When ideas are born it seems as if they appear from nowhere. But look closer and you’ll see a carefully woven combination of elements that invite their arrival.
Marium Ullah’s simple, bold yet intricately embroidered designs are a perfect example of just this. Her newly created venture “Needle Town” was born from the deep connection with her Pakistani heritage and cultural background.
Growing up in Manchester and studying in London, she wanted to bridge the gap between the worlds that she inhibited through her designs and accessories.
“The name ‘Needle Town’ is a literal translation of the name of the village that my family are from in Pakistan which is known for it’s seamstresses and garment work.”
Marium would visit annually and began to realise the lack of infrastructure and access to education that was available to women and young girls.
From starting the designs as a hobby, more and more of Marium’s friends began to ask to buy pieces of her work. With a father experienced in international business and her sisters into fashion and design, Marium began to take her venture more seriously after graduating.
Always staying close to her roots, she is now working on making Needle Town into a social enterprise back in her hometown in Pakistan, employing women under fair trade values, and helping them to make a living and afford education for their families.
Marium also makes custom designs, like the one Seetal sports above.
“My advice to any girl who wants to pursue their passion and creative ideas is to Think about how it can make a positive difference to others and how you can give back."
Follow Marium’s incredible work here on Instagram!
Whether its a fresh new recipe or a perfect hair selfie, you can trust Thahmina of Golden Tiffin to conjure up artistic and inspiring content. Since the start of her blogging journey we’ve always supported her creative growth and we secretly knew the GT blog would branch out into other incredible pursuits. So we’re super excited that TODAY she has finally launched her YouTube channel!
Combining her love of travel, food and photography, the YT channel is a spell for the senses. We especially can’t wait to see where she ate whilst she was honeymooning in the Almafi Coast!
I’d dreamt of visiting Iran for years. Seeing images of its magnificent mosques, beautiful parks and narrow bazaar alleyways lined with carpet weavers and rug shops always made me yearn to visit, so when I heard the UN sanctions were lifted earlier this year and that travel as an independent couple (and not part of a tour group) might be slightly more easier, I was in that Iranian embassy quicker than you can say CHELLO KEBAB.
We landed in Tehran in the early hours, just as Fajr began, and on the ride to the hotel we saw the city waking up. Getting closer to our hotel in midtown Tehran, shutters were opening, the streets became busier (Tehran traffic is a thing people – it’s worse than Mumbai), and sunlight began to illuminate the grand mountains surrounding the metropolis that were previously only a daunting shadow.
There is so much to see and experience in Tehran; from the magnificent royal palaces, to holy shrines adorned with marble and mosaic and the huge parks blooming with flowers and citrus trees, to the dusty streets filled with rich aromas of lamb kebabs and naan, and the artsy and hipster pockets of the city sprinkled with museums and exhibitions. Come Maghrib (sunset prayer) and the city begins to light up, with families, couples and groups heading north towards Tajrish and the Darband mountains for a long night of food, music and nargile in restaurants carved high up into the rocks.
There’s an underlying atmosphere of wonder and curiosity now that the political climate is changing. You can feel it in the markets, from the falooda stands to the rug bazaars, in the glazed shopping malls and the conversations in restaurants and cafes. Will business boom? Will the economy improve? What changes will Iran see? What lies ahead?