1. Not ever pattern will work for every person
This was one of the biggest issues I had when doing this pattern. TLM fell into different sizes for height, waist, and hips. I made adjustments but even after making 2 separate pairs, the just don't quite fit right. I blame this entirely on her personal shape. There wasn't much I could ever do, without totally redrafting the pattern, that was going to make them work. But that's okay! We've all had patterns like that and part of testing is finding what works and what doesn't. I need to let the less-than-successes roll off my back a bit more.
2. If you have doubts from the start, opt out of testing.
This was presented as a unisex pattern. I was always a little skeptical about this. Turns out it was an incredibly solid boys' pattern. Every boys' pair I saw really rivaled RTW with the bonus of being customizable. If I was sewing for a boy this would have become a go-to pattern for years. That being said, I don't really like it much on girls. There's something about the super straight cut that just didn't work for me. All the doubts I had from the start ended up playing out. I need to trust my gut. Pattern testing is me working for free so if I can't go into it feeling confident in success, I shouldn't do it.
3. Related, if you don't love the pattern, don't apply.
Much the same, if I'm not loving something or if it's just wrong for me (ex. a shirred bodice for me) I should just wait. Something that is a better fit will come along. Testing just to test is a recipe for stress and ripped seams.
4. Know when to say no.
I believe in being responsible, in sticking with commitments, but you need to know when you need to distance yourself from something. When I was still planning on participating in a blog tour I was struggling because while I had positive things to say, I also had criticisms. I found myself in the awkward place between honesty to myself and respecting the work and business of the designer. At this point I should have opted out of the blog tour.
What it all boils down to is trusting my gut instead of just gleefully excepting every opportunity.
I'll leave you with one last picture. Next time I'll have something I can actually talk about.