Summer Fireflies

Warning, this post is super pic heavy! I had a very hard time deciding which photos I liked best and thus ended up liking too many.

Nail Polish Canada is having a Summer Nail Art Challenge that involves prizes and stuff and I decided to participate! Make sure to check out the link and vote for your favorite. (Of course I’m hoping you’ll choose me, but tons of talented artists participate in these so it will be a tricky decision!) I had a few summer manicures up my sleeve that I haven’t posted yet, but when this idea came to mind, I knew it was “the one.” Fireflies! Nothing represents the beginning of summer quite like those first fireflies that appear when it starts getting warm. I didn’t see a firefly in real life until I was 13, but even then I understood their iconic meaning. I’m hoping you’re allowed more than one entry, because I also have a beach-y manicure I am quite proud of.

First I sponged a night sky gradient, much like my Stormy Night manicure from June. Then I used a more casual version of the “waterfall” technique that I learned from Chalkboard Nails to make the grass. My favorite part of the grass is the new holographic polish I just bought from Chirality Polish. It’s called Kale and I LOVE it. This was my first indie polish purchase and I’ll have to do a haul post next. She has some really interesting glitters in a chunky base and I’m pretty excited to use ALL of them. Although as fun as glitters are, I always go back to my trusty nail art. Perhaps I need to get better about skittles so I can incorporate both!  
fireflies mani  
Added some yellow pearls for a sort of 3d element that makes me think of glowing.
glowing fireflies nails
firefly manicure    
The hardest part of this manicure for me was choosing the 3D element. I wanted rhinestones for their sparkle, but the only rhinestones I had in the color I liked felt too big and the wrong shape. I used them on my right hand, and honestly, even though I had my doubts about them, I actually ended up liking my right hand much better!!
summer firefly night sky nails
I love how the polish kind of represents the fireflies that are further away and glow, and the rhinestones are the fireflies that light up much closer to you and blink brilliantly.
firefly night nails
Sorry for all the pictures, I just can’t handle how much I like this manicure! summer grass firefly nails
Also sorry for my messy cuticles! Taking photos of my right hand was kind of an impulse decision while I was at work so I did not clean them up quite as nicely the night before. However, this also means I have photos I took in direct sunlight and you can see the brilliance of the holographic Kale a little better.
Of course, the fireflies glow, but I won’t be able to get a picture of that until I find my blacklight!

Don’t forget to check out the other manicures and vote!

July 4th Stripes

I went a little stripe and dots crazy with these. Mostly because I’m not into glitters and stars are a pain to paint well. My primary idea was to do a distressed look, much like these Kate Spade Keds I knocked off of a while back

but I had a hard time incorporating the red into the look. I think the distressed stripes have promise in future designs (maybe a nautical one), but it was not my favorite of the manicures I tried. When I try them again, however, I’ll put up a tutorial.


Surprisingly this is the best photo I took. It’s just with my iPhone, but the natural lighting though the window at my desk at work is AMAZING.


I did my right hand a little differently, primarily because the distressed stripes were a little too time consuming and took a little too much coordination to do on this hand. Also because this way I get to post another idea for you!


Lastly I did a fun pedicure. I don’t usually post about pedicures, but this one was pretty cute! I am loving this large and small dot pattern I used on my various creations, and I will definitely be using that pattern again.


Today I learned just how difficult it is to take good pictures of a pedicure. I think I ended up with some pretty good images in the end.


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Stormy Night

These nails were inspired by a whole lot of emotional turmoil. Had my heart broken pretty badly–badly enough that I didn’t even have an interest in painting my nails last night, but I knew I needed to express myself somehow and I knew what I wanted my manicure to look like in order to represent those feelings. I wanted a darkened night sky with a gradient from black to blue and I wanted dark and ominous clouds over that. Ideally I would have liked lightning, but I know my nail art skills are not precise enough to do the true beauty of lightning any justice.


I’m very pleased with how they turned out. They managed to capture how I feel and what I was envisioning perfectly. Particularly impressive since I freehanded the clouds while tipsy. I’m also relatively pleased with the photos. I bought a daylight lamp for taking my photos. I’m still working out the kinks, but I like it.


Lastly a doodle. We’ll always be an unfinished piece of music to me.