May 16, 2017

Project Highlight: Orsden Web Experience

Orsden is a direct-to-consumer ski apparel start up, aiming to bring style and performance back to the slopes. Sara Segall, a former marketer at Revlon, founded Orsden. Their apparel has been featured in Sports Illustrated and recently wrapped up a Kickstarter campaign to expand their collection.

Orsden’s brand was designed by Anton Anger. The logo features a bear silhouette, which calls out to the meaning of the brand’s name. Orsden comes from the French for snow bear: ours de neige.

We came into the project to design and develop a web experience for Orsden. We needed to create a site that aesthetically balances the quality of their skiwear with the affordability of the direct-to-consumer model. This is a dichotomy that a lot of companies have to work around (Warby Parker, Tuft & Needle) and the key is to create a unique experience that is informative for the user. Because they were only selling two products at the time, we created an experience that felt full with the capacity to grow.

Orsden positions themselves as a lifestyle brand—that their apparel is not just for the slopes but also for après. The photography, custom shot in Chilé, promotes lifestyle imagery compared to the industry standard of aggressive sports photography. We also developed a snow tracker that allows the user to see where it is snowing around the world. Jon Arvizu created a custom illustration of a snow bear for the About page.

Originally, we considered building the website on Shopify. However, we soon realized Shopify wouldn’t allow us the flexibility we needed for custom product pages and a blog. We used Craft to build the custom pages and integrated Shopify for the cart and inventory management. Craft allowed for a tailored experience that is simple to use but fast for the user. We also initiated speed optimization for the high-resolution images and for the code. The site is responsive, thus accessible from all devices.

We wrote the copy for the site, focusing on the lifestyle aesthetic here as well. The main headline “For Those Who Don’t Hibernate” ties together the ours de neige imagery while exciting the user with some initial energy. The copy combines the technical and the experiential. It teaches the user about the research and development of the apparel while celebrating the Alpine lifestyle.