Here's what I found in the package from amusedPolish, which she sent out of the blue as a thank you for a little something I'd sent her earlier this year as an "I'm sorry the swap package I sent you got eaten by the volcano" gift:
In front, polish from brands that are not available here: Luminelle (shade is Mauve Captivant, which I think translates to "pretty purple") and Glam Nails (shade is Larissa, which has flakies a la Nfu-Oh). In back, there are Essence stamping plates so now the lone one I got at Ulta has friends. The one on the far right is something I put on my wish list when I decided stamping was for me; it's the plate from the Stampy Kit 02, which has never ever shown up in any Ulta I've looked at, and I check the display every time I'm in one of the stores. To say I was delighted to see it is putting it mildly! I was so eager to use it that I just went ahead and stamped on top of my (left on entirely too long so please pardon the chips and such) Stila mani using Wet 'n' Wild Black Creme:
Those of you who have this plate (and/or really good eyesight) might notice that I never managed to get the littlest star in the design onto my nail. I'm not entirely sure if I wasn't getting it from the plate to the stamper or was getting it on the stamper but then not onto my nail because at the time I didn't notice it was missing, being so distracted by trying to make sure I had the arch of the stars oriented correctly and somewhat centered. You'll see I didn't do so well with the centering on my index finger, so I took that opportunity to add a butterfly in the open area. I was extremely pleased with myself for figuring out how to only get one butterfly from the two on the plate. I also managed to get topcoat on without smudging the stamping very much, so that's progress, too.
I knew the package from Jennifer was coming, since we'd arranged a swap, but I didn't know exactly what was in it because we did a "grab bag", just trying to send things the other person didn't already have but which we thought she would like. I didn't have any Models Own, so you can imagine how pleased I was when I opened the box and found these inside:
All colors I would have bought myself if a) this brand were sold here or b) I were braver about ordering from companies overseas (I love swapping internationally, but something about sending my credit card information to a company in another country makes me pause, which is really silly because I've used my cards in foreign lands when travelling and nothing bad has ever happened; indeed the only time I had a credit card number stolen was right here in the U.S.) I didn't know which one to try first, but eventually picked Dusty Mauve because the shimmer in the bottle intrigued me.
On the nail, it is much more dusty than mauve, which is fine by me; I love a good pewter. I did not have a chance to get it outside in the sunlight to see what it would do there; I suspect it saves its flash for that sort of environment.
Emboldened by my star stamping experience (and since the WnW black and Essence plate were still nearby), I tried added flowers to the Dusty Mauve. Lots and lots of flowers. Stamping on top of stamping. What I got was rather a mess. I considered pretending it did not happen, but decided to share, hoping in a few months we can all look back and this one day be amazed at how much better I've gotten at stamping.
Thanks, amusedPolish and nailpolishUK!