Sunday, 23 November 2014

Oh hey there, Summer (plus my 5 favourite science podcasts)

Dress is thrifted (All About Eve) | socks from Glebe Markets | necklace c/o I Love Crafty | banana brooch - handmade by me | glasses from Glebe Markets | shoes c/o Choies (old)

Thank you to the dude who sold me this All About Eve dress for $15 at Glebe Markets on Saturday. He seemed disappointed that I haggled him down from $20, and I now realise why - this dress is still in stores, retailing for $80. So I am pretty happy with myself for picking it up second-hand (#hagglers4lyf). And, I'm sorry guy, but I will super enjoy the dress this summer (if that's any consolation). It's super light, easy to throw on and has the cutest summery print!

One of the things that I enjoy most about the summer is binging on podcasts. I am obsessed with podcasts, particularly science podcasts. Being both free and regularly released, and they're perfect for listening to while sewing, catching public transport or taking long, lazy afternoon walks. (Illustrations in below photo are by Em Somerville.)
  Annika's 5 all-time-favourite science podcasts:
Radiolab (website)
I actually discovered Radiolab after someone mentioned it on a blog post of mine (thank you, if you're reading)! I then proceeded to listen to every single episode. Radiolab is amazing - as well as science they also have a focus on sound production and effects, so it's as pleasing an experience for your ears as much as it is for your brain. I recommend that you start with the Colours episode, followed by Stochasicity, followed by Black Box.

The Infinite Monkey Cage (website)
Brian Cox and Robin Ince manage the perfect combination of science and comedy in their live panel podcast, featuring both science writers and comedian panelists such as Stephen Fry and Ross Noble. Their discussions often venture into philosophy and the broader implications of science on culture and technology. I've only just started listening, but I'm already hooked. I highly recommend the episodes "Irrationality" and "Can Science Save Us?"

Sawbones (website)
Sawbones takes you on a tour through Western medical history - and it does a good job of making you appreciate being alive in the 21st Century in the time of science-based-medicine, which while it isn't perfect, is a far cry from drinking goats blood to treat hayfever, hiding horseshoes to cure the hiccups, giving opium to children to get them to sleep, or treating headaches by drilling a hole in your head (listen to the episode "trepanation" for that one). It's funny, haunting and educational all at the same time.

Skeptics With A K (website)
From Merseyside in the UK, Skeptics with a K focuses more on scientific skepticism and regularly covers topics such as debunking ghosts, homeopathy and psychics, as well as discussions about placebo, peer review and scientific design. With their new PhD panelist Alice, it now also has a good dose of molecular biology thrown into the mix. The thing that I really love about Skeptics with a K is that the podcasters manage to both be hilariously offensive and the most genuinely lovely people all at the same time. Highly recommended for anyone who likes to take a critical look at the media they consume.

The Naked Scientists (website)
A recap on the science news of the week, as well as answering questions that you never realised you were curious about until now, such as "why do your eyes water when you yawn" and "why do chameleons change colour"?

Do any of you have some good podcast recommendations (science or not! And on the topic of not-science podcasts, listen to SERIAL podcast if you haven't already - oh my, it's good. You'll all be hooked.)

Much love,

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Friday, 21 November 2014

Is This The Real Life? Is This Just Fantasy?

The moment that I stepped outside with my camera and stood against favourite white wall to take some outfit photos, everything felt so normal again. I didn't realise just how much I had missed regular blogging! Well, my exams are now over and that means I am pretty much free for the summer. And like always... now I don't know what to do with myself. While studying (note: procrastinating), I made about 100 different plans of things to do and make and people to see over the summer - and now I'm completely overwhelmed by my own freedom and I'll likely just spend the next couple of days sitting around in my underwear wasting time on facebook instead. Ho hum. But I just have to keep reminding myself that having some downtime is okay!
Dress is thrifted | necklace c/o Now Or Never Jewelry | earrings are handmade | shoes c/o Chicwish (old)| socks from Glebe Markets

The necklace that I am wearing is a sponsored gift from Now Or Never, an independent handmade designer from Spain with some of the the coolest, quirkiest jewellery I have ever come across. They have just released an ~amazing~ collection of candy-themed accessories called the "Psychocandy Collection", which I think would make some perfect Christmas gifts (or a treat for yourself!)

I also went on a cute sock splurge at Glebe Markets last weekend (which I have already posted all about on my instagram), so be prepared to see a lot of cute patterned socks on my blog! I am loving these pineapple ones. My housemate happened to buy me some pineapple underwear on the same day that I got the socks, so I spent the rest of that day being a pineapple queen! All I need now is a pineapple skirt/shorts and I will have a complete pineapple outfit (life goals, right?)

I've missed you all so dearly! Update me on what's been going on in your lives while I've been absent from blogging these past few months!

Love always,

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Sunday, 9 November 2014

DIY Seashell Bra Mermaid Top | Make Thrift Buy #7

Hi! I can't believe I've already done 7 episodes of Make Thrift Buy - they're so much fun to make and I can't wait until my exams are over (1.5 weeks, everybody!) because then I can start working on it full-time! I've had over 100 great suggestions for clothes to try out and I can't wait to finally tackle as many as I can (and don't forget to leave me links if you find something cool that you want me to try out. The weirder the better imo, and you all know I'm a sucker for novelty).

I should really be studying right now and not making videos, but I actually think that having this to do on the side is helping me remain (somewhat) sane ~
(University exams are such a killer. Does anyone else ever feel totally and completely overwhelmed by uni assessments??)

~*I hope you like it!*~

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Wednesday, 5 November 2014

DIY Floral Two-Piece, Buggies & Takayasu's

First up I'm going to provide an explanation for my somewhat sporadic blogging lately! I don't want anyone thinking that maybe I'm becoming disinterested in this blog, because I definitely am not. Lately I've just been really knocked about by my autoimmune illness (which is called Takayasu's Arteritis if you're curious, ~because I know you are~).

If you don't know what it means to have an autoimmune illness, this cartoon below is basically the best way of explaining what that is (and can double-up as my science segment for today's post, hooray!):

The above picture represents some over-zealous white blood cells. While in healthy people white blood cells act to find and destroy unwelcome intruders (like cold viruses), in people with autoimmune disorders the white blood cells decide, for whatever reason, that the cells of the body are also unwelcome intruders, and destroy them as well.
To quiet down those over-excited cells, many people with autoimmune disorders have to take medications that suppress their immune systems. An unfortunate side effect of these is getting seriously knocked-out by little things like colds and infections, like the one I have had for the past entire month.

I've been pretty private about my illness for the past three years on my blog, as I have never wanted for it to be a defining feature of my life - and I'm still not going to talk about it much because that's not what this blog is about - but it is a big part of my life. Lately, a fellow tak-haver has lately begun trying to raise awareness of our illness and I want to do whatever I can to support that pursuit! Because it's a rare illness most doctors have never encountered it, making diagnosis very difficult, and it also means that there is basically zero research money for it. So if you would like to "Like" the awareness page, or even just tell someone that you learnt about a new disease today, that would mean the world to me. We even have a hashtag, #TAK ~what what, getting on that social media bandwagon!~

Now back to my outfit.
I wanted to take some proper, non-iPhone pictures in front of this cute car that parked itself near my house, but as soon as I tried it began to storm quite heavily. *Thanks, universe.* So you're all stuck with the quick-and-dodgy iPhone version of this outfit instead.
I made this two-piece set yesterday out of a thrifted vintage quilt cover. As soon as I saw the quilt cover I knew that it had to be converted into something that I could wear on my body. The print is one of the coolest I've ever encountered - not only are the colours gorgeous, when you look up close you notice that it's jungle-themed, and all these snakes, birds, gazelles and elephants jump out at you. 
Floral set is DIY | necklace c/o Now Or Never Jewelry | shoes are Rubi (old)

Not wanting to waste fabric, I even lined the top using the quilt's lining! This is definitely one of my favourite things that I've ever made. And a tutorial for this will be on my youtube channel by the end of the year, I promise!

Hopefully everything will become a little bit less stressful for me soon, and I'll be back to a more regular blogging schedule. Thanks again for sticking around, reading what I have to say, leaving such wonderful comments and supporting what I do - it's been invaluable to me when I've been at my lowest points these past couple of months.

Much love, and I wish you all a healthy, happy week!

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