Inspired By Karen Templer: Finding Pride In Your Accomplishments

Cherry Blossom Buds at the Tidal Basin. Washington D.C. Photo taken March 2016. ©
Cherry Blossom Buds at the Tidal Basin. Washington D.C. Photo taken March 2016. ©

Earlier this year I selected a knitting-related birthday gift for my Mum – an avid knitter – and in the process got to know the lovely Karen Templer of Fringe Supply Co., purveyor of lovely supplies for yarn craft and author of the blog Fringe Association. Karen’s carefully curated her space inspires me to continue to learn and enjoy my new found skill – as taught by my Mum over the Holidays. I hope you find inspiration in Karen’s words!

1) How were you inspired to find your calling to create Fringe Supply Co. and how it has evolved over time? What is on the horizon for you?
When I first learned to knit, in October 2011, I started fantasizing about my own ideal yarn store, mapping out every square inch of it in my head. But for various reasons, I decided to start small and online, and to concentrate on the part of my imaginary store that was most appealing to me, which was the tools and accessories. It started as an online pop-up with just twelve items for sale — a couple of things I had designed and had made, and the rest third-party goods. That mix is still true, but now there’s more of both, especially the Fringe brand goods. And growing that part of the business is what interests me most. I love bringing to life products I long for that don’t exist.

2) How do you re-connect to that original calling on a daily basis?
It’s easy to get bogged down — and bored, frankly — in the mundanities of running a business. So when I start feeling uninterested and uninspired, the best thing I can do is go into my little workroom in my house, pull out my notebooks and paper and start sketching ideas of things I want to knit or sew for myself. It puts me back in that creative maker mindset that everything stems from, which then gets me back in touch with what sorts of things I want to have on hand to support that creative side of my life — whether it’s a project bag or a ruler or some kind of paper product I feel I’m wanting but don’t have. My business is built entirely on finding or creating things I want for myself, trusting that others will want them too.

3) Where do you look for new inspiration?
Oh, everywhere. My favorite day is one where I can carve out two or three hours to just wander around the internet, wherever it may take me — from looking at photos of the latest runway shows, to Pinterest, to the latest patterns released by indie designers, to the websites of interesting people I’ve run across on Instagram. I’m a people watcher in the 3D world and in the virtual one.

4) How does your mission and Fringe Supply Co. positively impact a woman’s inner bliss and outer radiance?
There’s nothing in the world quite like the feeling of getting dressed in the morning in clothes you made with your own two hands. With my blog, Fringe Association, I really strive to help people feel empowered to do that, in every possible sense.

5) What does the phrase ‘inner bliss and outer radiance’ mean to you?
I truly believe in the old adage that if we feel good, we look good.

Pride in your accomplishments will put a smile on your face that nothing else can compete with.”
Karen Templer

Karen Templer is the founder of the Fringe Association and Fringe Supply Co. where she shares interesting and inspiring details from the warm, wonderful world of yarn.