Exploring Nail Art with MoYou London

Last week I went to a press day and a fab nail product caught my eye. This was a nail art stamping kit from a brand called MoYou London, and to cut a long story short it creates fabulous statement nails without the need for an artistic hand. This week they sent me a starter kit to experiment with and so experiment I did.


First of all get everything ready – the polishes you have chosen, your metal nail art plate (mine is from the Explorer collection), the scraper and stamping tool and also a bottle of nail varnish remover, cotton wool pads and plenty of cotton buds.


Next prep your nails with a clear base coat. Then apply your colour of choice (1 or 2 layers) along with a top coat as per your usual manicure. I used the MoYou London varnish in Silver Dust £8.99 on my accent nail and a pale pink on my other nails – OPI’s Miso Happy with This Colour £11.50.


Once dry you need to get ready to add the artwork. Make sure you soak a cotton bud in nail varnish remover before you begin. Choose the colour that you wish to use as your detail. I opted for Chanel Le Vernis in 219 Black Satin £18.00 and the MoYou in Silver Dust for the nude nails. Next add the varnish to the design of your choice. Make sure you use a generous amount so that it covers it entirely.


Next, and you need to work rather quickly, use your scraper tool to scrape across the surface of the metal plate removing the excess varnish. This needs to be done in one move, with the scraper held at a 45 degree angle. Be decisive and apply some pressure.



Now you need to lift the design from the plate and add it your nail. Again try to do this as quickly as possible so that the varnish does not dry. Firstly use your stamp tool to lift the design from the plate, then to apply it to your nail. You need to use a rolling motion to lift and apply and only go across once. If you go back and forth the design will not transfer cleanly. Use some pressure, but the key is nerves of steel and a steady hand. As you can see this one of mine isn’t entirely perfect but keep practising and you will get the hang of it.




Next (& sorry I forgot to take pictures of this stage as I was so busy stamping) you use your varnish remover soaked cotton bud to clean the excess varnish from your fingers. My design went all across the top of my fingers around my nailbed but it was easy to clean up with cotton wool buds. After each use you also need to clean the plate, stamp tool and the scraper with nail varnish remover. Finally when it is dry, add a top coat. This is not crucial but it means the manicure will last longer. Another note… if you are using a dark colour for your design (like my black varnish) then leave it a good 20 mins before you apply the top coat to ensure it doesn’t smudge all your hard work.


I did one hand at a time and let the left hand dry completely before I worked on my right hand. Being rather clumsy and also right-handed this one is always more of a challenge. I’m not going to lie, this does take some patience, practise and a somewhat steady hand, but I am not a manicurist and I think the results aren’t bad. This took some time, but if you are less of a perfectionist than me and aren’t taking pictures along the way it will be quicker. The below were my first attempts when I was deciding on colours. I only used one layer of varnish and stamped quite quickly and the results in some instances are even better! For the other nails I used MoYou London Orchid Chic £4.99 (lilac) and an old varnish called Fiesta from New Look £2.99 (neon orange). Both had the MoYou London Silver Dust for the design.


If you have plans to stay in with friends this bank holiday weekend or just fancy something a bit different why not try it out for yourself? Head to http://www.moyou.co.uk and pick up a starter kit for £29.99 (mine was from the Explorer range). This includes 3 polishes, 2 stamp plates, a stamp transfer tool, a scraper and the all important manual. Then all you need is some nail varnish remover and some cotton buds and you’re away.

For starter kits, nail art plates and polishes head to http://www.moyou.co.uk

Cocktail couture

So it’s Friday (yay!) work is done for another week and you’re probably deciding what to do this evening. Well, if you like cocktails and fashion and are partial to a drop of gin then let me recommend the fantastic Couture Cocktails at One Aldwych Hotel. To coincide with Fashion Week and inspired by the style capitals of New York, London, Milan and Paris, this luxury London hotel has created four special drinks, each with its own unique style and flavour.


Last night I was lucky enough to try all four and my favourite was the delicious Alice Temperley inspired English Rose which combines Tanqueray London gin with rose liqueur and bergamot foam. It was delightful. Top marks also go to the minx of a drink, the Moschino inspired La Dolce Vita, served in a kitsch cat-shaped glass. The cocktails are available for a limited time only (this is the last weekend you can sample these four) so you best get your fashion skates on and head down to the Strand before it’s too late. Mine’s an English Rose thanks.


Alice Temperley inspired English Rose


The Calvin Klein inspired New York New York


Paris v Milan: the chic Chanel Blanc et Noir and the kitsch Moschino La Dolce Vita

Cocktail Couture is available until 2nd October at One Aldwych Hotel, One Aldwych, London, WC2B 4BZ. T: 020 7300 1000. http://www.onealdwych.com/home

Topshop x Adidas Originals

With Chanel pairing trainers and couture gowns, Prada showcasing stripy footless sports socks on the catwalk and a printed sweatshirt being the garment-du-jour for several seasons, the proliferation of sports influences in fashion hasn’t been this big since the 90s.

 Chanel couture SS14

Chanel Couture SS14

Prada SS14 Look 22

Prada SS14 Look 25

Prada SS14

Street style blogs are exploding with high-tops, rucksacks and baseball caps and chief Twitter faces Cara Delevigne, Rita Ora and Miley Cyrus are regularly spotted in logoed attire. In fact fashion’s current obsession with the decade that redefined sportswear may well have nearly reached its summit, but not before this week’s collaboration causes a veritable shopping storm.

High street giant Topshop has teamed up with sportswear stalwart Adidas Originals to give us a 20-piece collection that blends slouchy shapes with vibrant prints. Incorporating the brand’s iconic signatures, such as the triple stripe and logo motif, Topshop has infused tracksuits, shorts and sweaters with a dose of fashion magic. In store this Thursday (March 20th) the collection is causing a buzz in style circles with the high-tops in particular attracting a flood of attention. Check out the below images from the campaign. Let the fashion frenzy commence.

Topshop X Adidas Originals shorts, £32

Shorts, £32

Topshop X Adidas Originals hoodie, £55

Hoodie, £55

Topshop X Adidas Originals logo vest £26

Vest, £26

Topshop X Adidas Originals Printed hoodie, £70; printed tracksuit bottoms, £50

Printed hoodie, £70 and tracksuit bottoms, £50

Topshop X Adidas jumpsuit, £137

Jumpsuit, £137

Still life - Topshop X Adidas Originals zip-up top, £70

Zip-up printed top, £70

Still life - Topshop X Adidas Originals Printed tracksuit bottoms £50

Printed tracksuit bottoms, £50

Still life - Topshop X Adidas Originals high tops, £80

High-tops, £80

All items Topshop x Adidas Originals

Also head to the Topshop website where you can catch an interview with the creative directors heading both companies – Josefine Aberg for Adidas Originals and Kate Phelan for Topshop.


Topshop x Adidas Originals hits stores on March 20th. http://www.topshop.com/en/tsuk/category/topshop-x-adidas-originals-collection-2774327/home?geoip=noredirect

Classy cupcakes

I was recently introduced to these cupcakes by a fellow stylist, and they are so amazing that I thought they deserved a blog.  Made by the lovely Suzi Diamond of Born Again Cupcakes, they are hand-designed and hand-painted to meet your exact specifications.

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Christmas cupcakes, by Born Again Cupcakes

If you are looking to impress a fashionista or have a difficult client that you’re trying to woo, why not surprise them with some of these sugary treats this Christmas. The stylish fashion branded designs are my favourite (a tiny bite of Chanel? Yes please!) but there are plenty of other options to choose from.

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Hand-painted cupcakes, all by Born Again Cupcakes

And as boys like sugar as much as girls, if your fella is into footie you will definitely score top marks by ordering this full box of 12. Just be sure to get the right team… no-one wants to see their enemy, even if they are topped with buttercream.

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One for the boys! Football team, by Born Again Cupcakes

For more information on prices and to place orders go to: http://bornagaincupcakes.com/

Keep your cool in Monochrome

Today’s is a pictoral blog post… a little styling inspiration for dressing in the summer heat.    Think clean and simple, black and white.


Left: Emporio Armani;  Right: Vintage Chanel ad campaign


Left: www.annatylercakes.co.uk;  Right: Rita Ora


Left: Marina Streb by Jenny Brough for Gloss Slovenia June 2013;  Right: Chanel


Left: Street style;  Right: Kristen Stewart in Chanel at Chanel Haute Couture show AW13


Left: Slogan;  Right: Haute Couture AW 2013 Street Style featured in Harpers Bazaar


Left: Street style;  Right: Model Karolina Kurkova


Left: Stripes in the home and right: On the street


Left: Chanel;  Right: Amazing face art

I hope you like and are suitably inspired by my monochrome mood boards.  I am loving the clean lines, the graphic checks and the decorative florals.  Let me know which is your favourite image.