I have been fascinated by One Stroke Designs for a long time and today I finally took the plunge and attended a full day course hosted by the Fabulous Gemma Lambert.
We were given our bag of materials, watched demonstrations and then we got to go and practice on nails.
It’s very tricky to get to grips with and I have the utmost admiration for the designs and art I have seen in magazines and online. I think its going to take a lot of practice for me to be confident enough to do anything on my clients nails.
When lunchtime came I was standing in the bakers with Gemma and she couldn’t decide what to have to eat. As it was quite a cold day I was having a big hot container of Stovies and Gemma decided she would have that too as she had never had them before.
She loved them and I think she’ll try out the recipe in Doncaster!
I always struggle when it comes to doing my own nails as I have too much choice: Colour? Design? Embellishments? Accents?
After weeks of thinking what to do, I decided to have 10 CND Shellac Blackpool nails to match my colour of my dress but, on each of the Ring Fingers I put an ‘R’ and ‘K’ written in size SS3 AB Swarovski Crystals for the Bride and Grooms initials.
To add a bit more sparkle I had to have super glittery Silver RockStar toes to match in with the embelilshments on the dress.
As you know I like a challenge and I don’t like to be defeated. Today however I nearly crumbled under pressure.
A lady had called asking for her two big toenails to be reconstructed with Enhancements. I carried out a bit of research as to what product had been used previously but as it wasn’t a CND system, it was best to remove the existing product and start from scratch, so as to avoid service breakdown.
Upon removal, I was perplexed as to how I was ever going to give her back two realistic toe nails, given the lack of nail to work on. I have done minor reconstructions on finger nails but today I thought I’d met my match and would not be able to complete the work.
After custom cutting forms to provide a foundation piece and a regular shape piece I started work. My Client told me this was only the second time she had this done as she didn’t realise that this type of service was available and after years of hiding her feet this was a revelation!
In the past month she’d bought 3 pairs of open-toed shoes for the first time EVER!
Before and after
Once the nails were completed you would never know they weren’t hers or how small the small bits of nails hiding underneath were.
My CND Shellac and Vinylux Open Road Collection arrived today and for me being mobile it couldn’t have a better name!
It is the Spring collection for 2014 which has been released earlier than planned and is a welcome addition to my bag to add some colour and light in to dark mornings and early dark nights.
My clients are loving Mint Convertible, which is the same colour as a mint Aero as it is a shade that has been requested many times over the last few years.
Tonight I am pampering some lovely ladies at a Solicitors firm in a building which I have much admired from the outside.
There is an amazing view of the city which I have never seen before with sneaky peaks through the buildings of the Christmas lights hanging up the length of Union Street.
Things ran behind time, as normally happens at these events but I was happy to stay behind and make sure all the ladies who wanted their nails done went home happy.
Tonight’s most requested colour was the gorgeous deep dark rich red CND Vinylux Masquerade.
Today I was at the CLAN Childrens Christmas Party at the Patio Hotel, not for manicures but for sparkly Glitter Body Art.
I had all the Christmas designs at the ready but as usual all I was asked for was Pirates and Kittens! Not very Christmassy but so much fun as always.
I wished I had been invited as a guest, rather than having to work so I could watch the awesome Gary and Basil do their Magic tricks.
At the end of the party I was covered in Glitter (as usual), had so much fun and I am looking forward to their next event in the Summer.
Well it’s that time of year again!
My car, Mr Fox is in the garage to have his tyres swapped from Summer to Winter ones.
When I get him back he’ll be packed with all the extras required in case of bad weather including the sledge for my trolley bag, which ironically since I bought it I have never had the need to use.
My clients have already shifted into using the darker colours in the range with Midnight Swim being the most requested colour, closely followed by Red Baroness. It still amazes me that Red Baroness was one of the original 12 colours released over 4 years ago and is one of my most used colours 12 months of the year.
After a sunny dry Summer, most of which I spent in the car looking out at it and getting a drivers tan on my right arm and side of my face, the weather has now changed and Autumn is well and truly here.
Clients are now looking at deeper, richer colours to match in with their change in clothes.
I will be sorry to say goodbye to Lime Greens, Bright Pinks and Ocean Blues to make way for Dark Reds, Navy Blues and Deep Greens.
There is one last School holiday before Christmas (sorry, yes I did just mention the ‘C’ word!) and a few of my clients will be escaping to sunnier climates so, hopefully I will still get to use my lighter colours a few more times.
I may buck the trend by continuing to wear Brights to be a reminder to those warmer days and nights we had.
Time to start thinking about getting the Winter tyres put back on the car and put the Winter box of essentials (Scrapers, Grit, De-icer, Gripper over shoes and extra clothes) back in the car. Not forgetting my sledge, not for recreational purposes, but to allow me to pull my trolley case through the snow with ease!
You may think I have slightly lost the plot here but I would like to confess something; I like all these special deals on cut price marketing websites (Groupon, Wowcher etc.) and in NSS’s (Non Standard Salons) because they are GOOD for my business.
If my clients are tempted buy these deals or go to the cut price salons they always come back to me and then they tell their friends about the difference in service and quality I offer, which in turn adds to my client list.
I have seen many badly damaged nails on clients who have chosen the cheaper option and I have heard their frustration when their nails have only lasted 2 days, which has resulted in them returning to the ‘salon’ several times or they give up and just don’t go back. Often these salons don’t offer the full range of colours or treatments available.
I pride myself in reinvesting money and time into my business by having the full range of CND Shellac colours available at all times and attending Training Courses, Seminars and Trade Shows to ensure my skill level and knowledge is the highest it possibly can be and clients receive the best possible service not only in Aberdeen but in the UK.
What I offer to my clients is an individual, bespoke, convenient, service in the comfort of their home to fit in with their lifestyle rather than a ‘sell em cheap, stack em high’, conveyor belt mentality of others.
All my hard work and effort over the last 3 years has been rewarded as I am the current Scratch Award UK Mobile of the Year (2012-2013), Professional Beauty UK Nail Professional of the Year 2013 and I will now have to defend my title as I am Scratch Star Finalist UK Mobile Nailist of the Year (2013-2014), the winner of which will be announced at the beginning of June.
I’m heading down to London again, this time as one of six Finalists in the Professional Beauty Awards 2013, Nail Professional of the Year.
In the last 2 weeks I have experienced every emotion leading up to today and I am glad I am now on the train after quite a few sleepless nights.
I am thrilled to be in the same category as some amazing Nail Technicians I have been reading about and following for the last 4 years and I have to be honest, it’s weird seeing my name alongside theirs.
Not sure if I am going to have time to see the Christmas lights in Regent Street, Oxford Street or Covent Garden as I have been told they are fabulous this year.
Maybe I could squeeze in a visit to my favourite Macaroon shop too… , well it would be rude not to!