, I thought I'd jot down what one of my typical internet-less days were like. Thankfully, I'm back online now but MAN, guys, it was super brutally bad. Just take a look and I'm sure that you'll agree. Haha!


6:03 AM – Attempt to check email, only to see that the internet is still down.

6:04 AM – Sprint to modem, hoping and praying that there will be five lights and maybe all it needs is a reset. Heart sinks because modem has only two lights, meaning there's no signal.

6:05 AM – Sigh deeply.

6:06 AM – Boil water for tea while convincing self that it’s really no big deal that I don’t have internet. Again.

6:08 AM – Attempt to check email on phone while tea steeps, only to remember that the internet is down.

6:09 AM – Let loose a string of profanities better left undocumented.

6:14 AM – Break down and switch to 3G on iPhone to check email and social media for latest trending hashtag.

6:24 AM – Realize that 10 minutes have passed and vow to not switch to 3G again for the rest of the day because of potential overage charges.

6:30 AM – Take longest shower of life.

7:30 AM – Go back downstairs with primped hair and makeup for no reason other than needing to stall until resetting the modem again.

7:31 AM – Reset modem.

7:32 AM – Cry because there really is no internet.

7:33 AM – Stop crying in order to preserve makeup.

7:33 AM – Start reading.

7:35 AM – Stop reading and switch to 3G data because I’m 80% sure that something amazing is being featured on Groopdealz and I don't want to miss out.

7:50 AM – Realize I somehow started reading an article about social injustice in the UK but cannot research issue due to immense data consumption. Reaffirm vow to not use any more data because last month’s bill was bananas.

7:55 AM – Seriously, seriously turn off the phone. For reals. Like, all the way off.

7:56 AM – Turn phone back on because someone may call and I don't want to miss my only connection to the outside world.

8:00 AM – Leave house to run errands because some of the places I need to go have wifi.

11:00 AM – Return home after world’s longest morning of errands that ended up being super annoying and not at all enjoyable, mostly because people are jerks.

11:01 AM – Reset modem.

11:02 – 11:06 AM – Rage-filled phone call with satellite internet service provider where I continually pose the question of why the satellite television works, but the satellite internet does not. Make note of the service technicians not appreciating my candor, which is ridiculous because I’m extra-hilarious when I’m losing my mind.

11:08 – 11:30 AM – Hate my whole life because I’m convinced that I’m missing tons of awesome things and all I want to do is respond to the mass of emails that have cumulated since the first no-internet day, two days earlier.

11:30 – 12:00 PM – Engage in intense daydream about a potential protest I can launch at City Hall because access to internet is now considered a UN basic human right and even though we’re sandwiched between two towns with high-speed internet, my road is stuck with satellite, which could be interpreted as a lack of internet because whenever there’s a storm, I can’t get a signal.

12:01 PM – Due to my inability to research this new basic right thoroughly, opt to not launch protest, although strongly consider writing letter to the UN, if I ever have the chance to look up the address, that is.

12:02 – 2:30 PM – Take nap because there’s nothing else to do and I’m worn out after all the hateful daydreaming and jerk-filled errands.

2:31 PM – Wake up, reset modem.

2:32 – 2:58 PM – Second phase of protest daydream, with a particular focus on celebrities who can join my cause. Channing Tatum being one because, well, Channing Tatum.

2:59 PM – Check email on phone as quickly as possible while promising self that I will not browse social media accounts because I have a tendency to get sucked into the vortex.

3:07 PM – Weep because of the data bill I’m going to get, as I have no will power and have been browsing for almost 10 minutes.

3:10 PM – Reset modem.

3:20 – 5:10 PM – Read/stare at window for any movement or sound because that would mean Marc’s home and I’ll have someone to talk to, while making deals with The Universe to get Rogers to come earlier than 2020 to install high-speed cable internet in my area (yes, you read that right—TWENTY TWENTY).

5:13 PM – Marc finally comes home. I rejoice and pseudo-attack him at the door with a flying barrage of words that I hadn’t been able to share with anyone else because of the lack of internet.

5:14 PM – Marc takes in the shambles of our home but has the wisdom not to ask why I didn’t spend my solitary day cleaning.

7:40 PM – Marc finds my cold, still-steeping tea from the morning, and pours it down sink. You know, because it’s been steeping for 12+ hours. He then envelopes me in a bear hug because it’s clear I lost my mind due to the lack of internet, and possibly the lack of caffeine.

8:30 PM – Draw curtains in bedroom because it’s still light out but I need a new day and maybe the new day will have internet.

6:30 AM – Wake up, see there’s still no internet, and repeat previous Worst Day Ever.


27.6.14

the nail files: curves n dots


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Let the recent nail art extravaganza continue! 

*bangs gong*

This week, I tried a new technique with a current obsession. You know, cause I literally am obsessed. Haha! I've seen this technique before, on Pinterest, and I have to say that I wish I'd tried it before!

Why? Because it was pretty freaking easy, that's why! And isn't that the best? YES IT IS!



To start, I did two coats of the breathtaking Monaco. Holy moly, do I ever love that blue. 

*stares* 

Oh, sorry. I got distracted. Haha! Where was I? Right! The curve! 

Using the regular ole brush from the essie polish, shake your $$ maker, I made a line, starting from the bottom of the nail, all along to the other side, and then up. I touched up the middle of the curve just a bit and then, when it was dry, went overtop with Monster Mash, also using the bottle's brush. Then, a coat of quick dry top coat sealed it all together.


For the other two fingers, I did one coat of shake your $$ maker, followed by two coats of Monster Mash. When the base was dry, I used a medium-sized dotting tool, picked out some light blue hex bits from I'm a Go Glitter, and placed them in the centre. I should have waited until they were a bit dryer, though, because they sank into the polish and I lost some of the hard hex edges. *grumbles* Haha!

As you can see from the pictures, Monster Mash is hella sparkly, which is precisely why I love it so much! Haha! The blue breaks it up a bit, so although it may be a tad much for an office, it's sure a cool mani for a party! Like, I don't know, A Monster Mash? Bahaha! I kill me. *wipes tear*

What are you rocking this week? Link up and show off!




20.6.14

the nail files: keep two chevrons apart


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Well, it's been a long time but it looks like I've finally gotten my nail art mojo back!

lauren conrad

And now that I've ordered approximately one-third of all the world's rhinestones from eBay, you'll probably need sunglasses to read my nail posts after they arrive. Haha!

Anyhoo, for this week, I decided to try painter's tape instead of the ole striping tape. And you know what? It worked out pretty well! Just scroll down to see!


With the colours chosen, I got to work cutting out basic chevrons from a roll of painter's tape. Getting both sides of the "v" even was a bit of a nightmare, but once I got a decent pair of scissors instead of the stupid cheap Dollarama ones I started out using, the process got a lot better. Haha! When all of the chevrons were cut out, it was time to put them to use.

Outside, no flash (although the sun was hella bright).

I started with my feature fingers because I was scared it wouldn't work out and then I would have wasted time doing the other fingers. Haha, but seriously. It's always the worst when that happens. So, after pressing VERY FIRMLY, all along the edges of the tape, I used avenue maintain and 15 Minutes of Frame to paint above and below the tape. 

I let the first coat dry for about five minutes before applying the second coat, and after another five-ish minutes, peeled off the tape. Because there wasn't any polish underneath, I ran a small brush soaked with remover along the lines, just to get rid of the little bits of polish that bled. When they looked pretty clean, I gave them a good coat of quick-dry topcoat because I was scared of messing them up while painting my other nails. Haha!

Outside, no flash (and the sun was behind a cloud).

For my other fingers, I did two coats of Oxygen and, when it was dry, applied medium-sized dots with a dotting tool, avenue maintain, and 15 Minutes of Frame. But, as I'm sure you can guess, the mani wasn't complete without a little sparkle, so I continued my current obsession of picking out hex glitter from Techno and placed one in the centre of each dot, and in the middle of each feature finger.

Although I'm biased because this is my own mani, I think that the combo of negative space, simple chevrons, and dots is pretty freaking cool! Haha! I love that the hex glitter from Techno only catches light at certain angles, because when it does, the sparkle is really intense. And I really love the negative space detail, which I've wanted to try again since attempting it, the first time. Woot woot!

Hope you all have a fantastic weekend! And don't forget to link up and show off your pretties!