To celebrate the release of our first ever collaboration pin, I’ve got Raffael on the email to ask a few questions about living life with T1 diabetes and her awesome brand Dead Pancreas Gang.

DPG is BY FAR my favourite diabetes merchandise and I’m stoked to be able to work with Raffael on this new pin. She has an amazing eye for design so make sure you head on over to the website to see her awesome T-shirts for yourself!

Enjoy the read and click through to see Raffael’s website!

Good Sugars, Linda x

Who are you and where are you from?

Hi! My name is Raffael and I’m from the Gold Coast, Australia. 

Tell us a little about your diagnosis story.

I was diagnosed on the 8th February 2016, two months leading up to that date I was finding myself super thirsty, needing to pee a lot, getting foot cramps, losing weight quickly and only craving naughty food (which at the time I was loving).

I got down to around 55 kilos before I finally decided to get checked out at the doctors. A few hours after that appointment I found myself in the hospital with a blood sugar reading so high they were unable to read it. 

I ignored my symptoms for so long as I put it down to working 2 jobs (and working 8am – midnight every night), so I just put it down to exhaustion really, oh, how wrong I was! 

DPG is my fav diabetes brand, the designs are so perfectly executed! Why did you start DPG and how did you get so bloody good at product design?

Awwh, you’re making me blush! Thank you! I really do appreciate those words. I started DPG to bring awareness to diabetes in a fun, humorous and super light hearted way. I specifically chose the name ‘Dead Pancreas Gang’ as it evokes a reaction and sparks curiosity, and in my experience of wearing DPG around, it certainly does its job! I’m a graphic designer by trade so it’s only natural for me to design my tee’s and brand based on my personal style; minimalist yet a little edgy (oh, and loooots of black!) 

Whats next for DPG?

I do have a few things in the pipeline, by you’ll have to wait a little bit! Is it leather jackets? Is it a kids line? Is it world domination? Watch this space!

Everybody has one! What is your best T1D hack?

I’d probably say my best diabetes hack is to have more than 1 glucose meter. I have 4 meters and carry 2 on me at all times. You never know when your meter will die or have a moment of inaccuracy. 

Shout out your top three fav diabetes instagram accounts: 

@hyper.hypo – Another diabetic out there making the world a better place! She deserves the Nobel Peace Prize for designing those insulin pump sports bras. – Her page isn’t totally dedicated to diabetes but Samantha really inspires in the health and fitness department! I’ve become more and more interested and aware of the importance of gut health and I admire her dedication and determination towards not only her own health journey, but many others. 

@ali.abdlkareem – I love Ali’s transparency and sense of humour when it comes to all things diabetes. He definitely has a way of creating interesting and honest content daily. 

And some final advice for young or newly diagnosed T1D’s.

A low blood sugar is only a low blood sugar; a high blood sugar is only a high blood sugar – it doesn’t define who you are!