This week we caught up with Shelley Burns, an NYC-based freelance nail artist. Her nail design strays from the traditional simplicity associated with the outline nail art trend. Instead, a two-tone paint job is further enhanced with glittering embellishments—golden foil and gilded spikes for the chic win!

Read on to learn more about what inspired this manicure, plus find out more about the nail artist behind it.

EBONY: Shelley, what inspired the design?

Shelley Burns: The colors were actually inspired by a shirt I saw on the rack in a consignment store, and at the time I was dying to use my gold leaf sheets and spikes.

EBONY: How was the design created?

SB: For this design, I used a very sheer nude shade, along with Essie’s “Turquoise and Caicos.” I followed a very simple pattern by brushing the color on and letting them blend naturally. I tore the gold leaf sheets into many different sizes and shapes and simply pressed them into the semi-dry paint. Afterwards, I framed the nail using It’s So Easy Stripe Rite in White. Then I topped off the look with Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat. Finally, I added a drop of glue and placed each spike.

EBONY: What do you feel is your artistic significance when it comes to nail art?

SB: I’m naturally very simple, and a lot of my work is indicative of that. I also like to work mostly with natural nails.

EBONY: What is one piece of advice you’d give to aspiring nail artists?

SB: Always show support and respect for fellow artists, because we’re all we’ve got sometimes.

Loren Lee