5 Things I look for in a Pattern Tester

This post is not going to contain any unique, new or unheard of ideas for pattern testing, but none the less I wanted to write this post. I wanted to share my opinions on pattern testing since I have been on both sides of the fence as a tester and a designer. 



5 Things I look for/expect in a pattern tester:

1)Public social media accounts. 

I have learned that you really do need to have public and active social media accounts as a tester because you are basically helping advertise the pattern for the designer. Now note that I have said "social media" as opposed to just instagram because in my opinion as great as instagram is, it is not the only way to share about a pattern. I recently did a tester call and one applicant when I looked at her instagram it was sparse. If I had stopped there I would have missed out on an amazing and experienced knitter. In her application she said she was active on Ravelry, and holy sh*t her ravelry was amazing. I instantly emailed her to test for me. This has really opened my eyes to the fact that looking for testers who are active only on instagram is limiting. I know personally from now on I will be asking what platforms are you active on in my tester applications as opposed to just what is your instagram handle. I feel like even though instagram is popular there are people who are more active on ravelry,facebook, pinterest ect.

2)Some experience.

Now this does not mean you have to be an advanced knitter or have done 100 tests, what I mean is this is not your first time picking up some knitting needles. I like to see at least a few knits on your social media. Testing for me is not meant to be a "learn to Knit" course. If your page is entirely photos of yourself, your plants, your food ect I likely will not pick you.

3)Communication

When I email you that you have been selected to test I personally like a quick response back that you got my email and are still able to test. I also like to hear from a tester throughout the testing period even if it is just a quick check in so I know you are doing ok and on track. What I do not like is a tester who gets the pattern,does not respond, I have to chase down repeatedly to see their progress. Now I understand life happens, but personally if you agree to test and something comes up you need to tell the designer right away. To me testing is an obligation and someone is relying on you and your input. I know I read once that testing a pattern is basically a job and I agree. You would not just bail on work and not show up or call to let them know whats up. 

4)Photos

You need to post both progress and FO shots of your project on whatever social media platform(s) you use. Yes both...as I said before you are basically acting as an advertiser for the upcoming/released pattern. This means generating buzz and excitement for the pattern by talking about it. I usually ask testers who are on instagram to post BOTH progress shots and FO shots in BOTH their stories and feed! Also good quality photos are preferred but you do not have to be the worlds best photographer (I certainly am not!). 

5)Feedback

Do not just say "looks good", I know for a fact I cant spell for sh*t and I 100% missed a typo  somewhere. Also be understanding of the fact that I am having the pattern tested to work out the kinks in it, which some patterns require more touch-ups along the way then others. Some patterns will have a few minor errors, while others will require whole sections to be reworked along the way. Also when you respond with your notes include what needle size you used, how much yarn,which yarn ect. These things are important for finalizing the pattern!

Now every designer is different and will look for different things. These are just some of the things I like to see from makers testing my patterns :)

-KGC



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