Today's theme in the CNTCWC is Christmas Traditions. When I was a kid, of course, we had a few traditions around the house, mostly involving decorations and the like. I think my favorite part of Christmas was in our stockings, Mom would always give us an orange, a few chocolates, and a LifeSavers Story Book. For my non-American readers, LifeSavers are are little ring-shaped hard candies and mints that come in a foil-wrapped roll of about a dozen or so. At Christmas time, they would bundle several different flavored rolls (including my favorite, butterscotch) together in a box that opened like a book and was filled with different Christmas images. I'm not sure why that was my favorite stocking stuffer, but I always looked forward to that being in my stocking each year.
As I've grown and since I have no children of my own, Christmas has taken a back burner for me. It all seems far too commercial and hectic and ugly, and I haven't put up a tree in probably 15 years. The past several years I've spent Christmas dog- and house-sitting for Mom so she could go visit family who couldn't let us bring our dogs, and I was okay with the arrangement because I just haven't "felt it" for so very long. Today's theme gave me an opportunity to really play around and have some fun with Christmas traditions, so I've opted to show off two of the less-popular traditions that a lot of people struggle with every year - untangling Christmas lights and dealing with kitty cats in Christmas trees. Most of the polishes and the stamping plate in this mani were in The Pink PrincessZ's giveaway I won and posted about in my Giveaway Mania post.
I started with two coats of Essie Mojitos on my middle and ring fingers, and a single coat of Essie Good as Gold on my thumb, index, and pinky.
Once dry, I stamped over the green nails with Essie Licorice and MoYou London's Christmas Collection 01 plate, using a portion of the image of the decorated Christmas tree. To give the tree a little more color and depth, I dotted over the ornament balls using Good As Gold and Sinful Colors Sugar Sugar.
I then added two pale green rhinestones to each finger and painted vertical slits with Licorice to make them look like cat eyes peeking out from the boughs of a decorated tree and sealed everything in with SV.
The next step was actually fairly challenging. I started by cutting a few lengths of green embroidery thread, but ultimately found that it was far too thick to use for this look, so I separated the individual strands from the thread and used those. Through a process of laying down SV and waiting a few seconds for it to get slightly tacky, I wrangled the thread in a hot mess fashion around the gold nails so that it would look like twisted light strands. To my happiness, I discovered that getting wet with SV actually darkened the embroidery thread that it was almost identical to the shade of green found on those strings of lights.
While it was still tacky, I started shoving white rhinestones into the crevices around the string, using them partly to help hold down the tangled string, and mostly to imitate white Christmas bulbs (because when you have a color-themed tree, you use white lights, not the multi-colored strands, and that's that).
Again, everything is sealed in with (on these, anyway) SEVERAL coats of SV. Once try, I trimmed off any of the thread that was overhanging the nails or sticking up weirdly, because I still had to sleep at least one night with these on, and I didn't want to wind up pulling all the rhinestones off in my sleep.
Overall I am super pleased with this manicure. Although it's definitely a novelty look and not terribly wearable for more than a day or so, I think they're super cute and the rhinestones definitely catch light and flash much like cat eyes and Christmas lights do.
I'm sure the other girls in this challenge will think I'm quite silly here, as the others I've seen posted are all quite beautiful interpretations of the theme. However, I'm a weird girl, and I'm okay with that.
Do any of you have any Christmas tradition horror stories to share? I'd love to read them in the comments, below. Hope you all are enjoying the season and staying out of any crazy shopping incidents or bad weather.
As always, make sure you take a look at the other interpretations of this theme in the inlinkz below.