Posts tagged White

David Emanuel Spot Peplum Dress

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Up until recently I would never have even considered shopping in Bonmarché.  I’d been in there a few times with my mum and grandma, but everything was just a bit too… ‘mature’ for my style.  But then I was offered the chance to choose an item from the Bonmarché website to review, and suddenly my opinion was changed.  The item I chose is this gorgeous black and white polka dot dress from the new David Emanuel collection.  David Emanuel was the designer who created Princess Diana’s internationally loved wedding dress, and since then he has dressed countless female celebrities, and has sold collections in the likes of Harrods and Harvey Nichols.

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I absolutely love polka dots so it seemed only natural to go for this dress, and I’m glad I did.  The print is bold, but the cut of the dress is very sophisticated, so you can make a statement whilst still looking chic.  The front of the dress has a mock wrap effect, and a pretty peplum detail that sits just over the hip; both of which are extremely flattering, and the fabric is soft and stretchy for ultimate comfort.

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In terms of sizing, the dress is pretty generous.  I’m usually a size 10-12 and opted for a 12 in this style, but it is slightly roomy at the back so I should probably have gone for a 10.  This particular dress is available in sizes 10 to 24, and retails for £28 in all sizes.

I perhaps wouldn’t wear this dress casually as it’s a bit too smart for kicking around town in, but it would be absolutely perfect for the office or, as Bonmarché state, an ‘elegant occasion’.  It definitely looks the business teamed with a pair of elegant black heels!

Though the majority of Bonmarché’s stock is perhaps not very ‘me’, I’ve definitely learnt that you shouldn’t dismiss a shop based on prejudgments.  Even the most unlikely of places can have some hidden gems lurking on the rails, so it’s always worth having a browse to see what you can find!

If you like the look of this dress, or want to see the rest of David Emanuel’s Bonmarché collection, click here.

Naomi x

*This David Emanuel Spot Peplum Dress was sent to me by Bonmarché for review purposes.  All opinions expressed are honest and my own.*

What I Wore: Batik & Black

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Hi everyone!

Today I thought I’d share with you what I wore on New Year’s Day.  My outfit of choice consisted of a gorgeous new pair of jeans that I purchased from ASOS in their winter sale, which I paired with a simple black zip back jumper from Primark.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAPrimark Black Zip Back Jumper / ASOS Only Batik Skinny Jeans / H&M Black Ankle Boots / H&M Black and Gold Clutch Bag

I seem to have collected quite a few black tops over the past few months, so I decided to invest in some colourful pieces to wear with them, and these Batik Skinny Jeans by Danish brand Only do not disappoint.  Purple is my favourite colour, and I’ve always been a fan of batik/tie dye style prints, so as soon as I saw these I knew I had to have them.  They’re an excellent fit as well.  The sizing is accurate, and they have a range of leg lengths to choose from, so they are plenty long enough for my 36″ inside leg!  These jeans cost me £12.50, down from £60.00, and they’ve now been reduced even further to £11.00, so I have ordered another pair as I love them so much.

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To finish the outfit, I went for more black.  A few weeks ago I received a couple of fashion items from BLOGGERS[edit] to review, so I decided to give them a whirl with this outfit.  Despite only expecting one item from them, BLOGGERS[edit] actually sent me two (thanks!) – a gorgeous pair of black ankle boots, and a surprise black and gold clutch bag, both from H&M.

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Those who read my blog regularly will know that I have a thing for black, and a thing for boots, so these Black Ankle Boots are right up my street.  They’re made of imitation suede which looks and feels almost real, and they have a sturdy but flexible rubber sole so they’re easy and comfortable to walk in.  One thing I always look for in simple black footwear is a little bit of a twist to make them a bit more interesting, and these pass that test.  The boots have a curved panel on the front, and a lip at the top that sits higher than the back, giving them a slightly more unusual shape.  At £24.99 these are a real bargain!

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This Black and Gold Clutch Bag is a little beauty, and even comes with a chain strap hidden inside, so you can wear it over your shoulder if you so wish.  The bag has a sturdy gold metallic shell, which is underlaid with soft black suedette, and it fastens with a large clip on top.  Despite only costing £14.99, the bag oozes quality, and adds a touch of glamour to any outfit.  It’s not the biggest bag in the world, but it’s roomy enough for your phone, keys, money, lipstick and chewing gum, which is just about everything you need on a night out.

What do you think of this outfit?

Naomi x

*These Black Ankle Boots and Black & Gold Clutch Bag were sent to me by BLOGGERS[edit], on behalf of H&M, for review purposes.  All opinions expressed are honest and my own.*

Chocolate Tasting for Millennium Hotels

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Last week I received a very special delivery from Millennium Hotels…  A goody bag stuffed full of Hotel Chocolat treats!  Millennium Hotels are a luxury hotel company who have many hotels and resorts in exciting locations all around the world.  To add something a little extra special to every room, they are currently trying to choose a luxury chocolate to place on their pillows for their guests, and I was asked along with a few other bloggers to help them choose by sampling each chocolate in the goody bag.  How could I say no to that?!  Here is what the bag contains…

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From Left to Right:

Smiley Lick.

Eton Mess Slab.

Salted Caramels.

Chocolate Gemstones.

Billionaire’s Shortbread.

Choosing a favourite out of these five delectable delights is very difficult (I am a chocoholic, after all), as they are all different, and all extremely delicious.  However, a decision has been made!  Read on to see what I thought of each one, and to see which one is my overall winner.

Smiley Lick

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The Smiley Lick consists of a disk of thick milk chocolate on a lollipop stick, which is happily adorned with a smiley face.  This one is fun to look at, fun to nibble and it really shows off the high quality of Hotel Chocolat’s chocolate.  The chocolate is extremely smooth and has a rich, sweet flavour.  I gobbled this up rather quickly in one sitting, and was left wanting more.  Delicious, but I don’t think it’s quite right for a hotel pillow as it’s a bit too bulky looking!

Eton Mess Slab

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The Eton Mess slab is absolutely beautiful to look at, as the pink chocolate swirled with cream and scattered with strawberry and meringue pieces makes it look like a work of art.  The chocolate itself is strawberry flavoured, with vanilla chocolate running throughout.  It isn’t as smooth as the milk chocolate as the real fruit bits give it a bit more texture, as do the little chocolate cookies hidden inside (which I wasn’t expecting when I first bit into it!), but it is divine!

If you have a sweet tooth then this is definitely for you – it smells and tastes just like a strawberry milkshake.  I can only handle a little bit of this at a time, but at least that means I can make the bar last and savour it.  This would be the winner if my sister had a say – it was her favourite out of all five choices.

Salted Caramels

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I have always enjoyed the contrast between sweet chocolate and salty caramel, and these are the best salted caramels I have ever tried – the balance of flavours is perfect!  When you first bite into the chocolate the caramel comes oozing out, and you are hit with a toffee sweetness which has a slight tang of sea salt.  These perhaps wouldn’t be to everybody’s taste, but I think they’re a very sophisticated little treat and I’d definitely have these again.

Chocolate Gemstones

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Hotel Chocolat’s Gemstones are made of white and dark chocolate drops, which have been fused together to create silky and shiny little spheres, which melt slowly on the tongue.  They might be small, but each one gives big flavour, with a creaminess from the white chocolate and a bitter edge from the dark chocolate which stops them being overly sweet.  Out of everything in the goody bag, these are the ones I keep going back to…  They’re very moreish!

Billionaire’s Shortbread

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Last but not least, Billionaire’s Shortbread.  These unusual truffles are made of milk chocolate, and have a caramel praline inside which has a lovely soft texture.  Each one is also sprinkled with little pieces of shortbread cookie, which add a delicious crunch to every bite.  These really do taste just like the dessert of the same name, but their delicate size makes them that little bit more refined.  My other half absolutely loves the Billionaire’s Shortbread chocolates and I think these would win if it was his choice!

Though I like everything in the goody bag, my overall winner has to be the Gemstones!  They might be the simplest chocolate of them all, but I think that would make them suitable for any guest to enjoy, and their beautiful taste and dainty size make them the ideal snack to nibble on throughout the evening, whilst you lounge in your comfortable hotel room.  Bliss!

Millennium Hotels

If you fancy a stay at a 4 Star Millennium Hotel (I know I’d love to stay at the London Mayfair hotel myself), now is a good time to book…  They are currently offering 30% off room rates until the end of March, and with Valentine’s Day just around the corner, this could be a lovely way to impress your loved one!  Click here to find out more, and don’t forget to treat them to some Hotel Chocolat chocolates too.

Naomi x

*The Hotel Chocolat Goody Bag was sent to me by Millennium Hotels for review purposes.  All opinions expressed are honest and my own.*

Nail Art: Chikara King of Trios

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My fiancé absolutely loves wrestling and, though I’m not much of a fan myself, I do quite like some of the masks that some of the wrestlers wear.  One of the wrestling companies that my fiancé likes is called Chikara, and every year they run a King of Trios tournament in which many teams of three wrestlers fight each other in rounds until one team becomes the ‘King of Trios’.  This year’s winners were a team called the Spectral Envoy, so to celebrate their win my fiancé asked me do some Chikara themed nail art.  I couldn’t say no, and since the winning team wore wrestling masks it seemed only right to paint these onto my nails!  And here they are…

The wrestlers behind the masks are called (from thumb round to the ring finger):

… and the blue symbol on my pinky is the Chikara logo.  Apparently Crossbones isn’t an official member of the ‘Trio’ (otherwise there’d be four of them, not three), but I’ve been told he turned up this year to help them win.

I used my trusty old dotting tools to draw this design and I’m really pleased with how the masks turned out, especially since the whole painting process only took about 20 minutes in total!  My fiancé has already shown a photo of my nails to a lot of his wrestling friends from around the world and they were all very impressed, so they have the wrestling fan seal of approval at least!

The nail varnish shades I used were…

  • Primark Nail Polish in ‘Black’
  • Avon Nailwear Pro in ‘Coral Beat’
  • Laval Crystal Finish Nail Polish in ‘White’
  • Leichner Nail Gloss in ‘Blueberry’

I mixed the orange and blue shades with a little bit of white so it would stand out more on the black background and, as you can see, it worked quite well.

So, what do you think?  This is something a little bit different for me but I definitely want to do another wrestling mask themed design in the future!

Naomi x

Chocolate Treat Week: Nails

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In this penultimate Chocolate Treat Week post I will be talking about all things nail related.  I will be sharing my favourite chocolate coloured nail varnish, by Barry M, as well as some new nail art featuring five of my favourite chocolate treats!  See if you can guess what they are.  Oh, and of course there’ll be a few words at the end of the post from one of my favourite bloggers, in The Last Rolo.

Nail Varnish… Barry M Nail Paint in ‘Chocolate Brown’

Since first discovering them many moons ago, I have always loved Barry M’s Nail Paints, so it seemed only natural to include their ‘Chocolate Brown’ shade in this post.  Like all of their paints, this one has a fantastic formula.  It applies effortlessly easily and leaves no brush strokes or streaking behind, and opaque, even coverage can be achieved in just two coats.  The paint dries impressively quickly too so there’s no hanging around for hours waiting for it to dry, and as you’d expect of Barry M it is very long-lasting.

‘Chocolate Brown’ is a really stunning shade, and it has a high shine, creme finish which gives it a true look of chocolate!  The brown colour is highly pigmented with an undertone of orange so it isn’t too dark.  As such, even indoors in dim light it looks rich brown rather than dull black.  I’m sure you’d all agree that ‘Chocolate Brown’ is perfect for Autumn/Winter 2012 as deep, earthy nail shades are bang on-trend right now.

Barry M Nail Paints are available in Superdrug and Boots for £2.99 each, but as far as I know they aren’t currently stocking this shade.  However, you can get it even cheaper on a great website I discovered recently called Scentsational.  They are selling ‘Chocolate Brown’ for £2.95 with free delivery, but if you ‘Like’ their Facebook page you can get £1 off your order!  That’s how I got hold of this shade, so you can definitely trust the website and discount code!

Nail Art… Chocolate Wrappers

After much deliberation about what I would do for a chocolate themed nail art design, I came up with this – the wrappers and logos of five of my favourite chocolate treats!  Can you guess what  they are?

If you said (from left to right) Cadbury’s Creme Egg, Terry’s Chocolate Orange, Cadbury Twirl, Milky Bar and Maltesers then you are correct!  I had a LOT of fun creating this look and I’m very pleased with the results… Especially the Milky Bar nail!  I surprised myself with how neat and accurate I got the font on that one.  As usual, I used nail dotting tools to draw this design, and the colours I used were:

  • Avon Nailwear Pro ‘Real Red’
  • Saffron ‘Shade 16′ (Purple)
  • Rimmel 60 Seconds ‘Blue My Mind’
  • Barry M ‘Yellow’
  • Barry M ‘Chocolate Brown’
  • Laval Crystal Finish ‘White’
  • Primark ‘Black’
  • NYC In A Minute ‘High Line Green’
  • Avon Nailwear Pro ‘Coral Beat’
  • Leichner Nail Gloss ‘Blueberry’

What do you think?  Which five chocolate bars would you include in this design?

The Last Rolo…

The Last Rolo is where I hand over the last few words of each Chocolate Treat Week blog post to another blogger.  In the run up to Chocolate Treat Week I asked five of my favourite bloggers a couple of questions about their favourite chocolate treats, and today’s answers come from Ra of RaRa Reid.

Can you recommend any chocolate scented, flavoured or themed beauty/fashion products?

I would recommend the Soft Coeur masage bar from Lush. It smells incredible and is amazing for your skin. Like most Lush products! It’s also heart-shaped which I love. :) Lush also have a lip tint called Double Choc. I haven’t actually tried this as brown shades don’t suit me, but it just smells wonderful! As for fashion, I am a huge fan of kitsch jewellery, especially necklaces. I got a Jammie Dodger necklace a while back from Diamond Lil’s and they have a lovely Bourbon Biscuit necklace which I’d also love to add to my jewellery collection. :) This is their website. There are plenty of other sites that have similar necklaces to this too.

What is your favourite chocolate treat to eat, and why?

Choosing a favourite chocolate treat is really quite difficult, I love all chocolate! :) My absolute favourite has to be a Kit Kat Chunky Peanut Butter, I haven’t actually had one for over 2 years now though as Teddi is allergic to nuts. Other than that, I love all the chocolates that I used to have as a child. Like Freddos and Curly Wurlys. :)

Once again, thank you so much for reading my latest Chocolate Treat Week post.  Please come back tomorrow to read the final chocolate themed post which will focus on fashion and accessories.

Naomi x

Chocolate Treat Week: Makeup

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My third Chocolate Treat Week post is all about make up.  Believe it or not, I had to search high and low for chocolate scented and coloured make up products, but I found a couple of great ones in the end.  I’ve also created a yummy eyeshadow look to share with you, which uses three different shades of chocolate brown.  Enjoy!

For Lips… Palmer’s Dark Chocolate & Peppermint Lip Butter

In my high and low search for chocolate lip products I discovered a myriad of chocolate lip balms, but none of them seemed to cut the mustard as a gloss, rather than just a protective balm.  In all honesty I was close to giving up, but then I found this…  Palmer’s Dark Chocolate & Peppermint Lip Butter.

The Lip Butter has a lovely creamy formula which feels amazing on the lips.  You can tell from how it feels that it is intensely enriching, and because it’s a butter and not a gloss it feels smooth and moisturising rather than sticky.  It  is also light in colour so doesn’t leave a tint on the lips, but as the packaging states it adds a ‘subtle gloss’, which is what makes it makeup in my eyes.  The glossy shine it adds lasts for a long time, and can be worn over lipstick as well as directly on the lips.

The minty chocolate scent of the Lip Butter is absolutely divine.  The fact that it is dark chocolate means that it isn’t too sickly sweet, and the freshness of the peppermint gives it a sharp edge.  The mint also feels wonderful on the lips as it gives the lip butter a pleasant tingle.  Though it doesn’t claim to be a plumping product I think it does have a slight, natural-looking plumping effect, but without the pain that some plumping glosses can cause!

Palmer’s Dark Chocolate & Peppermint Lip Butter definitely does what it says on the tin.  It ‘softens & soothes lips’ almost instantly and leaves them feeling protected, but it has a big advantage over most lip balms by adding that ‘subtle gloss’.  The Lip Butter is available in lots of high street shops (there’s a list here), and usually retails for about £2.75, which is an excellent price considering it is a gloss AND a protective balm in one.

For Eyes… MUA Malt Chocolate Intense Glitter Eyeliner

MUA’s Malt Chocolate Intense Glitter Eyeliner is another quality MUA product.  Like all of their glitter liners it costs just £1, which is outstanding value as there’s even a pencil sharpener incorporated into the lid!  The eyeliner is very creamy so it applies like a dream to both your waterlines and your upper and lower lash lines without pulling the skin at all.  The glitter is very fine too, so it adds a lovely shimmer without causing any irritation or heaviness on the eye.

Malt Chocolate is a pretty, highly pigmented shade with a bronze tinge to it, which gives it that ‘intense colour finish’ – far from the dull, uninspiring look of most brown eyeliners!  What I like about this liner is that, once it dries, it doesn’t smudge and it lasts a good long while before it comes off, keeping its bold colour for the duration of wear.

The eyeliner is also impressively versatile.  MUA state that it can be worn all over the eyelid, as a lip liner or as an all-over lip colour as well as an eyeliner, and due to its creaminess I think it would make a great lip product as it wouldn’t be drying at all.  What a fab thing to throw into your suitcase for a holiday or into your clutch on a night out!

If you’d like to try any of MUA’s Glitter Intense Eyeliners they are available in Superdrug stores or online here.

Create the Look… Triple Chocolate Eyes

The above look was created using three different shades of chocolate coloured eyeshadow.  MUA’s Chocolate Box Trio Eyeshadow would be perfect for this, but I actually used their Immaculate Collection Palette.  All you need to use to copy this look is a white chocolate shade as a highlighter, a milk chocolate shade as your main colour, and a dark chocolate shade for shadows and creases.  The shades I used from the Immaculate Collection were these…

  • White Chocolate: Shade 12
  • Milk Chocolate: Shade 23
  • Dark Chocolate: Shade 21

And here’s how you get the look:

  • Prepare your eyelids right up to the brow bone with your preferred eye primer.
  • Apply your milk chocolate shade to your eyelid using a flat eyeshadow brush, from corner to corner and up to the crease.
  • Using another flat eyeshadow brush sweep your white chocolate shade above the milk chocolate shade, up to the brown bone.
  • Using a shading brush, apply the dark chocolate shade along the crease of your eye, thickening the line at the outer corner and taking it down to the corner of your lashes.
  • Blend the dark chocolate shade into the edge of the milk chocolate shade with a clean eyeshadow brush.
  • Using a fine brush, apply a small amount of the white chocolate shade to the inside corner of your eye and a third of the way under your lower lash line.  Fill in the rest of your lower lash line with the dark chocolate shade.
  • Brush any loose eyeshadow from your face using a clean brush and finish with a generous coat of your favourite mascara, preferably brown.

The Last Rolo…

The Last Rolo is where I hand over the last few words of each Chocolate Treat Week blog post to another blogger.  In the run up to Chocolate Treat Week I asked five of my favourite bloggers a couple of questions about their favourite chocolate treats, and today’s answers come from Claire of Nocturnal Beauty.

Can you recommend any chocolate scented, flavoured or themed beauty/fashion products?

I can definitely recommend the Whipstick lip balm from Lush. It’s my by far my favourite chocolate scented product that I’ve tried. It smells just like chocolate orange, and it isn’t overly sickly or too sweet, it smells absolutely divine. I do catch myself smelling the tin quite a lot! It feels lovely too and leaves a bit of a brown tint to the lips. It’s perfect for anybody who loves chocolate!

What is your favourite chocolate treat to eat, and why?

My favourite chocolate treat to eat is probably chocolate cake. I eat far too much cake and it’s a wonder I have any teeth left. I also make some seriously good chocolate fudge!

Thanks for reading today’s Chocolate Treat Week installment!  Please check back tomorrow for a post all about chocolate themed nails, featuring some new nail art!

Naomi x

Monopoly Nail Art

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Today I thought I would share my latest attempt at nail art with you all, which is themed around squares on a Monopoly board!  After doing my Pac-Man nail art last week, I wanted to try some more game themed designs.  Monopoly is one of my favourite board games and I happened to have MUA’s Shade 5 to hand, which is very much like the colour of a Monopoly board, so it seemed only fitting for this to be my next design.

What do you think?  I’m rather pleased with how they turned out, although it was VERY difficult drawing the ‘Free Parking’ car using my left hand!  I’m very happy with the ‘Go’ nail though, and I think the coloured cuticles look good.

The colours I used for this design were:  MUA Nail Varnish Shade 5, Avon Nailwear Pro ‘Real Red’, Avon Nailwear Pro ‘Coral Beat, Barry M Nail Paint ‘Yellow’, NYC Nail Polish ‘High Line Green’, Rimmel Pro Nail Polish ‘Fancy Fuchsia’, Primark Nail Polish ‘Black’, Primark Nail Polish ‘Blue’, Laval Nail Polish ‘White’, Technic Nail Art Pen ‘Black’ and Sally Hansen Base & Top Coat.

Naomi x

Pac-Man Nail Art

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After looking at some amazing computer game make up designs yesterday, I wanted to try my own game-inspired look.  I didn’t want to do anything too complex (it was 9pm and I’d had a looong day), so I settled for nail art as I find it quite relaxing.  I decided to do a basic Pac-Man design as the simple shapes are very easy to draw using nail dotting tools, and it only took five colours – black, white, red, blue and yellow.  This was the finished result…

I painted Pac-Man on my index finger, Blinky the red ghost on my ring finger and the famous Pac-Man cherries on my thumb.  I really enjoyed painting the cherries for some reason!  I’m not completely happy with the overall look as, once again, my bed sheets left imprints on the design (someone please stop me painting my nails at night!), but I think they look cute enough.  People keep telling me how much they like them anyway so I must be doing something right.

What other games would you like to see turned into nail art?

Naomi x

 

Nail Art: Leicester Tigers

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I’m not much of a follower of sport and never have been, but there will always be one team that I will always support, and that is the Leicester Tigers rugby team!  I have lived in Leicester for all of my 22 years and I am proud that we have such a successful sports team to call our own.  Tomorrow is the Aviva Premiership Rugby Final between Leicester Tigers and Harlequins.  My other half is lucky enough to have a ticket to the game, which is taking place at Twickenham Stadium, but the game is now sold out so (for the first time in three years) I’m not going :(  Boo!  So, instead, I’ve decorated my nails in Leicester Tigers colours and stripes to show my support, ready for when I watch the game on TV tomorrow.  And here they are!

To create this look I used:

  • MUA Nail Varnish in ‘Shade 13′ (Green).
  • Avon Nail Enamel in ‘Real Red’.
  • Laval Crystal Finish Nail Polish in ‘White’.
  • Avon Peeling & Brittleness Solver (Base Coat).
  • Models Own 3 in 1 (Top Coat).

For the stripes I used my new batch of striping tape, which I got from eBay for 99p for 10 rolls (BARGAIN)!  I’d never used striping tape before today and it was a lot easier to use than I expected.  I will be posting a tutorial on how to use it next week if you’re interested :)

Naomi x

Nail Art: Monochrome Cats

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Yesterday afternoon I had some well-earned time to myself for a few hours, so I took the opportunity to sit down with a cup of tea and try out some more nail art.  It meant I had to remove my Very Hungry Caterpillar design, which has been my favourite so far, but I quite like what I did this time.

So here are my Monochrome Cat Nails!  They’re not the neatest, but I think they’re quite cute :)


I didn’t use anything particularly fancy to create this  look… Just a simple black nail varnish from Primark, a white varnish I picked up from the local market and then my usual top coat.  The designs were drawn freehand with my set of dotting tools.

What do you think?

Naomi x

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