Mellow Yellows

It's no secret I'm a bit of a thinker. I love to think about big important stuff, small frivolous stuff, why I think the way I think, and how the way I think shapes my views and opinions. As a progressive thinker with progressive morals and values I feel like thinking about everything is incredibly important. 

I love it when people challenge my thoughts/views/morals and or give me new things to think about/ ways to think about them. My views and opinions are by no means perfect or of the highest moral standing (or free of bias), but I feel by keeping an open mind when it comes to these challenges I can 1) learn and grow as a person 2) spread that knowledge when it needs to be spread. 

That being said, I haven't thought about everything. Recently I went shopping with a friend of mine (we both had things to get at lush/needed stuff to make our respective colds suck less). We were in the pharmacy, when she started looking at the Natural/crystal/aluminium free deodorant. Naturally this lead to a discussion about cosmetics/animal cruelty (which was her catalyst for researching these products) 

Intellectually I've "known" about animal cruelty. Every so often it pops up in mainstream media or on my facebook page, or a youtuber/social media influencer I watch/follow will talk about it, and I'll think "Man, that sucks" but somehow it didn't occur to me that the products I use were tested on animals (pro tip, unfortunately almost all the stuff I use(and probably you use) is). I've been feeling like a bit of an idiot all week due to this "sudden realisation" that most stuff with "chemicals" is tested on animals (and that it's not just cosmetics. It's household cleaning products as well), but now I'm aware, I'm going to take steps to go cruelty free. 

The first step to this little journey of mine is when I use stuff up to research cruelty free alternatives to the product I was using. One of the easiest ways to do this is by searching for products that have the leaping bunny certification. The leaping bunny was designed by a bunch of cruelty free/animal rights movements/companies and insures that the product meets cruelty free standards such as not testing their product on animals, or making use of ingredients that have been tested on animals by other companies. They also have a number of great resources that you can use to educate yourself. (Another great but less formal resource is Cruetly Free Kitty. This site publishes articles and reviews in an easy to digest, yet informative manner) 

Super sneaky edit: Another friend of mine just let me know about this app for cruelty free research of products on the go

On a less serious note how cute is this blouse!? This is my other recent acquisition from The Treasure Trade. The colour is a very light grey, and the fabric feel kind of like a knit/chiffon hybrid (there's probably a technical term for it, but I can't be bothered right now/don't really care that much) The coat I'm wearing isn't a recent acquisition, however, this is the first time it's been worn by me. I thrifted it in October last year, and have been waiting since then for the weather to be at the appropriate temperature for me to wear it. 

I've also got some new glasses! I'm super happy with the frames (I bought 2 new frames, then changed the lenses in one pair I already own) but I'm not quite convinced that my prescription is quite right. My eye deterioration this time round has been quite different, and I'm aware that there is a transition period when you get a new prescription that differs dramatically from your old one, but I feel like the problems I'm having (I've been getting headaches/feeling motion sick) are a bit more than "transition problems". Then again, it could just be because I was actually sick with a cold. I think I'll give them another week and monitor my eyesight/functioning and see if they get better or worse) 

Maybe I'll run off and join the circus...

I'm going to keep my words short this evening, because writing words is hard for me at the moment (There's so much stuff floating in my head, and writing isn't my choice way of clearing the noise.) I made these pants last week, and styled them like this. They're made from the same pattern as my pinecone pants and my daisy jeans. Enjoy the pretty pictures! 

Daisy Chains

If you're friends with me on facebook, you would have seen me sharing quite a bit of stuff about why the Sydney Lockout Laws are pretty darn terrible for the city. On the outside the laws say "We're making a safe space for the community" but the reality of the situation is much more complex. 

 If you don't already know, the laws stop bars/clubs/venues from letting people in after 1:30am, and stop bars/clubs/venues serving spirits after 12am and alcohol after 3am in the Sydney CBD area in an aim to curb "alcohol fueled violence". The laws were hastily thrown together after the 2012 murder of Thomas Kelly and the 2013 murder of Daniel Christie. These deaths were avoidable and tragic, but happened well before "Lockout" in their prospective years. 

Now, I would be lying if I said that the Lockout Laws haven't achieved their goal. Violence is down by about 40 percent in the CBD. But at what cost? Foot traffic is down 80 percent  (Now, I'm pretty terrible at math and can't do the equation, but that means proportionally violence has increased) Countless Bars, Pubs and Clubs are shutting down (Not even Kabab shops are safe), taking with it hundreds of jobs for both bar staff and musicians. More than this, the violence that was in the CBD has now spread to other areas in Sydney. As well as "getting rid of the violence" the lockout laws are killing the city. 

I personally am not really sure about the argument that Australians have a uniquely violent relationship with alcohol. I've read some very compelling well sourced articles either way, but lets say we do have a problem. There are other ways to fix rather than saying "no you've been bad, now nobody can have it". For instance, increased public transport with more police and more/better education at a high school level (I remember my classes about alcohol were "it's bad for you, so don't drink. Think the alcoholic equivalent of abstinence only education). The installation of a night mayor (like Amsterdam and Paris) to be responsible for making the nightlife vibrant AND safe. 

"Why are people complaining about not being able to get drunk at 4 in the morning when there are more important issues" you may ask. The answer to this very valid question is that it's not actually about getting drunk and partying. The lockout laws signalled the last straw between Gen x/y and the Baby Boomer generation. 

This article says it best, but here's a summary: the Baby Boomers who are in power have locked younger generations out of great educations, home ownership, pensions, fair welfare, and stability, but now on top of this, they have made it abundantly clear that we are not "mature" "responsible" and "moral" enough for recreation. The protests about lockout are more a reaction to our rights to being adults and using public space being chipped away until we're left with a conservative totalitarian government that rule every aspect of our lives in the name of "morality" and "safety". When we were growing up, they talked about us being "cotton wool kids". Now that we're adults, the generation is insisting of keeping this same "cotton wool attitude" for "our own good".  

As well as keeping us safe "for our own good" these laws are laced with political agenda. Did you know that in the whole "lockout area" there's a rather large space exempt from the laws. This space is in the location, and shape of the Star City Casino  as shown in that handy dandy map to your right. Other venues that have exemptions from lockout are only allowed to stay open as long as they stop selling alcohol and the only form of entertainment are poker machines. (I don't know about you, but this seems more than a little fishy, especially considering the Star City Casino has a reputation as one of the mostly violent venues

I'll finish by saying this: The politics behind lockout are extraordinarily complicated, and there's a lot of information and miss information to be had. Make sure you question your views and do your research, because the reality, and what the government wants you to think is reality are two very different kettles of fish. 

 

EDIT: If you want to join in the action to keep sydney from becoming the suburbs you can do so Here (Reclaim The Streets) and Here (Keep Sydney Open)

Daisy for Days

I feel as though I've been in limbo for the majority of this week. I got home Friday evening from being away with the Button Collective, and now today I'm off again, first to Sydney for a gig at the Gaelic Club with the East Pointers (they're a rad Celtic Trio from Canada)  and then to Bulli for the Ilawarra Folk Festival.

This whole week has been pretty unproductive. I mean, I did things, and saw people, but I haven't started on any "long term" projects as I've known I'll be going pretty soon after coming home. I'd call this week a week of busy work. 

Shirt: Thrifted, Belt: Alannah Hill, Pants: Self Drafted, Boots: Dr Martens.

Shirt: Thrifted, Belt: Alannah Hill, Pants: Self Drafted, Boots: Dr Martens.

I went and got a long overdue haircut yesterday, hence why my hair is significantly shorter in this post. Usually I like to keep my hair rather short, but this year life happened, and my hair ended up the longest it's been since I was 14. Because it got so long, I figured I'd get a new style done (I had enough hair to play with style). You can't see it because of how I've done my hair here, but the undercut goes all the way round.

One thing I did manage to do was hit the sewing machine and make my very first pair of long pants. I've been seeing a lot of pants with this silhouette out and about/on the internet, and have been designing a pair like this in my brain for a few months.   I used a light denim (sporting a daisy print) I picked up from spotlight, and decided to go with a scalloped hem (because it's the little details that count). I feel that I have finally mastered the fit of my pants block with these long pants (normally when I sew pants, I end of having to make a bunch of changes from the original pattern I've drawn as I sew. Totally didn't have to do that with these) 

A few weeks ago I went on a trip to spotlight with a friend of mine, and she bought a skirt pattern (because she wants to start sewing). Ever since then, I've been thinking a lot about why I tend to self draft rather than use a pattern. There are a few reasons and all of them just a little bit ridiculous (but I stand by them none the less) 

Reason 1: I feel like I'll learn more by self drafting. This would absolutely be true if I had a pattern making resource book/ made a muslin before sewing to test fit and record changes/ recorded all of my changes either in a notebook or on the pattern

Reason 2 + 3: I feel like it's cheating to use a premade pattern/ I want to make something original. This is a sort of two in one - because it's absolutely not cheating to use a premade pattern, you can make them original by altering them AND there's no such thing as "originality" because everything is inspired by everything else, and is either borrowing elements of a thing or doing something to react to something else. 

Reason 4: Finding a pattern/cutting it out/ making changes to get the fit right is hard work and I'm LAZZZZZYYYYYYYYY. Do you want to know what's just as hard? Making your own pattern, cutting it out, then making changes to get the fit right. 

The only reason for self drafting I have that isn't totally ridiculous is that I find it exciting. I enjoy the adventure and problem solving that comes with self drafting a pattern, and (as much as I complain about it sometimes) I really enjoy discovering new to me techniques by reinventing the wheel. 

I know I've been promising tutorials forever, but I think I'll actually start making them, because I'd love to show people how to draft their own long loose super comfy pants. 

Exams Yo

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So, examination hell has started at uni, and because of this, I have been posting a little less (whoops.). Because of said lack to time, let's have a double outfit post!

This first outfit is what I wore on Wednesday.

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Cardigan: don't remember Dress:review tights:sports girl shoes: docs

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I really don't have much to say because my brain is a bit fried from my university assessment from Tuesday night. I study music at uni and part of the degree is playing in an ensemble. My band was part of the university ensembles concert /assessment.

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(This is me trying to be a gansta strong man. I promise it won't happen again)

On Tuesday I wore this outfit

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This photo was taken in my bassists kitchen. I bought these jeans ages ago at danger field. I love how bright they are.

Speaking of bassists, I'm in a band! We're called vanishing shapes, and we play experimental folk music. m.youtube.com/channel/UCOw8gt5eVVRLakbT3DcfNXA that's our YouTube Page if you want to have a gander.