Monday, January 27, 2014

Glitter and Hubris

The latest trio from talented indie maker Shades of Phoenix is called Thread of Life, and was inspired by the Moirai, or as they're more commonly referred to these days, The Fates. The Moirai are a trio of women that according to Greek mythology created, shaped, and eventually ended the lives of all mortals. They're a really interesting facet of Greek mythology to look at from a modern perspective, because their role is largely based around an idea that's quite different from how we're taught to look at the world these days - the concept of hubris.

But before I get all academic, lets take a look at the lovely pretties.

Monday, January 20, 2014

My Favourite Undies - Red, Green and Purple

Welcome back to the second installment of my series all about undies! In my first installment I had a little rant about why I use undies with my indie polishes, that basically boils down to me being clumsy and (relatively) poor.

There was some feedback on the last post that made me want to add a little caveat before we begin - while I myself am a big fan of using undies for indie polish, it is a somewhat divisive subject. Some people think that using undies ruins the jelly effect you so often get with indie polish, and I can totally appreciate it's largely a matter of taste. Personally, I don't get as excited by the jelly look as I do being able to do a manicure more quickly and easily, but that's a personal preference, not any sort of hard and fast rule. If you have the time, patience, and skill to make the most of indie polishes without any undie polishes, then you get down with your bad self.

Lab Muffin, for example, hardly ever uses undies and her indies still look
glorious. One day I will steal her secret. And her crazy long nail beds.
For the rest of us, I thought I would pass on my recommendations (again, not rules just suggestions) of the undie polishes I reach for most frequently. I have a couple of requirements for polishes I intend to use primarily as undies; first, they MUST cover in one or two coats. Two is the absolute maximum. If I have to do three coats of an undie, then by the time I put my glitter on the polish is five or six layers deep and ridiculously difficult to manage. Secondly, a polish I intend to use mainly for undies must be under $10 for a mainstream polish. Indies I make an exception for, because I don't mind paying 10 or over for something someone has designed specially. But for a mainstream, vat grown plain colour, even $5 will make me think twice. So all the polishes I am going to be recommending here will be $10 at most, and all will give you good smooth coverage in two coats.

Monday, January 13, 2014

My Favourite Undies: Why Wear Undies?

Just so no one is disappointed, I'm going to point out up front this is not going to be a series of posts about underwear, knickers, or as my English friends confusingly call them, pants. This is going to be all about the part of my nail polish collection that ISN'T glittery, holo, or otherwise spectacular - the humble, but essential undie polishes.

As I mentioned in my introductory series on indie nail polish, undies (in other words, polishes worn under the sparkly stuff) are an essential part of any polish addict's collection.

Firstly, they can help make indie polishes look their best. While putting an extra layer of polish on just for background colour might seem like a pain, it can give you spectacular results. The thing about glitter, is that it only sparkles when the fluid it's suspended in is at least a little bit transparent. And the thing about transparent fluid, is that you tend to be able to see your nail through it, unless you put an undercoat on. Think of it like painting - no serious painter would attempt a work of art without slathering the canvas in a good layer of gesso, to bring out the colours and textures of the paint to best advantage. For some polishes, this under layer is essential. For example, let's have a look at Femme Fatale's (now sadly discontinued) sparkly little gem, Star's Lament. Like a sheer gossamer gown, this looks amazing over black undies. But on it's own, you just look kind of, well, naked.

Left to right, this is two coats of Star's Lament over black, two coats alone, one coat alone, and one coat over black.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Learning to Mend A Patchwork Heart

By the time you’re reading this, it will be two days after my birthday. The presents will all have been unwrapped, played with, set up, and the paper possibly thrown away. It might still be wafting around my lounge room, I’m kind of a slob. Some people get excited about Christmas, or Hannukah, or Thanksgiving – my yearly calendar revolves around my birthday, so by the time you read this I will probably be in the middle of a serious sulk that it’s over.

My birthday is only one day, but Write Your Own Snark Spock
will be awesome all year around.