Saturday, 27 December 2014

Beach Bloomers

Blouse - Thrifted | Skirt - Thrifted | Socks - Clear It | Shoes - Naot (Kedma's) | Bloomers - old

Seasons greetings and happy end of the year! This is a simple look that I wore down to the beach last week. The blouse and the skirt are recently thrifted items - the blouse being $1 from a girl who was selling all her old clothes at a market stall. I wore my favourite ever lace bloomers underneath, which are perfect for short skirts and dresses, and look particularly cute when paired with knee-high socks. Sadly, the bloomers are so loved that they're completely falling apart at the seams. I'm going to have to learn how to make some for myself very soon!

So did I mention that I'm going to Hong Kong in 19 days time, with one of my best friends?! Well, that's a thing that's happening. We booked the trip one year ago when we found $200 on-special flights and thought "well that's cheap, why not", then kinda forgot about it all year - and it's all of a sudden snuck up on us!
Like everybody else in the world, I was also gifted with a selfie stick for Christmas - while I make fun of the people I see using selfie sticks in the street, I actually think it's going to come in really useful because I'm planning on making lots of vlogs about my time in Hong Kong! One of the things I'm definitely going to be vlogging about is my fabric shopping. There's an entire fabric and DIY district in Sham Shui Po (check out that link and DROOL), and I'm planning on devoting at least a couple of days solely to looking around that area.

If you've ever been to Hong Kong, I'd love some suggestions for places to visit!

Much love!

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Monday, 22 December 2014

DIY Cat Pockets Dress - Make Thrift Buy #10

So I'm up to episode number 10 of Make Thrift Buy (!) and I've somehow managed to do 2 cat-themed things already. Well, this is the internet after all. 

I've been on the lookout for loose-fitting black dresses in op-shops for months now so that I could try to make this Dolls Kill pinafore/dress! Retailing for a somewhat ridiculous $119, I thought that I could probably recreate it for somewhat cheaper. I reaaaally like how it turned out. Anyway, have a watch & enjoy! And please keep those amazing suggestions for new challenges coming!

p.s. for people without overlockers, I added a whole bunch of tips for sewing stretch fabrics to the video description.


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Wednesday, 17 December 2014

DIY Sweetheart Dress & Kumquat Trees

This is the best dress that I have ever made. I am so ludicrously proud of it! If you follow me on instagram then you might have seen the progression of this dress from bedsheet to cute vintage dress over the past week. The whole dress is made entirely (apart from the bias tape around the bust and zipper which were separately thrifted) from a bedsheet that I picked up from the thrift store the other day - even the buttons!
I made up my own pattern for this dress (and yes I am working on a tutorial for it!), and I'm very happy with how it fits! I just used a basic circle skirt pattern for the bottom half, making it a little bit longer than I usually make my circle skirts to give it more of a "vintage" feel.
The heart pockets were a brilliant suggestion by Carbon Chic - seriously, Demi has been like my sewing fairy godmother for the past year or so, because she is always inspiring me and giving me amazing ideas for my sewing! They were the perfect finishing touch that my dress required. I'm super excited because Demi is actually coming to visit me this weekend in Sydney. As well as going op-shopping together, we're aiming to join creative forces and have some kind of "sew-off" session - I'm really looking forward to what will result!
For this entire past week I have been staying at a wonderful beach house down the south coast. As I wandered down into the backyard the other day to take photos of my dress, I discovered that the house we are staying in has a giant kumquat tree! Not only is it pretty to pose with, I also LOVE kumquats. I am obsessed with all things sour - seriously, I could eat sour lollies all day long (in fact, when I was a kid I ate sour things so much that my tongue would literally bleed & I'm also someone who can easily drink a cup vinegar), so naturally, kumquats are one of my all-time favourite fruits.
(This is me stealing all the kumquats to take home with me, haha).
Dress - handmade by me | shoes - Katie's (from Estonia) | necklace - c/o Ginger Pickle

Little science fact for the day - did you know that kumquats can form hybrids with other citrus fruits? Many varieties of hybrids exist including lemonquats, limequats, and fukushu, which is a mandarin-kumquat hybrid. I wonder if Lemonquats would be even more sour than both lemon and kumquats individually are? If so, I want to eat all of them! What's the most sour food that you've ever eaten? (I'm on a bit of a quest to find the most sour foods in the world).

I'm not really sure how I progressed so quickly from dressmaking to sour foods there, but in any case, I hope you're all having a really great day!

All my love,

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Monday, 15 December 2014

Life's a Beach

I'm feeling super lucky because I got to spend the weekend with these two gorgeous ladies, at my boyfriend's brother's wedding party, and we have had the loveliest couple of days eating food, going for walks and brief dips in the ocean (brief because the water has been freezing). It's the first time in many months that I have finally been able to relax, and not have the constant worry about assessment deadlines and health issues hanging over everything I do. It's really, really nice.

I was asked to take wedding photos, and as I am a very shy person, being able to approach people from behind the lens of the camera under the guise of taking pictures was a liberating experience for me. As the sun began to set and the light hit "golden hour", I also convinced Katie and Tilde to be their cute selves and take photos with me, and what resulted was one of my favourite photo shoots ever.
Annika's swimsuit - Glebe Markets | Tilde's swimsuit - Seafolly | Katie's swimsuit - Venderstore

Aren't Tilde and Katie the absolute cutest? (Katie just posted more pictures, so click over to her blog to see them!) I'm spending the remainder of the week with Katie and a few of my closest friends down at the beach, and I also have my sewing machine and looooots of fabric with me (I am not one for packing light when going on holidays), which means that hopefully I will also have lots of cute crafty things and pictures to show you over the next couple of days!

Love love,

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Saturday, 13 December 2014

Boobs! & Being In Print

(How many of you clicked onto this post because of the word "Boobs!" in the title? I hope at least a couple of you did.)

For whatever reason, at age 22 my boobs have decided that they're finally going to grow. 
After a number of angsty teenage years of being frustrated by my lack of boob - constantly comparing myself to my peers, despising how I looked in swimsuits and wearing the most ridiculously padded bras - I'd finally become totally comfortable with having an A-cup chest, and didn't feel like I needed to change, or pretend I had some giant bust. Small boobs are just as valid as big ones!

But then out of nowhere - BAM. My bust increased by several sizes. This was mostly annoying, as I now no longer fit in most of the clothes I have taken years to accumulate (I guess this is an excuse to update my entire wardrobe...?). However now I've decided that I'm going to capitalise on the situation instead, and enjoying (when I feel like it) having a whole lot of cleavage that's never existed before. I've gone on a bit of a nice-bra-buying-binge, such as getting myself this Dita Von Teese bra that you can see the top of in the photos below:
top - thrifted | jacket - vintage | jeans - Dotti (old) | necklace - c/o Now or Never | bra - Dita Von Teese | shoes - Yeswalker (old)

And I'm trying my best to embrace all my new curves. I hadn't been 100% happy about the appearance of a little tummy either, nor the stretch marks that cover my upper-thighs - but I'm trying my hardest to stop exclusively wearing clothes that hide those "flaws", because they're actually not flaws and I'm going to own them, and wear all the skinny jeans and high-cut swimsuits that I want.
So guess who is now a published writer in a real-life newspaper? 
Meeee! (posing in a bunch of swimsuits, no less)
Most of you probably know that I write for Birdee magazine (and, by the way, I just wrote a new article.) Anyway, Birdee have just recently released their first ever newspaper - and it's amazing. I'm not just saying that because I'm in it - it's legitimately such a great and needed publication, being the first ever feminist newspaper for young wom*n in Australia. This swimsuit article was a reworking of an article I had already had published on the Birdee website, but there's many fresh pieces inside and it'll keep you occupied for hours. You can either buy it from the Birdee website or many newsagents around Australia (click here for the list).
Support this thing if you can afford it (it's only $4!) because it would be a very worthy publication to be available to young wom*n in Australia on a regular basis! (You can even buy it if you live overseas, the shipping is just a little bit more costly).

Oh! And just one last thing if you didn't see it already on my facebook or instagram page:
The reason that I haven't blogged in a little while is because I got a new sewing machine & overlocker, and have been having so much fun playing around on them, including making this dress! I made this from scratch using a pattern that I made myself, and I'm now working on a tutorial for my youtube channel! So keep an eye out for that if you are interested.

Much love,

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Sunday, 7 December 2014

DIY Pleated Skirt

Hello! So about a week ago I was inspired by Carbon Chic to learn how to make my own pleated skirt. I had always been scared of sewing pleats - but now I know that it's actually much easier than you might think! In this video, I have tried to explain how to make a style of pleats called "knife pleats" - the same type that is popular in American Apparel skirts right now - as simply as possible. Enjoy, and let me know what you think of the video!

I hope you're all having a great weekend,

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Wednesday, 3 December 2014

DIY Cactus Shirt - A Simple Way to Update a Plain White Shirt

Yesterday I got bored of owning a bunch of plain white shirts, so I decided to draw cacti all over one of them. I also cropped the shirt, added ties and performed a simple alteration to make it button up to the neck.

And then I made a video!

Have a watch:

"Templates" for the cactus designs so that you can do the same on your own shirt:
 Draw these shapes using green paint.
Draw the pots! Use whatever colours you want. I used three colours - blue, yellow and pinky-red - to give the pattern some consistency. Wait for the green to dry first.
Using permanent marker, draw an outline around your shapes, and then add cactus bits and spikes like in the above example (note: wait until the paint is DRY before attempting this).

If you try this out then tag your photos with #diyannika on instagram. I would love to see what interpretations you come up with. Good luck!

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