Lazylinepainterbelle Nail Transfers Have Arrived!!

A few weeks ago I went to the Little Birds Market (follow the link to find out more!!) It’s a vintage market filled with boutique stores and enchanting hand-crafted items.

One such creative lady is Lazylinepainterbelle. I got in touch with her to express my admiration for her work and she replied… with Nail Transfers!

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Lazylinepainterbelle is a Dundee based Scottish Fine Arts graduate names Michelle who creates jewellery in the image for her favourite things; dolls, Belle and Sebastion, nautical themes and sailor sexyness, tattoo’s and Frida Kahlo. It’s all based on a logo of her own creation and the sailor style appeals to the vintage era she so adores, emulating a modern take on the current zombie fad. My fave products from her line are the statement cocktail rings.

So don skater dress, quiff and a swish of red lippy and bang, you’re ready to paint the town in platform heels and custom nail decals 😀

So here’s a wee how-to on how the nail transfers work and why they’re awesome 🙂

So before you apply the transfer make sure you remove all the crap you have on your nails already. If you’re like me, then chances are you might already have them painted (all the time…) so making sure you prep them properly is important.

Scratched up nails from another day...

Scratched up nails from another day…

Once all the nail varnish from your previous exploits, if you can be bothered (and I think that you should be) buffer them, to make the nail surface smooth and easier to apply a flawless new layer of paint. I use a 4-in-1 and leaves my nails looking shiny and completely flat. Believe it or not, it actually strengthens the nail too, making them less likely to break, even under a layer of polish.

Most tutorials would have you put on a base coat, but I have to be honest, I can rarely be bothered. If you use a cheaper nail varnish I would say yes, definitely use one because they are far more likely to leave a stain that can be a nightmare to remove, even with nail varnish remover.

Caite Nail Varnish Collection

Caite Nail Varnish Collection

I have many budget brand nail varnishes (ok, so I have so many I could start my own store and be heartily stocked for 100 years!) but at Christmas I was given a collection of Caite nail varnishes. They are a little higher quality and are FANTASTIC! Two coats and they leave a flawless finish, apply smoothly, dry within just a couple of minutes (so you can even use them on a quick bus/train/car journey in a pinch!) and are difficult to chip. Despite all that, they are not impossible to remove AND don’t stain your nails. They are the best varnishes I’ve come across. Even better than the Black Channel one. Which is saying something considering that went on like water over glass.

For this tutorial I used 2 coats of Caite, Cookies and Cream so that the gorgeous design really pops on the plain background.

Caite - Cookies and Cream

Caite – Cookies and Cream

Application is super simple, though it can be a bit fiddly so chillax, take your time.

To apply:

1. Ensure nail is clean and coloured/ has a layer of clear gloss.

This will held the sticker adhere to the nail.

2. Cut the transfer as close to the image as possible and peel off the top plastic layer.

(do not do what I did with some transfers I was using the other day when I wasn’t paying attention and dull off the backing card instead… HINT HINT it won’t stick…)

3. Pop into water for 10-20 seconds and press against a damp nail. Mop up excess water and either breathe on or blast gently with a hairdryer for a few seconds.

4. Apply a couple of layers of your favourite top coat (clear varnish) to make sure it stays put.

(wouldn’t want to lose these gorgeous designs, right??)

AND THAT’S IT!! All done! Simple 😀

So check her out on Facebook and get in touch. She takes custom orders and will ship to wherever you may be (because she’s a lovely lady like that 🙂 )

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Expect more posts about this lovely lady in the future, I like to write about things I deem pretty cool 😀

Lazylinepainterbelle

 

SSDD

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Red Jumpsuit Apparatus Glasgow Gig Review

 

King Tut's Wa Wah Hut

King Tut’s Wa Wah Hut

 

King Tut’s Wa Wah Hut served as the setting for Red Jumpsuit Apparatus’ latest Glasgow event. Celebrating their 10th anniversary as a band, Red Jumpsuit chose to bring relatively unknown support acts Rat Attack and Tantrum for Blind to open the show, but it was clear that the crowd were there for the Florida rockers.

Red Jumpsuit Apparatus

Red Jumpsuit Apparatus

Rat Attack attempted to blind the crowd with front man Mike Hodges donning a Bowie reminiscent sparkly gold shirt. In an effort to stir a bit of life into the uninterested crowd said shirt was then removed – a treat for ladies, gay men and tattoo lovers, I can assure you. Hodges attempts to get the crowd moving and “doing craziest dance moves (they) could think of” were said with more than a hint of desperation and in the end his own chaotic bouncing around the stage almost rewarded him a concussion, thanks to the extremely low ceiling.

Rat Attack

Rat Attack

Swedish, female fronted Tantrum to Blind were shown a bit more affection and Melanie Mohlkert’s impressive vocals were certainly a pleasant surprise. Songs such as Get Get Get, with it’s catchy, repetitive hook got their audience shouting along to the chorus, though they may have earned themselves a few more fans had they left the synchronised headbanging in Scandinavia. Though he may be about 25 feet tall bass player Daniel Lundell was gracious and surprisingly softly spoken, hanging back at the bar after his set to sign autographs and talk to the Glasgow fans. Top marks for fan appreciation.

Tantrum To Blind

Tantrum To Blind

But, at 9:20, the real stars arrived – and blew the thatched roof of the legendary Hut!

For the first time all night, King Tut’s made some noise and Glasgow gave the Yankee quartet a true Glasgow welcome. Performing in a venue hardly bigger than someone’s living room, in what is effectively the back room of a pub, RJA treated their audience to an hour of musical delights. Always pitch perfect and forever chilled, the small venue was the perfect location for only surviving original and member Ronnie Winters to deliver a stunning, powerful vocal.

New song Am I The Enemy really got the fans jumping and was a welcome treat for some who may not have heard their new material.

However it was the old favourites Face Down, You Better Pray and Your Guardian Angel that rated highest in the scream stakes. In true reflection of the latters’ lyrics, tears rolled down more than  one face. Achieving what Rat Attack failed to, the crowd were not only jumping but dancing. The sporadic dispensing of their new CD into the grappling hands of the crowd was an added bonus, due to the close proximity of the stage to their fans.

Always worth a listen and definitely worth seeing twice, RJA were worth more than their £10 ticket.

9/10

SSDD

The Dog Days of Summer

Dog Days of Summer. Dog Days. The dog days… What the hell is a “DOG DAY”!?

Well I’ll tell you.

I used to think that a ‘dog day’ was another name for one of those lazy days you have during summer. The ones where there is heat rising in a mirage-like haze from the roads, a slight sheen of sweat covers every forehead and more iced treats are floating about than at an Italian gelato vendor.

One of those days that become so bright you could swear some belligerent ten year old had turned on a high watt bulb over you and was trying to incinerate you with a magnifying lens.

One of those days so hot and summery that all you want to do is take a nap under a tree then douse yourself on cool water and guzzle a litre of ice tea from a tall glass filled with ice and topped with lemon.

tall glass of something from my pre-alcohol days… 😉

One of those days. The Dog Days.

But no. This is apparently (and admittedly disappointingly) not the case at all.

Mystic Meg

Apparently, the phrase stems from the Ancient Romans. Those clever little conquerors who invented all manner of things we now take for granted such as roads, cement, plumbing, government, even an EXTREMELY early computer, made a bit of a silly. For all their intelligence they may er… have read a little too much into the stars… kinda like Mystic Meg… except people actually believed them… for hundreds of years

They believed heavily in the power of the stars and their influence over earth. They studied them extensively – at least, as extensively as they could without todays technology.

Sirius Constellation

Once a year (another thing they invented, by the way, the calendar) the brightest star in the Sirius constellation would synchronise with the rise and setting of the sun, outshining all others in the sky. The Ancient Romans believed that it was the energy, light and heat released by this combination that led to the hotter and brighter summer seasons. Hence, Dog Days. It was really just a very early term for summer.

(This all has nothing to do with Harry Potter, by the way…)

The surprising thing is, that despite this being something they came up with simply as it was the only rational explanation they had for the change that came about in the environment around that time, they were not so far wrong; Sirius does shine brightest between July 3rd and August 11th, which is generally the hottest time of the year – it does not, however effect the actual temperature. That bit was all a load of rubbish. But it made them happy to feel clever, so we’ll let them have that as they were rather good at a lot of things.

It was the astronomer Geminus who out forward a more correct thesis around 70 B.C.

He wrote: “It is generally believed that Sirius produces the heat of the ‘dog days,’ but this is an error, for the star merely marks a season of the year when the sun?s heat is the greatest.”

This is what FLORENCE WELCH (of FLORENCE AND THE MACHINE fame) refers to in her song “Dog Days are Over”, used in the Slumdog Millionaire soundtrack. Many people originally thought the reference to “dog” was a tip in the direction of the films protagonist. Not so.

Florence Welch

So when you thought you were hippy swaying in a field to a song about breaking up with some “dog” of a guy/girl, or emancipation from being treated like nothing more than a “dog” – you were actually celebrating the end of the summer season, as sanctioned by the Ancient Romans. Go figure!

Not so chuffed about it now, are ya… 😉

It was purely a serendipitous moment that led me to this discovery. I was randomly pondering its implications, trying to make some nuance of sense of it, after hearing our fiery haired Florence on the radio (as you do…). Then the very next day I discovered its origins on, aptly enough, a calendar at work. 😀

Florence Welch

So consider this while you lament the end of the summer holidays:

When the light of the Sirius has waned, will you continue to grieve the passing of its season? Or will you invest your former vigour in new, autumnal exploits?

In other words, wocha up to after summer, anything interesting happening in the Autumn? 😀

Just because the fairest season has lived and left, does not meanthat the sun has to set on life and all its brightness.

And so, in the best of Florence style, I bid you, put on your flowery crowns, don those flowing dresses and RUN! “Run fast for you mother and fast for your fa-a-ather/run for your children for your sisters and b-rothers.”

Would you know, I think I’m becoming something of an optimist in my old age.

NAAAH! More like some kind of wood nymph. 😛

SSDD

“The Dog Days Are Over” still…

T-ara Contoversy

On the 30th July news broke that T-ara member Hwayoung would be leaving the band, effective immediately.

The news came as an utter shock to thousands of fans, as the girls have only recently been embarking on promotions for Haru Haru. The girls popularity had been at an all time peak with their music charting well and successful runs in television programmes.

Yet controversy has struck again for these girls as the reason for Hwayoung’s sudden departure was revealed – bullying.

She has allegedly been the victim of bullying for her (now former) bandmates and has suffered to the point that her agency, CCM, agreed it was time for her to go.

The story has progressed further. Following a deluge of negative feedback directed at CCM, they released further statements claiming that, not only was the decision to terminate her contract was not solely the fault of her members actions, but her own – apparently Hwayoung has become too big for her boots and had become arrogant, which was another contributing factor. One might have expected that joining late into an already established group would be an advantage; but oh no, this seems to have been part of the problem.

My reason for posting this is to condemn the actions of the agency and her bandmates. It is not to troll on any specific people, however, so not hate, please.

At just 18 years old, this talented, beautiful musicians’ career is being put on halt and it appears to be because her supposed friends and colleagues, saw her as an easy target. In a professional  environment, this is utterly unacceptable.

From all of the stories and footage emerging to back the bullying claims, including one eyewitness saying they saw member Eunjung slapping Hwayoung, it begs the question as to why they did not release the version of her becoming too arrogant, first. So, you allow the release of a story that completely decimates the reputation of several of your most valued employees, then suddenly the game changes and it was actually all her own fault.

Yeah. Coz that sounds totally legit.

Everything about the situation is just a disaster. Were it all true, then her agency should have disciplined her and corrected her attitude or fired her and have this version released first. It would have limited the damage to the entire groups reputation instead of this mess of a fiasco.

Hwayoung

KPOP is synonymous with a wholesome, butter wouldn’t melt image, generally, but I do not personally know even one person who has been taken in by all that. There have been too many suspicious reports of mistreatment, quickly quelled whispers of dire working conditions and the odd, highly public, deeply embarrassing lawsuits for big companies, regarding “slave contracts”. The public are not so naive as the industry would like.

It seems that everyone is aware of the secret black heart of KPOP and yet are willing to get involved with it anyway. The legions of screaming, obsessive fans would indicate that they are practically foaming at the perfectly sculpted mouths to be a part of it!

Creating a group so large (they have 7 members) may have worked with the nine-strong Girls Generation, but appears to have been less successful here. T-ara have always been plagued by controversy, making headlines as often for their “mistakes” as their merits, from that concept to those outfits.

All this raises the concern of how many other bands are hiding the cracks under public displays or sugar-coated friendship? Will this incident open a crevasse into which other members shall fall? It would not be the first time such a domino effect was created in the fall-out of scandal. Once Pandora’s Box has been opened, it is very difficult to close again…

We can only hope that those suffering tyranny instead of savoring success find freedom and that those whose sibling-like relationship is real stay strong in this latest unveiling of KPOP sham.

Fighting!!

SSDD

Super Junior are Still Super Seniors

The Sm Entertainment manband are topping charts only two weeks into their comeback.

I had orginally planned a different entry to come nexy but after reading a couple of articles today I couldn’t resist -I have to congratulate Super Junior on their comeback so far.

Despite an unspoken doubt hanging over whether they would be able to compete with the increasingly youthful competition, Super Junior have pulled it oput the bag in record time. Returning just two weeks ago with smooth dance-electronic track Sexy, Free & Single, they have beaten off big dog girl group T-ara‘s Day by Day to win on KBS ‘Music Bank’.

Making a comeback today on the show was soloist NS Yoon Ji, girl group GLAMc-clown and B.A.P.

B.A.P are an interesting one who I’ve supported since their INCREDIBLE debut with Warrior. Not only was it one of the best debut songs I’ve ever heard, and certainly one of the most impressive I’ve heard recently, I was dumbstruck to discover that (at the time of their first appearance on the scene) was of them was only 15 years old! Not only that, but he was one of the co-choreographers and wrote some of the rap lyrics! The kid has mad rapping skills and a really unique voice; keep an eye on him, as well as the other members. I’ll do a full entry on them for you guys later, I’m getting w bit side-tracked here 😀

So. Super Junior. Yes, excellent. … Where was I again…

So despite some heavy hitters being in the running, these boys are proving that they are more than with their salt and deserve their esteemed place in the SM trophy cabinet.

With the recent successes of SHINee’s Sherlock and F(x)’s Electic Shock, as well as BoA‘s imminent comeback (yeah you heard me, haven’t you been listening to the web whispers??), all ontop of the countess awards SM‘s artists have already accumulated, I’m betting that cabinet is more of a spacious room by now! Or perhaps a small shed… maybe not even that small a shed… with a seperate wing, just for Girls Generation

The interesting thing now will be to see if they can fend of the feisty ladies of 2NE1, who have already begun promotions for dance ballad I Love You and have already topped all the charts SJ haven’t managed to cling onto.

Even moreinteresting, will be seeing how they fair against – wait for it… the mighty G-Dragon!! Ohhhhh yeah, GD himself is making a reappearance soon promoting solo material, following the success of album Alive, with BIGBANG.

All in all, it’s an interesting time to be caught in a chart battle. You’ve got the sweetness of T-ara, the rockin’ indiviuals of 2NE1, suave Super Junior, and to top it off, the promise of returning big hitters. Add some shockingly talented newbies and I would say we have a very exciting few weeks in store.

(Yo! I got a full list of performances at KBS ‘Music Bank’ performances for ya, right HERE)

SSDD

… And here are some music vids. Now, don’t say I’m not good to you… 😛

SUPER JUNIOR – “Sexy, Free and Single”

First, there was Sorry Sorry. Then, there was Bonamana. Most recently, we had Mr. Simple. And now, they have come back once again.

That’s right, SM E’s man band have returned, with the Supermen of Super Junior dropping their new track Sexy, Free and Single.

Super Junior, Sexy, Free and Single

Super Junior, Sexy, Free and Single

Released on 2nd July 2012 the video has already devoured almost 2.2 million hits on YouTube as well as thousands of comments.

Now ladies, I know what you’re all thinking; Sexy, Free and Single? If only it were all true! We have known for some time that funny man dancing lead Shindong is engaged to his girlfriend and other member have been linked to celebrity lady friends. For example, it was strongly suggested a few months ago that the gorgeous and multi-talented Donghae was dating, as well as the continents favourite man candy Siwon. While none of these, bar Shindong, were ever confirmed, they broke the hearts of thousands of women with the allegations, however joking, and admittances of previous love affairs with unnamed women.

But all is well! As this song seems to profess, they are all up for grabs, and even if we have no confirmation on their relationship status, it seems to make no difference in the eyes of their admirers as the boys break out with yet another excellent dance track.

They are continuing their run as a 10 member group, with the effeminate and outspoken Heechul having left for military service in September of last year. However, April has seen the return of member Kangin, who now returns from his own stint in the military, marking the end of a three year hiatus. How Elfs react to him reclaiming his place on the Super Throne remains to be seen, but initial reaction and hype appears positive.

Sexy, Free and Single is a dance track with a flavour of R&B. The combo is not uncommon in KPOP but has been particularly successful for Super Junior, who use their superb dance skills and smooth, mature style to deliver a sophisticated and sexy performance.

The head-bopping cool of the track works to the tone of each member, rapper and sub-vocalist Eunhyuk delivering a particularly impressive middle verse, reinforced by the more melodic tones of Donghae and Yesung.

The whole thing is topped off by injections pure Super Junior talent with the trademark sounds of power vocalists’ Yesung, Reowook and baby of the group Kyuhyun maintaining a level of ballad pop and soul throughout that no Super Junior song could ever be without.

The result is a polished song and interesting sound. However.

Yes, I’m sorry to break it, but it is not without its faults. Nothing major, but what kind of review would this be if a couple of holes weren’t picked in it?

While the sound is a polished and electronic hit, of the sort we have come to expect from SM Entertainment following the recent exploits of F(x) and EXO, it is a little samey. There is no significant difference between this and what we might expect to hear from their last album Mr. Simple (which you can buy here). They could be from the same disc.

As for the styling and the video, again, there have been some errors. One of the scenes is almost identical to the main scene used in their own mega-hit Bonamana and while that might have worked once, re-using sets so entirely seems a little repetitive and, forgive me, lazy.

Sexy, Free and Single

Look familiar to anyone?

Anyone have a Mirror Mirr

Their starting scene is reminiscent of one used by 4Minute in their video for Mirror Mirror, but they restyle it with their own distinct look.

The final mistake that is begging to be commented on is – what the hell are they wearing!?

At times it has to be questioned if their stylist had ever seen clothes before. Or had any kind of exposure to the media… Or ever seen anything that was not a horror movie!

Several of the neck pieces by-passed being reminiscent of bondage and went straight to paying some sort of homage to Hannibal Lector! Leader Leetuk in particular seems to have suffered at the hands of the stylist-from-hell and seems never to be free of bondage-like apparatus throughout the video; his displeasure for which seems apparent in the fact that he never smiles in the video.

Unhappy leader Leetuk in bizarre bondage

The look was saved by some wise choices and thoughtfully individual styling for each member for much of the vid, their individuality shinning. Not an easy feat in a 10 member group. Suave sophistication was also well executed in a series of tailored black suits.

So, we have reached the final word.

Overall, I would say this is a great track and one that I immediately liked, as I am sure fans will too. Far too often recently it has taken several listens before a songs hook has really drawn me in, the exceptions being SHINee, Sherlock, F(x), Electic Shock and BIGBANG, Monster. The new, mature vibe and chilled tone suits their age – they are no longer trying to pretend they are still competitors with the youngsters currently dominating the market. They have reached the level of maturity currently occupied by idol favourites Shinwa. But as the recently returned supergroup have also proved, they are not nearly ready to be put on the shelf yet.

Even the dance has a relaxed limber to it, using moves that show that they are talented; they just don’t necessarily have to break themselves to prove it.

In a nutshell, despite being a little more similar to their old stuff than I would have liked, Super Junior have yet again pulled it out the bag, proving once again why they deserve to keep their pop King crown.

Super Junior, Sexy, Free and Single

 

Support them by buying their new CD here