The first thing you need to do is gather your materials. You will need the following items:
- a styrofoam egg (see here for discussion on different sizes)
- thumb tacks (see here for tack estimates)
- some kind of glue (foam glue, super glue, hot glue, etc). In a pinch, clear nail polish with substitute.
- something to stick the tacks into for painting (see ideas here)
- desired nail polish colors
- clear nail polish for a shiny top coat
Once you've gathered your materials, the first step will be to place your tacks for painting. Placing the tacks in lines will help you keep better track of which tacks have already been painted, which is especially important when you get to the final clear coat of polish.
As you can see, I used a styrofoam board for my tacks.
Make sure the tacks aren't pushed all the way into the board, so you will be able to paint their edges.
I always start by painting my tacks with a base color. This helps both with making sure th edges get painted and masking he underlying color of the tack. Since I plan to use a darker color later, I used black as my base coat.
When using white for a base coat, you may need two coats before it is opaque. Patchy base colors lead to the finished tacks not being uniform in color.
This tack is a good example of one that the edge didn't get painted. On the finished egg, tacks like these will be noticeable, so you may want to check for them and repaint them before going on to the next step.
Next, I paint one coat of my color. As you can see, the black base is still peaking through. I will need at least two layers of the color for this egg. Depending on the opaqucy of your polish, you may need several coats.
After two coats of my color, you no longer see bits of the black base coat.
If I were using a glitter, this is the point where I would add a coat of glitter polish.
Since my color is pretty enough by itself, I'm just going to use a clear top coat to give it an extra shine and help prevent the polish from chipping.
Once your tacks are ready, place the first tack in the very center of the larger end of the egg.
Now comes a crucial step: letting the tacks fully dry. Do not try to place the tacks until you can push on them with your fingernail without "denting" the polish. The polish will otherwise get messed up when you push the tacks together on the egg. The safest policy is to let the tacks dry over night. Remember, the more coats of polish you use, the longer the tacks will need to dry as well.
Place the next tack slightly overlapping the first. You want to create a circle around the middle tack.
Each tack should slightly overlap the tacks "below" it and the one to the left of it.
Once you get the first "ring" complete, place each subsequent tack in the "V" formed between the last tack and the ones below it.
Continue on in this way until you get to the top of the egg. If your lines get a little crooked, don't worry too much. They usually straighten out by the top.
Once you're down to the last couple tacks, put glue on the egg. I used foam glue. You may want to practice placing the last couple tacks before adding the glue to make sure the top looks nice.
The last tack should cover up the last few tacks to hold them all in place.
Here is the finished product.