Tuesday, July 12, 2011

China girl - a stamping n00b's journey

I got another opportunity to try out a nailart item from the Born Pretty Store, free of choice - the lovely woman I've been in contact with offered me to pick something more expensive, but I already had my eyes and heart set at a specific stamping plate: the Chinese motifs of m66. What else would you expect from someone who grew up in the land of minimalism?

This is identical to the Konad m66 plate, but I'm fairly certain that this one is what is usually referred to as a fauxnad plate. I couldn't care less, since this one works well.

This is what I used:

Image plate, rubber stamp, and plastic card (instead of razor scraper - not always a good idea to use those, I have been told). Of course my card is red and indicates certain cultural preferences.

Now, one of the reasons I wanted to try this plate out, is that I have to date been scared shit of trying large stamping images. Do you remember my first attempt? I did smaller images then, afraid I would just ruin everything if I tried anything larger. But the m66 is perfect that way, it contains both larger and smaller images, so I thought that if I suck badly enough to be unable to do the larger ones, I can just surrender to the smaller.

No matter what, I was eager to try this time. First, I did a sloppy attempt at my existing manicure, the Kleancolor I showed you yesterday - Fashionista.

Rather cute, I used another Kleancolor for the stamping, Military Green. I like it, but I'm still no van Gogh when it comes to this method...

Though, do check out the little Chinese peasant (?) I fell in love with - I placed her (?) on my pinky nail:

Unfortunately I managed to chop off her legs. Sorry sweetie!

Next, I wanted to try another Chinese style thingy I had wanted to since I saw it done by the fantastic Solveig at Nailin' It! - Chinese china.

Not terribly well executed - I'm not a stamping goddess like Solveig - this one gave me a terrible headache. First: stamping on a fresh manicure is time consuming. Second: stamping on a fresh white manicure is even more time consuming. Third: stamping on a white manicure just isn't very forgiving when it comes to mistakes. I don't know how many times I had to redo some of the nails, which is the reason why I've used two different white shades for a base here. I wanted to do all nails with the Essie I had picked out, Marshmallow, but it took forever to dry and I was impatient and ruined both the index and the stamping-wise difficult pinky. I redid those in one of the typical Color Club Halloween mini whites, which was a lot more stark white than the squishy Marshmallow. I used China Glaze Calypso Blue for the stamping.

What can I say? I suck at this. Look at the pinky! It's terrible. Not only does it remind me of the stapings of a wellknown blogger who succeeds with her stampings in only about 5 % of the photos I've seen, but also, that particular nail is so soft and getting the entire image on is almost impossible!

Well, I'm not known for giving up that fast, so I tried another idea I had for the true Chinese feeling - the more sultry kind: gold on red.

Still no Vermeer when it comes to the stamping technique. This one looks decent in reality, but not so much in these photos. I used the matte Revlon Ruby Ribbon as a base, and stamped with a warm (unnamed) gold from Sonia Kashuk I once got in a sweet giveaway from Kelly at Vampy Varnish. I have very few gold polishes and this one was actually the most opaque - or least sheer.

This is the most true to what it looks like in the today cloudy Stockholm area:

Notice the little butterfly?

However, I could of course not leave out the other cute images on this plate, so I did a couple of them on my very secretive thumb nails:

Water lily, arbitrarily stamped...

And look! Once again my favourite, the little Chinese peasant. This time with feet almost intact!

This was fun. I think I'll use this plate again. Also, I think I'll be getting more plates. I know I suck, but you know what they say: practice makes perfect.

I want to squeeze in so many youtube videos for pun in this post, but I won't, so I'll just post links if you're really interested in the mental soundtrack during my work:

T'Pau - China in your hand - how many of you were born when this was a hit?
David Bowie - China girl - too obvious.
Opeth - Porcelain Heart - for those of you who are like me.

I have also constantly been thinking of the China Palace, a fun lustschloss near the royal palace of Drottningholm, outside Stockholm. It was originally a gift from king Adolf Fredrik to his queen Lovisa Ulrika, at her birthday in 1753.

Please note that there is a 10 % off coupon from the Born Pretty Store in the sidebar to the right, if you would want to try these images at a more than fair cost.

Do you know what would really disappoint me now? If someone told me the images on this plate are actually Japanese.

Swedish expression of the day:
övning ger färdighet practice makes perfect
I really hope so.


  1. I think I have that stamp! LOL Wow, I haven't done Konad in so long. It was so intensive I just couldn't do it. Never quite got into doing it correctly. You make me want to pick it up again.

  2. I love the designs on this plate! I think I'm going to have to buy it.. and probably stick with the fauxnad since its cheaper and has the same image!

  3. So cute! I just started stamping and it's so fun! I love the red and gold together!

  4. Synes du har vært ganske så dyktig,jeg! :) Og jeg tror jeg vet hvem den velkjente bloggeren er. :lol:

  5. I love all the designs & the colors you chose .

  6. I think you did great! I have only just ordered my starter kit after using a friends a couple times and watching bloggers on line and lemming a system for a long time! Glad to see you are not using the Konad polishes. That is something I don't want to have to buy. The designs on this plate are really great! I have to look into these - cheaper is better for me! As far as if these are Chinese or Japanese - I think it's a toss up. Both art cultures use the bamboo. The flower branch is definitely a cherry blossom which is linked to Japan more than China. But the little person looks Chinese to me. I really love the blue and white (with the hard to dry Marshmellow Essie - it's softer and my fav white). Some blogger who is great at nail art free hand (forgetting now who it was) recently did a blue and white rendition on Danish pottery blue/white style. It, like yours looks really crisp and really pro. But as said, I like all your color combos. Keep stamping. I am told it takes patience and just keep working at it. I would never guess from looking at this, you are sketchy about stamping at all. You fooled me! Thanks for that great photo of the China Palace. It's beautiful. Is it open for tours or a private residence still?

  7. Sooooo pretty, I loved the blue and white one. I'm going to have to buy this plate.

  8. Hjälp vilka snygga mönster, verkligen porslinsresultat...

  9. I really like the blue and white stamping mani. It reminds me of the china my grandma has. It's nice to see other people have a bit of a trouble with the whole stamping system. I see everyone else doing it and theirs looks so nice and perfect but when I do mine they seem smeary? Is that even a word. I can't seem to get them to stamp without smearing a little.


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