Author Archives: Nicole Cobler

Dresser: Last blog post!

Thank you all to our loyal blog readers, Facebook likers, and Instagram/Twitter followers. We’ve had a great couple of months updating you all about the Dresser app, and we’ve finally reached the end of the semester. For most of the team, it’s our last time in a classroom at UT.

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Demo Day was a huge success! Thanks to all who showed up to support our team (cough, cough – moms, dads, significant others). Here’s a quick recap for those of you who couldn’t make it: Dresser won best logo! The team knows that this is because of the hard work Tori Townsend put into the design of our app from start to finish. Her first goal for the team was our logo, and we were in love with the design from the second we saw it. Tori also selected our color pallet and is the reason for the beautiful teal throughout the app. Good work, Tori!

We spent our time on Demo Day before the presentations mingling with the audience outside the auditorium. We set up a photo booth, and we’ll share those photos on social media on Monday. So follow, follow, follow us at @dresserstyleapp on all of the things. This time before the presentation also gave us a chance to walk people through the app on our own phones. We felt like our target audience (females 18-25) were really impressed with the app and seemed to be interested in using the app. We also got a lot of feedback through Twitter about how interested students were with the app! Check out the hashtag #UTapps on Twitter if you want to see all the fun we had on Saturday. Check out just a few of the tweets we loved reading on Saturday.

Dresser’s presentation ran smoothly, too. Tori worked really hard on the design of our presentation, and we think it turned out super clean. We stayed under 10 minutes and all had a chance to talk about the parts of Dresser that each of us worked on. Nicole talked about social media, Hannah talked about photo and video, Tori discussed design, and Ben and Adam talked about coding the app. We even had time to include a live demo of Dresser and a marketing video that Hannah made a couple weeks ago. Congratulations to all the teams for their hard work on their apps this semester!

Don’t worry, y’all. This isn’t the end of Dresser. You’ll still be able to download the app at bit.ly/dresserapp. We currently have more than 50 downloads of Dresser on the App Store and more than 140 outfits have been sent through the app. We only want those numbers to grow! Later updates to the app could be coming soon – that would include private messaging and bug fixes. Thanks again for those of you who have kept up with us this semester. We know it’s taken over all of our social media accounts, so we appreciate you sticking around and downloading Dresser.

Brunch is always a good idea

The Dresser team ended a productive week with a meeting over brunch Saturday at Snooze in Austin. We won’t bore you with the details of homemade sausage gravy or eggs benedict, but more importantly, the team came up with a redesigned slideshow for our Demo Day. We hope you’ll all be impressed with our slideshow theme and color. We spent the weekend rearranging slides, rewriting our pitch to the judges, and we’ll finally meet up Sunday night to do a run-through before our  in-class presentation on Monday. The in-class presentation is a way to work out all the kinks before the big day. We’ll also get to hear all the other app team’s proposals! We’re less than one week away from Demo Day, and the team is pumped to show off Dresser. Stop by Belo if you’re interested in seeing the final presentation and most updated version of the app.

We’ve reached nearly 50 users on Dresser this week, and the team has been sending photos back and forth to work out any problems in the app before Demo Day. The latest version of the app will be pushed out right before Demo Day and will include starred “top outfits” and the ability to add friends through Facebook. We talked about this in the last blog post, but the top outfits function will give you stars on your top three rated photos in your private profile. Here’s a sneak peak of the stars on your private profile.

This version is only available for the developers right now, but it will make its way to the App Store soon! Keep an eye on social media and your iPhone updates.

We also spent the week wrapped up in video production. Our fourth and final promo video will launch this Sunday, so make sure you’re monitoring your social accounts for that. This video is an entire walkthrough of the app, featuring two friends using Dresser while one decides what to wear for a job interview. She gets the job and the friends decide to meet up for drinks! We shot most of the video in Nicole’s apartment on Wednesday, then we met up at Epoch coffee for the final meetup shot. Hannah will spend Sunday editing and posting the video before our team meeting.

Tonight’s meeting will also serve as a chance to take a high-resolution shot of all of us for a slide in our Demo Day presentation. Hannah is bringing along her Canon Rebel to take a photo of all us together. This will be much better quality than last week’s Instagram post at Tap24. An iPhone camera can only do so much when it’s dark outside.

In final Dresser news, your loyal blog writer is sick as a dog. Most of my Dresser photos this week have been at the doctor’s office in leggings or crying in my bed. Please send me photos of your beautiful outfits @nicole on Dresser to cheer me up. That’s all for this week. We hope to see you at Demo Day on Saturday. RSVP to the Facebook event here.

Dresser hits the App Store

It’s the moment we’ve all been waiting for! Dresser is finally available on the App Store. Apple approved our final version of the app earlier this week, so the team met up for margaritas in West Campus to officially release it. We had to wait 48 hours before the app became available to others to download, but we were finally able to push it out on Wednesday. We’re going to spend the rest of the month sharing Dresser on social media. There will also be an updated version of Dresser before Demo Day on April 29. The final version will include stars on the three of your highest rated outfits. It will also allow users to find their friends through Facebook. It’s pretty difficult to find friends by their username right now. We’ve noticed that some people will download the app and then stop using it when they realize they can’t easily find friends.

During our initial launch of Dresser, we realized that people were unable to upload their profile photos. Ben immediately fixed the code and updated the app. He also made the thumbs up and down icons the same colors. We had a couple comments from people who were confused by the two different colors – some said that the teal thumb looked like it had been pressed. Then, Ben sent out a push notification to our users to let them know that they should download the latest version of Dresser to upload their own profile. It was an easy and quick fix for something that could’ve been a bigger deal in an initial app launch. Now, we have matching thumb icons and profile photos.

Our other biggest barrier so far is because the app is pretty hard to find just by searching “Dresser” in the App Store. We’ve had to direct people to the link in our Instagram bio so that they can download it. Hopefully it’s just because we need more downloads, but it could be because of our short app name. Let us know if you’ve had any experience with this.

The Dresser team is really excited about updated emojis and alerts throughout the app. We added a cute tag on the inbox that says “Get Dressin’” when your inbox is empty. The app also gives users an alert when their photo has been sent to a friend and when they rate a friend’s outfit. The whole team is really proud of Dresser! We hope you’re all impressed, too.

Demo Day is getting closer and closer. The team is meeting every week (and sometimes more) until April 29 to plan our script. Our presentation will include a live demo of Dresser and show the judges and audience the way that Dresser went from just an idea to an app that’s available for your iPhone. We’ve been brainstorming fun ways to show off the app before our presentation. We’ll have a photo booth set up so that people at Demo Day can meet the team and promote Dresser through their own social media account. The week after Demo Day, we’ll post photos on social media. In Austin that weekend? Come say hi!

Dresser launches promo video, completes beta testing

Dresser is just days away from being available in the App Store! We don’t have an exact date, but we’ve submitted our final version to Apple. This was after a full week of user testing. Shoutout to our eight testers who took to TestFlight this week to check out Dresser. We had a fun time using Dresser with our testers to send outfits and vote on our favorite clothes. It helped us figure out what was making the app crash and gave us inspiration for the design of the app. For example, our testers discovered that Dresser would crash if you clicked on an old notification of a deleted photo. The code was immediately corrected and now Dresser is bug free!

Check out three main pages below which show the user profile, photo ratings and notifications.

The middle photo is what the user sees while reviewing a photo they’ve sent to friends. The teal and white boxes keep track of how users are rating each photo. We hope this will help you decide whether or not to wear an outfit. If you’ve been following along with our blog posts, you’ll know that the user profiles are private. You won’t have to worry about your friends seeing how others have voted on your outfits!

The newest updates to the app are the result boxes on private photos, updated emojis on every page and credits within the settings page. Our beta testers won’t see some of these tweaks until Dresser is live.

In other news, our latest promo video is available for your viewing! We were finally able to show people using Dresser in the video. Hannah shot and edited the entire video this week. She used a royalty free track and no voices again, which make the video a little more professional. It’s also much easier to edit and get online in a short time period. This video shows four different people using Dresser before they go out. They take photos of their outfits, get ratings from their friends, and then walk out the door in their clothes. We know, we know, the “Available in the App Store” tagline at the end of the video is a little premature, but we’re pretty sure that Apple will approve Dresser this week. We’ll push the video out more over social media when it’s available. Check it out:


The entire team is thrilled about this video, and it could potentially be the video we show off while promoting Dresser on demo day. We still have one more video coming, though. Our fourth and final promo video will be posted in a couple weeks. We’re expecting the last video to be an iPhone screen that’s recorded while someone using Dresser. A lot of brands do these kind of “walkthroughs” for videos so that viewers know exactly what the app can do. What do you think? Send us an email at dresserstyleapp@gmail.com or reach out to us on social media @dresserstyleapp. We have plenty of new friends on Facebook and Instagram. Don’t miss more content from the team on those sites!

Dresser to hit the App Store this month

Happy April from the Dresser team! We’ve added 20 new Facebook friends to our ranks in the last week. @Dresserstyleapp has reached 70 likes on its Facebook page, 20 followers on Twitter (Sad!), and 39 followers on Instagram. Many thanks to our followers. You’ll be the first to know when Dresser hits the App Store this month. Despite our low follower numbers on Twitter and Instagram, we’re still receiving a healthy amount of audience engagement. We’re averaging 30-50 likes on Instagram and have received plenty of “likes” on Twitter while promoting celebrity fashion news. The entire team could probably do a better job at promoting Dresser on their personal accounts in the coming weeks. Maybe one day our follower to following ratio won’t be so embarrassing.

Social media will be key in promoting user testing these next weeks. The five of us handed our iPhones to our besties this week to get their feedback on the app prototype. We’re planning on making some changes to Dresser based on that feedback. Then, we’ll push out the app on TestFlight. I know, I know, you’ve heard the word “TestFlight” in almost every blog post so far, but it’s been an important part of our app production. This is where your emails come in handy on that Google Form. (You can still submit those emails FYI!) Those of you that volunteer to test Dresser will receive a notification to download TestFlight and use the app on your own iPhone. We’ll ask for your feedback about any changes that need to be made in the final weeks of the project. You can expect that email next week.

Finally, we have beautiful app icons thanks to Tori. She’s spent weeks creating the design for Dresser, and we’ll finally get to see it come together this weekend. Rather than those weird bright green and red boxes we showed you in last week’s blog post, we have these cute thumbs to rate your friends’ outfits:

Adam and Ben will add those ranking icons into the app with their magic coding powers, along with menu icons for inbox, notifications, camera and profile. We’ve noticed that our friends are a little confused about what to do when they first open the app. Some instruction for first-time users would probably be a big help in Dresser. Directions would walk the user through how to use the app and ensure that everyone understands what Dresser can do. You’ve probably noticed this when using popular apps for the first time or when an app like Snapchat or Facebook makes a major update. We think this would be a great tool in Dresser, too.

For example, we currently have a mailbox icon for the inbox screen, but it’s definitely not what iPhone users expect as an icon for their inbox:

We’ll change that icon on the bottom left to an envelope so that users immediately understand the page that we’re on. That will hopefully reduce some of the confusion we’re noticing during user testing.

But it’s more than just app icons, users need a little instruction before using a brand new app. Hopefully we’ll have updates about that next week. That’s all for this week’s blog post! Remember to submit your email for user testing and follow us on Twitter. We follow back.

Dresser team uses app to send outfits

We’ve all wearily made it back to the UT campus after an amazing week off. But don’t worry, Dresser is still in shape to hit the app store in April.

This week, the Dresser team made big strides with key functions of the app like storing friends and sending photos. Now, all that’s left is including the menus and themes that make Dresser unique. We’ve had fun this week using the app on our phones to send photos and rate outfits between team members. This helps us figure out what needs to be corrected before we submit the app.

For example, Nicole used Dresser this week to send a photo of a outfit she was trying on at a clothing store. She also took a photo of her outfit before meeting up with the group for margs. She got three up-votes on the app – thank goodness.

This image is what you would see while viewing the outfits you’ve sent to your friends. This can be found on your private “profile.” We’ve mentioned in earlier posts that privacy is an important part of this app. Based on user surveys, we know our audience wants to share outfits with their closest friends and keep it off of a public feed. Dresser lets you privately check out how many friends voted for or against the outfit. Obviously, we won’t use those crazy bright red and green buttons, but this gives you an idea of what the app will look like. We’re also considering removing the teal bar across the top of the photo so that the photo expands to the entirety of the phone screen. Get ready for a totally different look by the time it hits the App Store.

Another exciting improvement in Dresser is the push notifications that a user receives when a friend sends a photo or rates an outfit. Check it out:

We love incorporating emojis and think the style of the notifications reflects our app. “Billy Bob liked your photo” is not exactly what we’re going for. Props to Ben and Adam for coming up with a unique way to receive notifications on your iPhone. “Sent you an outfit to rate” is a fun way to get the user involved with Dresser. We want anyone using the app to be excited when they receive a notification.

Our app is pretty far ahead of schedule, so we decided to submit it to the App Store. This will help us determine what needs to be corrected before final submission. It’s no surprise that Apple rejected our app this week, but this gave us a clue about what needs to be done to meet our April goal. The team will make corrections to the submission and resubmit until we get it right. Don’t worry, we’ll still get the app to you in April!

Here’s another reminder to follow us on social media @dresserstyleapp. We’re getting back into the groove of things after hardly any posts during spring break. We’re ready to bring more fashion content on Twitter, photos of friends on Instagram and app updates on Facebook. Get ready for an exciting six weeks, y’all. Things are going to be moving quickly from here on out.

 

Dresser Team Gets to Work on Spring Break Bods

Happy spring break, y’all! We spent the last week counting down the days until our week off, but that also means we had to get ahead on app development and finishing our new promo video.

Hannah edited the video on Adobe Premiere, while Tori created the final logo screen and text in Adobe After Effect. We exported our video after class on Wednesday, so that we could be well ahead of the deadline to turn it in. Check out our second promo video for Dresser, a style app for when you need a second opinion.

We mentioned last week that the rain was a bummer during filming, but we were able to get all the shots we needed! We’ll be promoting the video on social media. Head to @dresserstyleapp on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook to see our content and share it with your friends.

The team had some trouble deciding the final words at the end of the video, but we finally ended up with “For when you need a second opinion.” We think this sums up the app nicely, which is something we’ve struggled with since the beginning of the semester. During promotion for the next few weeks, we’ll be finding ways to increase our audience’s understanding of what the app does. That will definitely be explained in greater detail in the next two videos.

Still unsure what the heck Dresser is?

 Dresser is an app that allows you to quickly share a photo of your outfit with friends while you’re deciding what to wear to school, work or a date. Your friends will be able to vote up or down on the outfit, and you can find a curated list of all your outfits to see how they scored.

It’s probably no surprise that this app is mostly…okay, completely…coded by our two computer science students. They spend hours each week building the app while the journalism students do marketing, social media and design. All of these things are an important part of our app, but the journalism students know how much work the CS students are required to put into this each day. We decided to spend part of class on Wednesday talking about what Ben and Adam have been doing behind the scenes to create Dresser. Ben walked us through the way our app receives and stores user information when they log in through Firebase and S3.

We’re expecting to submit Dresser to the App Store in the next few weeks, so our team will be using TestFlight to put the finishing touches to the app. We’ve also been collecting email accounts to do user testing. This has been a goal in the last few weeks, but we’ve been waiting for the app to be in a place we can share with users. Apple also has to approve our most recent update in TestFlight before it’s available for the team and others to view. We’re aiming to send out the prototype during the week after spring break. Then, it will go to a handful of potential users to get feedback about what’s working with the app. This will help us decide what needs to be changed before Dresser launches in April.

Another necessary part of submitting an app is understanding Apple’s developer handbook. Reviewing Apple’s requirements is helpful so that we can avoid the app being denied on the App Store. We’re mostly worried about Apple’s requirements to have a Facebook log in. We’d like users to be able to create their account by logging into Facebook, but there are specific requirements the app must meet to be able to have this function. Nicole will review Facebook log in requirements before the app is submitted to the App Store.

That’s all for this week. To all the students out there: Have a good spring break!

Dresser: Branding and Design

Swipe right or left. Thumbs up or thumbs down. ❤️  or ❌.

There are a million ways to vote in an app, and we just have to find the right one for Dresser. We spent this week debating the way we’d like our users to view their notifications and how they’ll vote on outfits. We’ve decided on thumbs up/thumbs down overlay buttons so that a user can vote for or against an outfit when they receive a photo from a friend. We’ll also have to decide the way we want notifications listed in the menu. Here are two prototype screens that show a thumbs up or heart icon as the notification screen (Bottom menu):

What do you think? We will either keep the thumbs up icon uniform through the app or use the heart icon – a unanimous symbol for notifications in many apps.

Other major developments to our app include its design. Tori Townsend has taken the lead on finding the best fonts, colors and styles for Dresser. She’s spent the week testing different colors for the thumbs up/down voting icons and the font styles throughout the app. The all-caps lettering in “Dresser” at the top of the screen is another design change from last week.

It’s difficult to debate these changes when we’re apart outside of class. To help with that distance, our team uses Slack to brainstorm changes to Dresser and share the latest developments. The messaging application has come in handy each week – especially when we’re apart and are trying to decide on Dresser’s design through screenshots. We’ve also used Slack this week to share inspiration for branding and video ideas. One video we were impressed by was from Snapchat. They have a great promo video about their live video function:

Tori and Hannah spent Saturday shooting our next promo video. The video will feature friends (who use Dresser, obvi) picking out outfits and then wearing them around town together. This weekend’s rain in Central Texas proved to be a huge obstacle, but Tori and Hannah worked through it. They were able to capture all the content for the video. We’ll have the video up next week. Follow us @dresserstyleapp on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to be the first to know when the video is posted!

Speaking of social media, we’ve really stepped up our game. Last week we promised to have more photos of the best-dressed Austinites, and we’ve succeeded. We’ve been using Instagram and Twitter to share those photos. Our most recent post was from the Texas Capitol. One recent UT journo graduate offered to pose for Dresser in front of the Capitol as she headed off to cover a committee hearing. These photos aren’t just coming from the journalists on the team. Adam, one of our computer science students, is contributing his own excellent photography skills to the cause. Check out his latest photo for social media:

That’s all for this week. We’ll have a new video ready for next week’s blog, along with updates on user testing.

Dresser Releases First Promo Video

Drum roll, please…

Our team has finished the first promo video for Dresser! The video follows a guy using Dresser to snap a photo of a potential outfit for a date. He asks his friend for advice on Dresser, which helps him decide what to wear for his night out. See for yourself:

We used Adobe Premiere and Adobe After Effect for editing – some of which came during #NationalMargaritaDay at Torchy’s Tacos. Our group met over margaritas to check out the promo video and the app.


Those margaritas really gave us the boost we needed to finish video editing and design plans. We’re hoping to spend some time creating GIFs of our video to share on social media (@dresserstyleapp). We’ll also promote the video through our personal accounts. Stay tuned for our next video in the coming weeks, and don’t forget to follow Dresser online for the latest updates.

We’ve been growing our presence on social media with 46 (!!!) likes on Facebook, 17 followers on Twitter and 29 followers on Instagram. We should obviously work on those numbers, so we’ll spend this week finding ways to grow our audience on social media. We’re using hashtags like #OOTD to grow a fashion audience on our accounts. Most of our content will come from trendsetters around Austin showing off their favorite clothes. Similar to a fashion blogger’s account, we think this will grow our followers and promote the app. Hannah took photos of her friends last week and will start pushing out those photos on social. Check out what we’re sharing on social media:

 


Last week, the Dresser team reviewed and tested the app. We have a functioning camera, an inbox, a search bar, notifications and a login screen. Adam and Ben will spend next week creating a private profile and several other screens that will reflect our initial wireframe. The development team will need to add content to most of these pages, so we’re using TestFlight to review the latest updates on the app. TestFlight is an app that makes it easier to invite users your iOS app before releasing it onto the app store. This is incredibly important because it allows team members preview the app during its testing period, which will be critical in determining what works and what doesn’t early on.

But our most important changes will come from prototype testing with potential users. We’ll spend the next week showing our friends and classmates the prototype of Dresser. It will be important to see if they’re able to use and understand the app without our direction. It’s hard to know if navigating through the app is simple for someone who didn’t create it, so user testing will allow us to see where there needs to be updates and corrections.

Dresser: Lights, Camera, Action

We started ~rolling~ on video production this week. The Dresser team spent the weekend shooting video for our first promo video, which will feature a guy having trouble while deciding what to wear for a date. He’ll use Dresser to send a photo to a friend for their advice, and then head to a date in his rockin’ shirt. We’ll be editing through the week and posting it next Sunday. Check out these behind-the-scenes photos:

We’ve also rolled out our social media accounts. You can follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook @dresserstyleapp. We’ve finished a social media calendar and will start posting regularly this week. Our audience on these feeds will likely be Millennial women, and we’re already starting to follow the top celebrities and fashionistas of 2017. Our accounts will allow our audience to be the first to hear about new promo videos and app updates. We’ll also be posting our favorite #OOTDs by just snapping pics of well-dressed Austinites walking around the University of Texas campus and the surrounding area. Dresser’s social accounts will be more than just app updates. You can count on our feeds to be full of amazing outfits for men and women, style advice and more.

In even bigger Dresser news: our logo is complete! Tori Townsend has been working on this logo since day one. Check out how far she’s come:

Final version.

Version 1.

This logo is already on our social media accounts and will be the icon on your iPhone. Tori played with different colors and hanger styles and finally decided on this version. This hanger shape seems much more unique and the colors make the logo pop. Here’s a mockup of the screen:

The app itself is moving along thanks to our computer science students, Adam Hood and Ben Wernsman. They’ve spent the last week creating the login page for the app. They’ve linked the app with Facebook, so our users can quickly sign up when they first use the app. They’ll also have the option to login with email and password. Ben and Adam also connected Dresser with a database, so user information can be stored. The rest of the group has also seen some sneak peaks of different functions on the app – the camera screen, captions and inbox.

The decision to prioritize messaging more than a public feed was based on user feedback we received from our survey. You may remember that we sent out a survey last week to get feedback from our potential audience about how they’d get clothing advice from friends. The survey found that a majority of our 90 respondents would definitely or “maybe” use the app. We also asked what kind of functions would be most important in a style app, and respondents answered that private messaging would be a top priority for them. The Dresser team originally thought that a public feed was a pretty important part of the app, but we’re realizing that a lot of people don’t consider that to be very valuable. Potential users would prefer to communicate with their friends about their clothes, which makes sense now that we’ve had a chance to hear from our audience! Viewing and voting on a stranger’s clothing is the least important function of an app like Dresser. We’ll take these survey results and shift our priorities for the app. Ben and Adam will focus on adding a messaging function in our MVP. We’ll also have to consider that most of our audience likes to send photos of their clothes through iPhone’s camera roll or Snapchat.

That’s all for this week. Remember to follow us on social media @dresserstyleapp!