Sunday, April 28, 2013

Ikat Nail Tutorial

I love ikat. I want to wear it on everything... it is so fresh and summery! I have had shellac manicures for the past few months now and decided to save some money and paint my nails myself. I thought I would give the ikat pattern manicure a try and it turned out quite nicely. Its a nice manicure to try because you don't need the steadiest of hands... the pattern looks complicated but it really is not! You can make the strokes choppy and still achieve the desired effect. Here is how I did this: 

Materials Used
Essie Nail Polish First Base Base Coat
Essie Nail Polish in Avenue Maintain (blue)
Essie Nail Polish in Tart Deco (coral)
Kiss Nail Art Paint in Black 
Kiss Nail Art Paint in White
Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat

After buffing my nails and trying to even them out from months of shellac manicures, I used the base coat and painted my nails. I then applied two coats of Essie Avenue Maintain. I am the sloppiest nail painter so you can see in these pictures some of the polish extended to the sides of my nails. I am also impatient and hate waiting for polish to fully dry (a whole 20 minutes!) in between coats. This turned out very nicely and I love this color! It is very summery and I would totally sport this alone... this is perfect for the pool or beach! But let's continue....

 Once my blue coats were dry, I used the Kiss Nail Art polish in white. I roughly painted on a diamond shape on my nails, some nails containing only half of a diamond. The edges were very rough; you can see each stroke. I thought this added to the graphic effect of the ikat print.

I bought the Kiss Nail Art polish at my local Walgreens because the sales person said the polish has a very thin applicator brush -- this was exactly what I wanted for this design! And this polish came with the black shown above, a silver glitter polish AND stencils for your nails. All for about $7.99. Pretty good! These polishes smelled pretty strongly but really had a lot of pigment for a mid-line product. I am pretty impressed overall!

Next, I took my Essie Tart Deco color and dotted a bit of coral into the center of the "diamonds." This was also roughly done and not perfect. As you can see, some of the shapes are more circular, while others are more oblong. Again, this does not have to be perfect as it adds to the graphic effect of the pattern. 

Next, I outlined the diamonds in short, choppy strokes with the Kiss Nail Art polish in black. This was the scariest part of deciding to do this manicure to me because I am so sloppy when I paint. However, this turned out to be the easier part! It is almost as if you can't mess up; it just adds to the pattern's effect! I filled in the lines on the boarder of the white "diamonds" and overlapped a little bit of the black over the white. I added a bit of black to the center of the coral because it was looking too empty without it. 

Lastly, I finished off with a top coat of Seche Vite once I was sure all of my polish was dry and cleaned up the edges with a bit of nail polish remover and a Q-tip because I have such an unsteady hand. Surprisingly, my right hand (my dominant hand) looked fantastic too -- this manicure seems to be foolproof! I am looking forward to teaching tomorrow and seeing my student's reactions (they have gotten extremely excited about nail art less intricate than this in the past). I will definitely be doing this again all summer. 

Good luck and happy painting :) 

Love, Erica

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