Add for Grad: Final Project

Molly Bedard and Cookie Jeter

About & Inspiration

For the final assignment, we decided to go with Option 2. We interviewed a few of our friends and students in various classes to learn about what people felt like they were missing at our age. There was a main theme among every one we asked: money. Saving money. Spending money. Running out of money. As seniors approaching graduation, almost everyone is worried about coming off their parents account and starting off brand new. People are stressed on how they are going to afford rent, utilities, meals, and pleasure in the life after college. Our friends also were worried about student loans. About half of the people we interviewed were attending grad school after college and had no idea where to start on saving their money and surviving in the real world.

Add for Grad is the solution to the grad student’s dilemma. It is a budgeting app specifically made for grad students to help them save and spend appropriately. Grad students have the opportunity to put their weekly spend goal, various hobbies, and how much they want to save to afford grad school. The app will then track their performance and send push notifications letting them know how they are doing and when they are failing. The app is easy to use and perfect for anyone fresh out of college.

Define and Ideation

Initial Ideas

  • Budgeting app for grad students
  • App that has special restaurant deals
  • App that sends you coupons for what you buy
  • App that questions your buying choices based on location
  • App that sends recipes so you don’t eat out as much
  • App that sends you workouts to do at home so you don’t pay for the gym
  • App that helps you budget your errands so you waste less gas
  • Piggy bank that doesn’t open until a certain date
  • App that gives you rewards based on how much you save
  • Scratch map as you save
  • An app that rewards you for good grades (study money)
  • Log study time for rewards
  • App that shows you how your job salary after grad school changes as you pay each semester
  • App that shows you clubs/groups to join at your new location for school
  • App that shows how to invest while still in school “stocks for dummies”
  • App that helps you budget your time instead of just money (gym, study, job)
  • Card similar to flatiron meal plan but you can spend at certain places (gas stations, grocery stores)
  • Shock shoes when you spend money
  • Wallet that locks your card so you can’t use it
  • Subscription service to food delivery – 2 meals a week for monthly price

After brainstorming this list, we chose our two favorite ideas and expanded upon them. We made app prototypes for both. With each prototype we drew out we thought of more and more features we could add. In the end we decided we did not want to abandon one of our ideas, but instead combine them into one single app. This app would overall be a budgeting app for grad students but would also include a page, “Study Money,” where students would be rewarded for good grades and studying hard.





Headings: HWT Unit Gothic 719

Content: Avenir Next


With money being such a taboo topic, we wanted both our text and color scheme to be lighthearted and pleasant. We played around with a few fonts and came to the decision to make our heading font lively and our content font informative. We chose to not incorporate a sans serif because it made our text look too stuffy. We knew our users were young and playful, and wanted a font that imitated this.

Final Design

Art boards

Link to Invision App

Link to User Experience Video

Pain Points

  • The iPhone X pre-set on Adobe Illustrator does not account for the Mic/Camera section that Indesign puts on the iPhone X design for effects (in order to make it look like a real iPhone). In build mode, you also do not realize this black bar that will be placed on your design so it was not until the very end after it was all built that we realized this.
  • Not everyone owns an iPhone X so the design was hard to translate from phone to phone.

Readings 3.10

The Secret Language of Signs

This reading talks about how signage is the most useful thing we pay no attention to. Bad signs can send perfectly ordinary citizens into spirals of obsession. Signs should be designed for the humble human, this can also be referred to as “wayfinding.” Businesses make sure signs work because well-oriented people are calmer, happier, and more likely to spend money than people who are lost. Much of sign innovation has sprouted from our world becoming so globalized and people traveling in airports all the time. These signs need to be understood by everyone coming and going, of all nationalities.

Lost in Penn Station

This reading talks about how the signage at Penn station, one of the busiest hubs in America, is confusing and bizarre. Penn station is home to three different railroads—Amtrak, New Jersey Transit, and the LIRR—and two subway lines. It’s the busiest train station in North America. The signage is confusing and it makes people second guess whether they are on the right track to find their train. In order for a space to work, way-finding needs to identify every key decision point a visitor might stop and think, “Where do I go from here?” It’s also important to decide what information will go on each sign, doling out directions only as needed. The problem with Penn Station is that three sets of designers did this process at the same time.

UX Project- SpaceX

I have built apps with Invison in the past and it is an application I am very fond of so I was excited about this assignment. I began my UX project by sketching out my ideas on blank white paper. I drew sketch after sketch of fake IPhones to see where I really wanted to take my design. Below are by sketches before I took my designs to Illustrator and finally Invision.



In my design of the app, I chose to use the colors of the SpaceX Logo to keep it simple and crisp looking. I chose to the text to give a futuristic sense to my information I was relaying.

Invision Link

Readings 4.3

Interaction Design

Ch 5: Beyond Human-Computer Interaction

This reading discusses how expressive forms are meant to produce an emotional response in users. Expressive forms do not just apply to humans, but can apply to objects, such as a phone waking up after it has been asleep. The appearance of an icon on a phone is very reassuring to users as it shows the phone is functioning properly. It creates a sense of friendliness and the user may even smile back. One of the benefits of using expressive embellishments in objects is that they can provide reassuring feedback that is informative and fun. Different interfaces create different emotions. A frustrating interface will create a negative emotion, just as a user-friendly interface will create a positive emotion. These interfaces can also be persuasive and get their user to do something.

Bringing Order to Chaos with Grid Systems

In this reading, grid systems are discussed in further detail. At the simplest, grid systems are a way to structurally organize pieces of information. They lay out the building blocks to design. The earliest traces of grid systems go all they way back to the Ancient Greeks. The Industrial Revolution then next used the grid system with inventions like the printing press. Müller-Brockmann went on the write a book that became the bible of grid systems and is used and referenced today in many projects. It is also important to understand how and why we use grid systems. The most important reason on why to use a grid is that it brings order to chaos and creates a fail-proof system on how to organize your data.

Aesthetic-Usability Effect

In this video, the term “Form follows Function” is discussed. This saying means that first a design must make sure things work, and then make sure its beautiful. However, this video discusses the other laws of nature that suggest form may not always follow function. The aesthetic-usability effect is one of these laws. It describes a phenomenon that beautiful objects are perceived to be easier to use than uglier objects.

Readings 3.20

Design of Every Day Things

Chapter 1

In this chapter, the author discusses the frustrations of poor designs of every day objects that thwart use. This brings him to the point of discussing one of the most important principles in design: visibility. He claims that every day household objects should be simple designs that have visible cues for the user to use. Just the right things have to be visible in order to operate. The psychology of every day things is an interesting topic and the rest of this book will speak on it. Beginning, the author claims there are around twenty thousand every day things and each object has its own conceptual model behind it. He emphasizes the importance of mapping in creating these concepts for every day objects and planning out the entire process of the design. Every design should also receive its own set of feedback to see if the design is actually feasible and makes sense to every day users.

MAYA Video

MAYA stands for the most advanced yet acceptable principle. It is a strategic principle used for determining the most commercially viable aesthetic for design. This aesthetic appeal is a balancing act between familiarity and novelty. This principle helps us realize we can not introduce radical innovations all at once, but rather in steps with multiple product releases.



For my midterm project, I wanted to focus on sustainable fashion, specifically on the case of bio-fabrication. I am going into the fashion industry after I graduate. It is a passion of mine that I have been interested ever since I was little. However, I struggle with the idea that the fashion industry is the #2 polluter of the world. Twenty percent of water pollution globally results from textile processing. I knew that if I went into the industry I needed to help change (and not ignore) this fact. The fashion industry mainly contributes to pollution in the way that they currently produce all their fabrics. So why not start at the heart of the matter?

With my posters, I wanted to get the message across that there are other alternatives to produce fabric that are less costly to our environment. This is a topic I have been interested in for a few years now and find joy in researching it. Aesthetically, I wanted my posters to be bold in order to catch attention. But I knew I also wanted them to be simple so they would keep that attention. I find that when posters are too busy people begin to pass them by. I wanted these posters to be informational. On the front of the poster, people would see the design I made and on the back, they would read about how each bio-fabrication works.


For my inspiration, I wanted to look up companies who were already in the process of doing this bio-fabrication. I found leaders in the industry and wanted to see how I could incorporate their designs, their tones, and their cultures into my posters. I also researched each bio fabrication method and explained it briefly to show where I derived some of my designs from.

Micro Silk

Spiders produce silk fibers that have remarkable strength, elasticity, durability, and softness. With the help of technology, micro silk is a way to replicate this process sustainably at a large scale process. Scientists have developed proteins inspired by the natural silks that spiders create by using bioengineering to put genes into yeast. They produce the proteins in large quantities through fermentation using yeast, sugar, and water. The main ingredient used is sugar which makes this whole process sustainable. Sugar comes from plants that are grown, harvested, and replanted, whereas polyester is made from non renewable petroleum-derived fibers. After the production of the protein, scientists extract the liquid silk and spin it into fibers in the same way that acrylic and rayon are made. Lastly they knit these fibers into fabrics and garments. No spiders are harmed in the process because there are no spiders at all in the process. They were originally just studied to understand the relationship between spiders’ DNA and the characteristics of the fibers they make.

Orange Fiber

Orange fiber is the process of making fabric from citrus juice byproducts. The textile is constructed from a silk-like cellulose yarn that can be blended with other materials. It is used in its purest form, resulting in a 100% citrus textile that has a silky hand feel, is light weight, and can be opaque or shiny according to production needs.

Eco Dying

Eco Dying is the process of natural dying your fabrics with flowers and not harmful chemicals to the environment. The process includes enclosing plants in textiles or paper bundled with string, and then steaming or immersing them in hot water to extract the pigments and produce a print made with plant dyes. Leaves, stems, flowers, buds, seeds and roots may be used.



For this poster, I played around with many texts and colors. I knew I wanted a bold font that stuck out since I wanted just a few words on each poster. For this reason, I chose the font “Impact” as it conveyed the exact message I wanted to get across and make an impact with.

I also knew I wanted the colors I chose to pop. I wanted to emulate a sort of “pop art” poster so I chose colors that told a story and emulated the subject in each poster. For a spider, I did different variations of black. For an orange, I did different variations of orange. For the flowers, I did different variations of greens and purples.


I began sketching what I wanted to do and HATED it as I am not very good at hand drawing. So I decided to stop that and began cutting out pieces of paper and finding objects around the house that I could brainstorm with. I placed dried up flowers on top of paper and rolled an orange around to see just how I wanted to place my designs in Illustrator. This hands on experiment really worked for me as it allowed me to physically place things before I did it digitally. This definitely saved me time as I knew exactly where I wanted my objects to go before I took it to Illustrator.

Tag Lines

Poster 1: SPIN IT

Poster 2: PEEL IT

Poster 3: ROLL IT

Final Designs

Readings 3.6

Gloss Bias

In Gloss Bias, we learn that glossy displays out sell matte displays every time. This is because of the gloss bias, or the general human preference for glossy versus dull objects. This theory is said to be from evolution and humans ability to find water sources from the “glossy” reflection of the lake. Glossy favors instinctive biases and not conscious thinking. Also for a mass market appeal, choose glossy. For a niche target, choose matte to differentiate your product.

What is Glitter?

“Even humans who do not like glitter, like glitter.” Our desire for sparkle is innate, it is embedded in us. In this article, the author searches for the origin of glitter. The author wishes to discover how glitter is made, so badly wanting to physically visit a glitter factory and wrap his head around it. In his experience in the factory, the author tells us about how the glitter is made. Plastic goes through metallization until both sides are coated with aluminum. But why does glitter even exist and who could even think of glitter in the first place? The primary functions of glitter are, of course, aesthetic; glitter exists so that glitter can be put on things that do not have glitter on them. The article begins to talk about color and wavelengths and it reminds me of a physics class I took freshman year. I never would have thought that glitter has anything to do with physics.