• Sewing,  Sewing journey (archive)

    A little stretch and sew

    I’m not sure I’ve mentioned it before… but I really hated sewing with stretch material! Thankfully I’ve slowly gotten over that fear…and maybe stepping into the realm of mutual like…maybe even love. Part of this fear was put into me by The Sewing Bee (funny how using an overlocker for the first time under timed conditions isn’t conducive to learning!) But The Sewing Bee also gave me the confidence to just give things ago. Feeling a little bit nostalgic I decided to put this lovely knit fabric from Girl Charlee to good use (Taufiq now has a habit of peering over my shoulder as I internet shop fabrics now he knows I quite like sewing menswear!)

  • Sewing journey (archive)

    The Little Beginner

    One of the questions I get asked the most is: “I want to start sewing- which machine should I buy?” So here’s my hopefully handy guide on buying a sewing machine. Firstly, YAY! You want to start sewing! It will be daunting. You will make mistakes. But you will also get better with each step you take. And that sense of achievement after you complete that first item? Well, there’s no feeling quite like it. I promise you won’t regret it. It is doable. Trust me. I’ve been there- just scroll back and you’ll see my wonky-hemmed maxi skirt which didn’t even fit over my head. That was 4 years ago. Then there’s the less than perfect wonky-zipped maxi dress a year after the skirt (a wonky-theme to my sewing abilities). And then a week after that, my graduation dress. Fast forward 3 years and I’m being flummoxed by stretch materials in the quarter-finals of The Great British Sewing Bee. So two things to take from that: you can go from making barely-wearable items to being in the quarter-finals of The Great British Sewing Bee with a bit of a ‘can-do’ attitude and seam ripper, and secondly- there’s always more to learn!…

  • Sewing journey (archive)

    The little dress form

    This is my dress form. As you can see, I use it everyday! Perhaps not in the way it was meant to be used but it’s still being used right?… I got emailed this question and thought I’d share my thoughts in case anyone else was pondering the same thing: “My question is if I was to invest in a dress form to help me would I need an adjustable one or can I do just as well with a fixed size which is of course cheaper but I thought best to get some advice first as the adjustable are quite expensive.” I hear you, and currently having the same dilemma and wondering whether to upgrade my one. Sewing can be an expensive hobby: machines, accessories, fabric. So where do you draw the line? 

  • Old blog,  Sewing journey (archive)

    A little pin cushion

      Who doesn’t like peonies? And who doesn’t like pin cushions? I know I’ve covered pin cushions before but here’s another super simple and easy pin cushion, even for a beginner! We were terrible with pins in the sewing room- plenty of pins where to be found on the floor. Though I’m pretty sure Taufiq would tell you that it’s the same in our flat as well! Someone once asked me if I stored my pins for sewing in my headscarf, which is a fair question and probably not a bad idea! But no, that’s how I keep my hijab and it’s pleats in place. So as a hijabi and a sewer I have a lot of pins laying around, so a pin cushion is always good to have to hand. Pin Cushion Materials Some fabric- you can use anything for this! I used left over scraps from baby quilts Something round to trace around approx. 25cm wide (dinner plate/embroidery hoop) Embroidery thread Thread matching your fabric 2 x buttons Stuffing

  • Sewing journey (archive)

    A little pyramid pattern weight

    I hope you’ve been enjoying The Great British Sewing Bee. I’ve had lots of lovely  comments about my little pattern weights so thought I’d share a tutorial so that you too could have a bamboo steamer full of the very best sewing dim sum. Why use pattern weights? Well, there’s a time and a place for pattern weights- but generally they’re a super easy and quick way to keep your pattern in place while you cut out your fabric using a rotary cutter. Some people swear by scissors, but with scissors you really should pin the pattern in place to prevent it shifting which can be a bit long and cumbersome. Some people swear by rotary cutters. Personally I only tend to swear when I’ve managed to nick myself with the blade more than anything… (They are blooming sharp!) These particular set of pattern weights were whipped up late one evening using left over scraps from Tanzanian/Zanzibari kangas (the traditional clothes made up from one large continuous piece of printed fabric, much like a sari).

  • Sewing journey (archive)

    The (Little) Great British Sewing Bee

    So… this is my face. Hello. You may wonder why I’m showing the face behind The Little Pomegranate after all these years! Well I’m so excited to say  that you may see this face a little more often… I’m a contestant on The Great British Sewing Bee Series 4! Say what? The girl who once made a skirt which only fit over her head and had a wonky hemline? The girl who burnt a hole in a dress straight after she finished making it? The girl who only discovered what interfacing was two years ago? Yup. Proof that miracles do happen. I don’t know about you guys, but I’ve been hooked on the show from the very first series in 2013 and looked on at the contestants in awe. Never in a million years did I think I’d actually be part of one of the best shows on TV. To be honest, I can barely believe it even now. I guess I just wanted to say to all you lovely people who followed me on my blog up until now, and all the lovely new faces coming by to visit- thank you! Thank you for silently watching me grow as a crafter/sewer and…

  • Sewing journey (archive)

    A little baby boom

    We’ve had a real boom in little one’s around here! Most exciting was the arrival of my brother’s little baby gal- the first grandchild in the family, our cute little pumpkin. Between fielding well meaning Aunties patting on my tummy, asking “when is she going to get a cousin?” and sewing up all sorts of treats for this little one, I’ve been a busy little bee. Here’s a few projects I’ve been working on, along with the links to patterns (all freebies!) Little Geranium- from Made by Rae– I love this little pattern. So simple and so cute. This cotton fabric was from IKEA! (Size 0-3 months) 2. Little Geranium- from Made by Rae– I did say I loved this dress pattern! This time with a little added bias tape and pockets.Tiny babies need pockets you know. The Mary-Jane style booties are from my own pattern The Little Bow-tiful Booties. Matching headband was just a simple thing I whipped up! The fabric is from IKEA again…The salesperson hovered around behind me waiting for me to checkout. Poor guy, it’s like he’d never been around crafters before! I kindly suggested he carry on with his work and I’d get him when I was ready……

  • Sewing journey (archive)

    A little hearty wrapper

    Me: What do you think of this photo? Is it a keeper? Tree: It shows your face [I’m trying to keep some vague sort of web anonymity] Me: I’m pretty sure if people recognised me it would be because of the full length heart printed dress instead of the slither of forehead… Another post to add to my “Little chronicles of a small time sewer” collection. To be honest, I probably give my sewing machine a lot more love and attention than my crochet needles at the moment which is why the next few posts are all sewing based! I decided that with each new project I would try to learn at least one new technique. First up was this heart print cotton from Cape Town. Having watched this year’s Great British Sewing Bee, I learnt that ‘pattern matching’ was 1. an actual thing. 2. apparently quite important. 3. big prints are easier than small prints…or maybe it was the other way around?

  • Sewing journey (archive)

    A little long for an apron…

    I’ve found myself waking up pretty early today, despite not having to be in for work until 11 (oh yes, it’s weekend shift no.2 in the space of three weeks!) So I thought I’d do a quick post of a skirt I made during christmas. Luckily for me, I had Christmas off. Unfortunately, Tree was working nights. And being car-less I was flat bound, with just the Christmas movies to keep me company in the evenings. The perfect environment to get my sewing machine out, wouldn’t you say?

  • Sewing journey (archive)

    Fabric haul!

    Whilst on holiday visiting family in the beautiful city of Cape Town, I ended up visiting the fabric shops. Perhaps a strange thing to do when on holiday, but when I found out where the fabric district was- I couldn’t resist! (And luckily I had a lot of luggage allowance left!)