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Guest Post – “Cattails at Sunset” Nail Art by Chalkboard Nails

Happy Monday Fanatics! Do I have a treat for you. The lovely and talented Sarah from Chalkboard Nails has whipped up one of her amazing nail art creations just for us.


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I’ve been an admirer of Sarah’s from afar for a while now and recently got to know her through a blogging group I belong to. Her artistic skills leave me and my unsteady hands in awe. She has a creative eye for color and a skill level I could only hope to aspire to. I’m honored to be able to share her work with you.

My name is Sarah, and I’ve been writing the nail art blog Chalkboard Nails for almost two years. I’m so thrilled to be posting on All Lacquered Up today! Show me a group of nail polish addicts and I’d be hard-pressed to find one of them who isn’t familiar with Michelle and her blog. I’m thankful to her for giving me this opportunity to share my passion for nail art with you.

We don’t have a lot of cattails where I live, but they always seemed kind of strangely beautiful to me. So instead of admiring them in person, now I can admire them on my nails! I am a lover of all nail art styles — from subtle to noisy — so for this particular look I attempted to find a happy medium that I hope most will enjoy.

The manicure began with a gradient. I sponged on four different polishes to achieve a moody sunset:
Finger Paints Lemon Sour (pale yellow)
OPI Call Me Gwen-ever (dusty orange)
China Glaze Purr-fect Plum (velvety plum)
China Glaze Grape Pop (rich purple)

Next, I used an It’s So Easy Nails striper in black to paint on the stems and the tall grass along the tips. I finished painting on the fat parts of the cattails with American Apparel – Hassid and a small nail art brush.

Of course, you can’t forget a good topcoat to seal it all in! My favorite is Seche Vite.





I’d love to hear your thoughts on this manicure! Is this something you’d wear on your own nails, or do you prefer a simpler style? The bolder the better, in my opinion!

Stunning, no? While I doubt I could recreate this look in its entirety, I would definitely wear the gradient on its own. The colors meld to create a perfect Midwestern sunset.

If you enjoy this type of guest post, let me know in the comments.

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There Are 37 Brilliant Comments

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  1. Chia says:

    Sarah’s creations are always awe inspiring :) Beautiful design, great post!

  2. Mo says:

    I have to confess one of the reasons I enjoy your blog is the lack of nail art. I know it’s what the cool kids are doing, but I barely have the time to keep my nails done and one color, much less doing this sort of thing.

    Keep up the color reviews! Occasional nail art OK, because it’s pretty, but I really do come to you for things I can do at home. And truly do appreciate the hard (and pretty) work.

    • All Lacquered Up says:

      Thanks for the feedback Mo. I’m no nail art aficianado and my heart is still with color, pure color, but a little nail art sometimes can be fun. And I loved featuring someone as talented as Sarah. The color reviews will definitely outweigh any nail art I feature here. I’m not about to pretend to be as good as it as the nail art bloggers.

  3. Wow, this is an amazing design!

  4. Agi says:

    So unique and beautiful! I would be happy with tenth of your talent!

  5. anissa says:

    absolutely gorgeous! love sarah’s nail art creations and this is no exception!!

  6. Pryanka says:

    Wow, that is one of my favorite Chalkboard Nails nail art creations. Sarah’s amazing with nail art and I’m so glad you featured her here! Would definitely love to see more nail art guest posts around on ALU! I’m so glad you’ve been regularly posting again

  7. NailPolishFan says:

    I love this nail art. It looks absolutely effortless. I wish I could do nail art like that. The only thing I’m kinda good at is doing polka dots on my nails and sometimes they turn out terrible.

  8. awesome job Sarah! Love it!

  9. I want to know how to do it and see step by step pics of the process!!! This is so gorgeous… I bet it took a long time.

  10. Paty Cunha says:

    Do you have a tutorial for this nail art?

    • ewa says:

      This is Robin’s Moses design- she has tutorial for this. Check it out on her youtube channel :)

  11. Jill says:

    Love it!

  12. Cindi says:

    I enjoy the swatches as much as the nail art. Sometimes even more. There is something to be said for the true beauty of a polish plain and unadulterated and that is something you can’t appreciate when it is covered by nail art. However on the other hand, nail art is what hooked me and gave me my polish addiction. I really prefer a bit of both. As long as it’s polish as the subject matter I’m good.

  13. Christy says:

    I heart this! I would definitely wear it!!!

  14. Jackie S. says:

    Amazing, as always! :)

  15. Ronja says:

    Did you start the gradient with the yellow or with the purple?
    Or didn’t you layer te colours?
    Thanks in advance!

    I seriously adore this manicure by the way!
    One of the prettiest I’ve ever seen, and I’ve seen a lot!


  16. Annie Suzie says:

    Stunning Sarah!

  17. Carolina says:

    Wow, perfect nail art!

  18. Kenya says:

    Sarah is one of my absolute favorite bloggers! I absolutely love the idea of guest posts on alllacqueredup because it gives us an opportunity to see bloggers we know in a new light and discover bloggers that we don’t know :)

  19. Mariska says:

    This is so gorgeous!!!! :D

  20. Cori says:

    I think it is lovely, but not something I would wear. Don’t get me wrong, this nail art is gorgeous, but a bit too complicated for me… I’d like it better without the black. The gradient is something too beautiful!

  21. Jenni N says:

    I so love this! It’s beautiful!!

  22. Sarah’s nail art always totally blows me away!

  23. Ingrid says:

    This is stunning!!!!Would love to wear it, but seems impossible for me to replicate it.

  24. Christine says:

    I absolutely love this manicure! From the colors to the detailing. It reminds me of taking photographs at dusk.

  25. I love the colour combination on this and the design is amazing. Almost any simple black silhouette would work well over the gradient so could be recreated with a few black lines or a stamped design. Very inspirational!

  26. TikiBarbie says:

    This is a great design!

  27. Justine Cornil says:

    I always love Sarah’s artwork! Being an aspiring nail artist myself, I always try to replicate her beautiful designs on my own nails. These are so stunning! Once again well done!

  28. Sharon says:

    I really love this nail design. It is not something I could pull off but I admire Sara’s talent and the end result is truly beautiful.

    I think having guests posts like this on occasion is a great idea, it may introduce your followers to an artist and give us all some great ideas.

  29. Jacquelyn says:

    I would love to wear if I knew someone who would paint it on my nails!

  30. Kate & Zena says:

    I love Sarah!

    I think it’s important to cater to every kind of nail polish addict when you have a blog like this (one that tends to educate people on nail polish.) I love swatches, I love plain nail art (just an accent nail), I love easy nail art and I love nail art like this. It gives me something to work up to or to use as an accent nail. It even gives me inspiration to use in my everyday life or to work into my fashion.

    I actually found Sarah through another blogger when she guest posted, so these kind of posts lead me to another point: these posts show off talent and show people that there are other bloggers! I think we get so wrapped up in our blogging routines we forget there are other amazing bloggers out there!

  31. Maria says:

    I absolutely LOVE this! I will be having a go at this myself, though my nails aren’t long enough to get such a beautiful 4 colour gradient lol. If only…xx

  32. zimmy_b says:

    Gorgeous gradient! And I love the silhouette look :)

  33. hey, my firend showed me your design and i was wondering if i could do it.. i must say it was veeery hard :) but i think it went well :) if you want you can see the manicure i did on my blog (this is not a spam of course :)

  34. Syn says:

    I searched for pic of sunset nails and those definitely are the most beautiful I found. I directly started to do them like that and this is how it came out:
    Thank you for your inspiration!