Friday, 30 November 2012

I want to ride my bicycle, I want to ride my bike

This is possibly the third post on my blog that I've named after a Queen song. Haha.. However I'm going to go right out there and unashamedly state that I love Queen. I have so many good memories from every party ever in my teenager years dissolving into long Queen medleys (particularly Bohemian Rhapsody), that hearing a song by them never fails to bring a smile to my face. Plus, Bicycle Race is awesome.
Anyone else secretly love Queen (or at least have a soft spot)?

skirt - c/o Oasap
top - c/o Oasap
ring - c/o Oasap
socks - Tutuanna
sunflower clips - the Little Pineneedle
shoes - Label Shoes c/o Chictopia

Speaking of bikes, and seguing into some science, did you know that while physicists can build a telescope to see what elements made up the early universe and accelerate particles to the speed of light in gigantic underground tunnels, they don't really know how bicycles work?? It was thought to be for many years either the gyroscopic effect, or the caster effect, but it's been shown through building bicycles that either don't have or counteract these forces that bikes still work without these forces. A bike will keep moving without its rider as long as its accelerated constantly, but as for why... scientists still don't have the answer. I think it's pretty amazing that science has been able to tell us so much and contribute such a great amount to our lives (I mean, computers?! Internet? Medicine? Our much increased life spans? The human genome project? The LHC?!!) but we don't know how bicycles work! Got to love that.

Anyway, I should also mention that I have a bunny rabbit ring. And it's awesome.
Hope you're all having a beautiful week! It's summer tomorrow, eek! (Sorry, Northern Hemisphere :( )

Thursday, 29 November 2012


Here's an outfit I made to go with my new DIY'd collar clips! I matched the sunflower clips with this floral vintage skirt from Japan - one of my favourite items in my wardrobe in fact, although I never remember to wear it!

blouse - Vintage
sunflower clips - the Little Pineneedle
skirt - Vintage
bag - Vintage
socks - Cotton On Body
shoes - Vintage

Sunflowers are often used as an image to depict the sun... so today I'm going to talk about many suns (whew, that was a stretch, bear with me).
I discovered a beautiful, incredible astronomy based site today - it's called 100,000 stars and it's a new google chrome plugin.
note: I think you need Google chrome for it to work.

Starting with our sun as the centre of the visualisation, it allows you to zoom right out and view our whole galaxy from every angle, as well as giving the names and positions of stars that we can observe on the galactic plane. Click through to the site and watch the "take a tour" video... it's so beautifully made and will definitely have the effect of making any of your problems seem... well... insignificant. Mind blowing, I think is the correct term to use here.

Hope you're all having an amazing day,

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

DIY Sweater/Collar Clips Tutorial

I've never been so excited about a project than today's one! Want to learn how to make your very own customised collar/sweater clips? This is how you do it.


There's quite a lot of materials you will need for this DIY, including:
note: moulds must be silicone to go in the oven. You can even use silicone ice-cube trays if you want! I got my moulds here. But search for "silicone mould" on ebay or somewhere similar if you're not from Australia! Maybe you could use these?
(Mine is kids modelling clay designed for ages "4 and up", haha. But it works!)


Step 1: Preheat your oven to approx. 150°C (300°C).

Step 2: Tear off a small amount of clay. Roll it into a little ball, and press it gently into the mould. Press it gently down and smooth out the edges. Then use a knife (I used a butter knife, haha) to scrape away the excess.

Step 3: Place it face-down on a baking tray, and pop it in the oven for about 15 minutes.
(The larger your mould, the longer time it will need in the oven)

Step 4: Making sure it's dry enough, carefully lift the mould (if it's dry the mould should lift easily). If it's still a bit wet (ie has dark patches), then leave it in the oven for a bit longer, but you can take the mould out now if you want.

Step 5: Paint! Use acrylic paints. Heavy-bodied paints are better as they come out thicker and more vibrant.

Step 6: Once the pain is dry, use a paintbrush to apply a layer of Mod Podge. While it's drying, move on to the next step.

Step 7: Separate a small section of chain with your pliers. Attach these to your clips, one on each end (make sure your clips have little holes in them to attach chain to!)

Step 8: Use strong glue (mine is woodworking glue, but craft glue probably works fine as well) to attach the flat side of your clips to the back of each flower.
Let it dry overnight, and you can wear your clips in the morning!

These blue flower clips are still drying as I type this up. But here are some I made earlier... and they can be worn on your sweater or your collar!

And you can buy any kind of moulds to use for your clips, or you can mould the clay by hand! Here's some examples of other shapes I made while I was making these clips...

Hope you enjoyed this DIY, and if you happen to make your own collar clips, send me a photo - I'd love to see what you come up with! And if you have any tips or tricks (I just started making these, so I'm possibly doing something wrong somewhere), let me know about them!

Monday, 26 November 2012

Little Red Boots

I bought myself the cutest red boots ever as a present for finishing my exams. I’ve been at the beach, and (more or less) wearing this outfit every day, occasionally swapping the shirt and skirt for denim shorts and a t-shirt. I am really enjoying pairing pops of red with light blue and white at the moment.
skirt - DIY
tie - c/o Flapper Girl
backpack - c/o Oasap
blouse - vintage
hat - c/o Wholesale
boots - Ebay

So when I was down at the beach the other day I became really fascinated with these little guys (there were hundreds washed up on the beach and they're pretty poisonous - not great for swimming).
(image source)
Also... "Mr." blue bottle is an entirely inaccurate term, as you are about to see. 
They are known as "Blue Bottle Jellyfish" (aka "Portuguese Man O' War"), but as I found out, they aren't jellyfish at all - in fact they are actually "siphonophores", and they aren't even one animal, they're a colony of little animals called "zooids". Each zooid is it's own free-living solitary animal, but these asexual and specialised zooids remain attached to each other in a big colony - the blue bottle - for their entire lives. Some zooids perform the "eating" function for the blue bottle, some are the swimmers which propel the creature through the water, and some perform the function of the poisonous stinger, but they all work together in a colony to make up what appears as one creature!
Here's a link to an awesome site about siphonophores, and I want to share an extract from it which I thought was really cool:
"Siphonophores challenge us to think about what we mean when we call something an individual, a concept that we usually think of as being quite straightforward. Is a single zooid or an entire colony the siphonophore “individual”? ... Humans function as ecological, behavioral, and evolutionary individuals. But they are made up of many cells. So is the entire human an individual, or are each of the cells individuals?"

Anyway, siphonophores are my new favourite creature.

Sunday, 25 November 2012

Lipards, leopons & jagupards

I bought the coolest bodysuit the other day. And guess what - it was $10! Best score. Unfortunately the leopard's face gets completely hidden if paired with high waisted skirts & shorts (and let's face it, I'm never going to wear low-waisted anything), so I'm really only going to be able to wear it on and around the beach. But hey! That's where I am today, in fact, so it's all good! And as if you wouldn't buy a leopard photo-print bodysuit for $10, no matter how impractical - it's too awesome.

So this little guy here is a leopon.
A Leopon (lion & leopard)
Leopards (the breed of the big cat on my bodysuit) are able to be cross-bred with many different big cats, resulting in some pretty funny sounding animals, including:
Leopons or lipards (depending on the gender of the parents) is a cross-breed with a lion;
A jagupard or leguar is a cross-breed with a jaguar;
And a pumapard, which results from a cross between a leopard and a puma. Pumapards are interesting - the cross means that they inherent a form of dwarfism and never grow very large, so they end up looking like oversized house cats.
Unfortunately it's very rare that a cross-bred cat is healthy, and they also have problems breeding themselves - many are sterile, although ligers and ligoons (cross tiger/lion) have been known to produce fertile offspring.
And that has been your daily Pineneedle science dose. You can read more about leopons here (pretty interesting if you're into animals or genetics).

bodysuit - cheap shop under Central station, Sydney
cat tights - c/o Oasap
shoes - Label shoes c/o Chictopia Shop

Saturday, 24 November 2012

DIY Heart Pockets Skirt (from scratch!)

This is how you make what I have decided to dub "the cutie patootie skirt". It's meant to look kitschy and handmade - so if you're only new to sewing, this may be a perfect project for you as any misaligned stitches will only make the skirt look even more adorable :)

What you need: Any fabric that you can wrap around your waist about 1 and a half times, and is long enough to be appropriate. A sewing machine is helpful, but not necessary. Scissors, pins, and a thread which is a contrasting colour to your fabric and so stands out! (I used white thread for the brown skirt, and bright pink thread for the blue one).
Step 1: Get any fabric that you can wrap around your waist at least 1 and a half times.
Then fold it so you get the length that you want. Add a couple of inches, and cut this rectangle out.
You should now have a rectangle like this (do yourself a favour and use a less crinkly fabric as well, haha).
Step 2: fold over one edge of the fabric. This is going to be the casing for your waistband. Sew all down the edge (like in the picture) BUT leave a small gap, where you will insert the waistband into.
Step 3: Fold up the other edge a bit and sew all along this time. This is the bottom of your skirt.
Step 4: Fold the whole thing in half, right sides facing together. Sew along the raw edges (see diagram). Don't sew over the waistband just yet - go back and finish up the job once you've completed steps 5, 6 & 7 (inserting the elastic). Anyway, now you should have a wide tube-type thingy that's beginning to resemble a skirt! It's time to add the elastic.
Step 5: wrap your elastic around your waist, pulling it tight (not too tight, just so it's comfortable). Then cut it off.
Also please ignore my sewing outfit. It's ridiculous. I know. Shush.
Step 6: Stick a safety pin through the end of your elastic. This will help guide your elastic through your waistband casing.
Step 7: Thread the elastic all the way through, making sure you don't lose the end! The fabric around the waistband will bunch up - that's good, that's what you want it to do :) You should now have something resembling a skirt, hopefully! Go back to step 4 and sew over the waistband part. Now you can add some cute pockets!
Step 8: Make your pockets. Use contrasting fabric, or the same fabric you used for the skirt, or any fabric you like - get creative, do whatever you like! Lace pockets work really well - it's what I used for my blue skirt (although they aren't exactly good for use as actual pockets, they look good!) Once you've made them, pin your pockets onto the front of the skirt however you want them to sit, and sew around the edges of them (everywhere but the top, if you want them to work as functioning pockets!)
Additional step: you can also add suspenders like I did with the blue skirt (see a tutorial for that here).
Step 9: strut yo' stuff. 
All in all this sewing project is quite simple and only took around 2 hours to complete at a leisurely pace (this is including suspenders). It's a good one for beginners!
Let me know if you have any questions. I will be happy to answer them!