Friday, May 6, 2011

Marbling is Hard

As covered in yesterday's post, I wasn't in love with Chanel Riva on its own. Thus I decided to try making it better with my first attempt at water marbling. I read a bunch of tutorials before I started; when I reached a point where more research was making me more confused rather than less, I stepped away from the computer and got down to playing. To complement Riva's light blue hue, I selected OPI Oh So Glam, Sally Hansen Night Hydrangea, and China Glaze Towel Boy Toy for my marbling colors.



I masked off my skin with wide cellophane tape, as I thought that would be less messy than dealing with Vaseline (also, I couldn't recall if I had any Vaseline in the house or if I did, where it might be).



Next, I dropped the polish into one of the small disposable cups of water that I'd lined up on the table ahead of time.



I then swirled the polish in the cup with an old orange stick, but did not take pictures because I wasn't sure how much time I had to work before the polish hardened. I dipped my finger in the cup and carefully removed it. I repeated the steps three more times with three more cups. In one, I added clear to mix to see if that would let more of the base color show through. I doubled dipped my pinky finger to see what that would look like. After all that, I ended up with this mess:



"Hmm", I thought, "maybe it'll look okay after clean up". Well, not so much, as it turned out, though I didn't help matters by not waiting quite long enough to apply the top coat, so I ended up with streaks among the swirls on some nails.



My pinky nail is my favorite of these not-so-great results.



What I like about this: The color scheme. That I tried something new. I got to use several colors at once. The tape did its job and clean up wasn't worse than a regular mani. What I don't like: The chunky-ness of the color sections (I think I need to add more rings to the cup and swirl more. The way I managed to get some good parts of the swirls on the taped parts of my fingers rather than the nail (will have to pay closer attention to where I'm dipping). The bubbles (not sure what to do about that). I'll try water marbling again but my intial impression is that it's not something I'm too excited about (unlike the first time I tried stamping, when I was all "when can I get more plates?"). I'd be grateful for any hints or tips you'd all care to leave in the comments.

*****

On an unrelated note, I've been feeling jealous of several nail board and nail blogger meetups I've seen posts about and decided the best way to deal with that was setting up a meet around here. Since the nail board at MakeupAlley moves fast, I wanted to mention it here as well. If you're a nail boarder poster or a nail blogger in the metro Detroit area and would like to be added to the planning mailing list, please e-mail me (the.karend at gmail.com) with your MUA username and/or blog URL.

27 comments:

  1. a good tip is more rings/design help because when you transfer the design, it will not transfer as it looks in the cup, it gets smaller. but you're brave for trying :) good job!

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  2. You should have put in more drops, I think.

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  3. more drops (around 6 i'd say) and perhaps better polish! your rings look kinda gloopy.
    if you have polishes from the china glaze kicks collection (which i would say you do, seeing who you are!) i totally recommend trying it with those.
    i did one with it's poppin, shy high tops, and entourage, and it was the easiest marble ever.

    and try using a tooth pick instead of an orange stick! much more precise.

    oh, and you don't have to keep using more cups. just clean up the water after dipping and then start again!
    and to conserve polish you can dip multiple fingers at a time!

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  4. There's nothing wrong with it. The colours work well together. I'm just so used to your nails looking....immaculately neat and perfect. I'm not a marbling fan. The asymmetry of it just irritates me.

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  5. I think it looks cool and I like the colors you chose. I am AFRAID of doing this so bravo to you for taking a chance! x

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  6. Hi. I was never able to do water marble. The last time i tried it did not went well at all i got nothing on my nails :)

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  7. thats not bad at all for a first try, i know i still can't get the hang of it even after many many attempts

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  8. I really want to learn how to marble. I know some dotting tools also usually say "marbling" tool with them and I've wondered how it works. This is like an Easter Egg approach. How much polish did you end up wasting in the process? I'm sort of curious. I'm just not sure if I could handle the clean up. LOL

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  9. I've never tried marbling before, I bet with time you will get better! -I love your color selection! (:

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  10. I love watermarbling other people's nails. I've never done my own though.

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  11. I'm not sure what kind of water you used, but purified water (bottled) works best for creating all the rings. Tap water just isn't good for it at all. I love the color combo you chose here, though!

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  12. This is great for your first attempt! It's a ton of work, but the result is always so fun. Plus I think each nail having a totally different look is what makes it so cool.

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  13. i agree, it's too hard for me - i was never happy with the result and the mess was... wow :-(
    still, yours look better than mine ;-)

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  14. Water marbling on nails IS hard - and that's coming from someone who used to be pretty good at marbling on paper!

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  15. Oh, I wish I lived closer to Detroit. I would try to arrange a meet up but I live in the middle of nowhere. :P

    As for the marbling? I did my first attempt about a month ago and have done one other since. Practice does help and it looks like you are getting a lot of tips in your comments. :)

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  16. I've got to give you credit for trying. I love to see when others post theirs. But haven't felt brave enough to try it on my own. Don't give up!!

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  17. i think it looks kind of like watercolor :) but it is quite difficult. i've attempted it twice with sort of mediocre results. i'm not sure what the trick is yet, but i'm going to try to find it out!

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  18. Not bad for a first attempt!

    To get rid of bubbles while your finger is under the water, wiggle it a bit. Clear the polish on top of the water and then pull your finger out.

    Be sure the water is room temperature.

    I also use a toothpick. I don't swirl so much as pull the polish.

    I haven't done this in a while. I think you've inspired me!

    (also) Karen D

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  19. Likewise, I might Essence has a lot of good varnish but the new formula is not the best.

    As for the method of water then I think it's terribly difficult and does not always work out.

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  20. My advice has to be just practice, the 1st time I did it, it just didn't look right, then I tried again and some nails looked great and others not so much! I agree with some of the others that you could do with a couple more rings and I also use a cocktail stick (gives more precise, thin lines. Anyway, good luck =) x

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  21. I don't think it looks bad at all :) The colour choices are really nice!

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  22. Love how there is minimal clean up for this... I can't seem to do it myself. Always cause a mess everywhere, hahaha!

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  23. You did a great job, it looks really good! I like the colours you picked. I think water marbling is one of those things that have to be practiced, the mess I would make puts me off, but I'd love to give it a try at some point :) xx

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  24. Simplelittlepleasues on youtube has the best videos and is one of the best water marbling artist. she also has a blog on blogger. thats how I learned. I love the creativity you have when marbling, practice,practice practice, sort of like nail stamping thats what im trying to conquer now

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  25. Hi Karen!

    Water marbling is difficult. You need to practice a bit before "mastering" the art. So keep trying!

    I wish we had nail fanatic meet ups here too!! Maybe one day ;)

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  26. Thanks for all the tips, ladies! I'm definitely going to try this again soon.

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  27. I agree with all the previous tips, also make sure you clean up all the polish while your nail is still in the water. That way when you remove the nail, the polish "pooled" on the top doesn't re-attach to your nail :)

    I think it looks great for a first try :)

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Thank you for reading and commenting! I greatly appreciate knowing I'm not just talking to myself here. :)