Unexpected Attachments

Attachments Cover Inspired ManicureAnother day, another dollar for Rainbow Rowell. And in her case, another dollar is another incredibly written novel! Attachments was the last of her four books out that I’ve read, and honestly, I was a little bit worried. I’d heard that it paled in comparison to some of her other books, and while the story felt a tiny bit dated in a way that Eleanor & Park didn’t, I still adored it!

Attachments follows Lincoln, an “internet security officer,” whose job is to snoop through company emails, looking for sordid and inappropriate conversations. He quickly finds himself immersed in the lives of Beth and Jennifer, and soon they’re the Three Musketeers, except they don’t know he’s involved.

This book made me smile, laugh and cry purely out of happiness. I love LOVE, and this novel found a special place in my heart that I’d thought had frozen over. And, just like her other books, the cover is perfect for a manicure!

Tools I Used // Julep Sheila + Sally + Essie Bikini So Teeny
Tools I Used // Julep Sheila & Sally + Essie Bikini So Teeny

The cover has a very vintage vibe and theme, and I had the perfect colors. Julep Sally is described as an “antique ivory,” which means it was born to be the base for this mani. Julep Sheila is a “cherry pie creme,” and is so compatible with Sally. I also wanted to bring in a bit of that pretty periwinkle that just accents the cover color palette, which is where Essie’s Bikini So Teeny comes in.

Attachments Cover Inspired Manicure

I liked the idea of color blocking with the ivory and red to bring in the design of the two-toned title. I used striping tape to get the randomized, classic feel of the blocks, and threw in a couple of blue polka dots and stripes for fun. Once all of that was dry, it was time to decide what designs I was going to paint.

Attachments Cover Inspired ManicureI knew I wanted a paperclip from the beginning, so that was an easy choice. I used the fine-tip nail art pens from my Sephora kit to paint both of the designs. The desk chair came about more on a whim. I honestly didn’t think I was going to be able to pull it off, but I did, and I’m quite proud of myself! I practiced once on a piece of paper, and then just went for it! This, plus my Landline manicure, is another reason I love Rainbow. Her covers push me to try new designs and be a better artist!

Attachments Cover Inspired ManicureHave you read Attachments? What did you think? Happy Reading!

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A Divine(er) Manicure

The Diviners Cover Inspired ManicureEvie O’Neill is a modern woman. A flapper. A ditz. She would be overjoyed to know there is an entire 600 page book written about her! But she’s also something more, a Diviner. In Libba Bray’s 2012 novel, The Diviners, something sinister in the air is headed for the bustling 1920s New York City. We find out that Evie isn’t the only one with these abilities, and soon everyone is thrown into a supernatural thriller with a ghost murderer and weird cult-like religions!

While the story sounds a tad far fetched, it is SO MUCH FUN! And it’s also a little bit scary. Ok, who am I kidding. I was terrified for almost the whole thing! I’m a total wimp when it comes to anything even remotely spooky, but Bray does such an incredible job painting such a vivid picture that I honestly felt like Naughty John was in my closet at night.

I truly adored the character of the story, but there were a couple things that took some help getting past. For instance, plot lines. There are subplots, and then there are TOO MANY DIFFERENT STORY LINES. This book rode the line between the two, and it took almost the whole novel for the characters to intersect and become relevant to one another. Because of that, it sometimes felt a bit like a set up for a series as opposed to a story. But despite these things, I was wildly entertained!

Now, let’s be real. How can you NOT be inspired by this incredible cover? With that, we can talk nail polish.

Tools I Used // Julep Cleopatra + Sephora by OPI A Brush With Fate
Tools I Used // Julep Cleopatra + Sephora by OPI A Brush With Fate

Black and gold is a quintessential color combination, especially when you think of the Roaring 20s. The glittering night life and opulent lifestyle of New Yorkers is pretty well represented in this book and its cover, and I wanted to portray that class. In addition to it representing the time period, gold and black (well, really gold and any color) is my life! So this has to take one of the top spots in the Novels and Nail Polish Cover Inspired Hall of Fame.

The Diviners Cover Inspired ManicureWith the help of my ever trusty Julep Cleopatra polish (I’m not sure what I’ll do when it runs out!), I achieved the perfect almost-matte black, minus the chalkboard dust look. After letting two coats of that dry completely, I broke out my brand new nail art set from Sephora!

The Diviners Cover Inspired Manicure The subtle gold shimmer polish is A Brush With Fate from the Sephora Cinderella polish collection. I painted the flower-like magic wisp accent nail freehand with the pointed brush, but the stripes were created with striping tape. A thin coat of matte top coat, and this mani is good to go!

The Diviners Cover Inspired ManicureThe Diviners Cover Inspired ManicureHave you read The Diviners? I’d love to hear your thoughts! Happy Reading!

Making Waves in a Sea of Nail Polish

The 5th Wave Cover Inspired ManicureLights out, plague, birds. Would you have survived the first 4 waves? NOPE. I definintely wouldn’t have! The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey is an intense, Sci-fi YA thriller packed with action and adventure. Of course, since it is a young adult book, you have to throw the love interest and strong familial ties in there too!

I feel like I’ve really been looking for a book like The 5th Wave recently; one that isn’t so much dystopian, but more action/science fiction. I mean, who doesn’t love a good alien takeover? I was intrigued right away, it held onto me the whole time and left me wanting more as soon as I realized I only had a couple more pages left!

I’ve just started The Infinite Sea, so a review of that will be coming later. But once I had both of these books together, my manicure inspiration hit me almost immediately, and I couldn’t wait until I finished the sequel to do it.

One thing I do want to mention before we get into the manicure is that my inspiration for this look really came from the colors of the naked books, as opposed to literal interpretation of the dust jackets! I will talk more about that below, but I wanted to throw it out there first. Now, let’s get to the polish!

Tools I Used // Essie Jiggle Hi Jiggle Low + Ciate Ladylike Luxe + Julep Black Latex
Tools I Used // Essie Jiggle Hi, Jiggle Low + Ciate Ladylike Luxe + Julep Cleopatra

Lining up the two naked books next to each other, you see there’s one main color, black, and two accent colors, silver and gold. Those three colors together ARE MY EVERYTHING! That is what really got the inspiration wheels turning, even before I’d left Barnes & Noble with the book!

I rounded up three trusty colors: Julep’s Black Latex Cleopatra, Essie’s Jiggle Hi, Jiggle Low from their Winter Collection and Ciate’s Ladylike Luxe. Now, Essie describes Jiggle Hi, Jiggle Low as a bold molten gold, but I’m really not sold on that description. It’s definitely silver, possibly with a hint of gold, but not much more than that.

The 5th Wave Cover Inspired Manicure

One of the classiest AND easiest nail art techniques I’ve tried is the Ruffian manicure. It’s a reverse French Manicure that follows the shape of the nail bed. I’d only tried it once before, but I adore the striking look it creates if done with the correct contrasting colors.

To create the Ruffian look, start with your base coat. Try to concentrate the color closer to your cuticles, as you will be covering the rest of the nail with a second color. Once it dries completely, you have two options. The first is using tape or a stencil to create the look, and the second is doing it free hand. I chose to run with it free hand, which speeds up the process because you don’t have to wait for the full dry you need when sticking tape to your nail.

The 5th Wave Cover Inspired Manicure

If you free hand the design, start with a good amount of polish on the brush. Place it where you want to start the second layer, and gradually spread it out from the center of the nail to the edges in one smooth movement. You can always go back in with a smaller brush and touch up any rough edges, but it works best if you can do it all at once.

The 5th Wave Cover Inspired Manicure

In The 5th Wave, one overarching theme that really resonated with me was that of hopelessness. I took that fear of the unknown, as well as the clean lines of the naked covers, and created this manicure. The black represents the fear the aliens have instilled in the human race, and it is covering up the gold and silver, which is their hope for the future. On my accent nail, I drew from Cassie’s strength, which is the reason for the reversed colors, covering the desperation and letting her perseverance shine through.

The 5th Wave Cover Inspired Manicure

Have you done a Ruffian Manicure before? I’d love to hear your techniques! Happy Reading!

Pinny the Bowling Pin Inspired Manicure {Blog Tour}

A fun and CUTE character like Pinny definitely deserves his very own mani! I wanted to create a design that would say PINNY right off the bat.

Pinny the Bowling Pin Inspired Manicure

I was inspired by the look of a bowling pin, with the double red stripe on the stark white background. It creates such a clean, sleek look that can be worn without an explanation, but at the same time represents the book. I threw in a bowling ball accent nail inspired by the color of the book’s ball that can’t knock Pinny down.

Pinny the Bowling Pin Inspired Manicure

The bowling ball in the story was brown, but I wanted to add a bit of pizzazz to the mani. I grabbed Julep Candace, which is a beautiful black/brown shimmer, and used their Black Latex for the finger holes. The matte texture of the black is perfect to create contrast between the shimmer and the dot!

Pinny the Bowling Pin Inspired Manicure

I had so much fun getting to know Pinny and Leah during the blog tour, and I’m so glad I could honor Pinny with this fun manicure. Make sure to check out the next stop of the blog tour over at Milliebot Reads! I hope you enjoyed the last three days as much as I did! You should definitely become friends with Pinny when his book comes out on November 21st! Happy Reading!

Something Different, Something Novel

A Little Something Different Inspired ManicureI first heard about A Little Something Different from one of my FAVORITE book bloggers, Jamie of The Perpetual Page Turner. It sounded like a cute, unique contemporary novel that I might like to pick up sometime down the road. Fast forward to one of my many shopping sprees at Target, and I somehow found mulitple books in my shopping cart, including this beauty.

While trudging my way through The Goldfinch (not because it’s bad, just LONG), I needed a happiness break. 36 hours later, I finished this guy, and I loved it!

One thing that both worked and didn’t to a certain extent was the use of 14 narrators. I LOVED seeing the romance unfold in front of everyone, and it made me so happy to see a unique, contemporary book. But it’s also something I notice writers struggle with and tend to use as a crutch. It’s hard to write a story from the perspective of 14 different people and make them actually sound like 14 different humans with individual voices and vocabularies. Listing the character’s name becomes a way out of fully developing each facet of their personality, and I understand why! It takes a ton of time and effort, but I felt that was the one major thing this novel lacked. Aside from the squirrel, most of the storytellers sounded the same, and their distinguishing factor was purely their name at the start of the chapter.

Aside from the lack of distinction between the characters, I found myself completely immersed in their lives! While the book didn’t change my life, I didn’t need it to. I loved it for the light, fun piece of writing it is!

Now to the feminine and fun mani that goes with it!

Tools I Used // Essie Bump Up The Pump + Julep Ava + Sally Hansen Nail Art Pen
Tools I Used // Essie Bump Up The Pump + Julep Ava + Sally Hansen Nail Art Pen

The colors of A Little Something Different are on the simpler, more classic side of the spectrum, but there is a lot going on in terms of the design. It took some trial and error to decide what and how much to actually try to accomplish on the small surface area of my nails. Obvious details that stood out were the swirls and hearts, which ended up being the main design elements I drew from.

A Little Something Different Inspired Manicure

The cover is the palest pink, which creates a beautiful canvas for the design. Julep’s Ava is the perfect opalescent, barely-there pink to bring the cover to life.

This was the first time I’ve ever used a nail art pen, and at first, it wasn’t smooth sailing AT ALL. I actually did this manicure twice. The first featured swirls on all four nails, with the two hearts on the ring finger, but it ended up feeling much too busy. The second time around, I played with the love and hearts a bit more and scaled the swirls back.

A Little Something Different Inspired Manicure

My favorite aspect of the whole manicure is the heart detail on my pinky finger. It was a fun, fresh take on a french tip, and almost feels like a hidden detail that you don’t notice until looking a bit closer.

A Little Something Different Inspired Manicure

Do you enjoy books with multiple narrators? What are you favorites? Happy Reading!

Liar, Liar, Polish On Fire

We Were Liars Inspired Manicure Picture this: A rich family. Private East Coast island. Secrets & lies upon lies. If you haven’t read We Were Liars, don’t ask how it ends. You don’t want to know, and I won’t tell you the truth!

E. Lockhart’s Contemporary YA novel is a complete masterpiece in my opinion. I haven’t been this engrossed and then completely shocked by a novel in a very long time.

The book’s first success? The incredible dust jacket blurb. It immediately caught my attention, which the book didn’t relinquish until it was over! I hadn’t realized how impactful a good summary can be, but this book raised the bar.

Second success? Unique layout. If there is a way to master reader confusion and use it for good, We Were Liars did just that. The book lets you live in a mild state of disorientation, really making you question the reliability of the narrator, which is so important for the success of the story.

Now that I’ve hopefully sung my praises of this wonderful book enough, let’s jump into the cover-inspired mani!

Tools I Used // Essie Blanc + Fashion Playground + Bikini So Teeny
Tools I Used // Essie Blanc + Fashion Playground + Bikini So Teeny

Happiness is realizing you own the PERFECT colors that match the cover beautifully! This was the exact feeling I had when I fell in love with this book, this cover and now this manicure. I grabbed Essie‘s Fashion Playground (pretty minty green), Bikini So Teeny (perfect pale blue) and Blanc (whitest white) to create this ombre watercolor masterpiece!

We Were Liars Cover Inspired Manicure

The minty green of the water, blue of the sky and white clouds were the inspiration for my design choices. I grabbed a makeup sponge to create the gradient from green to blue. In my Shatter Me Cover-Inspired Manicure, I used the sponging technique as well, but I learned a lot more about what works and what doesn’t this time around.

I started off with a naked nail, as opposed to painting the base color like I’ve seen in other ombre tutorials. Next time I use this technique, I will for sure try it with the first color painted on the nail to start, because it took forever to get an opaque color!

We Were Liars Cover Inspired Manicure

I really wanted to emulate both the cover and the overarching feeling of the novel with this manicure. The cover depicts a hazy day, just as the story is told from a potentially unreliable narrator, making the truth seem clouded and confused. There is so much beauty, but it and the truth are just out of reach beyond the clouds.

We Were Liars Cover Inspired Manicure

I had a lot of fun creating the white splatter design to mirror the cover’s hazy clouds. Of course, I grabbed the technique straight from the source of all things nails and beauty, The Beauty Department. They have an awesome tutorial on how to make your nails look like turquoise stones, which I adjusted to work for this manicure.

I grabbed a plastic ziplock sandwich bag and ripped it down the seam, which created the perfect cloudy texture. From there, I painted the white polish on the bag and blotted the excess on a plate before dabbing on my nails. Before it completely dried, I brushed a top coat over the nails to soften the edges of the white design.

We Were Liars Cover Inspired Manicure

Have you read We Were Liars? Did it completely shock and surprise you like it did me? Happy Reading!

To All The Nail Polish I’ve Loved Before

TATBILB Cover Inspired ManicureThere is something so sweet about young love. It brings you back to a simpler time, when you thought you were in love with every single boy you had a crush on. There is also something so annoying about it. And To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before captured all of these facets. Half the time, I found myself back in high school, without a care in the world, aside from the next time I was going to see my crush. But the other half? I was frustrated out of my mind by the naivety of Lara Jean and the other characters that sounded much younger than their assigned ages.

Don’t get me wrong, I truly enjoyed this fun, quick read! It was everything I wanted it to be! I just happened to find myself a tad bothered every once in a while.

One thing that never, ever bothered me was the gorgeous cover! I love feminine and floral and soft and everything in between. And well, I LOVE PINK. This made creating a cover-inspired manicure easy and hard. Easy because I had so many ideas running through my head, and hard because… I had so many ideas running through my head!

TATBILB Tools I Used
Tools I Used // Essie Blanc + Julep Avery + Washi Tape

Someday, I will not be able to go into my Julep Nail Polish collection and find the exact color I’m looking for to match my book. Today is not that day.

After a quick look through my polish stash, I grabbed Julep Avery, a bright, vibrant pink that matches the exact shade of the book. Paired with Essie’s Blanc, you have a winning combo!

TATBILB Inspired Manicure

I’m going to level with you guys. Washi Tape is definitely one of my best friends! So of course I broke it out for this mani. To create the color block design, I began with my white base coat. After letting it dry, I taped out my diagonal designs. One of the best tips I’ve learned about using washi tape when painting your nails is to get rid of some of the adhesive before putting it on. I press the sticky side to my palm a couple time, and that does the trick. That way, there is less risk of it ruining the base coat.

TATBILB Inspired Manicure

Hand lettered book titles and covers make my heart smile. Calligraphy is one of my more recent passions, and while I’m just starting out, I love to find inspiration in other hand lettered beauties. The black cursive on the spine of the book was the inspiration behind the black stripe between the pink and white color blocks. I wasn’t sure if I trusted myself to paint a perfectly straight line, so I grabbed my Washi Tape, painted it black and voila! Perfectly straight lines chalked up to another win for Washi Tape.

TATBILB Inspired Manicure

TATBILB Inspired Manicure

Have you read To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before? What did you think? Happy Reading!