Monday, April 30, 2012

Loaded Baked Potato Soup

Oh my goodness my stomach is growling just thinking about it. If you follow my "Fatty" board on Pinterest where I pin recipes, you may know that my favorite soup is loaded baked potato soup. Yes, it's true I love fattening, creamy, bad for you food. AHHH I am so hungry right now, I guess I picked a bad time to write this post since I am currently trying to "get my bootay in shape", which also means I'm trying to eat healthy and writing this posts isn't making that very easy. Okay, let me get back on track. I found a loaded baked potato soup recipe on pinterest and needless to say, I had to try it. Well, the verdict is in and I must tell you, it was delicious. If you like this particular kind of soup and are looking for a yummy recipe, well look no further because this one is pretty fantastic! It's a really simple recipe that you probably can't screw up (well, maybe one part you can but it's still pretty easy!). If you aren't an amazing cook but you're looking for a recipe that will "wow" try this! It would also taste really yummy with some sandwiches, maybe a roast beef sandwich on some french bread...oh so yummy! You know it's good when I've said yummy about 4 times already. I didn't do a picture tutorial because it's not my recipe and there's quite a few steps but I did take a few pictures and will include the link the the recipe at the bottom!

Sorry for the not so amazing pictures, it was dark when a few of them were taken and flash never does the subject much justice!

I know you want to make this soup yourself so here's the recipe! Please make it and tell me how you liked it, and of course tell Kate!

- xoxo Alexis Leigh

Sunday, April 29, 2012

No Sew Fabric Bow!

Hi guys, today I have a super exciting tutorial for you! As you can see from the title, I'm going to show you how to make a no sew fabric bow. This tutorial can also be used to make a bow tie, too. You'd just have to find out what to do so that it can go around the neck. So, this tutorial is fairly easy, as always, if you have any questions you can leave a comment, e-mail me, use the form in the tabs section, or tweet me! Feel free to enlarge the photos for a closer look!

 Click "read more" for the full tutorial and pictures!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Just an Idea...

Hey guys, I had an idea a while ago and it keeps coming back to me so I thought I'd share. Because I'm so busy sometimes I don't get posts out as often as I'd like, I thought it might be a good idea to add maybe a person or two with different talents or things to contribute each week. The thing is, I don't have a gigantic amount of traffic or followers so I can't attract people that way. However, if you or someone you know might be interested please have them e-mail me at xoxoalexisleightheblog@gmail.com (Please paste my e-mail into your message instead of sending the email by clicking on the link. It doesn't always work and I'd hate not to get your message!) because I really would love to get this idea possibly going. I'd be interested in having someone with either of these talent to e-mail me please if you're interested: nail art or swatches, cooking, and crafts. Those are the only things I can think of but if you think of something else you would like to do to contribute, email me. I just want to say that this would still be my blog, I'd keep the name and everything, you'd be more like a special guest blogger ;)! Also, I'd proof every post, at least at first. I'd also want to talk to you more about it over email and see a "practice post" or a sample. I'm really excited about this idea and I hope you guys will e-mail me about it! Even if you have your own blog I'd be more than happy to have you contribute, it's up to you! Please, tell your friends!
- xoxo Alexis Leigh


<a href="http://www.bloglovin.com/blog/4343313/?claim=hytv9xeyewr">Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>

In case you're wondering what that bit of link nonsense is, it's a link to follow me on Bloglovin'! Thanks to one of my lovely new readers, Swatch It Up  I have 1 follower on Bloglovin'! If you would like to follow me too, just click on the link above or I've added a button onto the left column under my blog archive. Thanks so much for reading!

P.S. I have a great craft tutorial coming up either this week or next, so keep your eyes peeled! :)

- xoxo Alexis Leigh

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Ulta - 14 Carat

Because my other post was so lengthy I figured I'd keep this one short.

I recieved this polish for my birthday from my grandmother back in February. It's a really pretty sheer (but buildable) gold frost I want to say? I'm so bad at distinguishing polish finishes even though I've looked at this finish index about a million times. Either way I'm not a fan of frosts but this I really like. I wonder how it would look as a topcoat... In the last picture it looks a little like a duochrome, right? Or maybe not? You don't really see that in reality just the flash which is strange. So, if you only want this color because you think it's a duochrome, it's not! Just letting you know ;)

                              In sun, no flash                                                 Indirect sun with flash

Colors Used: NOPI - Basecoat Plus, Ulta Pro - 14 Carat 3 coats, NYC - tc 1 coat

Have a fabulous week! ;)

- xoxo Alexis Leigh

Grungy Gradient

You may remember how I said in my Nude Clouds post that I loved half nude manis? Well, I did! I LOVE them! They're just very unique and fresh, I can't really think of a good explanation for why I like them, they just look cool, okay? :) Anyway, the other day I was seriously going crazy and did my nails about 5 times, literally. It was pretty insane. I just had all these ideas and wanted to do them all at once! Most of them were ombres or gradients. Another love of mine. I loved them the first time I saw them and looked everywhere to find out how to do them. I gave up after a while because they looked too hard for me to do and I couldn't find a good tutorial. Well, since then many people have been doing them and there are some pretty great tutorials out there. Also, it isn't that hard to do and I bet you can do it too! (...I swear I rhyme at least once in every post, cray.) I made a picture tutorial for you all but I'll post that next week. There's two techniques to get the ombre effect and one of them I definitely favor. Both you need a sponge, I've heard people say any kind of sponge (ex. dish sponge, eye makeup applicator, etc..) but I personally like using makeup triangle sponges. I bought a bag of generic sponges for $2 at Target, FYI. For one technique (this is the way I learned and used in my St. Patrick's Day mani ) you place a drop of polish on paper, dab your sponge in it, sponge some excess polish on the paper if needed, then sponge the polish on your nail 1/3 of the way gently, then get some more polish on your sponge and sponge the polish on 2/3 of the way, then just the tip to create a gradual color change. That way works well but this second technique, for me, works extremely better. It creates a more seamless, gradual color shift. I first saw this technique popping (I re-read that and thought I wrote pooping by accident, ew haha and sorry for that) around on Pinterest (of course I did) then a few other places. I was like, "What is this incredible idea?" so obviously I had to try it. It was indeed incredible. You're going to be mad at me but I'm not even going to tell you how to do it until next week when I show you the tutorial. Please don't screen slap me. Sorry for the long post, let's get to the pictures!

So, I named this mani "Grungy Gradient" because as you can see it is a gradient and I thought it looked grungy and gothy. Now, I love color as much as the next gal but usually only on my nails or makeup, I'm more of a black girl. It's just a universally flattering, chic and simple color. Like I said before, I was really on an ombre kick so when this idea popped (...I wrote popped, guys. Stop it.) into my brain I had to try it out right away. I am really very happy with the results. Second edgy mani in a row, people! (I'm talking about the Edgy Splatter Mani!) This was a little more difficult of a gradient to do than normal I think because black is obviously so pigmented. It was harder to create a sheer layer of it so that it would graduate into dark black, but I think it turned out really good! What do you guys think?

Colors Used: Essie - All in One basecoat, Wet n' Wild - Black Creme, NYC - TC 1 thick coat
What do you guys think of this look, too unfinished or fashionably grungy?

- xoxo Alexis Leigh

Monday, April 23, 2012

Wished.it Tutorial

Hi guys, today I have an interesting tutorial for you! A good friend of mine has a website called Wished.it (you may remember the name from this nail post a while ago), an online registry for any given event. I'll talk to you about it in depth a little more but here's their 'about us'  page which you can visit for more information. You know how Target and Bed Bath & Beyond all have registries on their websites where you can add stuff from their site? Well Wished.it is similar to that and Pinterest, also. It's a super easy, free website where you can add clothes, furniture, makeup- just about anything- all to one place so friends and family can easily browse through your wishes. Another great advantage of this site is that you can easily e-mail, facebook, or tweet your list so that others can see it without thinking of you as pushy for stuffing a whishlist in their face! Great, right??? Another plus (sorry guys, but there's going to be a lot of these!) is that they recently came out with an Andoird and iPhone app scanner so that when you're out shopping you can scan the bar code of your favorite items and they'll be added right to your Wished.it list! I know, it just keeps getting better. Oh, and remember how I said it was free? Yes, you read that correctly. What more could you ask for? Hmmm, well maybe a way for people to check that they've bought that item already so you don't get two of the same thing? Well, they've already thought of that! Your friends and family can check off that they've bought an item on your list and if you checked off you want the buys to be a surprise, only your friends and family can see if something is already purchased! I know, I know, it's great. There's lot's of little tips and tricks to using this site at it's fullest potential (even though it is so easy to use...) so I'll just share a tutorial on how you sign up and add things to your list for today! If you have any more questions regarding Wished.it ask me in the comments and I'll try to answer them as best I can. Clicking on the photos to enlarge them will help a lot!
 Click 'Sign up to create your own wishlist!" on the top right corner
 Fill out the form
 Log in
 Click 'toolbox' on the top tab
 Click 'Save to Wished.It Bookmarklet'
 You can either add the bookmarklet like this or the way under (the video on the page helps). I do it the other way which you'll see in a second.
 Right click the 'save to wished.it!' button and click 'Add to Favorites' (sorry it's covered in the picture!) Click 'Add"
 Go to your desired website (ex. clothes, furniture, nail polish ;) etc...), click on a specific item, open your favorites, click on the 'Save to Wished.It!' button...
 ...And fill out the form! Click 'add item to wished.it when you're finished
Go to your Wished.it account and you should see your newly added items! Now, go add a whole bunch of stuff to your wishlist and send it to your friends and family!

If you have any more questions feel free to ask. Sorry, my watermark got in the way!

- xoxo Alexis Leigh

All statements were written by me and reflect my own unbiased opinions and experience with this site.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Easter Candy

Pretty overdue, but here's what we did the day after Easter. We ate yummy on sale Easter candy of course. It is after all the only sensible thing to do. Who else is going to eat all the Easter candy? The momma picked up some interesting candy that I had to snap some pictures of. Happy Sunday!

Enjoy the last blissful hours of your weekend!

- xoxo Alexis Leigh

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Nail Polish Cleanup

Here's a quick video on how I like to cleanup the polish that gets around my nails!

Tool: Orangestick, acetone, paper towel (I use an old shirt), q-tips (optional).

Mani in video: Edgy Splatter Mani & Tutorial

- xoxo Alexis Leigh

Autism Awareness Month: Blue Nails

As many of you probably know, April is Autism Awareness Month. April 2nd was Awareness Day but I didn't get a chance to post this then. For those of you who don't really know what autism is, here is an informative place to start. Also, if you want to know more about Autism Awareness Month, here is a helpful page. Posting a blue mani is really the least I could do, but it does bring awareness and every little bit does help. If you are interested in volunteering your time or money to Autism Speaks, go here. Like I said, every little bit helps and even though I can't do much, I hope this sparks you to at least find out more about Autism and ways you contribute.

Now about the polish, don't you just love this blue? It's a gorgeous bright blue creme that's opaque in 3 easy coats. Now for the downside, it chips really quickly. I don't personally wear polish that long but I did want to wear this one for awhile but couldn't because of the chipping. I don't know about the process of gel nail polish but could you put that over this? I'll have to do some research about it. Although, honestly I'm not sure I could wear one polish for 2 weeks.

Colors Used: NOPI - BC Plus, NYC - Water Street Blue 3 coats, NYC - Quick Dry TC 1 coat.

On a side note, I miss my long nails.

What are you doing to bring attention and to support Autism Awareness Month? Send me your blue manis!

- xoxo Alexis Leigh

Edgy Splatter Mani & Tutorial

Hi guys, today I have a pretty cool post for you! A splatter mani! I'm sure most of you have heard of this before but if you haven't it's a nail art technique used to create a splatter effect by dipping a straw into nail polish and blowing quickly and with a lot of pressure into the opposite end of the straw. Doesn't it create a cool effect?!?! I think so! Right before this mani I did another splatter but with a different color scheme, it was my first time trying this technique and it was okay but I wasn't a big fan of all the colors together. I'll post that a different time! So this technique was actually so much easier than I thought but explaining the steps does help so that's what I'll do. Here's a video tutorial from Chelsea on Get Nailed which helped me if you need a visual.

Also, here's my little nubs. Aren't they soooo short? I don't really like them but lately my nails have been breaking more and I often have to file them down. I've heard OPI Nail Envy was good at preventing breaks and I think it was Seche Retain helps them grow? Have any of you tried these products or know of any good ones?

Okay, let's get started!

Read after the jump for the how-to and more pictures!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Mustaches & Stripes

Last week I showed you guys Essie's - To Buy or Not to Buy. Well, today I have the nail art I did over that! This mani reminds me of a ringleader in the circus, you know the one's who wear the red and gold striped jackets and usually have a big bushy mustache. I wanted to try out the mustache mani for quite a while but doing a different mustache on each fingernail seemed too time consuming and difficult at the time. So, instead I chose to try this mani. The result pretty good. I could do better next time but for a first try, I do like it. At the end there's a simple video link on how to make the mustaches! I used a bobby pin and toothpick but you can use a dotting tool if you have one. Also, I used a nail art striper bursh for the stripes.

Here's a great tutorial for mustache nails! And, if you mustache for inspiration, here's  a great mani! So corny, I couldn't help it!

Colors Used: NOPI - Basecoat Plus, Essie - To Buy or Not to Buy 3 coats, NYC - tc, Wet n' Wild - Black Creme for nail art, NYC - tc 2 coats.

What do you all think of this? Would you try mustaches on your nails?

Side Note - I figured once and a while I'd post a few personal things that are happening in my life at the bottom so if you guys don't want to read it you don't have to ;)...
So, as you know my baby brother was born last week (if you didn't get to see them here's some hospital pictures). He's getting so big already! When he was born he weighed a little more than 7 lbs and now he weighs about 9! He's such a sweet little boy. Other than having a new baby in the house there hasn't been too much going on. For Easter last Sunday we didn't do much, in fact somehow I slept almost the entire day! Crazy. I haven't had much time to get posts together lately and I'm not sure when that will change but I always have time to do my nails so you can hold on to that every Tuesday! :) I hope you guys have an absolutely wonderful week!

- xoxo Alexis Leigh

Rad Rainbow Tips

Today for tip-tastic Tuesday I have a rainbow french for you! I usually am not a huge fan of the french manicure. Maybe they're too conservative for me? I'm not sure but they just aren't my cup of tea. However, this mani I'm really liking! It's modern and totally flirty, it reminds me of summer days eating popsicles outside. You too? Anyway, I took off my other color (will be posted next week!) and decided I wanted to go for a nude. I painted them and then just left them like that for a few minutes. I looked in my stash and decided rainbow tips would give this nude a nice fresh spring-y kick! I surprisingly ended up really liking the results! They add just the right amount of color and edge to my nails without going full on neon. I freehanded on the tips with the plain old nail polish brush because let's face it, those nail strip things just don't work; well, not for me. They were super easy (plus!) and come on, aren't they so cute? All you need to do is paint on your fave nude then pick out five bright or pastel (or a mix) shades. You can even go bare and just do the tips on your natural nails but I liked the added contrast from the neutral. I don't have any yellows or oranges which wouldn't looked good but I still like this mani a lot! After your base dries (my base was a little sheer which works well since you can see your nail line through the polish) simply paint on your tips using the polish brush and finish with a topcoat. Easy! All the pictures pretty much looked the same but I liked these nails so much I posted almost all of them ;)

Colors Used: NOPI - Basecoat Plus, Nude franken 1 coat, NYC - tc 1 coat, TIPS THUMB TO PINKY, Sally Hansen Salon Professional - Trouble Maker, Red franken, NYC - Quick Dry (no name!?), Sinful Colors - Olympia, Essie - To buy or Not to buy, NYC - tc 1 coat.

Remember to send in your suggestions!

- xoxo Alexis Leigh

Monday, April 9, 2012

Part 1 - Easy Breezy Beach/Messy Music Festival Hairstyles

Hi guys, I'm back! I haven't had a hair post in a long time and a reader suggested this so I wrote some ideas down and this was the outcome. I hope you like! As you can see from the title of this post, this is just part 1. I couldn't decide if I wanted to do all four hairstyles in one post or break them up into two but time decided for me. I still haven't taken pictures of the process for my other two hairstyles then I also have to edit them so I figured making two posts out of them would work just fine! I love brainstorming and experimenting with different hairstyles, the possibilities are endless! I wanted to create something easy but still very appealing to the eye, sort of complex looking but easily achieved. I think I did okay but you guys tell me! Thanks to my little sis I had the perfect hair model. She has such pretty hair, so thick. So, if you have any questions of course leave a comment, tweet me, email me, or use my new form! I really do love and appreciate all the feedback, constructive criticism or praise if definitely welcome ;)! A plus, these looks are also so appropriate for the music festivals coming up! Add some flowers to either or both of these looks and you're hair is ready for the heat, and music!
Read after the jump for the full tutorial, pictures, and tips!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Essie - To Buy or Not to Buy

I'm back! So sorry I've been gone lately, I've been super busy blah, blah, blah. You know how that goes. Anyway I'm coming back with a bang! A really light, delicate, pretty bang of course. Yes, I am talking about nail polish. This color is from Essie (I've been buying quite a few of their products lately and I think I may be falling in love), it's sooo pretty and sort of Easter-y if you're looking for a nice pastel. Of course, It's very wearable on any given day besides Easter too! First coat was sheer but became opaque by the third easy coat. Dry time was decent in between coats, FYI. I'm sure most of you have heard that this beauty from the Spring 2012 collection was a little disappointing. Well, that's because in the bottle there's this gorgeous bluish purple shimmer or micro glitter and when it's on the glitter is nonexistent. I for one didn't know about this before I bought it so I wasn't let down but I can see how people would be upset by this. I truly am so very fond of this color. Enjoy the pictures and look out for some nail art of this mani next week, I think this color deserves two posts!

I'm not sure how I'm feeling about the round macros anymore. What do you guys think? On a side note, I have a post I'm working on I think you all will really like. Hint: it's a hair post, and not just one tutorial but a few! I had two video tutorials I wanted to edit and post but my video editing software apparently can't handle HD videos (did I tell you guys this already?)! :(  Hopefully I'll get that figured out soon. Remember to keep sending me in suggestions, questions, or images of you take or trys on my designs and tutorials, please! :)
Colors Used: NOPI - Basecoat Plus, Orly - Ridgefiller 2 coats, Essie - To Buy or Not to Buy 3 coats, NYC - fast dry topcoat 1 coat.

Have a lovely week!

- xoxo Alexis Leigh

Drumroll *bum, bum, bum, bum, bummmm* REVLON - WHIMSICAL is in the building!

 Whoop, Whoop for the obnoxiously long name!

You may have heard a lot of talk and speculation about Revlon's nail polish color, Whimsical. If you didn't well, I have. Some was bad but I believe a lot of it was good. Nevertheless, I had to see for myself! While in Publix I ran over real quick to the polish section with Haley to browse the colors. While scanning for Whimsical in the Revlon display case I told my sister that if I did indeed find Whimsical that I'd pee my pants and scream. I looked, and looked but didn't see it. I walked away and then came back a few minutes later just to make sure I didn't miss anything. Well I did! There were two bottles possibly hidden behind a different Revlon shade. You crafty little polish hider, you. Obviously (hopefully this is obvious...) I didn't pee in my pants like I told Haley I would but I did scream this, "OHMYGOSHOHMYGOSH, HALEY THEY HAVE ITTTTTTT!!!" I definitely did get some chuckles and strange looks but it comes my the obsession I suppose. Okay, enough talking. As you know I brought this beauty home with me and swatched it that night.

Let me just start my saying that seriously, this was sort of a crazy witch lady (with a b) to apply. I mean there was a lot of coats packed on my talons, it was seriously ridiculous. And, worth it. BECAUSE, there wasn't even one sheet mark or dent in the morning, hooray! Luckily dry time in between each coat wasn't bad so it didn't take too long but seriously there were about 10 coats on there. To the pictures!...

One of my favorite things about this jelly polish was the depth to it. See how some pieces were sort of buried under the delicious jellyness? So pretty! There's big blue and pink hex glitter chunks, smaller pink glitter pieces (I don't think there's any blue?) and last, micro iridescent pink glitter. The base is powder blue but unless you really pile it on like I did it won't be super noticeable. I'll have to double check but this may only be my first or second jelly. I know right, what is that? Well I can't always tell if a polish is a jelly or not so maybe I have more than this one, not sure. Not sure why my cuticle and skin looks so nasty in that macro, it definitely didn't look like that in real life. Calls for some cuticle balm! Back to business, this is my first Revlon so I can't speak for all of their polish formulas but this one was just okay. The big glitter chunks you had to dig around for just a bit (in the pictures I didn't really do that so you can see some sparser areas) but other than that it was fine. It's super sheer which is why I needed 3 coats of Orly's ridgefiller (which I'd imagine looks A LOT like Essie- Marshmallow) but that's not a big deal to me. Also, supposedly it's a nearly dead-on dupe for Deborah Lippmann's - Glitter in the Air but I can't confirm that since I don't own the DL. I feel like I forgot to say something, haha, if I remember I'll edit it in later! :)

Colors Used: NOPI - Basecoat Plus, Orly - Ridgefiller 3 coats, NYC - fast dry TC 1 coat, Revlon - Whimsical 3 or 4 coats, NYC - TC 2 coats.

That's about 10 layers including TC! It does look like an awfully yummy, squishy, glitter jelly to me, though! I hope you guys are in love with this as much as I am!

- xoxo Alexis Leigh