Test Knitter: An Interview with Vanessa T.

by | Sep 17, 2020 | Interview, Test Knitting and Crochet

Vanessa T. - Test Knitter

I recently had a great conversation with Vanessa T. about knitting and patterns. Below is an interview I had with her about her experience as a test knitter. She had some great insights, especially about how to be a great test knitter.

 

How long have you been knitting? And how did you get started?

I have been knitting for about 3 years as a way to help calm my brain. I have anxiety and depression. When I came to a point I was no longer able to work due to the side effects of an autoimmune disease (physical disabled), my depression ended flaring up. I needed a hobby I could do at my own pace that would give me a sense of accomplishment.

How did you learn about test knitting?

I learned about test knitting when I joined Instagram and started following talented knitters and saw my friends test knitting the Half Moon Tee by Dragon Hoard Yarns.

hand knit skirt designed by Vanessa T, a test knitter on Fiberly.

A skirt pattern that Vanessa designed herself.

What was your first pattern test? And what was your experience as a test knitter?

My first test knit experience was testing for @purlpassion on Instagram.  I signed up to test knit her Breathe Yoga Bag. I was extremely nervous to put myself out there to help a designer with their pattern. I think took over 100 photos of the entire test knit because I wasn’t sure if I was helping with the right photos. It turned out to a great learning experience because I learned how to double stitch lettering on knitting.

What are your top two tips for new pattern testers?

Follow the Pattern

Before deciding if the sizing is correct, or that the needles are too small, please start the test knit and work though it. Try it on as you go. Just because a pattern looks like it won’t work- trust the designer. If there is a grammatical error in a row that is one thing, but please follow the pattern you are given, try it on as much as possible, then give feedback.

Pattern testers needed.

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Communication is key

Always be in contact with your designer. If you are having trouble with understanding the pattern, if you read the pattern and feel the pattern is too hard for you to complete, or if you know you won’t get your test knit done on time. If you don’t feel comfortable in group message, don’t let that discourage you.

What do you wish designers knew about test knitters?

There are a lot of knitters who can only read charts to knit or only read wording. Having both options available in a pattern is helpful.
 
There are different learning curves and learning disabilities, sometimes there are test knitters that need extra comprehension help with patterns. Also designers need to encourage the plus size testers more. They need to push more completed photos of size inclusive knitters.
Vanessa T

Vanessa T

Test Knitter

Vanessa lives in Canada and is passionate about accessible knitting.  She can be found on Instagram @knitvee

Interested in talking about pattern testing? We are looking for more talented testers and designers to do profile articles on. Please contact us.

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