Sparkle-icious Nails

Dec 31, 2012

Hello hello!

I've managed to catch some nasty cold that's going around so I spent the weekend between my bed & the couch. Mom bought me some meds yesterday so I'm feeling a bit better today, but still fairly sick. Won't get to spend tonight with my besties, but hopefully I'll see them soon :)

I realize this post might be a bit late, but I wanted to share some festive & sparkly nails with you in case you still need some ideas for NYE tonight! I used Essie All In One Basecoat & Sally Hansen Insta-Dri topcoat with all of these mani's. (If you haven't discovered quick drying topcoats, you need to go buy one asap!)

This mani might be my favourite of the bunch. It was just SO sparkly in person! This is several coats of Essie Beyond Cozy with one coat of China Glaze Fairy Dust (a holographic sparkle polish) for extra fun :) With glitters like this, you'll need at least 2 coats of a good topcoat because they tend to 'eat' topcoat and lose the nice shiny finish topcoat gives. And no one wants dull nails on New Year's Eve!

If you like a good navy, then you need to find a bottle of China Glaze Midnight Mission. It looks ok in the bottle, but on the nails it is so much prettier! I layered Essie Stroke of Brilliance over it to add some extra glitter :) The lighter shimmer from MM matched the glitter in SoB so well! Yay for happy accidents haha

If you want something a bit softer and more understated, then go for a nice cream or white polish and layer a subtle glitter over top! I showed this mani last week, but that was an Instagram shot and this one shows the pretty holographic sparkle a lot better :) This is 4 or 5 coats of Sally Hansen Mousseline with 2 coats of China Glaze Fairy Dust. You'll definitely want to use a quick drying topcoat with this one (I use Sally Hansen Insta-Dri, but there's tons out there) so the 8 layers of polish don't take hours to dry!

This gorgeous combo is what's currently on my nails, but I'm going to have to change it later because I just managed to get a large chip on my right hand. This is 3 coats of a really beautiful Color Club wine/maroon/oxblood colour that I don't know the name of (but there's tons of similar ones out there), with China Glaze 5 Golden Rings & some loose gold glitter on the moons. Won't lie, it was a little fiddly to do the moons, but it was definitely worth it. I love the effect it adds to a previously plain red nail!

What are your plans for tonight?? (Hopefully more exciting than mine, which currently involve my couch & Netflix haha) And what's on your nails?? Love getting new recommendations & ideas :)

See you next year!!


Christmas Week

Dec 28, 2012

Good morning!

Hope you've had a lovely week :) I have been laying low, enjoying time with family & friends and eating way too much food haha Just wanted to pop in and share a few photos from the week :)
 This package came on Monday and it was the most wonderful early Christmas present :) I ordered Paolo Roversi Series 1 & Rivoli, and then Leigh always includes a 5x7 in every order (this one is Flatterie). Last year when I ordered some prints from Leigh they didn't come until almost New Years, so it was exciting to get them before Christmas this year! Cannot wait to get them framed & hung :D

 Christmas nails! This was a combo of a really soft cream (Sally Hansen Mousseline) & a holographic sparkly topcoat (China Glaze Fairy Dust). It gave the softest sparkle and looked so pretty in the light!

I received several books for Christmas (including Mr Penumbra's 24 Hour Bookstore, which I've already finished haha) and I'm so excited to make my way through this one. The Elements of Style is such a classy looking book, I think I'm going to have to leave it on display when I'm not reading it!

I think this picture makes me smile more than any other one I've taken recently.  So many things I love in one photo! A real fire (courtesy of my brother :) ), good book (Mr Penumbra's), cozy pants & socks, and a little kitten peaking out from under the stool :) All it's missing is a cup of tea!

We had a green Christmas this year (our grass was actually still green it's been so mild), but we woke up to a slight dusting on Boxing Day and then woke up to this yesterday! If only it had been 2 days earlier, eh? haha

I hope you've had a wonderful Christmas week!


Friday Favourites, Holiday Edition

Dec 21, 2012

Good morning!

I haven't done a Friday Favourites in a while, but I decided to bring it back today :)

Love love love these clay tags Lindsay made. I attempted to make some but I must have had a bad batch of clay because it was SO tough to work with!

via Little House Blog

Love these 'resolutions' from Mackenzie. I actually saw it on Pinterest before I realized it was from her, but I think it's a really great list of things to do next year.

via Design Darling
And some totally gorgeous holiday nails from Amelia! Think I'm going to have to try something similar today for a Christmas party tonight :)

via Duckling to Swan
In case you're up for some deep reading, this article about finding your purpose is an interesting read.

And don't forget to enter the Leigh Viner giveaway! Someone's going to win a fabulous print!! :D

Have a wonderful weekend!


Emerald Love

Dec 20, 2012

Good morning!

I'm kind of excited that Pantone chose emerald as the colour of the year for 2013. I think it's a gorgeous colour and there's so much you can do with it!

In case you're still on the fence about emerald, I've pulled some beautiful inspirations & a few things to incorporate into your space :)

Emerald Statement Necklace
Emerald City Print
Green Silk Pillow
Vintage Glassware
Emerald Earrings
Do you like Pantone's choice for this new year?


Holiday Glam (on a budget)

Dec 19, 2012

Good morning!

I've been seeing a lot of fabulous holiday outfit ideas around the interwebs lately, probably because Christmas is less than a week away (!!!!! I'm not even done my shopping yet, oops!)

But let's just be honest, we don't all have the budgets to get completely decked out in J.Crew or Kate Spade.

Enter: Forever 21. I love this store so much. And I miss being 10 minutes away from one. Thank goodness they ship to Canada or I'd really be in trouble haha

I am so in love with that dress. Look how cute the back is!! But if you need it to be a little more classy, just throw the coat on and you're set. Lots of sparkle, a little leopard, and of course, some mint nails :)

And how much does that entire ensemble cost, you may be wondering? 150.46 (CAD). For everything you see up there. And you probably already have a couple of the pieces already, so it would be even less! Total win. And everything can be mixed up and worn again for other occasions - double win.

What store(s) are you hitting up for your holiday look(s) this year??


ps, don't forget to enter to win a Leigh Viner print!!

My Leigh Viner Story + Giveaway!

Dec 18, 2012

Good morning!

I am more excited for this post that possibly any other post I've ever posted. Bit dramatic? Maybe, but I'm still ridiculously excited!!

Before I get to the exciting part, I have a story to tell you first.
Twilight Blue
In the summer of 2009, I discovered Etsy & the beautiful art of Leigh Viner. It was Twilight Blue that really captured my attention & love. In one of my Visual Studies classes that fall, we had to share an inspiration, and I chose to share her work. I remember sharing Twilight Blue & Cricket, and a few others as well.

I stalked TB for months & months & months. I remember it disappeared once and I totally panicked & thought it was gone for good. But I contacted Leigh & she assured me it was still available. I asked for it for Christmas that year but it wasn't under the tree. (In fact, TB & I wouldn't meet until December 2011.)

Silence & Noise
I started my blog on January 1, 2011, and one of my first posts was about Leigh's work. I think I must have commented on her blog (which I'd been following since I discovered her work) and told her I had featured her on my blog & she stopped by and became my first follower! That was a pretty exciting day.

31 Rue Chanel
In November of 2011, I made my first purchase! The day they arrived in the mail, I was like a 5 year old at Christmas - SO excited. Twilight Blue & 31 Rue Chanel now live in my room :D (soon to be joined by Paolo Roversi Series 1 & Rivoli)

In January of 2012, I became Leigh's intern. She had mentioned something about wanting an intern in a blog post, so I emailed her and put myself forward, and she agreed! I think my prof thought it was a little odd, but I didn't care one bit. Having the chance to work with Leigh was just so wonderful.

Paolo Roversi Series 1
And now, here we are today.

Before Show
It is a completely surreal full-circle moment for me. I had no clue 3 years ago that I would have worked with Leigh, owned several of her prints (2 more are on their way to me!!), and be friends with an artist whose work I admire SO much. I am one blessed girl.

About A Pearl
So, onto the exciting part of this post!!!! One lucky person will win any standard sized print of their choice! You can check out her shop here, and enter below! There are 8 ways you can enter and the giveaway is open for one full week, until Dec 25. I'll announce the winner right after :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!!


No words

Dec 17, 2012

I had a wonderful & exciting giveaway planned for today, but I want today to be a day of silence for those lost in Newtown. Words cannot express my sadness for what happened.

Go hug those you love and never forget to tell them how much you love them.
via Pinterest
Our thoughts & prayers are with you Sandy Hook.

O Christmas Tree

Dec 11, 2012

Good morning!

Our tree always goes up around the beginning of the month, but this year since I was sick, we didn't get it up until my birthday.

Now, this might make you think that it takes a lot of effort on our part. But we have an artificial tree, have since I was a baby. There was one year we had a real tree and both me and my brother were very pleased to go back to the fake stuff. This isn't the same tree we had when I was a kid. We got a new one 6 or 7 years ago. Comes in three parts, with branches and pinecones built in, and is pre lit. Plug the top into the middle, middle into the bottom, and bottom into the wall. Done.

It sat like that for a day, and then we got the ornaments up. This is my favourite part :)

None of our ornaments match. Very few were bought at the same time. For the most part, it is a collection of many years worth of ornaments and unpacking them from the box & finding our favourites to put up brings so many lovely memories. We have some from dear friends, some we made, and some just because we liked them.

But this year we have a kitten. Who thinks this wonderful tree is just brimming with fun toys to play with. So the bottom third was filled with the unbreakable/non-precious ones. See that guy in the bottom right corner below? Never stood a chance.

This is what I came down to the morning after we put all the ornaments up. A bare bottomed tree. And if you look closely, you'll see a little white face & 2 glowing eyes from within the tree haha

Quite proud of her handiwork, that one.

Hope your tree fares better than ours :)


A Deal For You!

Dec 10, 2012

Hello hello!

Hope you all had a lovely weekend! I wanted to pop in today and let you know about a super deal in case you're still in need of some Christmas ideas :)

If you haven't heard of blurb before, then you are seriously missing out! They allow you to create some truly beautiful books full of your photos. And they even offer Facebook & Instagram albums, which I just think is SO cool. I'm planning to put all my Instagram photos from this year into a book so I can look back on my year in Instagram :)

But, can't forget the important part of this post:

Blurb has kindly offered you guys a 25% discount! All you have to do is use the code GIFTIDEA at checkout!

The discount is only available until Dec 12, but if you miss it make sure to sign up for their newsletter, as they often run discounts of 10-20% :)

Let me know if you've ever ordered from blurb or if you haven't, what you'd like to order!!


Twenty Two

Dec 3, 2012

Hello hello!

It was an exciting day around here - I turned 22!

It was a fairly quiet day around here though; I caught some nasty bug last week and haven't felt quite right in days. Feeling much better today but I'm still a little off. There's nothing like being sick though to make you really take it easy - started & finished a book over the weekend and thoroughly enjoyed spending most of the weekend in my pjs :)
Last month, Michaela posted 22 things she believed in on her birthday and I thought it was such a wonderful idea I had to steal it :)

I am so incredibly thankful for:

1. My dear sweet family. No one can make me laugh as much as my brother and I wouldn't be the person I am without my mama. Love you both to the moon & back.

2. That I have a Heavenly Father that loves me even when I don't deserve it.

3. Some of the bestest friends a girl can have. S, K & R, you are all beyond wonderful and I am so blessed to have you in my life.

4. To live in this wonderful country of Canada...

5. ...and to have all the opportunities that are available here.

6. The beauty that surrounds me daily. Glittery polish, happy faces in hot chocolate, & winter wonderlands.

7. To artists & designers who inspire with every stroke & create magic with the simplest of items.

8. The wonderful & endless colours God created for our world.

9. Chocolate :)

10. Soft kittens who love to cuddle. 

11. Words & grammar and the stories they tell

12.  To be able to read & learn whatever I chose.

13. Photos that capture a whole slew of memories in that one shot.

14. A warm home & bed to sleep in.

15. My health. Even though we all catch the occasional bug, I have no long term health concerns.

16. For my education & the ability to complete it.

17. The ability to work on things that I love.

18. My real & 'adopted' families, love you all.

19. Creativity and the constant inspirations this world holds

20. The internet (and computers). Emails, Skype, Photoshop, Instagram, Pinterest, none of that would exist without those inventions.

21. Simple pleasures like nail polish, hot tea and warm fires on cold nights.

22. And you! For stopping by & reading, for leaving sweet comments, and for the wonderful community that is blogging. Thank YOU!

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