Ideas for a website come form all kinds of sources. We went from a brochure to a website. My client wanted a website to let visitors learn what Historic Downtown Burlington Wisconsin had to offer. The downtown has historic buildings with great architecture and unique businesses.
Started with a brochure
The downtown businesses had a brochure created that contained a map and information on their businesses. I used the map as a starting point. Then, I researched websites of historic downtown’s. I found a couple and looked at how they were organized and what kind of content they had.
Next, I created a paper prototype using the brochure to decide how to separate and organize the businesses based on categories. The businesses were separated into three categories: Shop, Dine and Visit. We added a history page, so people could learn a little bit more about Burlington, Wisconsin.
After completing a paper prototype, I researched vintage design. I learned what type of colors, fonts and other decorative elements that were used. While I researched vintage design, I found an old poster that inspired the initial color scheme. Once, I had the color scheme and fonts, I created a prototype using Adobe Fireworks. I worked with the client to make a few adjustments to the logo and the overall design.
From design to website
We decided to build the site in WordPress using a custom theme. I created the custom theme using the Toolbox Starter theme. Then, I added the original content from the brochure to the site. As the client reviewed the site, the client wanted to make a few changes. We added additional businesses, more pictures of the downtown and altered the color scheme.
What I Learned
Every project is unique. Some go smoothly and others do not. While working on this project, I learned at least three things:
- Your color inspiration doesn’t always translate well to a website. What looks good as a poster, may not translate well as a website. The colors I chose were too strong for a vintage design.
- Pinterest is a great tool for researching. I found a board that had Vintage Design color schemes. This board helped in deciding which colors to change and which ones to keep. Our end result gave the site a more historical look.
- Taking photos of the businesses was challenging. My camera picked up the reflection of the street on the windows. I discovered that removing it with Photoshop is time-consuming. With practice, l learned how to find the best angle to limit the amount of reflection.
Have you built a website from a brochure?