Hello. I'm Laurel Natale.

I'm a UX Designer living in Philadelphia, PA.
I design human experiences on digital devices.

Take a look:

David Donahue

A clothing company where every thread is stitched with quality and care, so much so that the brand is recognized and carried by Nordstrom. At first this was a match made in heaven, but the brand started noticing their customers knew them as Nordtrom, not as David Donahue. An older, outdated website did not match the clothing and certainly did not help them stand apart as their own label. It was time for a new brand, a new website and with that, new opportunities to make David Donahue a pleasure to experience all over again.

Here's what happened.

The clothing line, David Donahue, is a company of high standards and quality. Nordstom, a department store known for carrying high end, well-made clothing carries the brand and its dedicated customers know they can go there to get their favorite dress shirts coupled with the personalized service that Nordstom provides.

David Donahue Dress Shirts with high reviews on Nordstom's website.

David Donahue's older built website

This partnership works well for both companies, but David Donahue is its own entity and its customers don't realize that. They think it's a Nordstrom brand. David Donahue wants to change this so it decided to have Red Tettemer help them create a new brand, a new website and a new campaign so their existing customers understand they are not part of Nordstroms and start attracting new customers who are looking for high end, high quality clothing.

When I started at RTOP, they were already working on gathering data. They had a presentation that was filled with research about the company and the team was using this data as source for UX design. Questionnaires were given to Nordstrom employees who sold David Donahue clothing, there was a lot of quantitive data about products sold to what age groups and in what financial range, competitors where researched and analized but there was no conversations, surveys, or research on the actual customer. Even so, the team did use what they had to put together a persona using an online persona tool.

A David Donahue questionnaire

David Donahue data charts

Persona created by team using existing research.

To help the design team get inside the head of an actual David Donahue customer, I facilitated an empathy map exercise. Using a whiteboard, I walked the team through the various questions - what does he hear?, what does he think?, what does he see? I had the existing persona on the wall as well as any data that we had that I thought would be useful to them as we discussed the points on the Empathy Map.

Whiteboard empathy map generation with Interactive Team.

After the whiteboard creation, I created a version in sketch for the team to access while making decisions.

Sketch created Empathy Map template created for team.

I then created another version for the client presentation using colors and pattern from the DD clothing products.

Polished Empathy Map for client presentation on who their customer is.

I also created a journey map for the Interactive team to understand the path taken when purchasing and where we can interact with the customer.

Persona Journey Map

With a persona in mind and the idea of an actual human with his needs, frustrations and personality traits in the minds of the design team, it was time to move to the designing of the new site. One of the current areas that needed attention was the shopping bag. It was very machine generated. There were no human touches of delight in its design or in its presentation of data. Using Sketch, wireframes were created to suggest to the design team ways to take the data and present it with a human touch and delightfulness to the design.

DD shopping bag that is very machine generated and absent of delight in data and design.

Wireframes that took the machine generated data and presented it with a clean design, a human feel and a modern look to match the new brand and reflection of quality from David Donahue.

The Interactive Team's mockup that was created from using the UX findings and discussions combined with the wireframes.


While the David Donahue website is still being built by the RT Interactive Team, the new design directions are already evident in the mockups. Best of all, I was personally told by members that designing with an actual person in mind was extremely helpful and guided them through their designs as they continually looked to the persona for inspiration and asked themselves if what they were designing would work for him.