Station Eleven

It’s been a while since I’ve done a book-inspired post. I’ve actually been reading a lot lately, and fell in love with Emily St. John Mandel’s Station Eleven. It’s a beautifully written story about the aftermath of a flu virus that wipes out 99% of the world’s population. It’s one of those books that has something in it for everyone – a little bit sci-fi, a little bit family drama, and even a bit Shakespearean. If you haven’t read it yet, I would highly recommend it!

station eleven

These nails were inspired by Station Eleven‘s gorgeous cover. They’re kind of a take on galaxy nails with less sponging and more stars. They didn’t quite turn out how I’d imagined, but I still really like them!

station eleven

I started with a base of OPI Road House Blues and then sponged on a little bit of Essie Suite Retreat. The stars and letters were done with an ivory acrylic paint. I’ve been really liking acrylic paint for detail work – especially lettering – because it’s a bit smoother to work with.

station eleven

Have you read Station Eleven? Let me know what you think in the comments!

And don’t forget to add me as a friend on Goodreads to keep up with what books I’m reading (I’d love to hear/see your recommendations, too!). And if you’re interested in books, check out my other blog: Adventures of a Bibliophile.

Jurassic Park

I’ve finally got another book-inspired post!  I’ve actually been reading a lot lately (outside of my medieval literature class), and recently read Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton.  I’ve loved the movies since I was a kid, so I thought I’d finally read the book.  I actually really enjoyed it!  I’ve also been experimenting with acrylic paints in my nail art, and I find they really allow me to paint more detail, which is perfect for this design.  And, bonus: I used two untried polishes in this design.

jurassic park

The black base is OPI Who are You Calling Bossy?, which is an awesome glossy black creme.  The red on the sign and as the background for the t-rex is Essie A-list, which I surprisingly hadn’t tried yet.  The plants were painted with Color Club Wild Cactus and Color Club Twiggie (another untried).  I used white acrylic paint for the Jurassic Park sign and black acrylic paint for all the dinosaurs (I hope you can tell there are dino silhouettes in front of the ferns).

jurassic park

They’re not perfect, but I am kind of in love with these.  Definitely got a lot of practice with details in this design.  I am especially happy with how the t-rex skeleton (from the cover of the book – and the Jurassic Park sign in the movie) turned out.

jurassic park

Anyone else super excited for the Jurassic World movie coming out this summer?  I can’t wait!  I might have to do some more dino nail art for the occasion.

Golden Son

Time for some more book inspired nail art!  I”d been looking forward to Golden Son by Pierce Brown for almost a year, and it absolutely did not disappoint.  It’s the sequel to Red Rising (check out my Red Rising inspired nail art here).  I wanted to do these for the book release on the 6th, but that was a busy week and I didn’t have time.  I did end up going to the book launch party in Hollywood, though, so it was totally worth it!

golden son

On my thumb I painted a golden laurel (which is on the cover of the book), the index finger is the gold sigil (in the book, society is divided into color classes), my middle finger is the symbol of the Sons of Ares (the rebels), my ring finger is a gold/red/black watercolor/gradient, and my pinky is the red sigil.

golden son

I used OPI Who Are You Calling Bossy? (black), OPI Rolling in Cashmere (gold), and OPI Coca Cola Red (red, obviously).

golden son

These honestly turned out a lot better than I was expecting!  I’ve been slowly investing in more good quality brushes from the art store, and they are really helpful for detail work.

Golden Son was just as good as, if not even better than, Red Rising, which is one of my favorite books ever.  If you haven’t read it yet, I’d highly recommend it!  I’ve read the hard copy of each book as well as listened to the audiobooks, and if your more of an audiobook person (0r if you have a long commute) the narrator does an incredible job.  Definitely worth a listen.

And don’t forget to, add me as a friend on goodreads.com!

The Night Circus

Time for another book-inspired post!  Despite the fact that my literary theory class is totally kicking my ass, I’ve somehow been reading books like crazy.  I’ve actually really been enjoying reading as I go through grad school, because even though I’m only two classes in, I feel like I have a better appreciation of well-written books.  One of my recent favorites is The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern.  I knew from the first page that I would like this book, and I couldn’t put it down!

the night circus

The book takes place mainly in a black and white circus, so I tried to portray that and a few important elements of the book.  From thumb to pinky: the name of the circus – Le Cirque des Revês (the circus of dreams), the two of hearts, a clock (nowhere near as elaborate as the one in the book), a single rose, and a tree.  All of the nails have a distorted checkerboard pattern in the background (though the white-on-white ones are a bit hard to see).  I absolutely loved these, and kept them on for a few days even though I didn’t have the time or energy to do my right hand.  I think they turned out really well!

the night circus

I used all OPI polishes for this manicure: Alpine Snow, Black Onyx, My Boyfriend Scales Walls, and Coca-Cola Red.

the night circus

I know The Night Circus has been super popular for a while, so if you’ve read it, let me know what your thoughts are in the comments below!  And as always, you can add me as a friend on Goodreads (it’s like Facebook for books).  Happy reading!

Neverwhere

Finally another book-inspired post!  I just finished reading my first Neil Gaiman book, Neverwhere, and it was incredible!  Definitely a unique book.  Kind of like a modern Alice in Wonderland.  So, naturally, I had to do some Neverwhere nail art.

neverwhere

I used Essie Going Incognito as the base for all the nails, and Sinful Colors Chick Chick to paint the designs.  It’s slight sheerness really worked for this design.

neverwhere

The designs I chose are (from thumb to pinky): the title of the book, a door, Islington (the name of one of the characters), Mind the Gap (which was my favorite scene in the book), and a key.

neverwhere

I really enjoyed reading Nevermore, and I’m moving on to The Graveyard Book next.  I’ve been on a huge reading kick lately, so any and all book recommendations are welcome!  And as always, you can add me as a friend on Goodreads (it’s like Facebook for books).  Happy reading!

Paper Towns

Today’s nail art was inspired by one of my new favorite books, Paper Towns by John Green.  I honestly loved this book almost as much as The Fault In Our Stars.  It was so good, I actually found myself wishing I was back in high school, so that I could be as awesome as Margot or Quentin.

paper towns

I used OPI I Sing in Color on my index and pinky fingers because nail polish “so red it was almost black” was kind of a thing in the book.  My thumb and middle fingers are supposed to be maps (they didn’t turn out quite as I’d pictured), with the “paper town” of Agloe marked on my thumb.  My ring finger is grass, because that’s also kind of a thing in the book – specifically Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass.  All the polishes used are OPI, Essie, and China Glaze.

paper towns

If you liked The Fault In Our Stars, or you’re looking for a really good (YA) novel, I would absolutely recommend Paper Towns.  Or pretty much anything by John Green.  I think I’m going to read Looking for Alaska next.

If you like to read, add me as a friend on goodreads.com!  And if, like me, you have a long commute (or would just like to do things like painting your nails while reading), I would definitely recommend joining audible.com – I listened to most of Paper Towns on the way to and from work – until I got to a point where I had to know what happened before I went to bed, so I moved to the paper version because it was quicker.

P.S. Sorry for the lack of posts lately, there has been a lot going on – I turned 25, watched my little sister graduate high school, and I start grad school on Monday!  I have also been completely redecorating my bedroom, which has actually been pretty time consuming (especially with all the overtime I’ve been logging at work).  I’m considering posting some pics when I’m done, so let me know if that’s something you’d like to see!

Mortal Instruments

Today I have another post in my book-inspired series for you!  I’m a little late to the party here, but I just started reading the Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare.  I’m just starting book 2, but I am totally hooked!  I was a little skeptical at first – I’m not a huge fanfic reader, regardless of how Harry Potter obsessed I am – but these books are really good.  They’re pretty much an amalgamation of some of my all-time favorite series: Harry Potter, the Gemma Doyle Trilogy (A Great and Terrible Beauty), and Star Wars (I don’t want to spoil it, but there is totally a Luke/Leia/Vader thing going on).

mortal instruments

I decided to go for the obvious – if not slightly overdone – runes for my nail art.  Runes are sort of like tattoos with special powers.  I don’t have The Shadowhunter Codex (yet), which lists all of them, so I just chose from the ones I could find online.  From my thumb to pinky, they are agility, angelic power, deflect/block, strength, and precision.

I used Essie Yogaga and Essie Licorice.

mortal instruments

They’re pretty simple, but definitely interesting.  Have you read any of the Mortal Instruments series?  Let me know what you think in the comments below!  No spoilers please 🙂

If you like to read, add me as a friend on goodreads.com!  And if, like me, you have a long commute (or just like to do things like painting your nails while reading), I would definitely recommend joining audible.com – I listened to the first book in the series over the course of two days while cleaning, painting my nails, and driving to and from work.

The Golem and The Jinni

Time for another book inspired post!  I may have perviously mentioned that I’m a huge fan of audible.com – I spend at least two hours a day in the car driving to and from work, so being able to “read” in the car makes me feel more productive.  Right now, I am listening to an amazing book called The Golem and The Jinni.  It’s kind of a historical fantasy novel, and I am really loving it. I’ll admit, it’s a little long and it took me a while to get into/get invested in the secondary characters, but it was totally worth it.  I’m about two thirds of the way through, and I actually just purchased the physical book so I can read it when I’m not in the car.

the golem & the jinni

My ring finger is OPI Taupe-less Beach topped with Nails Inc Westminster Bridge Matte Top Coat.  My middle finger is a water marble using Essie Fear or Desire, Sinful Colors Chick Chick, and Essie Snap Happy.  The rest of my fingers are OPI Ski Teal We Drop sponged with OPI Unfor-Greta-bly Blue and OPI Frog in My Throat.  I tried to represent the beautiful book cover, the Golem, who is made of clay, and the Jinni, who is made of fire.  I didn’t realize until I was writing this post that the watercolor fire looks kind of like a face, which is just so perfect!  I couldn’t do it again if I tried.

the golem & the jinni

I would 100% recommend this book.  It is a very interesting story and extremely well written.  If you’ve read it, let me know what you think in the comments below – no spoilers please!  If you’re on Goodreads, add me as a friend here!  And please feel free to share your book recommendations below.

The Maze Runner

My most recent book-inspired nail art (seen here and here) has been pretty popular, and it’s definitely been some of my favorite nail art I’ve done, so I decided to make a series out of it.  My goal is to write one post a week inspired by some of my favorite (or most recently read) literature.

Today’s post was inspired by The Maze Runner by James Dashner.  I don’t know if this is a favorite, but I definitely enjoyed it.  It’s pretty much Hunger Games meets Lord of the Flies.  I got the book as part of a set (it’s the first in a trilogy), so I will eventually be reading the second one.  I just don’t feel completely compelled to continue with the story (like I do with Red Rising), but I’ve heard great things, so I’m looking forward to it.  If you’re a fan of dystopian fiction, The Maze Runner, is a good read (and soon to be a movie).

the maze runner

For those of you who haven’t read the book, I won’t ruin the plot for you, but WICKED is important.  I painted it on my ring finger with Essie Snap Happy on a base of Essie Licorice.  The rest of my nails are Essie Stylenomics with the maze design painted with OPI Moonraker.

the maze runner

I really like how these turned out!  I’m definitely getting better/more comfortable painting (legible) words.  If you’ve read The Maze Runner, let me know your thoughts below.  And feel free to post your book suggestions and add me as a friend on Goodreads!

Red Rising

I’ve been on a huge reading kick lately – I’m taking part in the Goodreads challenge for 2014, and I’m currently 12 books into my 50 book goal (if you’re on Goodreads, add me as a friend).  I read the Divergent series last month, and I’ve been really into dystopian books since.  I bought Red Rising by Pierce Brown on a whim, and ended up completely loving it!  Definitely check it out if you’re into dystopian fiction.  Anyway, I decided to do some nail art inspired by the book (mostly inspired by the cover), and I really like how it turned out.

red rising

I used Essie Licorice as the base, and a mix of metallic reds and golds (mostly Essie and OPI) for the wings.  The idea of the wings came from the book’s cover.  In the book, society is color-based, with golds at the top and reds at the bottom. I don’t want to ruin the plot, but you can check out the book here.

red rising

If you’ve read Red Rising, what did you think?  It is definitely a new favorite of mine; Red Rising was the first book in a while that I wanted to re-read immediately after finishing it.  I didn’t, but I’m tempted to start it again this week.  It’s going to be extremely difficult waiting until January for the next book!