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Many designers and Pattern Testers get confused as to their role in the pattern testing process. Let’s discuss this topic, and I’ll share a few insights from my experience in the industry.

I remember the first time I ever heard the term “crochet pattern tester” I had NO idea what that meant. Even after I began testing patterns, I really had no idea what I was doing or what was even expected of me! All I knew was that I loved to crochet!  Times have definitely changed in how designers advertise for pattern tests. Back in my day (ugh….I feel so old saying that!), we didn’t have the same kind of opportunities that you do now. The internet and social media have really made a designer’s job a lot easier to find testers and a tester’s job easier to find testing opportunities.

It’s inevitable, when scrolling through Instagram or Tik Tok, to come across a reel or post about crochet pattern testing. Especially if all you search for on social media is crochet-related things! You might see a designer showing off a new sweater, blanket, or an amigurumi they just finished! You might see the words “Pattern Testers Needed” in BIG BOLD letters and wonder what it means. Let’s jump in and answer the very first and basic question:

What is a crochet pattern tester?

A pattern tester is someone who works up an unpublished pattern for a crochet designer. Testers answer the most important question for a designer, “Does my pattern make what I intend it to make?” Basically, testers test to see if the pattern “works”!

As a designer myself, I rarely publish a pattern unless it’s been tested by a handful of crochet testers. Once I’m finished working up my design, I’ll sit down with notes in hand and type up my crochet pattern. Of course, I’ll edit it about 1000 times because I’m a perfectionist…then I send it to my tech editor. A tech editor is NOT a pattern tester. A tech editor doesn’t crochet the pattern but will go through the pattern to look for errors, consistency issues, accuracy, and so much more! Find out the role of a TECH EDITOR HERE! Designers should have their pattern tech edited before sending it to pattern testers. Testers should receive the best version of the pattern as possible so they can answer that important question….”Does the designer’s pattern make what they intended it to make?”

Many designers will depend on their pattern testers to do the job of a tech editor, and that isn’t right. Testers are not professionally trained to spot all the errors, styling issues, consistency issues, and so forth. However, a tech editor is. Tech editors get paid to render these professional editing services. No designer should ask testers to do the job of a tech editor! It’s absolutely not fair to the testers.

If you’re a designer, please give your testers a completely tech edited version of your pattern. Don’t ask them to do a professional job for free.

If you’re a tester, you have every right to ask the designer if the pattern you’re testing has been tech edited. You are not obligated to do the job of a tech editor!

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How do designers find crochet pattern testers?

There are several ways designers call for pattern testers. In this post, I’ll share three different ways that seem to be the most common.

    1. Social Media Tester Calls: Many designers will use social media as a way to find crochet pattern testers. They may create a post or reel showing off the new design, and, in their captions, it reads “crochet pattern testers wanted.” They may share a bit of info about the design and then ask for you to apply to be a tester. The designer may provide a link to fill out a tester application in their bio or ask to DM them. Here are a few hashtags you can follow that designers will use when they need a pattern to be tested. #crochetpatterntesterwanted #crochetpatterntesterneeded #patterntesterswanted #patterntestersneeded #patterntesters Be aware that following the hashtags that are not crochet specific, you’ll also see designers for knit, sewing, and quilting patterns.
    2. Private Pattern Tester Group: Some designers, like myself, will call for pattern testers to become a part of their exclusive testing group. They will have an open call for testers that usually involves a detailed application process. Once they go through all the applicants and find the testers they desire to work with, they will close the application process. Each time they need a pattern tested, they will email the group of pattern testers directly.
    3. Tester Groups on the Web: Other designers will create posts in testers groups on Ravelry, Ribblr, or Yarnpond. It’s free to create an account on each of these sites. It may take a bit of searching for the right group on Ravelry, but one group I found to be the most helpful is The Testing Pool. On Ribblr, visit the Testing Zone and find out how to use this platform to find testing opportunities. Yarnpond has an Open Calls tab that features both knit and crochet testing opportunities. You can set up your preferences to see only crochet testing calls.

Do pattern testers get paid?

No. A pattern tester is a volunteer who is willing to work up the unpublished pattern and also provide feedback about the pattern. Not only do they NOT get paid to test a pattern, but they also have to purchase their own materials to complete the test. Your “payment” as a crochet pattern tester is a final copy of the tested pattern. You also get to keep your finished project! Don’t let anyone fool you into thinking you can become a professionally paid pattern tester. This very RARELY happens. You can, however, get paid to be a sample maker. A sample maker is someone who makes the crochet project exactly as the designer wants it and works under a deadline. The sample maker will send the finished project to the designer to use for product photos and such. How can you become a sample maker? Become a REALLY good pattern tester! Many times, designers find their sample makers by working with pattern testers or by word of mouth!

Why should I become a crochet pattern tester?

Why not!? Being a crochet pattern tester has so many benefits and can be quite rewarding! Here are several benefits of becoming a pattern tester:

      • You get to meet other testers that you wouldn’t have met otherwise.
      • You’ll learn new crochet skills and techniques.
      • You’ll gain confidence in reading a variety of patterns.
      • You get the privilege of working on new designs before it goes public.
      • You’ll get exposed to a variety of pattern styles, especially if you work with more than one designer.
      • You’ll develop relationships with crochet designers.
      • You’ll be able to build your pattern testing resume.
      • And, last but not least, FREE CROCHET PATTERNS!

Do you have questions about crochet pattern testing that you would like me to address in future posts? Drop your questions in the comments below, and I’ll add them to my list!

[This blog post may contain affiliate links, meaning I get a commission if you decide to make a purchase through the links, AT NO COST TO YOU. Please read my DISCLOSURE for more information]

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Here’s the thing…

This market is oversaturated!

With hundreds of patterns published every day, crochet designers, like you, wonder how their pattern will stand out above the rest. With Sweet Bird Crochet’s Tech Editing Services, we ensure your crochet patterns are flawless and published at their full potential, which results in repeat customers and increased sales

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