Be a Great Test Knitter!

We often partner with talented knitwear designers, providing yarn support and marketing assistance on new designs that utilize our yarns. We like to include a QCY test knitter in the designers testing pool, so that we can have a sample of the design to add to our very large sample collection.

It’s been a while since I jumped into the test knitting pool. With my current work load, I typically end up utilizing our amazing sample makers for these, but they were all busy working on other things we aren’t ready to share yet. So, It was up to me! I was really excited to get to know Jill (of Knit Sisu) and knit her newest design the Olive & Oak Sweater.

My VERY first step was a schedule! Jill needed my feedback no later than Sept 4th. Once I had the pattern, I worked out a schedule. I took every day between the day I got the pattern and the deadline and broke the pattern into small daily deadlines. I also took into account days I knew I wouldn’t have time to knit as well as finishing up my Super Simple Summer Sweater in time for the Southern Comforts Market. I also gave myself days that had no deadline. I used these as days to catch up. 


I could and should do a whole blog post on swatching, but I will leave that for another time. After swatching, I was ready to get started reviewing the actual pattern. For this I prefer paper and a red pen. (The architect is still in there!)  I printed the very first version of the pattern and read the whole thing. I like to circle or highlight all of the instructions and numbers for my size. This is a good time to ask questions. There were a few minor errors, but I was behind the other testers and they has already found these typos, so I double checked they had been corrected in the second version I also had printed.    


From there I dove into knitting, hitting my daily deadlines most days and catching up on others but never falling too far behind. As I had questions or comments I added them to the pattern. I used my Taco progress keeper to mark where I started each day!


Once I finished my sweater it was time to translate my chicken scratch hand written notes across three versions of the pattern into a cohesive set of notes for Jill. 


Last and Final Step, Photo Shoot! I find it VERY helpful to see photos of the finished test on a body! 


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