Responses by Alexander Laguta, designer, Laguta & Laguta; Kate Laguta, motion designer, Laguta & Laguta; Anton Bondar, cofounder, CUSP; Anton Kozhevnikov, cofounder, CUSP; Brandon Levesque, cofounder, CUSP; and Joshua Posty, cofounder, CUSP.
Background: WE+AR TRBL is a French startup in the intersection of technology, fashion and culture. Essentially, its product is a garment with a flexible e-paper screen connected to your phone—for the generation of troublemakers who seek more ways to express themselves. Our goal was to build a site to reflect the philosophy of this generation, tell them about the device and make it easy to purchase.
Design core: We consider the main thing is conveying the atmosphere and brand’s philosophy through imagery. We wanted to make sure that the target audience will recognize themselves among the characters presenting the collection. We believe being relevant is as important as being fashionable and topical.
We are proud that, in the course of the communication with the client, we found a common ground, and distributed tasks and ideas in the right direction. In terms of design, we suggested a couple of visions that the client supported and prepared materials specifically for the site.
Challenges: The most challenging thing was not only to declare the brand and implement some complex animations—which were mentioned in the brief—but make it convenient as well. First, we talked through the entire workload and flow in order to properly plan our resources and actions. We fit the time constraints into our planning, so during the course of work, we did not feel a sword over our heads but simply did our job according to the planned schedule.
Navigation structure: With the help of simple mouse movements and scrolling, the site guides users to the target action. We wanted to help everyone get to the finish line together with applied patterns, building navigation in such a way that it could be re-created on a mobile device. It turned out to be a good workout for the brain. Be sure to check out the site from your phone.
Technology: Under the hood of WE+AR TRBL is Ruby on Rails on the back end and React on the front end with our custom-made framework for easier animations. As the site essentially is an e-commerce project, we decided to use Shopify as the e-commerce platform so the client would get all the integrations, admin panels, analytics and other benefits of using the market-leading platform. On the other hand, we needed flexibility in terms of the design and animations, so instead of using standard, ready-to-use components on the front end, we used Shopify API. This way we got both: the power of the Shopify and flexibility of the custom solutions.