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Wake Up Dress Up - the beginning of my new journey

"Wakeup Dressup" was born out of shehacks 2014. Jude Gammie (hacker), Jackie Antig (histper) and myself (that time hustler) were teamed up in the 1st Australian all-female hackathorn event. What makes it significant in my life is not only the great people I've met, but also the journey wake up dress up took me on and changed my career path.

Stage 1

Everything starts from a self-awared but broader relatable issue and a simple idea. The one I am still experiencing today. I remember this is how this idea came to me: I found making a choice of what to wear is equally difficult as making a choice of what to eat on a daily basis. Putting on your outfit, says something about you and about your personality, regardless whether you think about it or not. Also, melbourne weather is notorious for its intraday changes. Have you heard of this? "How would you describe 4 seasons in 1 day? The answer is Welcome to Melbourne." So I thought what if there is an app that wakes me up with my alarm and tells me information about today's weather, then recommend clothes for me?

Anyway, this is what it becomes, from a simple sketch to a beatuiful prototype that bring us home the runner up price.

Due to the different life priorities at that stage, both Judith and Jackie have moved on to other excting things. However, I have to say thank you gals, you've told me about appreciation and patience from this experience together.

Other articles about our project are on Hackerleague and the fetch

Stage 2

I wanted to give wake up dress up a life outside hackathon, and really want to do more customer testing to dig out what information and how this app should work for my audience.

In this stage, I was playing both researcher and UX designer role. I recruited 10 users through my network and hacked the functional system using a blog on wordpress I created, a weather widget I plugged into the website, and scheduling sms system to fake the mobile phone alarm and notification experience.

My curiousity on how style and fashion is presented and how business and partnership should work all kicked in at that stage, and it was an expoential growth experience I had.

In that testing week, I spent hours of night, researching styles, color theory and the current trend in that winter season, finding some testing images and writing up contents. I do this daily in order to adjust to melbourne's weather report (which does change over the days, so planning for a whole week manually isn't that easy)

Because I was given my users mobile phone number and their morning routine, I schedule the website link in the sms to be delivered with personalised message at their indivudual alarm time.

During that week, I asked my users to send back a sms about their experience and send me a photo of what they actually wear that day so I can pick up subtle changes to their behaviors.

When the whole testing finished, I conducted follow up interviews with them individually to understand more of their thoughts and feelings.

And based on the insights, an updated version is emerged.

Click to check out my full prototype.

Stage 3

I was quite serious and think about how can I bring it to production? I then put back business strategy hat at this stage. It was ok to use some photos during the testing and prototype because I asked the photographers' permission for testing purpose, but where can I source the stocks sustainably? Also, how could I actually build a mobile app so users can experience it as they are supposed to? So I teamed up with Chery Lin (fashion blogger and owner of businesschic) who also happened to be one of the judges in the event, and Ray (Shiwei) Sun, an engineer worked in Alibaba, who I met in my Carins holiday.

At that stage, I shifted my focus to the other part of audience - fashion bloggers or stylist, the content creator. What was the experience like if they need to post it up, and how would the image relates to the information about weather conditions and styles, colors and material is associated with it and associated with my users if I intent to use profile matching in the future. I have even consulted some cool technologist on how the database should be structured, what coding language would be most suitable and enterpreneurs on how to set up the business structure.

One of the advice I was given was about commitment and belief. How much do I believe it is successful that I am willing to quit my job and do it for full time. I guess I wasn't that committed or brave, and I wanted to try my luck of doing this part time. Well, at the end, things are not that unexpectd. Everyone shifted priorities somewhere: I got a new job and moved on to digital department and work on one of the most complex UX design - forms, Cheryl moved to New Zealand, and Ray was chained up with taobao's seasonal campaigns. The team gradually and naturally stopped progress on it.

I don't know whether there will be more stages of this or not, but I have very special feelings with this project because I started the idea, I learnt design skills from it, and I learnt a lot of myself and people. This is also where I picked up fashion illustration as a hobby, and wake up dress up has fundamentally changed who I am and who I want to be.

Lastly, let me share with you my journey in drawing.

#hackathon #shehacks #wakeupdressup #weather #style #color

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