Advent Calendar Day 16 – Inspired by a Christmas Song

This one was kind of a no-brainer for me.  It was inspired by my favorite Christmas song, that I have loved since I was a kid: “I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas.”  It’s such a cute song, and I thought it would be much more creative and interesting than if i had gone with my other idea: “Silver and Gold.”

I want a hippopotamus for Christmas

The base is Essie Mojito Madness.  The hippo is all polish (no acrylic paints).  Let me know if you want to know about a specific color.  I really like how this turned out, especially since I am terrible at drawing faces.

And here’s the song.  Isn’t it amazing? 🙂

P.S. Because of my love for this song, I have received more than a couple of hippo toys over the years haha

Advent Calendar Day 15 – Something Cozy

I actually had a bit of a hard time coming up with something for today’s post.  For me, cozy means a cup of tea in front of the fire with a blanket and a book or some knitting (if you follow me on Instagram, you’ve probably seen some of my knitting).  So I decided to attempt something I’ve been wanting to try for a while – knit nails!  I really wanted to use this stamping plate (isn’t it awesome?), but it’s not here yet.  So I attempted some freehand “knitted” nails.  I kind of love them.


After several attempts, I discovered that the best way to do these is to paint the lines in between the stitches, rather than the stitches themselves.  So I started with a base of OPI My Boyfriend Scales Walls and then painted on the lines with Orly Mirror Mirror.  What is cozier than a white winter knit?

I have to say, this is one of those times where these look a million times better from a normal distance, rather than a close up picture.  So take a few steps back to fully enjoy the effect of these.  Also, try not to focus on the lines, focus on the white parts so you can actually see the “stitches.”


I am so glad I gave these a try!  I’ve been planning them in my head for months, but was never brave enough to do them.  They did take forever, though, and I am crazy excited to get that stamping plate!  No joke, I will probably use it like every day for a few weeks.  Sorry 🙂

Edit: Today the nail blogging community is doing white nails in remembrance of the tragedy in Newtown, CT yesterday.  Since these are white, I thought I dedicate them to children who lost their lives yesterday, and to their families and friends whose lives will never be the same.  Please don’t make this political (at least on this blog) – just be content with remembering the innocent lives that were lost.

nails for newtown

Advent Calendar Day 14 – Glitter

You all know I’m not a huge glitter fan, but since I do have at least three glitters that are definitely “Christmas glitters,” I was actually excited to use them for this challenge.  I couldn’t really get a good picture of this (sorry!), but it looked great in real life.  Kind of reminded me of Victorian Christmas colors.

christmas glitter

For the base of these, I used OPI Thanks a Windmillion.  The glitter is F4 Polish Miracle on 34th Street (named after one of my favorite Christmas movies).  I probably should have stopped at one coat, but I wanted to do a gradient, so here it is.

christmas glitter

What is your favorite “holiday” glitter?

Advent Calendar Day 13 – Snow

I as originally going to do some stamped snowflakes for today, but then this idea popped into my head and I had to give it a go.  I really love how these turned out!  They’re not quite as good as they were in my head, but I think they’re pretty good for me.

Even though today is actually really cold, for Southern California, it’s at least 25 degrees above snowing.  Since I’ve spent the past two winters in Boston, I think I’m really going to miss snow this year – it’s just so pretty!

snow scene

I started with a few coats of OPI My Pointe Exactly, a super sheer gray jelly.  The snow is mostly OPI Alpine Snow, with a bit of Orly Mirror Mirror mixed in in a few parts.  The trees are Sonia Kashuk Emerald City, with black mixed in for shading.

snow scene

I can’t believe how fast Christmas is creeping up this year!  I’ve bought most of my gifts and the house is decorated, but it still doesn’t feel like Christmas yet.

Advent Calendar Day 12 – Family

Anyone else think this day of the challenge was insanely difficult?  I spent at least a week trying to come up with something for today.  I finally decided on trying to depict some of my family’s Christmas traditions.  I used tape to make the designs so they’re kind of simple and graphic.  These actually looked really good glossy, but my camera hated them, so I had to mattify them for pictures.

family christmas traditions

Some of the Christmas traditions I tried to depict were decorating the tree together, opening presents on Christmas Eve so we can sleep in on Christmas (now that my youngest sister is too old for Santa), driving around the neighborhood to look at Christmas lights (the middle finger is supposed to be a house), and going to Christmas Eve mass with the whole family before dinner at my grandma’s house.  (I did the tree twice because I really liked it and couldn’t think of anything else.)

I used Essie Going Incognito and OPI Goldeneye.  These colors are awesome together!

What are some holiday traditions your family celebrates?

Advent Calendar Day 11 – Gifts

Today’s theme was gifts.  I really like how these came out.  I started with alternating red and green nails in various shades, then stamped patterns on them to make them look more like wrapping paper, and then freehanded the bows.  I really like the colors together.  It’s definitely Christmassy.


The colors I used are Essie Size Matters, Essie Mint Candy Apple, China Glaze Merry Berry, China Glaze Glittering Garland, OPI Cuckoo for this Color, OPI Alpine Snow, OPI Don’t Mess with OPI, OPI I’m Not Really a Waitress, and Sephora by OPI Mash Up.


This year, I think I’m getting a new camera from “Santa,” and I am pretty excited about it!  I will finally be able to take nice nail pictures!

What’s the best holiday gift you’ve ever received?

Also, it’s snowing on the blog! How cool is that?

Advent Calendar Day 10 – Lights

To be honest, I think this mani is kind of “meh.”  It’s not bad, but I’m not super excited about it either.  I feel like I would like it a lot more if someone else had done it haha.  But, it’s ok, and I didn’t have the time or ideas to attempt something else, so here it is.

I just went with basic Christmas lights for this one.  I’ve always loved the old-fashioned multi-colored ones, so that’s what I went with.  For some reason, when it comes to Christmas (and a lot of other things, now that I think about it), I always prefer the older, simpler, more nostalgic versions of things.

christmas lights

I used OPI My Boyfriend Scales Walls, Sonia Kashuk Emerald City, Zoya Pippa, China Glaze Man Hunt, Essie Snap Happy, and Essie Pretty Edgy.

What’s your favorite type of holiday lights?  Blue or white icicles?  The giant multi-colored ones?  The red and white candy-cane striped ones?

P.S. Check out my new Christmassy background!