Sunday, July 8, 2012

Pattern Sneak Peek & Test Knitting

It's been as hot as blazes around here but that has not kept me from working on my next pattern projects! The swatches in this post are from one of three versions I've knit for development of my next pattern.

I enjoy the entire process of designing including concept sketch, pattern writing, knitting, photography and graphic design, and although I love doing all of these things, I also have a small team of helpers to assist me including test knitters and tech editors.

A draft for this pattern has been sent to the technical editor (who requests to remain anonymous, but you can listen to her podcast A Playful Day). She's the first line of defense in checking for errors in stitch patterns, charts, grammar, etc. and offering her suggestions for clarity and improvement.

After a successful tech edit, I have a wonderful group of test knitters who I work closely with to polish up a pattern. These men and women receive the pattern well before it's public release and offer valuable input and feedback as they knit their projects and afterwards. 

I'm always happy to consider new test knitters, so if you are interested in participating in the pre-release test for my next design just drop me an email or Ravelry PM with your email address and I will contact you. 

Some FAQ about test knitting:

Do I have to be an expert knitter to test knit? 
Not especially, of course you need to know the basics - simple cast on methods, knit, purl, decreases, increases, etc. but anything unusual or tricky will have information links to my blog or special tutorials in the pattern. And in many cases, being a less-experienced knitter can be a plus as a pattern instruction may not be intuitive for you and that helps me see where confusion or trouble spots might pop up for other knitters.

What sort of commitment do you require?
I need reliable testers who can finish, block and photograph their completed projects within a set time frame, which varies depending on the complexity of the project. Test opening emails include the time frame specified for that project. 

When the test knit is concluded, testers must answer a few questions on a short survey.

In addition, testers agree to not post any photos, description or pattern details of any kind, online or elsewhere, until you receive notification of the pattern's release. 

What sort of photos do you require?
Simple, clear photos from several angles in natural light. In order to be considered for a test knit opening, I need to see examples of your previous project photos, these can be from your Ravelry page or blog, or emailed to me. The better your photos, the better your chance of being accepted to participate, but I am happy to offer suggestions for making your projects shine in pictures!

Today brought a small, but welcome, respite from the unusual, record-breaking heat (103 degrees F in the shade yesterday) in my area, and this lovely lavender lemonade recipe from Rachel Ray that I found on Pinterest

looks so refreshing I believe I shall pop out to the backyard and clip a few lavender stems and try it.

Stay cool everyone!

1 comment:

  1. Good luck, Robin! To you and your test-knitters!

    I was wathing Japaneese TV channel just esterday about lavender's help at hot summer days. Thanks a lot for good recipe!