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Thursday, March 17th, 2011

Nail Art Tutorial: St. Patrick's Day Plaid

St. Patrick's Day Plaid Nail Art

What better way to ring in St. Patrick's Day than with a Black, White, and Green Plaid design that's simple enough anyone can do. A pattern even Mr. and Mrs. Patrick would be proud of!   

What I used: Nubar Foundtion (base), LA Colors in Energy Source (white), Essie Pretty Edgy (green), Milani Nail Art in Black Sketch (stripes) and China Glaze Fast Forward (top).

Skill Level: Beginner to Intermediate 

Step 1 Start with a White Creme

Step 1: Start with a white base color like a french white creme. Apply two coats or until completely opaque. Let dry.  

Step 2 Paint a Green Stripe

Step 2: Using Essie Pretty Edgy (or any green creme) apply a swipe of color to the nail. Repeat this step if necessary. Let dry.

Tip: When positioning the green stripe, just be sure there is plenty of room for your lines shown in Step 3.

Step 3 Draw vertical lines

Step 3: Take Milani's Precision Nail Art Polish (or your preferred brand) and start drawing vertical lines starting at the base of the cuticle to the tip of your nail.

Tip: Oh, boy. Drawing perfectly straight lines was a killer for me! But, after some good ole' practice it gets much easier - I promise. Two important factors I learned: First, find a striper brush that's easy to work with. I really like Milani and Art Club's (aka Color Club) nail art polishes. The brush is thin and perfect for smaller nails. Secondly, make sure your hand is super steady.

If you're having trouble keeping your hand still, try moving your nail/finger with the brush.

Step 4 Draw horizontal lines

Step 4: Using the same technique as Step 3, start drawing your lines in a horizontal (side-to-side) motion.

Tip: Horizontal lines are a bit more challenging than vertical ones. I found it much easier to draw halfway then connect the ends from the opposite side. 

St. Paddy's Day White, Green Plaid Nail Art

Step 5: Finish with a glossy top coat and you're done!

What do you think of my Green, White and Black Plaid design? Is this something you would try? What did you end up wearing for St. Paddy's Day? Have a great night!

Looking for the perfect Green? Browse through the Photo Gallery of Green Nail Polish.  

(11) Comments

nailpolishtwit said on Mar 18th, 2011 10:27 pm
That's really adorable, Steph. I might try that next year.

Steph said on Mar 21st, 2011 10:16 am
Hi nailpolishwit,
Awe, you don't have to wait until next year! Try a spring-y combination for Spring like Karli :)

Karli said on Mar 19th, 2011 12:09 pm
Love this! I'm going to try it with pink, green & purple for Spring. Thanks for the instructions!

Steph said on Mar 21st, 2011 10:10 am
Hi Karli,
Thank You! That sounds like a wonderful combination for Spring!

kia said on Mar 19th, 2011 10:10 pm
gorg!! i love it!! thanks for the tut!!

Tracy said on Mar 19th, 2011 10:35 pm
I'm actually really surprised there isn't more comments.. this is so awesome.. and to think it's freehand!!

Steph said on Mar 21st, 2011 10:09 am
Awe, you are so sweet! Thank you so much!

Shelly said on Mar 20th, 2011 12:32 pm
I love this...but I am just not steady-handed enough to do it well. I wonder how masking tape would work? :-)

Steph said on Mar 21st, 2011 10:08 am
Hi Shelly,
Yes, absolutely! Painting, Nail Art striping and scotch tape would also be good alternatives.

krystal said on Mar 17th, 2012 12:59 pm
love it tried it and I was even able to do my right hand lol! I used different colors but still love it thanks for sharing yeah def. have to have steady hands lol but not hard very easy thanks again.

jenni said on Apr 30th, 2012 12:12 am
you should check out these awesome nail shields at

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Hi Steph,
Love your blog. You wrote: Always wrap the free edge or tip throughout each step. I didn't see this step in the video. Could you please explain how to do the wrap process and with what material. Thank you.

Megan said, on Sep 8th, 2012 1:12 am regarding Product Review: Red Carpet Manicure Pro Kit
I am wondering if these gel polishes can be used with other gels. I have a different system with a different brand of base coat and top coat, can the different brands of gel mix?

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I've had my kit for a couple of months now and love the way it lasts; but the Structure and Brilliance brushes are starting to stiffen and so is the gel in the bottles. Anyone else having that issue? Is there a way to thin them out?

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Steph said, on Jul 3rd, 2012 4:14 pm regarding Wet n Wild Flash Dry Nail Colors
Hi Prinzy,
It was a gorgeous color! I remember picking up a few bottles because I loved the color so much! lol! Actually, yes, I'm launching a store in the next couple of weeks. I have everything built, I'm just working on the Terms and Conditions right now, so it should be very, very soon.

I only have about 10 Studio M colors in the store currently, but I will be taking special pre-orders once it opens.

prinzy said, on Jul 3rd, 2012 3:47 pm regarding Wet n Wild Flash Dry Nail Colors
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Hi Sarah,
I'm not sure about retail stores, but you can still find them on

Sarah said, on Jun 12th, 2012 2:19 pm regarding Summer Collection: China Glaze Poolside
Can I still buy them in the stores now?

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