Case Study: TOMS Shoes

TOMS Prezi

TOMS shoes has teamed up with designers and celebrities, as well as other charities to further their cause of providing shoes for children in Africa who can’t afford them. One such brand is



Limited Edition TOMS

"Rugby has teamed up with TOMS shoes to take a stand for the social action by co-designing a limited edition run of new styles."


Rugby Ralph Lauren.  Rugby created a line of limited edition TOMS to help boost the One for One cause.  They also hosted an interview with Blake Mycoskie, founder of TOMS.  Rugby’s blog has a section devoted solely to Social Action and they do a lot of charity work and give back to their community.

TOMS also joined forces with well-known skateboard company Element.  Not only did element design a limited edition line of TOMS, but they took the One for One idea a step further.  Element also designed a line of One for One Skateboards, so for every one of these special skateboards sold, Element would donate a skateboard to a child in Durban, South Africa.  Element founded the Indigo Skate Camp in Isithumba, South Africa to provide refuge from the angerous areas in which these children live.  Skateboarding is an outlet for them to escape hardship and stay out of trouble.

One for One shoes and skateboards TOMS has been featured in many magazines including: Vogue, People, Marie Claire, Cosmo, Lucky, and many more.  They are endorsed by these magazines and many celebrities not only for their good deeds, but also for how stylish and comfortable they are.  Julia Roberts, Kristen Bell, Anne Hathaway, and Brad Pitt are among their many famous fans.

Charlize Theron is also an avid TOMS supporter and TOMS donated 10,ooo pairs of shoes toCharlize Theron's African OutreachCharlize Theron’s African Outreach Project (CTAOP).  Charlize also designed a TOMS shoe.  Her charities mission statement is: “The Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project (CTAOP) is committed to creating a safer and healthier life for impoverished children and communities of South Africa, and other African nations, with a particular focus on individuals suffering from HIV/AIDS.”

charity: water created a shoe with TOMS because, “Shoes and clean water are critical resources for the development of healthy children.  That’s why TOMS and charity: water are teaming up to not only give shoes to children in need, but to build a clean water well to serve a village of 540 people for 20 years.”  This well they teamed up to build is located in One for One shoes and wellsSekura, Etheopia and five dollars from ever charity: water/ TOMS shoe sale went to building this well.

TOMS is a fun, fashionable, and innovative organization that encourages people to give back, while at the same time making it easy to get involved.


Redesign: Sam’s Grill

In class we’ve been reading Presentation Zen Design which talks about how important images, fonts, colors, and placement are when conveying ideas and meanings.  Tonight my roommate and I were looking at menus online, trying to decide where to have dinner.  We stumbled upon Sam’s Grill in Wynnewood, PA.  The menu sounded absolutely delicious, but the website was less than appealing.Dull WebsiteMy first step would be to change the background color of the website.  The yellow coloring with black font reminds me of a caution sign, which I’m sure is not the vibe Sam’s is going for.  Next I would redesign the logo.  It isn’t memorable, nor does it have anything to do with food.  They could use a picture of their building, or use the picture of grilling at the bottom of the website for their logo.  One possible redesign could be:

New Logo

Next I would focus on making the website look more professional and organized. Also the font is overlapping the links on the homepage making the website look even more sloppy and unprofessional, and in turn making the restaurant itself appear less credible.

Rachel vs. Brad?!

Rachel and BradIt’s true guys! Brad Goreski and Rachel Zoe have ended their fashion romance effective October 1, 2010.  Brad is branching off on his own!  I’m so excited for him, but how tragic?  First Rachel loses the backstabbing Taylor and now the adorable Brad is leaving too.  The difference however, is that Brad and Rachel are still BFF and there are no hard feelings complicating the break-up.  The Rachel Zoe Project just wont be the same without bubbly Brad and his freakouts every five seconds.  This is a totally MAJOR moment for him though and I’m anticipating great things from him! Good luck Brad.

What is Boland Hall?

Art Building

Boland Hall is one place I have never been on campus.  Maybe it’s because it’s all the way on Lapsley Lane, or possibly because I severely lack artistic ability.  Either way I am now inspired to be an artist.

View from OutsideYou can’t miss Boland Hall, with the wooden art structures on the lawn, and its bright red front door.  Walking inside, I realized it is actually much larger than I thought.  The building itself is perfect for the Art program, with its ornate woodwork, stained-glass windows, beautiful staircase and dark hardwood floors.  Boland has classrooms, art studios, storage closets, and offices.  It also has some unique amenities such as a kitchen, complete with refrigerator and microwave.

The front room students walk into is set up like a gallery, complete with accent lighting and students’ pieces on display. Directly center is the staircase leading to the second and thirdfloors.  To the left is the only ordinary classrooms, with desks and a whiteboard.  The stairs to thePaint Studiosecond floor as well as the second floor balcony were draped with braided ribbon chains in pink and orange hues.  The second floor was all kinds of studios: painting, sculpting, and there werealso pottery studios on the first floor.  Moving on to the third floor, there were a few offices but the most intriguing thing I found was the photography center.  Not only can students develop and edit pictures here, but they can also borrow cameras and other equipment.  The photo lab also has what appeared to be a photo booth and a high-tech developing machine.  Boland Hall is a very unique building, which dabbles in many different artistic venues.  It is a great resource not just for Art majors, but also for students who would like to know more about pottery, or learn to Photograph Developing Machinemake ceramics, or who want to learn more about how to take a good picture.

Visiting Boland Hall has inspired me to take an art class, because it seems that anyone at any artistic level is welcome and can learn there.

Usability Test

Use of Media:

  • Images: provides images and other media? There are both videos and images on the blog, except fashion week post, the video should be embedded rather than a link.
  • Site: If mentioning a site: provides link/screenshot/logo of site? There are links and screenshots of sites mentioned.
  • Video: If mentioning a video, embeds video?  All videos are embedded, except for fashion week video, which should be.
  • Links/urls: If mentioning a link, provides url? Urls are provided for links.
  • Citations: If mentioning a blog/blogger, provide trackback? N/A
  • Other Media: If mentioning a book, film, etc., provides link. (Author’s site, Amazon, IMDB, etc.) There are links to people/ terms that are not self-explanatory or well known.


  • Is the text in large intimidating chunks or is it scannable/skimmable?  Are long entries divided with subtitles or images? (22-23) There are a few long posts, such as the “Benny” post, the “Derrion Albert” post, and the “Doctor’s as Reporter’s” post.  The picture of Derrion Albert could be used to break up text.  The Doctor post is extremely long and has no media except for links, very un-skimmable.
  • Are long entries portioned out into clearly defined areas? (36-37)  Both the Doctor post and the Derrion Albert post need to be portioned out.  Other than that posts are pretty well organized.


  • Design: Does the overall design work for the site? (123-129) What strikes you about the site? (150)
  • Text/font: Is the text font, size, color clear and readable? The text color, font, size is very readable, and links appear in a contrasting color making them easier to spot.
  • Color: Is the use of color distracting? Complimentary? (165) The colors are muted but interesting. Coordinate well with the header.
  • Noise: Busyness? (38, 183-184) Is there too much going on? Can it be minimized? Background noise? (38-39) Can it be minimized? There isn’t really background noise, or too much going on.
  • Do entries contain needless words? (45-49) Some entries are wordy, and could definitely be streamlined without losing content.
  • Is site navigation obvious? (54-63) Does it rely on conventions? (51, 54-63) Site navigation is easy and user-friendly, mostly because there isn’t much to navigate.
  • Blog Title and Tagline: is tagline descriptive or engaging?  (14, 101- 106) Tagline is descriptive, but title doesn’t seem relevant to over-all purpose of the blog.
  • About Section: Is the blog concept clear? (101, 144 & 156) Do you understand the purpose of the site, do you “Get it?” Please see “happy talk” section, too. (46) The blog concept is made clear in the About section, but there isn’t much info about the author.
  • Structure/Organization: Amateurish vs. Professional: (Is the site sloppy or neat and clear? Disorganized or organized? Professional or unprofessional?
  • (165 166) The site is neat, clear, and organized, but does appear unprofessional. I am still learning how to use the site/ tools, so it’s a work in progress.
  • Accessibility: Is appropriate “alt text” added to every image? (179)  Alt text is added to images in newer posts, but posts from last semester need to be updated.

Student Blogging

Blogging is becoming more and more popular especially with students and young writers just looking for an outlet for their work.  Blogging is a way of connecting, sharing, and discovering.  One really amazing student blog I found is Her Campus.

Not only does Her Campus have a main page full of useful college tidbits, articles, and fun ideas, but they also have individual college blogs.

These college blogs are student run, and students can apply to be representatives of their college on Her Campus.  This is such a great idea, because it makes Her Campus more personal and specific for each student.  It is also really cool to have a blog specifically for females and specifically for her individual school.