Problem Space

During my term project at Brainstation for my UX Design course, I was working as a barista for Elysian Coffee Roasters. 3 years of making specialty coffee taught me that cafes are not always very descriptive on their websites and Yelp pages. I felt that there was a problem space involving the disconnect between the knowledge of cafes that customers have, and the reality they face.


Timeline: 4 weeks (August 2017)

Role: User Researcher, Designer

Team: 1 person

Tools: Invision, Adobe Illustrator, Moqups, Paper Prototypes

User Research

I conducted interviews with my coworkers and listened to what my customers had to say. Everyone I am surrounded by at work is passionate about their coffee. This is what I learned.

  • The biggest motivator for my target audience to visit a coffee shop was to try something new.

  • Every coffee place makes their drinks a little differently; customers who are particular about their drinks always have to ask to make sure it's made the way they like it.

  • Coffee drinkers enjoy exploring new cities by checking out their coffee scene.

  • Word-of-mouth is the primary source for news on brand new coffee shops opening up.



I made sketches in accordance to the features I wanted to include. 

  • Featured Cafe

  • Newly Opened Cafe List

  • Search Option

  • Detailed Feature Page for each Cafe

  • Review Display


Low-Fidelity Prototyping


First Iteration

Initial Mockups

Initial Mockups

Final Design

Reworked Mockup #1

Reworked Mockup #1

Reworked Mockup #2

Reworked Mockup #2

user testing insights

  • "Wait, that wasn't right... How do I go back?" Mistakes happen. It's essential to let the user be able to return to a previous screen.

  • "Maybe some sample search text would be good? Not sure what to search for." This is an application of Hick's Law. Giving users suggestions eliminates the number of choices and lessens decision time.


After presenting to a class of 10 students and 2 instructors, I received great constructive feedback. Something I heard a lot was that they would have loved to see more of my creative process on paper, and that my digital mockups weren't developed enough for presentation. I was able to gain experience with presenting my design choices to an audience and receiving criticism positively. 

As my first solid UX Design project, I felt that it deserved a rework to reflect my growth. A year later, I iterated on my designs to make new high-fidelity mockups.