The "I Just Bought 500 Rhinestones" Series: Stained Glass Statement Nails!

Well, we all know what happens when I have some spare cash -- I go buck wild for some nail swag.
Publish date:
August 27, 2012

Following my last buzz-kill of a post, I feel I owe it to you to let you know that I just spent the Best Weekend Ever in London, celebrating two of my best mates' birthdays. Saturday we hired out a barge and sailed (Does a barge sail? A barge isn’t dainty enough to sail? They kind of "chug.") down Regent’s Canal, from Kings Cross through Shoreditch and Angel in the sunshine. It was LOVELY.

The sun was doing its thing, trendy east-London wanker-types were sitting along the riverbank with their feet in the water, holding sweaty pints of beer. We were playing Gemma’s 101 R’N’B Classics CD she got at the 99p Shop -- R Kelly! En Vogue! Sean Paul! It was fucking great.

On Sunday, we surprised our friend Tash with a boozy birthday lunch in Covent Garden -- who doesn’t love a surprise birthday lunch when you’ve spent the whole previous night and day raving your tits off at a donkey sanctuary in Oxford (don’t ask)? She pulled it out of the bag spectacularly, with not a hair out of place. We rounded the weekend off at Gordon’s Wine Bar, which is basically a dungeon filled with cheese and wine, and Shakespeare used to hang out there or something equally as impressive and historical. Cultured!

This weekend was the one I’d most been worrying about not drinking at -- booze was-a-flowing and my mates love to get shanted. But, it was easy, I had an amazing time, and I’m fucking minted now as I didn’t spend all my cash on 20 Jaeger bombs and drank soft drinks instead. I’m so smug right now, y’all.

Well, we all know what happens when I have some spare cash -- I go buck wild for some nail swag. I’ve swapped wine for rhinestones, and I’ve been sat at the computer screen trading all my newly spare cash for all manner of sparkly, shiny things I can stick on my nails to admire while I’m typing. Is there any greater pleasure than being in the middle of finishing a really boring report, and then catching a glimpse of a teeny tiny cocktail glass on your left index fingernail? No? Anyone?

I’ve got a whole load of new presents-to-myself that I’m trying out, and I’m dedicating this post to showing you how to create some serious drama statement nails. I luckily work in the most laid back, least corporate office ever, so I can get away with pretty much anything on my nails. But I know a lot of you can’t, so here’s a tutorial on how to create a stained glass statement nail -- subtle enough to keep you looking classy but still a little bit rowdy. Buckle up!

Ok. So here’s my set up.

Grab a dinner mat or a magazine to work on, so you don’t completely wreck your table with nail glue and nail polish. (Voice of experience)

You will need:

•Nail polish of your choice: I used Barry M Blueberry.

Rhinestones. I bought these from Amazon for about £3 including shipping, the brand is Pink Tease.

•Nail polish remover for cleaning up. Even better if you have one of these OPI Correct & Clean-up pens.

•Top coat. I use Seche Vite. If you haven’t got it, go and buy it NOW. You paint it on while the polish is still wet, and it forms a super hard mega layer, and dries your manicure in about 30 seconds. It’s THE BALLS.

•Tweezers. I use Tweezerman, because they are the best. And these ones have got Hawaiian print on them! I’m a sucker for a floral.

•Nail glue. Just the bog standard stuff for sticking on false nails.

First -- paint all of your nails with your chosen color. Seche Vite all your nails APART from the one you are going to jazz up.

Tip your rhinestones on to your protected surface. Pick varying colors and sizes for a real stained glass effect. I used a mixture of dark blue triangles, green rectangles, pink circles and green circles, pretty! Choose the ones you want to use and make sure they are facing up, with the flat bottom on the table. When you pick them up with the tweezers, you want to simply drop them onto the wet glue on the nail.

Take your nail glue and squeeze a drop onto your nail of choice. Only use a tiny bit or you’ll end up like me last week, with my finger stuck to my desk at work. (Yeah, I do this on my lunch hour, at my desk. I told you - corporate!)

Wait a couple of seconds for it to dry slightly, and pick up your gems with your tweezers. Drop the gems into the wet glue, simple!

You don’t need to be precise with where you apply them, for a stained glass effect it looks better if they’re all higgledy piggeldy. Trust!

I find that with nail glue, these gems don’t fall off at all. My last stained glass mani lasted until I picked them off about a week later.

Are you going to try this look? Do you give yourself statement manicures? Is there anything in particular you’d like a tutorial on? I’m flexible, yo!

Natalie is posting endless nail porn over on Twitter! @Natalie_KateM