I am proud to say that every pattern I have published has been tested by at least one other and generally up to six other quilters, as well as checked over by a technical writer. This ensures several things:
1. I'm representing myself and EPQD in the best light possible.
2. As many quilters as possible will be able to read, understand , and sucessfully follow my patterns (I'd like this to be 100%, but since we all learn differently and relate better to certain styles of writing than others, that just isn't going to happen. Hey, I'm a realist.)
3. My inbox will not be deluged by angry quilters telling me I suck as a pattern writer. Here's hoping.
I personally could never skip this step because I know I am human and mistakes are easily made when creating a new quilt. Testers are an easy way to avoid sending a pattern out with stupid mistakes (we all make them, you know), random typos (even spell check doesn't catch it all, after all), and unclear wording. One of the reasons I like working with Quilt Pattern Magazine is that it is clear to me that they have the same commitment to pattern quality I like to think I have.
Even if you've never tested a pattern for a designer before, I urge you to check out http://quiltpatternmagazine.com/testing/. This new online magazine, for which I and several friends are doing some design work, is always looking for quilters of all levels to test the submitted patterns before they go into the magazine. At the link I just gave you, you can check out photos of the quilts that need testers, and choose to sign up (or not, there is no obligation) for any that look interesting. There is generally about a month turn around time to make a top, so if you are looking for a quick project and/ or another UFO, this just might be a great idea for you! Plus you get to get a preview of what might be coming up in the magazine (hint - one project up for testing is one I created, did you guess?) and you can feel really cool when it comes out in a few months and say "Hey, I already made that because I am awesome." And don't we all want to feel awesome?