Top posts of 2016

Top posts of 2016

Unlike 2015, I didn’t add much to the free knitting patterns on the blog this year (just one, actually — the Plait Hat), which makes for a pretty different Top Posts list from last year’s.  (I did publish multiple FO posts for top-down sweaters that include all the details you need to make your own.) Tutorials, however, there were a lot of! The mother of all tutorials was the update of my always-popular top-down tutorial, now dubbed Improv (and listed on Ravelry), which was also the basis for the Top-Down Knitalong — not only a highlight of the year for me, but of the whole five years I’ve been doing this.

But there were other tutorials I hope you didn’t miss. In the bottom-up realm: How to knit inset pockets and How to seam on a button band. And in the top-down realm: How to incorporate a stitch pattern, How to knit top-down inset pockets, How and why to knit top-down sleeves flat and How to knit a compound raglan. Plus How to knit the right size sweater, How to account for gauge differences and the importance of underarm ease. Phew!

But as far as what got clicked on most this year—

Top 5 posts from 2016:

1. Improv: Basic pattern for a top-down seamless sweater
2. Plait Hat
3. How (and why) to knit top-down sleeves flat
4. Slow Fashion October 2016 (master plan)
5. Hot Tip: Relax your cast-on

Top 5 posts from previous years (other than the top-down tutorial):

1. Pullovers for first-timers: Or, an introduction to sweater construction
2. Fringe Hatalong No. 1: Audrey by Jessie Roselyn
3. The lovely Audrey (the most popular image on Pinterest this year!)
4. Q for You: What’s your peak knitting experience? (the most popular image on Pinterest last year!)
5. Joining sweater parts at the underarm: Here comes the fun!

And some personal favorite posts that didn’t make either list:

– I have a soft spot for these photos from when I was working on Bob’s sweater in Florida in January.

– The art on Idea Log: Penguono x Joseph was probably my favorite of the year, and I still love the idea of that weirdo-minimalist take on Stephen’s cardigan, even though I abandoned the project. Might have to rethink that.

– I loved the Anna Vest knitalong, obviously — thank you to everyone who’s knitted my pattern so far!

– I only managed to publish a few Our Tools, Ourselves this year, but they were really good! See Julie Hoover and Ashley Yousling (and er, my own workroom)

Make Your Own Basics quickly became my favorite series to put together, so it’s good that you guys seem to love it, too

– And I couldn’t be happier about the introduction of Jess’s Swatch of the Month column into the mix!


I have two requests for you as we head into the new year:

  1. I’d love it if you’d leave a comment below telling me what your favorite post, series or event from this year was.
  2. I’d love it you’d tell others, by sharing your favorite on Pinterest or Facebook or wherever you share.

Thank you so much for reading along this year! And for all the great comments along the way.


PREVIOUSLY: Top posts of 2015

32 thoughts on “Top posts of 2016

  1. I love the Swatch of the Month and everything about Slow Fashion October. The Improv (not)pattern is an awesome resource, too! Thanks for continuing to make Fringe Association such a great daily read.

  2. I choose the wardrobe planning posts 2 and 3, with all the photos, from November. That was so interesting.

  3. i love all of your posts, but the most important for me is slow fashion october. second would be the wardrobe planning which ties in with why we need slow fashion. thank you, karen!

  4. Hard to pick just one but I enjoyed all and any pics of fair isle especially this post: New Favorites redux: Finn Valley and St. Brendan
    I have the St. Brendan pattern and think of color combos quite alot but no committment as yet. Maybe early 2017!

  5. my favs: slow fashion october and the top down sweater knit-a-long. i loved watching everyone’s sweaters come together. and i have loved the knit-a-long posts in the previous year as well!

  6. It is hard for me to pick too, but Make Your Own Basics is important for me as it is helping me incorporate Slow Fashion October and wardrobe planning into my making. That said, yours is hands- down my most favorite blog, so thank you, Karen!

  7. Happy holidays Karen! The spruced up improv top-down tutorial and kal were definitely highlights, as was the whole make your own basics series. I vote for more “our tools, ourselves” in 2017!

  8. Hi Karen :) I love reading your blog. I enjoy the mix – knitting projects, sewing projects, KALs, designers, products, wardrobe planning and the concepts behind it – interesting, thought-provoking, not preachy but truly invested… thanks for writing so often, too.

  9. I’ve really enjoyed your wardrobe planning posts (it gets me thinking about my wardrobe and what I want, and any knit-alongs. I don’t always participate in the knit-alongs, but I learn so much by watching and reading about it. Thanks for a great year!

  10. I enjoy all of your posts, but my favorite is is from early in 2015. Hot Tip: Keep your cables straight. It gave me the nudge I needed to get started and it opened up a whole new world in knitting for me!

  11. Back in late 2014, Fringe Association gave me the push to finally learn knitting on my own (with lots of help from Youtube). Your tutorials are incredibly helpful and great for confidence-building, but I probably get the most out of the inspirational posts, like updates or reflections on your own projects as well as the Elsewhere posts. In particular, it was your post on A Ervilha Cor de Rosa from however many years ago that really set my imagination on fire and motivated me to get off my rump and make something.

    This year, your site has inspired me to learn how to knit herringbone (Jess’s Swatch of the Month on Churro). I’m also now working my way through an improv top-down inspired by an image from one of your Elsewhere posts of last week AND using an impulse purchase of bulky TN Textile Mills yarn (which is absolutely lovely to work with and came just at the moment that I found myself wanting to make a nice, tidy pullover and having no yarn to go with it).

    You have great taste!

  12. Not a single favorite, but a composite that has brought my knitting, and me, to where I am today. The tools I use: I have needles that were my mother’s (who is turning 88) and more recent vintage purchases of what I thought were the kind I should buy. Now, I use the ones that work with my hands in methods that are successful for me. Magic loop – not so much. Two circular needles – success! What yarn am I buying and why? So many super bulky yarns and patterns but no, not for me. I work with the yarn weight that makes me happy.

    My life as a knitter has been a long and although intermittent, consistent journey. What I find in your posts is the discussion, the thought provoking questions that keep bringing me forward. When I am ready, I remember something from a past post. Posts have brought me to new places in this wonderful world of knitting and making. Biggest impact post(s) are about looking at what I am doing, undoing when it isn’t right instead of plowing forward and ending up with something finished but not worn.

  13. All the ‘wardrobe planning’ and ‘Make your own basics’ are really speaking to me. And I’ve always loved ‘Elsewhere’! SFO was a wonderful read this year as well, including the comments! So many suggestions and ideas that I got from those. Really enjoy that you have such an engaged audience! :)

  14. I love reading your blog, and my favorite series this year has been Make your own basics, which I hope will continue. It has encouraged me to take a different look at my knitting plans and focus on the things I really need. I knit less, but better. Looking forward to another year filled with great posts and insights.

  15. My favorite blog hands down. I enjoy Knit the Look, Make Your Basics and Wardrobe Planning the most. They always make me think. I also enjoy Meet the Maker to meet the face behind the brand. SFO and Improv Sweater improved my closet.

  16. I love the whole blog, but in particular the Make Your Own Basics series is my favorite. I go back to those frequently when plotting a new project. I hope you don’t run our of categories of basics to feature!

  17. I love slow fashion October series more than any other and have been wondering if you would consider visiting it during some other months? The amount of response during October is almost overwhelming, it would be nice to spread some of it through the year.

  18. I look forward to reading the blog every day. It’s a 5-15 minute break I take for myself during my crazy busy daily life. I really enjoy Elsewhere and the links taking me on an interesting journey elsewhere. Make your own Basics is good and it’s made me think about what I’m creating with my knitting and sewing. I get distracted easily by pretty fabric and yarns and wonder if I’ll actually wear what I’m making. This year I only made two sweaters for myself; Lighthouse pullover in YOTH and Glaize in Hazelknits DK. I love them both! I sewed a bit more but some of the garments probably won’t be worn much so I think 2017 is the year I concentrate on The Basics and wardrobe planning. Thanks for what you do and Happy New Year!

  19. I love the SFO series, and learning more about making your own clothes, I suppose because they’re tied together. I really enjoy your blog, and your links often lead me to new places that I would not have found (or wanted!) otherwise. Thank you for your inspiration and knowledge ;)

  20. I really loved reading all of the wardrobe planning posts. I haven’t thought as much about my own wardrobe, and I found those posts to be really thought provoking (even if I don’t sew).

    Generally, it made me realize that most other people seem to have a unified style, while my own personal style varies from classic to trendy and preppy with maybe some hints of hippie and that’s probably the main obstacle I need to tame before undertaking a project like yours.

  21. I love all your posts, but I think my favorites have been the Swatch of the Month, all the posts surrounding Slow Fashion, the knitting tutorials, and hearing your knitting plans then seeing your progress. I realize that kind of encompasses most of your content, but I truly look forward to reading every post.

  22. Your blog has been a such a highlight for me this year, I love it so much! Like comments above i think the mix of your posts means the sum is much greater than the parts – though the parts are awesome! It’s great checking in each day and finding something new, with things to follow over time too.
    I’m a wannabe knitter and i love reading your thoughtful posts about technique, I’ve shared your wardrobe planning with my sewing mates (who have been on a Wardrobe Architect journey)and I’ve enjoyed the rabbit holes I’ve fallen down through your elsewhere posts. Slow Fashion month has started some interesting conversations and has made me very much more thoughtful about my purchases and projects. I think it’s the mix of commitment, expertise, thoughtfulness, generosity and creativity that are so special about Fringe Association.
    It’s probably a good thing I haven’t found more blogs I have enjoyed as much as yours – I doubt I would get things like ‘work’, ‘sleep’ or ‘cook and eat vegetables’ done.
    Thank you so much for all of the everything, and I hope 2017 is going to be wonderful for you. (And who knows… 2017 might be the year i finally deliver on my 10yo new year resolution: “knit, dammit!”)

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  24. I didn’t participate, but I loved the top-down knitalong. (I’m looking forward to that e-book with all of that info in one spot!) I always love your “knit-the-look” posts. I also love your seasonal fashion week reviews and would love to see more knit the look related to the runway! Your posts about techniques are always great reads. Elsewhere posts are great weekend escapes!

    As others have said, I love your blog. It’s my favorite of all creative blogs, and I get so frustrated with myself when I let too many get “saved for later” when life gets too busy. My new year’s resolutions always include more time for knitting because I have such long periods of knitting droughts and staying caught up with Fringe. Mostly, Karen, I have enjoyed watching YOUR journey from Yarnoverme to THIS! Looking forward to your accomplishments in 2017!

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