Hello. I have some special dotty nails to share with you today. There’s a bit of an explanation that goes along with them that I’ll get to during this post. But suffice it to say, I was in a unique brain space when coming up with these!
|Science Is Girly|
You see…these nails were created for a unique gal. She likes pink and girly designs, she’s got a cheeky sense of humor, and she’s a physicist who studies optics and lasers. And, it was her birthday.
Who is this special person? What is going on with my nails? Read on to find out.
First – the who: Silvie a.k.a. the @cheekynailmonkey on Instagram. Silvie is the kind of gal who makes life that much better for those around her. She brings a wonderful artistic style to her nail art and is very supportive of everyone else as well. It has been a treat to get to know her through our community!
The hosts of Silvie’s surprise birthday party asked us to create a design that was pink, girly with hearts and/or flowers — and most importantly, fun. Phew! Let me tell you – this was a fantastic showing of great nail art!!
|Doesn’t this look like a fun nail party?!!|
You can just tell the enthusiasm and good vibes that were fostered in this fun birthday-gram! (I apologize to the gang for just getting this posted on my blog several weeks after the festivity. Better late than never, I hope.)
OK. So, my nail design. What’s going on with these unconventional twist on a dotticure?
It might help to know that this was my third go round of designs. Yes, the first one AND second one didn’t make it in front of the camera. For the first design plan I had some stamping issues (I couldn’t get a science lab image on one from an older plate to pick up). Going with a second idea that included glitter, I experienced some polish melting instead of drying (it was really, really hot and muggy at the time). All in all, these bungled mishaps gave me many hours to overthink things a bit. Just a bit. 😉
For the third design idea, I included two phases (give me extra time and I’ll over-complicate anything!). I attempted to introduce these in a little slideshow on Instagram. I was rushed, it was cute, but I’m going to try to do it without the transitions and music here. (This way if you follow me on Instagram – which I hope you do – you’re getting to see things a bit different in each place.)
|Phase One – a dotticure with a temperamental base|
Phase One entailed starting with a girly design, in pink of course. And, my spin to make this fun was applying a science theme in honor of Sylvie’s field of study. Specifically by using a thermal polish. These thermal polishes are the neatest things – especially for the person wearing the polish. As your body temperature and/or the surrounding air temperature changes, so does the color or shade of the polish. It’s better than the mood rings of the old days.
For my three central fingers, I chose a thermal polish from the Indie brand, Pretty & Polished, called For That Someone Special (so appropriate for a design for Sylvie). In its “natural” state, at room temperature, it is a medium dusty pink. When the polish gets warmer, it becomes more and more pale, almost white. When it gets colder, it turns darker and darker rosy pink.
On top of that base, I stamped a polka dot pattern in a dark pink that would mimic the polish in it’s coldest state — going for an almost seemingly disappearing image. Silly me, I was forgetting how darn hot it was and how long I would therefore need to soak my fingers in ice cold water to display the darker colors. However, some things are worth the trouble! LOL You could say this was a science experiment after all!!
|Phase Two – Magnify the Dots to Look Like a Flower|
Even with the accent thumb and pinky in a bright shimmery pink, with one dot of the thermal polish on them, I felt the design was still a bit plain. And I hadn’t included a heart or a flower anywhere which was requested by our lovely hosts.
So…getting creative again with the science theme…I added an 11mm domed crystal glass cabachon over the polka dot pattern. Why? Well I liked the optical illusion of changing the appearance of the symmetrical dots into a flower. It’s a stretch…but, the unique factor won me over.
Silvie is a smart cookie who loves creating nail art inspired by the beauty of the natural world around her. Combine this with her study of optics and I think I made a design quite fitting for her birthday. I had actually considered using this cabochon in a design already – but using it to warp dots into flowers was not yet on my radar. Now I can say I’ve been there, done that. LOL
|Can you see the flower?
The six dots surrounding the center dot are stretched to a petal shape by the domed glass on top.
Taking pictures of these was harder than making them in the first place. Getting just the right angle with my camera to show the “flower” was tricky for sure. Then, as I mentioned, without intervention the only color state these were in was the hot – very pale pink consistently on the nail surface (as shown in the photo above). Other than in the peak summer, usually the temperature of your finger is warmer than the air temperature under the free edge of your nail so that you get a gradient effect with the thermal polish without much effort.
Even though I am lucky to have air conditioning indoors, by the time I got under the lights in my photo set-up, it was too warm to show any color change with the polish. (Just picked up some LED bulbs this weekend to help reduce the heat going forward.) So, to get the different pictures, I used a bowl of ice water to dip my fingers in to “force” the change to dark pink. It wouldn’t last long though.
|HOT outside! Almost immediately after dunking in ice water, the free edge of my nails got warmer than my fingers giving the reverse gradient effect.|
After mentioning on Instagram my challenge of walking around outside with a bowl of ice water to get some sunlight pictures (yeah – a dumb idea in 90 degree weather), someone politely mentioned that she uses a bag of frozen peas. How clever!! And that would have helped me out a lot because after dunking my fingers, moisture would remain underneath the glass cabachon charm fogging it up making it harder to see the “flower”.
Anyways – it was a blast! Because I used top coat to adhere the glass to my nail, it only lasted long enough for pictures. But I kept the thermal polish on for a couple days and have never been that excited to do things like dishes (hot) or chopping up vegetables (cold). Poor Mr. Kimett, I was constantly shoving my fingers in his face squealing, “Look honey! They changed!” He would smile back at me. Yes, he loves me very, very much.
|In the sun, the polish would be an even pale pink so much that you couldn’t tell it was a thermal polish at all.|
- Thermal Polish: For That Special Someone by Pretty & Polished
- Pink Shimmer (Thumb & Pinky): Kimber by Zoya
- Stamping Polish: #51 Tulip by Mundo de Unas
- Stamping Plate: Plate 1-03 by Uber Chic
- Dotting Tool (for the single dot on my pinky)
Even though I struggled getting a design together for this party, I am really glad that it worked out the way it did. I had a blast by the time I got this version completed and forgot all about the first two disasters. And the best part, Silvie really enjoyed them and appreciated the meaning behind the design. Mission accomplished. 😉