Modern Holiday Nail Art

The first Christmas party on our calendar is coming right up and I’m more than a little excited to get all dressed up. With a full schedule and a toddler in the mix, the moments of luxurious pampering and glamorous nights out are few and far between these days. For me, there’s one surefire way to feel all gussied up, no matter how big or small the occasion: paint my nails. Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to hit the nearest spa for a manicure, but time is in even shorter supply than ever, so it was a DIY manicure or nothing.

I caught sight of this gorgeous manicure that Bri Emery of designlovefest posted about a month ago and fell in love with it. I’ve seen a ton of gorgeous manicures (check out the Instagram feed of Bliss Lau — not only is her jewelry exquisite, but her nails. Just WOW.) but I’m not so ambitious as to attempt anything too intricate by myself. After all, I’d be responsible for trying it left-handed. Not promising for a positive outcome on that one.

With the Christmas right around the corner, I wanted to make an attempt at Bri’s modern manicure, with a Christmas spin. From a previous trip to my favorite beauty shop, I had both white polish and a dark evergreen color (which unfortunately reads as black in these photos), which I felt was in the Christmas spirit without going blatantly holly jolly. The result? A DIY manicure that’s modern, simple and sooooo easy to do at home.

By the way, can I tell you how awkward it is to photograph your own hands? Lay them flat on the table and you’ve got meaty slabs. Curl your fingers at all and you’ve got claws. So. Many. Bad. Hand. Photos.

Good thing the manicure turned out well. Bring on the party frocks, the punch bowl, and the bad holiday music!


Step 1

 Open GalleryFirst, do yourself a favor and slick on a base coat. Your manicure will last longer and your nails won’t stain if you use a dark color.

Step 2

 Open GalleryNext, cover your nails in a coat of white. I also thought about using a shimmery silver for a fancier touch, but stuck with the simple, clean look of white. Allow to dry completely.

Step 3

 Open GalleryNext, dip your brush in the top color and wipe most off. Then paint on a line from the bottom corner of your nail to the opposite corner at the top of your nail. Do the opposite side to form an X across your nail. Now paint in everything but the small triangle at the base of your nail. Allow to dry completely.

Step 4

 Open GalleryFinish off your nails with a quick swipe of topcoat and voila! Chic, modern nails to dress up your holiday party finery.


  • Clear base coat nail polish
  • White or silver nail polish
  • Dark green or black nail polish
  • Clear top coat nail polish
About Ellen Foord 


A tight budget has never stopped Ellen Foord from creating a beautiful, modern, creative home and treating every day as one of life's smaller celebrations. A freelance writer and ...

More About Ellen Foord

3 Responses

  1. We love the modern holiday DIY Nail Art

  2. Robin Parson says:

    Ellen Foord I also impress with your work which you do on Modern Holiday Nail Art topic. I think you have a fantastic written skills for every type of explanation. I'm saving your blog for more reading.

  3. strip waxing says:

    I am impress with the creativity of nail art.

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