The Tech Editing Process for Knitting
editing a knitting pattern basically means proofreading it without
actually knitting the design. See What I
Check below for more details.
you plan to have your pattern test knitted, I
recommend having your pattern tech edited first (and in any case,
naturally before publication). There are several advantages in doing
In other words, it saves you time and
allows you to concentrate on your next design.
- You get most of the
corrections/changes to your pattern identified all at once, allowing
you to concentrate on changes/updates in one sitting, rather than
having to return to your pattern many different times as test
notice potential issues over
- It reduces the need to
send revised pattern versions to test knitters.
- Minimizes confusion for
- Avoids potentially
embarrassing test knit situations where a garment just doesn't come out
as it is supposed to due to a critical oversight in the pattern.
the test knit is run on a public forum (for example, Ravelry), less of
your pattern is revealed to non-testers and non-purchasers.
Why, in addition to the
Tech Editing Process
- Tech edited patterns
look professional and neat.
- It reduces questions
from knitters who've purchased your pattern.
- Knitters appreciate
error-free patterns and are more likely to give a higher rating to
patterns (and also to purchase more from the same source) that are
neat, clear, and free of errors.
- Test knitting in itself
is unlikely to identify all errors and inconsistencies. Many skilled
knitters happily and quickly produce the design as intended, not
noticing little errors and especially style inconsistencies, etc, as
- It can be hard (some say
impossible) and time
consuming to spot errors in your own work.
I work from .doc, .docx, or .pdf files, or in Google Docs.
If you're an
independent designer, a PDF file has the advantage of being WYSIWYG
see is what you get) thus allowing me to check the layout exactly as it
will be seen by purchasers. PDF file security settings need to
allow me to print, copy, and comment. I do most of my work directly
onscreen in Adobe Acrobat Reader DC noting errors/corrections and
making suggestions by adding "markup" highlights and comments.
(Click here for more details.)
You'll receive my
editing comments in a return PDF
file via email and see my highlights
and comments therein that pop-up as you mouseover. At this point,
since I haven't changed any actual file content, you can work directly
with it making changes (optionally deleting or replying to my comments
as you go) or you can work from your original file (whether it be .docx
or .pdf). Either way,
once you've finished making changes, send the corrected pattern to me
for rechecking. The process may need to be repeated.
a pattern's layout in PDF format is naturally more important with
complex layouts such as those that include photos, diagrams, charts,
notes in margins, and background shading. Typically layout problems are
as simple as a diagram encroaching on text or insufficent margins
between text and page borders. Of course, you can always send
pattern in both file formats if you'd like me to check the layout as
well as make corrections to your .docx file rather than being
constrained to review/markup comments alone.
The procedure is much
the same working with .doc or
.docx files: I add review comments in Word. This file format has the
allowing me to make corrections to the pattern itself, should you wish
to do that. In that case, I work with the "track changes"
turned on so that you can see what I've changed. I also add
review comments if the reason for the change isn't obvious or when
suggesting a change that I feel needs your confirmation or input. It
can be convenient, saving time for both of us, if I quickly correct
typos, grammar, and
punctuation as I work through a pattern.
working with Word files, if you've used a non-standard font that I
don't have installed it's likely
to mess up the layout/formatting on my computer. In most
I can download and install the font that you've used and all will then
look as it should. Let me know which special fonts you've used, if any,
or if you're not sure you can send me both .docx and .pdf formats of
your pattern. This allows me to compare and check I'm seeing the
pattern as intended.
you prefer to use Google Docs, I can work in "suggested edits"
mode (which tracks all changes that I make) or simply add highlighting
comments – the choice is yours. I'll let you know by
email when I've finished my review/edits – please wait
until then before accepting/rejecting/resolving
them or making other changes to the document.
if I see a discrepancy in math (stitch
counts across sizes, for example), instead of adding details with a lot
of numbers in small comment boxes, I may
create a spreadsheet (.xls or
.xlsx) showing the math for clarity and ease of explanation and email
it along with the PDF or Word file.
are many different ways to format and phrase knitting patterns that go
to make up a designer's, magazine's, or book's style. I follow your
Style Sheet if you have one, or otherwise simply your
style as presented in your
pattern, checking for style consistency and clarity. I can also
help define your style if you wish.
My own tech editing style is flexible. My aim
is to help
you create good-looking, error-free patterns in your own style in an
easeful way. Hence, if you'd like me to follow a different procedure to
what I've outlined above or would like help creating charts
(Stitchmastery or Stitch Fiddle) or
spreadsheets (Excel), let me know. When communicating, I tend
informal, friendly, relevant (I'm not going to bore you with
stories! 😊), and clear as to the
reasons for pattern changes/suggestions.
I check for every possible kind of error as well as consistency,
clarity, and completeness in style and instructions. This includes:
- Math, measurements, all
numbers and stitch counts are present and correct.
- Instructions, photos,
schematics, and charts match.
- Consistency of
style, phrasing, and compliance with style sheet.
- Written instructions
- Spelling, correct word
usage, punctuation, formatting, and grammar.
standards are followed for sizing, needle sizes, and yarn weight.
- Gauge is reasonable,
matching the design and yarn weight.
- Any external references
are correct (e.g. videos, yarn details, url's).
- Abbreviations and
notations used are defined and consistent with industry standards.
- All required materials
are listed and yarn requirements look reasonable.
My turn around time is usually 2 to 7 days, depending on my other
commitments and the length/complexity of the pattern. Even for the
simplest pattern, I like to sleep on it and read through it one more
time with fresh eyes before emailing my work. I send regular progress
reports when applicable and I'll let you know asap
if I find a major issue in your pattern. (A major issue, for example,
would be a missing section [Sleeves? Where are the sleeves! 😉]
error in one place that may result in significant changes to
instructions that follow.) Do let me know if you have a deadline for
tech-edited pattern completion – since I work from home my
typically flexible and most likely I can work to fit your time
standard rate is $25 per hour, billable in 15-minute
increments with a one hour minimum.
All prices/rates/quotes are in USD. Payment is due upon receipt of
invoice/completion of tech editing. I accept payments via credit/debit
cards online, checks, Google Pay, and Popmoney.
If you have a
very tight deadline and need a tech edit completed in less than 48
hours, my rush-job rate of $40 per hour will apply. For rush
let me know what date/time (including your time zone) you need the tech
edit completed by.
I keep a
strict track of my billable time by using
tracking software. The clock starts ticking when I start working and
pauses when I am interrupted, only resuming when I have
complete focus once again on your pattern.
care and highlighter,