Before I publish one of my new knit or crochet patterns, it is first professionally tech edited, and then tested to make sure the final pattern is as error-free and easy to follow as possible. Pattern testing is done by volunteer knitters and crocheters who make an item for themselves, using their own yarn following the pattern, and provide feedback about their experience and results. Also, pattern testing is a lot of fun, like a knit-a-long! All making the same item together, chatting about the yarn and process. Therefore, I’m very happy you’re interested in testing.
This page is to give you an overview of the way I handle tests. It includes useful information for you as a Pattern Tester. Please make sure you’ve read it before you apply to be part of my Testing Team. If you have any further questions, you’re welcome to send me a message through the contact form on this page, ask a question in my Ravelry group or on Discord.
Sign me up as a Pattern Tester!
How do Pattern Tests work?
When a new pattern is ready for testing, I email the testing call to the people on my Pattern Testing mailing list, taking the craft preference indicated when signing up into account. In other words: if you only do crochet, I won’t email you for testing knitting patterns. Testing calls are emailed about once per month, I usually design about 10 tot 12 patterns per year, most of them for knitted accessories like shawls.
In the testing call email you find all information about that specific test: a description and picture of the item, the type and amount of yarn needed, difficulty level, stitches used etc. I’ll also give a deadline for the test. Please read the specific test requirements really carefully, making sure you can follow them up before applying.
I accept testers based on my needs, taking into consideration things such as size, yarn used, projects posted on Ravelry and/or social media, experience and past performance. Of course, I’ll let everyone know as soon as possible. My tests usually fill up pretty fast, so don’t hesitate to apply for an interesting test.
Also, during the test, please give me feedback about your progress. Don’t just knit the piece and tell me ”I’m done!”, rather let me know how the process is for you. Anything that isn’t clear? Any spelling mistake or wrong wording? Any issue regarding fit? Anything else worth mentioning? Definitely, let me know because this is just the reason I’m doing these test knits. I want your feedback! I really appreciate an update at least once per week. Also, once you’ve finished your project, I would very much appreciate that you’d complete a simple questionnaire.
Testing through Ravelry
If you’re comfortable using Ravelry, you can apply for the test by posting in the test thread linked in the testing call email, and telling me which yarn you plan to use and, if there are different sizes, which one you want to make.
Once the test starts, I send out the draft pattern per email. That’s why it’s important to fill in your Ravelry name when applying to the Testing Team, when doing the test through my Ravelry group. Otherwise, I don’t know which email address belongs to which Ravelry user. Also, please create a Ravelry project page from the start on. That’s a wonderful place to keep notes as you go, but please post anything important into the test thread, such as mistakes you find, missing explanations, progress photos or if you stumble over anything. Keep your project page and any other online postings clear of any issues found in the test – these are for the test thread. Any issues with the pattern should be sorted before it goes live.
Once the test is finished and the pattern is online, please link your Ravelry project page to the pattern, if not already linked with the testing code that will be provided to you. This is very useful because it allows me to quickly access your project and to keep track. The feedback questionnaire will be posted in the test thread. Once the project page is linked to the pattern, I will gift you a copy of the final pattern.
Testing through Discord
If Ravelry is not accessible to you, the test will be done through Discord. If you’re not yet on the La Visch Designs server, click on the server invite link in the testing call email. Then, and in the case you are already on the server, apply for the test by posting in the general pattern testing channel. Please tell me which yarn you plan to use and, if there are different sizes, which one you want to make. I will then add you to the private pattern test channel for that specific test, the draft pattern will be sent to you per email.
During the test, you can post your progress updates and any questions in the private Discord channel. Please also let me know about mistakes you find, missing explanations, progress photos or if you stumble over anything. If errors are found in the pattern, I will, of course, let you know about them. The feedback questionnaire will also be posted in the pattern test channel.
Once the test is finished, I really appreciate a link to any place you may have posted (about) your project. Think for example about LoveCrafts, your own website or blog, or a social media post. If you don’t post your project anywhere, you can share pictures of the FO in the test channel on Discord. Once a place on the web about the project or finished project pictures are shared with me, I’ll send you a coupon code to download the final version of the pattern through my website (PayHip powered) or PayHip.
My responsibilities during the test
- I always try to be on hand during tests and answer queries promptly. I’m in the Netherlands (GMT+1), so for testers outside of Europe, this may mean that I’ll be sleeping when you’re awake.
- I always remember that people do this for the love of it.
- I always listen to feedback and incorporate as much as I can.
- My designs are usually self-published, and I will let you know what is happening with the release of the pattern.
- I provide you with a copy of the final pattern, once the test is finished and the pattern is published.
- Should I use the same yarn as used in the sample? Generally, you’re welcome to substitute yarn as long as you meet the given gauge. For many of my designs, gauge is not critical, making testing even more flexible.
- May I make modifications to the pattern? Usually making minor modifications to the pattern, for example to make a garment fit your shape better, is not a problem, but please check back with me on this before proceeding. For some tests, it is important that the pattern is followed exactly as written. For other tests, I welcome modifications and provide tips about possible changes. If this is the case, I mention it in the testing call.
- What if I can’t finish the test knit within the deadline? The goal, of course, is to complete the project within the deadline, although there usually is some flexibility. That said, sometimes life happens. Just let me know as soon as possible if it looks like you might miss the deadline, I understand that sometimes things don’t exactly go as expected. But please, communicate about it!
- What about pictures? I don’t have a fancy camera. Pretty pictures of your FO are not a requirement, but are very much appreciated. Daylight and a phone or tablet are usually sufficient for decent pictures, it’s what I use most of the time! If they are nice, I would very much like your ok to share on social media like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest. I would, of course, give credit where credit is due by providing a link to your Ravelry project page, a project page on another platform or website, or a social media profile of your preference.
I’m looking forward to working with you!