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January 7, 2012
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Know what Friday was?  12th Night!  Twelfth Night marks the start of Carnival season and is celebrated down here with plenty of parties and one goofy parade: The Phunny Phorty Phellows get all gussied up and ride a single street car along the Uptown route on St. Charles throwing beads and celebrating the beginning of Mardi Gras.  I went to the Muses 12th Night party (this year it was at Eiffel Society, a really interesting architectural club on St. Charles — it’s actually a section off of the Eiffel Tower in Paris that was removed in the 1980s, bought, and reassembled in New Orleans) where they set up a smorgasbord of goodies, including a huge assortment of king cakes.

king cakeI know, I’m throwin’ a lot of New Orleans info at you right now.  Here’s all you really need to know about king cakes: they come out for Carnival season, are like a breakfast cake cooked in a round/oblong circle (and usually stuffed with something yummy), covered in glaze and then sprinkled generously with purple, green and yellow sugar sprinkles.  And the bakeries down here that laugh at liability cases (NOT the grocery stores) will still put a small plastic baby inside of the cake — if you get the piece with the baby in it, the next cake is on you (also means you’re King/Queen for the day, but c’mon, you ALWAYS are).  It’s definitely a seasonal thing though so don’t expect to find these anywhere in the summer…  If you want to try it out and celebrate Mardi Gras in your neck of the woods, I HIGHLY recommend having a cake delivered from Sucré, this great sweets shop down the street that has been voted “best king cake” a bunch of times by a ton of sources (and is one of Oprah’s favorite places dontchaknow).

Anyway!  Point is, I needed nails that matched my wig on Friday so picked out a base of nubar Isis Purple then sponged in some Sinful Colors Purple Diamond on the bottom half for extra effect.  Followed that by using some acrylic paint to add pieces of king cakes on each nail.  They’re not perfect creations to begin with so it looks about as messy as they really are, with some glitter thrown over the top to mimic the sparkle of the sugar sprinkles.

And yeah, this city was not built for New Years’ diet resolutions.  There’s a reason they’ve coined the term “We Live To Eat“.

Happy Mardi Gras!

King Cake Nails

nubar Isis Purple

Sinful Colors Purple Diamond

mardi gras king cake

9 Responses

  1. Ashesela says:

    What an interesting tradition!! :D Also, your nails are so lovely!!!

    I nominated you for the Cute Blog Award. :D
    http://artevolve.blogspot.com/2012/01/cute-blog-award.html

  2. April says:

    Cool idea! I love the colors together! Yum King cake!

  3. Meg says:

    I love the traditions of New Orleans! I haven’t had a King Cake in YEARS!!! Now I have to hunt down a recipe. :) Your nails are cute – you did a great job with the colors.

  4. Calou says:

    I’ll be assuming that tradition has French origins since on the 6th of January (the Epiphany), here in France, we eat “la galette des rois”(king’s cake (in reference to the biblical magi) which is stuffed with “une fève” (a clay/porcelain-made figurine representing a character from the christian religion or more commonly just a funny object)
    there are 2 types of cakes here, one is a brioche very ressembling yours, while the other is a puff pastry filled with almond paste. (yum!)
    anyway, that’s a delightful nail art, festive and yummy at once! great idea!! i hope you enjoyed the festivities!
    sincerely, a fan~

  5. TikiBwana says:

    I love King Cake– I make mine with cream cheese filling–yummy!!
    Laissez les bons temps rouler!

  6. Helga says:

    Cute nails! Your city seem like a lot of fun! :) I’d love to see more photos of that stuff too :)

  7. gottwinkies says:

    Kick-butt mani! Those are traditions I have never heard of, thanks!

  8. WOW These are stunning and that cake looks sooo yummy it should be a crime

  9. the nerd says:

    Calou, YES! New Orleans: founded by the French, spiced up by the Spanish, coveted by the British and bought by the US. :-D I love that the tradition’s been kept over here — I’ve got to find one of the puff pastries, that sounds delish! And I will be sure to post Mardi Gras pics along with the nails once the season/parades really kick into gear, it’s a colorful mess.

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