Responses by Mark Goldstein, cofounder/creative director, Zero Studios
Background: NYLON magazine has been an icon since 1999. Recently, the publication has gone 100 percent digital, moving away from the printed magazine. Our goal was to revamp the site to reflect a best-in-class digital experience.
Highlights: Our digital design strategy is an ode to the iconic experience of paging through a physical copy of NYLON magazine. We wanted all digital touchpoints to recreate that feeling of excitement you get with print. As longtime fans of the magazine, we wanted to pay homage to the bold and unapologetic vibe of NYLON and celebrate its legacy with a design approach that melds maximalism with simplicity. We led the digital experience with a giant NYLON logo to evoke the full-page feeling of seeing it on a newsstand and used vibrant color and imagery throughout the site to tell the NYLON brand story.
Challenges: Designing for publishing is always a challenge at a scale like this. NYLON posts 30 plus articles a week. We had to establish a visual language and user experience that allowed for flexibility, but also held up to the needs of editorial and designs teams at NYLON. Simple things like aspect ratios, headline and type styles and page layouts end up being tricky due to the variety of content. On top of all that, it needed to look fun, energetic, premium and honest—all of which users would expect from an entity like NYLON.
Favorite details: That we had the opportunity to work with a brand like NYLON. It resulted in a great end product and new friends of the studio. We’re most proud of the collaborative environment that the studio and NYLON had. Everyone felt like part of the same team, was incredibly supportive of each other and ultimately contributed greatly to an amazing result.
Navigational structure: Continuing with the print inspiration, the full-screen navigation feels like a table of contents. We simplified the editorial categories to life, beauty and fashion & entertainment, sub-branding each to give them their own identity that’s consistent with the overall site experience.
Technical features: This was one of the first times the studio collaborated with a backend development partner. NYLON brought on-board Rebel Mouse to utilize its best-in-class CMS and publishing tools. We collectively worked together to create a digital-first experience by rapidly designing, prototyping and iterating.