Pink Dotty Pattern Nails

I really had no idea what to name this design. I wanted to do a pattern using dots, that was focused at the base of each nail in a half circle shape, which went around a rhinestone.

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I started by painting all nails in 2 coats of a shimmery pastel pink shade.

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Next I took a raspberry shade and a large dotting tool. I placed a large dot in the centre of the base of each nail. On top of this I placed a pink rhinestone.

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Next I took a medium sized dotting tool and placed 3 dots going around each of the large dots I had previously placed.

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I then took a small dotting tool and used this to make each of my medium dots into a kind of tear drop shape. I then placed small dots in between the gaps where I had placed the medium sized dots.

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Sophisticated Deep Red Tip Nails

I really think I made a good choice when I decided to pair this deep dark red shade with the gold flakie glitter. I think it gives it a sophisticated look, like something you would wear with an evening gown.

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I started by painting all my nails in 2 coats of a nude shade to improve the look of my plain nails.

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Then I took a dark red shade and painted 2 coats going on a diagonal line across the bottom halves of each nail. I made sure that the tips of my natural nails could not be seen through the nude base colour.

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I then took a chunky flakie glitter that was mainly gold with a little bit of rose gold flakes in it.

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I placed this over the line where the red meets the nude shade to cover it and make it look more tidy. I found it was easier to use the corner of a make up sponge in order to apply it.

Silk Polka Dot Nails

For this design, I started off by painting all nails in 2 coats of a shimmery white shade from the Barry M Silk collection called ‘Pearl’.

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Next I used a purple shade from the same silk collection called ‘Orchid’. I painted 2 coats of this to the bottom half of each nail only.

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I then used the white shade again and a small dotting tool. I placed polka dots over the purple area on each nail.

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Once this was dry, I used gold coloured striping tape across the line where the white and purple background colours met in order to make it look ‘cleaner’.

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I finished off the design by placing a gold nail art stud on the middle of each nail on top of the striping tape.

Blueberry Cupcakes

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I’ve been wanting to try blueberry cupcakes for a while. I wanted ones that had both blueberries inside and a blueberry flavoured icing. However I’ve never seen blueberry flavouring before in the shops. From my research online it seemed people either didn’t make the icing blueberry flavoured, or they used some sort of freeze dried blueberry powder. But that seemed a bit expensive and hard to get a hold of for what it was. I knew I couldn’t use fresh blueberries, as that would add too much liquid to my icing. However I noticed that my local supermarket sold dried blueberries. So I decided to give that a go, and I can say that it was quite successful providing you blend the dried blueberries into tiny pieces. Don’t make the mistakes I made the first time around by having big lumps of blueberry get jammed in the end of my piping nozzle lol.

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Ingredients

For the Cupcakes:

  • 300g Self Raising Flour
  • 2 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 225g Caster or Granulated Sugar
  • 14 tbsp Corn or Sunflower Oil
  • 4 tbsp Milk
  • 4 Eggs
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla Essence
  • 200g Frozen or Fresh Blueberries

For the Icing/Frosting:

  • 250g Unsalted Butter (softened to room temperature)
  • 600g Icing Sugar
  • 80g Cream Cheese
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla Essence
  • 100g Dried Blueberries
  • Lilac and Baby Blue Gel Food Colouring

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Method

For the Cupcakes:

1) Preheat the oven to 180°C or Gas Mark 4.

2) Sift the flour into a bowl and add to it the baking powder, salt and sugar.

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3) In a separate bowl, add the oil, milk, eggs and vanilla. Whisk everything together.

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4) Gradually add the dry mixture to the liquid mixture and beat together until everything is evenly mixed.

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5) Add the blueberries to the mixture and fold in gently with a spoon in order to avoid damaging them too much.

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6) Line a muffin tin with cupcake cases and spoon between 2 – 3 tsp into each case making sure you get some blueberries into each. You want the cases to be around 1/3 to 1/2 of the way full as the mixture will rise while cooking.

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7) Put them into the top/middle of the oven for around 25 – 30 minutes. Test that they are cooked using a toothpick. If it comes out clean then they are ready. Afterwards remove them from the muffin tin and leave them on a wire rack to cool. I found the easiest way to remove them whilst still hot was to poke a toothpick down the side in between 2 folds in the cases, and then use it to pry the cupcake onto its side to that I could grip it and lift it out.

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For the Icing/Frosting:

1) Sift the icing sugar into a bowl. Add the cream cheese and vanilla essence. Cut the butter into smaller pieces and add to the bowl as well.

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2) Cream everything together fully into a paste using a fork.

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3) Add your dried blueberries to a food processor/blender and process very well so that no large lumps of blueberry remain as this will clog up your piping nozzle. This step is highly important if you are planning to pipe pretty rose shaped onto your cupcakes. I found the easiest way to blend it up was to add a few tablespoons of the icing mixture to the food processor. This seemed to stop the blades from just pushing the blueberries around rather than chopping them up.

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4) Add the resulting blueberry paste to the bowl with the rest of the icing mixture and cream together well until everything is evenly mixed.

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5) I wasn’t quite happy with the resulting colour of this icing so I added a little lilac and baby blue gel food colouring. This step is completely optional. But if you do use the colouring make sure you mix it in evenly.

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6) You are now ready to pipe your roses onto your cupcakes. To do this you need a specific piping tip. The one I used is called a ‘Wilton 2D Tip’. You can find these easily online (I got mine on Ebay for a couple of quid).

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7) Set up you nozzle in a piping bag. Fill your bag with some of this icing and get it ready for piping.

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8) It is actually quite simple to pipe the roses. Hold the piping nozzle upright above your cupcake. Start in the centre and then work your way outwards in a spiral until the entire cupcake is covered. Move your arm rather than your wrist while doing this as you do not want the angle of the nozzle to change. You can find plenty of videos on the internet that demonstrates this.

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9) Repeat this for your remaining cupcakes, refilling your piping bag as necessary. Don’t worry if you mess any cupcakes up. You can gently scrape the icing off with a table knife and reuse it to try again. If you do happen to get your nozzle clogged up with some blueberry pieces, you can use the prong of a fork to try and pull it through. Just be careful to not bend your nozzle out of shape.

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I love all things blueberry flavoured, and these cupcakes are easily one of my favourite. I hope you enjoy making and eating them as much as I did.

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Rose Frost Nails

Originally, I had planned to build up a couple of layers of chunky flakie glitter over the top of this. But after applying the fine glitter I felt it looked too subtly pretty to add anything else to it. The glitter design makes me think of a metallic kind of wintry frost.

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I started by painting all nails in 2 coats of a chrome rose shade.

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Once this was dry, I used a makeup sponge and blobbed a little bit of a fine pink glitter on it.

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I then dabbed the sponge onto the nail. I made sure to mainly focus on applying it to the tip and working upwards to around halfway up the nail in a gradient.

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I then repeated this 2 more times per nail, making sure that the most concentrated area of glitter on each nail was at the tip.