Monthly Archives: December 2012

The Best of 2012

The Best of 2012Another year is coming to a close! Are you ready to see what 2013 brings?

What you probably didn’t know is that in 2012, I faced a lot of stressful issues in my personal life that caused me great emotional pain.

Blogging and interacting with you helped me push through it instead of giving up.

If you’ve been following Swatch And Learn for even a little while, I hope it’s evident that blogging and interacting with readers bring me a lot of happiness. Yes, it is hard work and very challenging to keep up, but I’m not the type of person who’s afraid of pulling up my sleeves to get things done.

Thank you for listening to what I think and for valuing my opinion, post after post and tweet after tweet. That is a big compliment!

Most of all, thank you, dear readers, for being encouraging and kind as well as for cracking the much-needed joke.

You remind me that genuinely good people are still out there. I needed that reminder, and you gave it to me in spades!

So, while in this post I list the best of 2012 in terms of nail polish, nail art, etc., I want you to know that Swatch And Learn readers are really the best of 2012!

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Smorgasbord Sundays: Knitting a Green Beanie

Knitting a Green HatNo idle hands here! They’ve been busier than ever this month with knitting Christmas presents.

I completed the pom pom baby blanket for my niece that I shared with you before. It used up 5 balls of yarn. And although it wasn’t perfect, each stitch was made with love.

In addition to knitting a dark-cranberry cable cowl for my mom, I also made one in a dusty rose for my sister-in-law.

The purple cowl I showed you before on here is the same style. I ended up keeping the purple one for myself because it was more of an ‘experiment’.

The following two cowls were super-quick to complete. I literally finished knitting 2 cowls in about 5 hours. It’s a fun and easy pattern that I recommend you try.

So, now that Christmas is over, I’m back to knitting another hat. It’s no secret that green is my favourite colour, so now I’m Knitting a Green Beanie.

(Yup, it’s the same style as the mustard hat and the purple hat you’ve seen before. I just love the style, and it’s very warm. Hehe, told you that I was going to make it in every colour!) ;)

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What I Wore on My Nails for Christmas

Christmas Manicure SwatchNow, I told you (and showed you) in yesterday’s post that I overcompensated this year by wearing China Glaze Party Hearty a lot to make up for not sporting it last year.

The one Instagram photo I snapped with my iPhone was insufficient. When you go overboard, you have to really go overboard, take the plunge, and throw all the sailors off the boat with you! (Just make sure they can swim first!) ;)

So, here are lots of photos of my Christmas Manicure that I’ve been wearing since December 25th all the way up to today. (Plus I only took the photos for this post with my proper camera yesterday evening. While it’s no longer a fresh manicure, I still loved it so much and wanted to share some holiday spirit.)

Some of you may know that I spent the holidays at my mom’s place. We were pretty busy, and I literally painted this 30 minutes before guests arrived because I didn’t want my nails to be naked for a special occasion. (Thank goodness for the miraculous Seche Vite Fast Drying Top Coat…hehe!)

Layering Party Hearty over dark green is my favourite so far. What other colours have you used under it? I’d love to see it over a purple.

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China Glaze Party Hearty Swatches & Review (Revisited – Layered Over OPI Oy-Another Polish Joke!)

China Glaze Party Hearty Swatches & ReviewLast Christmas, I didn’t get a chance to wear China Glaze Party Hearty, so what did I do this holiday season? I overcompensated like a good nailphile, of course!

If you follow me on Instagram, you probably saw the festive manicure I did with Party Hearty on top of red and green. But, days before that, I was wearing Party Hearty over OPI Oy-Another Polish Joke! from the Euro Centrale Collection due out in stores February 6, 2013.

This glitterbomb is back-up worthy! There are at least 2 extra bottles in my Helmer.

I’ve worn it tons of times, but oddly this is the first time I tried it over a gold. I quite like the look. It reminds me almost of a Christmasy dinosaur egg!

P.S. I reviewed this polish on here a long time ago. Felt that it was time to revisit it. :) It’s one of those polishes I could never get sick of. It’s essentially Christmas in the form of nail polish!

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Essie Knockout Pout Swatches & Review

Essie Knockout Pout Swatches & ReviewEssie Knockout Pout is a K.O. of colour that’s sorely needed during the winter. POW! BAM! ZOWWIE! (Okay, I just made up that last one, but it seemed to tie in with the whole retro-Batman theme.)

With the days getting shorter, colour therapy in the form of nail polish can be a real boost!

I’ve always picked up the Essie Knockout Pout bottle in the store to admire, but put it back on the shelf. Finally, it came home with me.

This time, I wanted a pick-me-up, and this was just the colour I knew could work some magic. I was right! :)

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OPI Oy-Another Polish Joke! Swatches & Review

OPI Oy-Another Polish Joke Swatches & ReviewOkay, I’ll admit it – I get a little intimidated by yellow and gold nail polish. And I can never tell if they’ll work with my skin tone until I paint my nails.

OPI Oy-Another Polish Joke! is from the upcoming Euro Centrale Collection for Spring/Summer 2013, which will be hitting stores on February 6.

In the bottle, it looks magical! When I first got it, I admired it in natural light at various angles. It’s definitely different than any of the golds or yellows I have in my stash.

(Random note: Whenever anyone says ‘stash’, I always think of a moustache first. And since most nailphiles don’t use the word in that context and more commonly use it to mean their collection, it usually makes me giggle when I hear sentences with the word ‘stash’. Yeah, I can find humour in anything.)

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Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas!

Merry Christmas 2012 Swatch And LearnDear Swatch And Learn Readers,

I wish you all a Merry Christmas that’s full of love and laughter!

You’ve brought a lot of joy into my life, and I’ll always appreciate your kindness and creativity.

You are a constant source of inspiration for me, and even when I’m having a difficult day, somehow readers like you know just what to say to put a smile on my face.

Thank you for joining me on this rewarding blogging journey.

Love,
Mary

P.S. The above image is a photo I took of the design on Christmas cards I’ve been giving out this year.

Note: I will be very busy today and the rest of the holiday season, so I may be slower to reply to your comments, e-mails, and tweets than usual. But I’ll still be checking in from time to time and moderating comments. I promise to reply to you as soon as I can. :) Also, I’ve scheduled daily posts in case you do happen to drop by again during the holiday season.

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