Monday, 29 October 2012

Jack Skellington Halloween nails

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For a quick new post, I'd thought I'd update with a nail art design I had a go at. I'm not the best at painting my nails with designs, but since I stopped biting  my nails last year and they've been growing, I've been trying to do more prettier designs than just colour.

I watched this Jack Skellington Halloween Nail Tutorial by Cute Polish on Youtube and seeing as it's one of my favourite Halloween movies, I had a go myself. It's actually really simple; but as you can see, I don't have steady hands.

1. The black nails are going to be Jack's suit and the white is going to be Jack's face. After a base coat I used two coats of each colour for an opaque look.

2. Then with dotting tools and a small make-up brush (use a striper brushes if you have one, I only have one in a white polish so I didn't try it) I dotted two ovals for eyes (they don't have to be equal), two small dots for a nose and a curved line across the nail for the smile. Then I drew a few lines down the smile for stitches. It didn't turn out as neat as I'd hoped, but luckily it's not noticeable from afar.

3. Using a white striper (you could use a normal white nail polish brush for thicker lines) I drew a few white stripes across my black nails. At first I started with three but on some I could fit more on I did four.

4. Once all dry, I used a top coat to lock in everything.

I hope these don't chip before Halloween, because I'm pretty proud of the outcome.

Any of you got any cool nail art designs you're proud of, Halloween themed or not? Or better yet, costumes?
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Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Attractive books

If there is one thing I have an eye for, it’s nice looking book/DVD collections. I could own 2 out of 3 films from a certain series, yet I would much rather buy them again in a box set of the trilogy edition for no other reason than the fact I think it looks neater, more appealing and the collection are in a cute little cardboard box.

Away from DVDs, I’m not the biggest book collector. Apart from a few exceptions, I’ll borrow books from libraries or friend’s to read first and if I really, really liked it, I’ll buy it.

My latest little fascination comes in the form of cute, small, hard cover editions of classic and modern literature. I received the beautiful Collector’s Library editions of Little Women and Jane Eyre for my birthday last year, and have found them to be both practical and, as far as books can go, completely gorgeous.

I know the Amazon Kindle is the latest book tool (to which I see both the pros and cons), but for those who still like to have a psychical book on hand to read and are looking to read a beloved classic, I recommend these fancy books.

Their handy size make it easy to take anywhere and despite being hardback, they are extremely light to pop into a bag. Each book has a ribbon bookmark to help keep your place and their gold edged pages are soft for comfortable reading. Not only that, they are all sold at affordable prices.

The sleeve's cover features a painting that fits with the story, and are designed to match in your collection (for example all of Dickens’ books are red, the Brontë Sisters are blue), as well as being able to buy box-set’s of certain authors, so they’re a nice thing to collect or buy as gifts.

To visit the site and browse their  click here or to see what books they have on amazon click here.

If you need anything, be sure to contact them from their email on the site. When I had a query, the people in charge were ever so friendly and helpful to me.
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Thursday, 11 October 2012

Ruby Sparks

Running Time: 104 mins
Directed By: Jonathan Dayton, Valerie Faris
Starring: Zoe Kazan, Paul Dano, Antonio Banderas, Annette Bening, Steve Coogan, Elliott Gould
Screenplay: Zoe Kazan
UK Release Date: 12th October -UK

Husband and wife duo Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris are well known as the creators of one of 2006’s best indie films, Little Miss Sunshine, as well as some very famous adverts and music videos. Now, they join forces with one of America’s growing female film writers and actresses Zoe Kazan (yes, the granddaughter of Elia Kazan-wow!), Ruby Sparks is another comedy drama, however with romance, making for a superb second feature.

Reuniting Dayton and Faris with Paul Dano has him as our protagonist, a very clever and successful author named Calvin, who is currently suffering the painful virus of writer’s block. After finding inspiration in a dream, Calvin begins to write about a girl named Ruby Sparks and, not long after, she becomes real.

The idea of the film is fairly original, as well as simple, and Ruby Sparks completely charms in a breathtaking, romantic, comedic way. Although it is completely imaginative and has its own specific feel, there are hints of a ‘500 Days of Summer’ and ‘Eternal Sunshine for the Spotless Mind’ atmosphere in the way that it’s an offbeat rom-com with quirks and untypical paths. Nevertheless, Ruby Sparks is more refreshing, as this offbeat atmosphere is more inviting that overpowering.

Giving a very memorable performance in Little Miss Sunshine, Dano impresses further with Calvin Weir-Fields. Calvin is a very adoring, empathic character for audiences to relate to and Dano has that little bit of himself in Calvin to make him ever so real. Opposite him is the beautiful Zoe Kazan, who shines as Ruby Sparks. Whether she wrote the part knowing her sweet, bubbly character was to be cast or not, it literally is as if the part was wrote for her. Ruby is not only real for Calvin, but real for audiences because the love story of the pair is touching to watch and the whole way through we are captivated by her. 

Ruby is absolutely everything a regular guy would dream of her to be, which is when Calvin begins to take advantage of his unexplained gift. Although, not in any type of vulgar way, rather trying to get her to fit around his mood and his plans. These scenes could be seen as the most poignant, because of Calvin’s melancholy life and strive to have someone shadowing his every move. Keeping to a traditional romantic film, the heart-warming montages stick out as some of the most beloved scenes, mimicking classic rom-coms from a few decades.

Kazan’s script is so lovely; it’s entirely believable on some levels. For fiction, it’s somehow plausible because everything that occurs during Calvin’s life is how we’d all react if this type of magic hit us. It’s a magical love story, in the most regular, convincing way. There is a complete contrast of feelings throughout Ruby Sparks, where there are moments to feel sad and moments to laugh. Although Antonio Banderas and Annette Bening have very few scenes, they’re input creates a lot of comedy to help keep Ruby Sparks on the ground.

Despite the rushed ending, Ruby Sparks still captures the essence of both the good and bad sides of being in love even if the person you have fallen in love with, is someone you have created in your mind.

Zoe Kazan is an absolute delight and being opposite her real life boyfriend makes the love story within Ruby Sparks seem even more real, exciting and moving in another touching drama by Dayton and Faris.

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