FEDERICO DONELLI - CREATIVE DIRECTION FOR CONTEMPORARY MEDIA - NEW YORK, 2018
 
 
 

CREATIVE DIRECTION
CUSTOMER INSIGHT & STRATEGY
USER EXPERIENCE
USER INTERFACE & VISUAL DESIGN
CONTENT

 

 

Sugar is one of the biggest fashion retailers in Italy.

Beppe Angiolini, founder and head of the Italian chamber of fashion buyers, wanted to enter the digital world from the main entrance. I developed the new SUGAR digital identity, the online store as well as editorial and social media strategy all FROM SCRATCH.

 
 

Two main goalS:

1. Build the Online store
ready to face the international competition starting THE SAME DAY

2. BUILDING Brand awareness
Quantitatively: by expanding the target.
Qualitatively: by transferring the SUGAR brand credibility from offline to online.

 

THE STORE 

The basic idea behind the INFORMATION Architecture is the connection between two worlds that live and talk to each other:
the store = catalogue and product pages
the journal = the editorial areA

the STORE links to the magazine, the magazine links to products in a seamless experience that inspires the customer.

 
 
 
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(The stakeholderS had LOW digital experience, so all deliverables and presentations were designed AND DEVELOPED FOR THEMTO BE THE EASIEST TO BE UNDERSTOOD)

 

From a strategic POV the first stage of the project was focused on the brand digital positioning. This affected the way we thought about the whole releases of features.

I usually translate these guidelines into a visual brief for the team. Starting from here the preliminary ideas are then discussed and developed. In this case I remarked the idea that during this stage we should keep the features at a minimum and focus on style, discoverability and understanding of the whole online experience.  

 
 
 
 
 
 

This preliminary work translated into two different approaches
  

Editorial approach

The first “editorial” approach was more eclectic, CLOthing focused, web magazine oriented. the layout was very image driven, with a few white space, and all the product images were in context. All considered we could say it was a more traditional direction.

 
 
 
 
 
 

Conceptual approach


the second approach was more “Conceptual”. arty, inspired by the visual communication of the Japanese designers of the 90’s like Comme Des Garcons, YOSHI YAMAMOTO, junia watanabe. minimal, abstract, experimental, a bit avant—garde and intellectual.

visually dominated by white space, the assets showed models like frozen in time, very serial, pretty cold and distant. The homepage looked like a visual essay: a mix of images that links to categories or the journal. Even the copy is a bit provocative by using meta-comminication (ie.” a selection of coats and jackets done by sugar employees”).

 
 
 
 
 
 

CONTENT & SOCIAL STRATEGY
 

 


Substance

The asset creation format we developed was based on different themes. Each theme has an hashtag. Each piece of content created is delivered on the Journal Section (now called: "No Sugar, Please”), Instagram and Facebook.

The content produced is gathered into 7 themes: #Sugar #SugarTrade #SugarBaby #HeySugar #SugarBeet #SugarFactory #Sugarism.

 
 
 
 
 
 

Structure

We created detailed guidelines of how the content should be created and released on the Journal and on social media, in terms of Identity, Copy and Aesthetics. 

 
 
 
 
 
 

The content is highly visual, basically videos or images with few descriptions. We selected a bunch of young international artists and photographers to create this kind of mood and content.   

 
 
 
 

© Luca Campri, Piotr Niepsuj, Francesco Nazardo

 
 

Workflow & Governance

We structured the team that will create, edit, release and archive the assets. The team hierarchy, the workflow, the communication and the editorial plan.  

 
 
 
 
 

DEVELOPMENT

As the stakeholder decided for the most avant-garde approach we finalised the design pushing it a bit further. After a few reworks, we developed the visual concept into something less futuristic and more 90’s fashion oriented.

  

Typography  

A more traditional Trade Gothic took place of the previous Akkurat + Simplon BP mono. We also took a pretty radical leap in choosing to go all capital letters.

Hierarchy and Readability are reached through white space and the alternating between Bold (for normal text) and Condensed Bold (for titles).

 
 
 
 

Images

Mood Images were made bigger in order to reach a more wallpaper / poster feeling.

 
 
 
 

Interaction

Inspired by a large scale study by the Baymard Institute and given the experimental nature of the project in the first stage of the design I opted for an inline filtering / sorting menu: it allows more horizontal space ad performs better when filters are limited.  

 
 
 
 

The Final Layout

Visually neat and bold, very clear and simple it's dominated by the contrast between the use of white space and and large mood images on the opening experience and the journal section.  

 
 
 
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