Creative musings in bright colors

Posts tagged ‘Darling Diva’

Jewish Geometry

I don’t even know. I painted these a few months ago over hanukkah, I wanted blue and silver and a jewish star, and I just sort of ran with the design and freehanded some geometric patterns. It is far from perfect but the whole thing took 30 minutes so I am counting it as a win! Since I don’t otherwise have jew-leaning nails to post during passover, these are now passover nails! Voila.

~ Blue metallic: Sally Hansen – Blue my Mind
~ Silver: Darling Diva – Diamond
~ Blue glitter: KBShimmer – Gaia

Very simple but they do get the job done! And will serve as a reminder while I (sadly) consume matzah for the next few days (yuck). This week is going to be a sad food week in my house, with my husband trying to do orthodox lent and not eat meat, and me off most carbs until saturday!


I love this polish so much that I barely wanted to cover it at all! So I made sky designs with clouds, the sun, and the moon. It also gave me an excuse to use these very intricate sun and moon stamps (even if you can hardly see them because using black holo polish instead of creme grey polish obscured the details)!

~ Teal/purple multichrome: Emily de Molly – Near and Far
~ Black holo: Darling Diva – Black Diamond
~ White: Sinful Colors – Snow me White
~ Stamps: BM – XL213

Every now and then I run into a design in my not-yet-posted folder, like this one, that reminds me to use a polish that I haven’t touched in months. Like this one. Near and Far is definitely going back out into my use soon set of polishes! Silly me. Anyway, hope you enjoyed!

Loosely Flung

I don’t know what this is. It is busy but pretty! I started with a red-orange metallic base, added some glitter (because…why not) and then decided to double stamp: once subtly with a sharp geometric pattern, and once with white and a circular smooth pattern. Of course, I went back in and added some silver holo dots because I am myself :-p The end result was pretty, but absolutely glowed in the sunlight!

~ Red metallic: Essie – Ring in the Bling
~ Holo glitter: Different Dimension – Intergalactic Dolphin
~ Grey: Zoya – Dove
~ White: Sinful Colors – Snow me White
~ Silver holo: Darling Diva – Diamond
~ Stamps: Nicole Diary – L28, Moyra – 54 Matrix 

Unsurprisingly, this red-orange makes me think of warmth, which is why it has been included this week! Luckily, the temperatures are supposed to rise above 20 degrees this weekend for the first time in a week and a half (yikes) so hopefully next week I will feel more inspired to post normal manicures! Hope you enjoyed, and stay warm! 

Neutral Snowflakes

Winter time manis! I painted SO MANY snowflake manicures last year that it is going to be a struggle to not lump them one after the other after the other. So, I will try to space them out. At least they aren’t all silver and blue, some, like this, are nude and grey! I have to say this is likely the oddest one I made, but I kinda like it anyway. It busy without being ugly.

~ Nude glitter: Cadillacquer – Darling Red Isn’t Your Color
~ Grey holo: Darling Diva – Black Diamond
~ Black holo: A England – Fated Prince
~ Stamp: JQ – L20 

I remember hating the black thin holo tip when I painted these, but now looking at the nail art I actually rather like it. You can see more of the holo rainbow goodness due to the thicker heavier line. Anyway, hope you enjoyed! 

Vibrant Jelly Net

I just wanted rainbows, so I made rainbows! This is just a bunch of jelly polishes painted in a random pattern over a silver holographic base. I like using holo rather than just plain white because it hides the mistakes and bald patches a bit better…I can pretend they are intentional :-p


~ Silver holo: Darling Diva – Diamond
~ Red jelly: Zoya – Aphrodite
~ Pink jelly: Zoya – Paloma
~ Yellow jelly: Esmalta da Kelly – Yellow Soap Bubble
~ Blue jelly: Zoya – Frida
~ Stamps: Born Pretty – Texture L002


The stamp here is from another new born pretty plate, this one being better etched! It didn’t need any touch-ups and you can clearly see the design even around the rainbows. Honestly the reason the black here doesn’t look great is I had just opened a new bottle of polish, and since i don’t use stamping polish it was too thin (aka…new) to be excellent for stamping! Oops. You can find this stamping plate with all its weird leafy and bubble-like glory here for $3.99.

Holographic Grey Splashes

Wintry and appropriate! Next week I start posting lace-themed things for Valentine’s day (no hearts this year) so I figured I should sneak in at least one final winter manicure.


What is cool about this mani is that I actually both polished with a holo AND stamped with a similar scattered holo. Usually I would stamp with a creme polish but I wanted to see what would happen! The end result it kinda trippy, it almost looks like I top coated with some type of linear-ish holographic? Go figure!


~ Grey holo: Emily de Molly – Crystal Crown
~ Dark grey holo: Darling Diva – Black Diamond
~ Stamp: MoYou – Fairytale 02


Of course my friend had a birthday, and she has (and loves) guinea pigs, so I had to add them on just for her! The background was just subtle enough that it worked. My nails had grown out 4-5 days at that point which is why I have so much free cuticle space (gross) but they were too cute not to post! So enjoy the bonus extra guinea pig photograph 🙂

Autumn Canopy

More fall! This was one basically just an excuse to make a whole bunch of dots. And we all know how much I love dots! The design was inspired by Snacks on Rotation although mine are much darker since I don’t have a gradient leaf stamp!


~ Brown holo: Darling Diva – Brown Diamond
~ Brown: Zoya – Louise
~ Dark red: OPI – Visions of Love
~ Red: OPI – All I Want for Christmas (is OPI)
~ Dark orange: Essie – Playing Koi
~ Orange: ULTA – Sun of a Gun
~ Red shimmer: ILNP – The Magician
~ Stamp: EdM – 07


Hope you enjoyed! Happy fall weather, and pumpkin spice everything if you are into that!

Resist in Teal

I really think these look like resistor bands! Of course the colors are all wrong, but I don’t care either way :-D. They are also wonderfully lines and therefor works for Geometry day in the 31 Day Challenge.


The design was inspired by Marine Loves Polish. I even used the same colors for the most part because A England is the best at opaque polishes!


~ Silver: Darling Diva – Diamond
~ Teal: A England – St George
~ Green: A England – Dragon
~ Moss: A England – Fotheringhay Castle


Hope you enjoyed! The rest of the posts this week are not quite as awesome but next weeks are fantastic, I promise 😀

Silver No Holo

So, this is a bit of a fail. I was sent a water-based base coat/top coat to review from the Born Pretty Store, with the intent to use it as a protective layer for foils. I have one water based top coat, but it is a mess to use and takes a very long time to dry. Needless to say, at least that one works, this one does not!


I started by painting my nails with a faintly holographic silver polish, Diamond by Darling Diva. I then top coated with my standard top coat (Seche Vite) and waited for the nails to dry.


After they were totally dry, I painted them with JNR Star Glue, which is also from the born pretty store and is basically Elmer’s glue in a nail polish bottle. It works great…as does Elmer’s glue. Once the white faded to clear, I threw on some silver vaguely disco-ball-eque foils, which looked amazing. I wish I had taken photos at this stage, since I had two perfect nails (which never happens) and most of the other nails looked pretty darn good!


I then added the Born Pretty water based base coat, and let it dry. Unlike regular top coat, the foils only shrunk and shriveled up a bit, but you could still see the design in the foil. I stamped with Sinful Colors Black on Black using plate EdM 17, and then added another layer of normal top coat. With my usual aqua base, adding regular top coat does not ruin the foil finish. This time, it did. What ever is in Born Pretty’s water base does not protect the underlying foil from being destroyed by regular top coat.


So, in the end, I have a fun silver and black geometric design, but I do not have silver holographic disco ball nails. You can find the water base at the Born Pretty Store for $3.99, but I cannot recommend it since my nails still ended up effectively foil-less!

Holly and Branches

This is by far not the end of my winter and christmas manis…this is just the last one I got done ahead of time to be able to post 😀


These were also the nails I submitted to the Nail Art Canada holiday nail art challenge, but I lost the link somehow so I didn’t get them posted until one day before the contest closed. As a result, I didn’t win, but I did somehow make top 5 for the people-who-submitted-to-vote (let’s see how that one goes!), but thanks to all of you who voted anyway!


I put these together using stamping decals for the holly and simple stamps with dots added for the branches nails. Overall quite easy!


~ Bright green: Darling Diva – Green Diamond
~ Dark green: Sinful Colors – Last Chance
~ Dark green glitter: Butter London – Jack the Lad
~ Red: Zoya – Isla
~ Stamps: BM – 302, BP – 43


Hope you enjoyed, and merry almost-Christmas!

Fall Fail

I was trying to make something like this and I failed. Whoops! I needed it to be impressive enough that I wouldn’t get in trouble wearing it to the hospital and this just doesn’t quite make it.


I should have done entirely golden leaves. I tried to mix in a few shimmery browns and yellow…and instead you can hardly tell the brown from the gold and the yellow is too faint to see! Grr.


So, fall fail. It happens! I have a few more seasonal manis that I want to put together before winter hits, hopefully they come off better! I even made stamping decals for these just so I could get the placement perfect *sigh*.


~ Red: Zoya – India
~ Gold: Essie – Good as Gold
~ Brown holo: Darling Diva – Chocolate Diamond
~ Yellow: Revlon – Hypnotic
~ Stamp: BP – 19


Live and learn! Sorry :-p. The next few fall/halloween manis are a bit better I promise!

Zig Up Zag Down

I realized that I had three different zig-zag patterns, of all of which were slightly different. I wanted to use them all in one mani! Ergo, pattern mani 🙂


Long ago, I decided that grey pairs well with pink, and I have stuck with that decision. This mani looks a bit odd as a result (a slightly darker grey…aka black…would probably have looked better) but so be it! Also, I don’t actually own a true black holo.


Regardless, zig zags! So many of them. I think I like the fine ones better than the thick ones, but they all look cool.


~ Grey holo: Darling Diva – Black Diamond
~ Light pink: ULTA – Baby Doll
~ Pink: Sinful Colors – Pink Forever
~ Dark pink: Zoya – Ciara
~ Stamps: BM – 201, BP – X06


Simple, but I hope you enjoyed!

Encased in Diamond

My nails are so tiny! And so sad. I went to New York City this past weekend to hang out with some friends, and in the process slightly broke two nails and completely devastated a third. I cut both of my hands down…but you can still see the devastation on my pointer finger here. It ripped halfway down into my nail bed 😦


Despite this terrible tear (which I am going to attempt to patch up and grow out, if I can), this mani came out quite cute! I had been looking at this diamond pattern on B. Loves Plates plate 03, but it was a tilted diamond…however, since my nails are so short I was able to apply it vertically!


The stamp has two colors on it, a lighter blue in the middle and a darker blue on either side. I thought it was rather fun!


~ Silver: Darling Diva – Diamond
~ Blue: Zoya – Ling
~ Dark blue: Maybelline – Midnight Swim
~ Stamp: B Loves Plates – 03 Mind Blown


Hope you enjoyed, despite my nubbins, and wish me luck growing out my poor destroyed pointer!! (Also to note – this is the first post that actually survived the great save failure that you guys will be reading about shortly. Yay! I am posting super out-of-order)

Tiny Nails: Grurple Dots

Grurple, also known as grey-purple, aka todays edition of tiny nails.


On these itsy bitsy nubbins, we have a base of two coats of Xi Yin by Mentality, a greyed out purple matte. It covered nicely in two coats and dried fast. I think, honestly, that Mentality won’t be back for a while if at all, but I had this polish untried so I figured I might as well get through it (and others of its ilk).


Since there isn’t much I can do with tiny tiny nails and I didn’t want to top coat (it would ruin the matte finish) I went ahead and just added dots and lines with another grey-purple creme (Muse by Sinful Colors) and a brown-grey holo (Chocolate Diamond by Darling Diva).


So, thats all for today! There are a few more days left of ‘tiny nails’ and then we can go back to real (full) nail art.


Nail Vinyl Fail

Oh god. This is AWFUL. I intended these for “pattern” day in the 31 Day Challenge but they are so so terrible that I couldn’t post them. I almost didn’t post them here. I’m cringing.


So, where to begin. I started with a grey-to-purple holo gradient using Diamond by Darling Diva and Vallis Sanguine by Gothic Gala. That went nicely. I even put down a liquid latex barrier to make clean up easy!

Then the trouble began. I pulled out the nail vinyls I was sent to review from the Born Pretty Store and started trying to pull them off their plastic backing…and they fell apart. The pattern is a checker board, and whole checks were falling off! Tearing, ripping…it was awful. I stuck the vinyls to my wrist before applying them to my nails (like I do for tape and really anything I plan to pull off my nail, just to make them a tad easier to remove.


Once on my nails, the vinyls were super stiff, and wouldn’t bend to my cuticle bed. I pushed them down hard, and tried to do an inverted purple-to-grey mani using Margo by Zoya and Sugar Cube by Salon Perfect (I started with a light grey creme, but it wasn’t opaque enough so I switched to white). The gradient went on fine…and then I went to remove the vinyls.

DISASTER. They broke into pieces as I pulled them off, some refused to come, and all this polish had seeped under the vinyl! I was using a makeup sponge, how was there seepage?! I can only imagine how awful this would have looked if I had actually painted the polish on rather than sponged it. Ugh.


What you are seeing is what it looked like after I tried to clean up the super super messy edges with a tiny brush and acetone AND two layers of top coat (because things were sticking up everywhere). I give up. Only my thumb came out even close to ok, and that was after clean-up as well. I’ll try the zig-zag pattern (it was two patterns, 5 pieces each, on one piece of plastic) but I hold very little hope for them.

In summary: Total And Complete Failure. Do not recommend. If you want to see if you can beat me at nail vinyls, you can find them for $4.59 at the Born Pretty Store. I’ve seen some pretty nail art with them, so either I got a bad batch or I am just as bad as I think I am at this! Don’t judge me for my terrible nails today 😦

Green Gradient Abstraction

So, I initially put together a different mani for Green day in the 31 Day Challenge, but I didn’t like it. It came out 80% gold! So, it has been moved to the Stripes day :-). Todays has been replaced with this green concoction which I like much better!


I started with a base of the lightest green, because Green by Nabi, although quite pretty, takes 4 coats to be opaque. Once that was dry, I gradiented on two darker green holos! My plan was to splatter on a darker green, but it turns out I have no straws in my apartment, so I settled for stamping instead!


I added a stripe of a dark green creme and then dots to finish off the design. Initially, I was going to use cremes for the whole thing, but I decided to take a page of out my book from a blue design I did a while back, so I went for holos instead!


~ Light green: Nabi – Green
~ Medium green: Darling Diva – Green Diamond
~ Dark green: A England – St George
~ Dark green creme: Sinful Colors – Last Chance
~ Black: Sinful Colors – Black on Black
~ Stamp: EdM – 03


Hope you enjoyed! Green is one of my favorite colors to work with 😀



Purple Spotted Prints

ALL THE WATER TECHNIQUES! We have waterspotting (on all the nails…yes, it is under the marble) and watermarbling! ❤ water. Even if the mani came out not as I intended, I am still proud 😀


I started with a base of Wild Violets by Revlon. This polish is from the ‘perfumed’ line, and was initially $8 (which is insane for a drug store polish). I got it on sale for $3 at ULTA. It is a pretty, if understated, dark purple with shimmer. And yes, it has a scent…I couldn’t say if it was of violets, but defiantly vaguely floral. Also not too strong, which I appreciate…I have some strongly scented polishes and they are terrible! Wild Violets took three coats to be opaque, but dried quickly. The brush is tiny, but the polish is easy to control.



Once Wild Violets was dry, I added top coat (never water-ANYTHING without top coat so you can clean off the watered-on polish if anything goes wrong! Trust me) and let that dry. I then went ahead and spotted on Malia by Zoya (yay hairspray and water!), and then marbled on some of my nails. The hope was to see the marbled line of Malia fade into the spotted purple, but it didn’t quite work out.


I accidentally brushed the side of one of my nails into the plastic cup while I was pulling it out, so I ended up adding purple flowers in the corners of all my nails. Despite my mistake, I rather like how the flowers ended up bringing the mani together! Also, purple + green makes me happy.


~ Dark purple: Revlon – Wild Violets
~ Medium purple: Zoya – Malia
~ Light purple: Sally Hansen – Lacey Lilac
~ Light green: Darling Diva – Green Diamond
~ Dark green: Zoya – Holly


Hope you enjoyed! There are more water-based manis coming, but this was by far the most ambitious 😀

Blue Diamonds

With my new oval nails, I can finally pretend to be lacqerstyle! I am not NEARLY as talented as her, so I am sticking to some more simple manis (aka no insane flowers). Even then though, my lines are about 300% thicker than hers, but I still like how this one came out! Inspired by lacquerstyle’s blue diamonds.


This mani took a bit of time (mostly from having to paint so many thin lines) but it came out rather nice for all that effort! I am glad that I have so many blue holo polishes.


~ Light blue: Nfu Oh – #65
~ Light blue scattered: Milani – Cyberspace
~ Medium blue: Darling Diva – Blue Diamond
~ Medium dark blue: Nabi – Navy Blue
~ Dark blue: A England – Tristam


I am NOT happy with Nfu Oh though…it is the first expensive polish I ever bought (at $12, back in 2012, before I ever got into blogging and could barely keep the polish off my entire nail bed), and it is now a formal disaster. It goes on patchy and then CRACKS! I have no idea what to do…the bottle is only about 1/3 used up, but it is mostly unusable. I had to paint over it with a similar-colored Milani polish just to make the whole thing lie flat! Not cool Nfu Oh, not cool.


Despite my feelings of betray towards Nfu Oh, holo polishes are fun! And I will shortly have a bunch more in RAINBOW COLORS (yay!) from Mentality to show you guys! Tonight, I am gonna try to water marble. With holos. Life is awesome!

Burgundy Floral

I’m leaving you lovely readers with something to look at over the weekend! This is a bit of simple floral art that I’ve put together around India by Zoya, inspired by kimiko7878.


India is a deep red which leans pink, with ample shimmery glitter (mostly gold) running through it. It covers nicely in two thin coats, with perfect control. This polish manages to be elegant while being fun! Well done Zoya 🙂


I didn’t feel like stamping over the dark color (which is my normal go-to on swatch posts) so I decided to make a floral accent nail instead! I still need to work on my flowers, but this isn’t terrible.



~ Red glitter: Zoya – India
~ Dark red: OPI – Visions of Love
~ Dark pink: Zoya – Ciara
~ Pink: Love & Beauty – Pink
~ Dark green glitter: Butter London – Jack the Lad
~ Light green glitter: Darling Diva – Green Diamond
~ White: Sinful Colors – Snow me White


Hope you enjoyed! Two more Zoya swatches + art next week before we get back to your regularly scheduled random bits of art!

Sleet and Snow

It is time for snowflakes! I just went ahead and grabbed two holo polishes that I don’t play with enough, and a whole bunch of Bundle Monster stamps. Some of them worked better than others…but still, shiny! I love winter manis 🙂 (so now we have two days of partial Bundle Monster fails)


The raindrop (sleet? odd lines?) stamp works…ok. It isn’t great but it does show up. Oddly, the single snowflake stamp is on the same plate and it is barely etched. I had to really work to get it to transfer! This is unfortunate since the whole-nail snowflakes from a different plate stamp beautifully but they aren’t NEARLY as much fun as that one stunning snowflake! Oy.



~ Black holo: Zoya – Storm
~ Grey holo: Darling Diva – Black Diamond
~ White: Sinful Colors – Snow me White
~ Stamps: Bundle Monster – 319, 323


I need to bring back those Darling Diva holos, they are awesome! I kinda forgot that they were one-coaters. Enjoy! Winter manis for the win!

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