Every story or section we work on at Elle has a life beyond the pages you see in the magazine each month: to give you a peek under the hood, here is a cross-section of one of my stories, Elle's annual Future of Fashion package from the August 2023 issue.
Read on to see how it came to look the way it did in print, and how we as a team translated the stories into a digital experience, from mobile to desktop to social media.
The Print Experience
Before we dive in, let me show you the final product. This is what was printed in the August 2023 issue; the layout guides our way in figuring out how these pages can translate online.
The Digital Experience
Digital storytelling is a challenge, as all content management systems come with their own quirks and limitations that we have to navigate. In this case, I made a bespoke version of the opener page to head the online version of the story.
My focus here was on maintaining the spirit of the page while considering how the crop would differ from desktop to mobile—the same image has to work for both aspect ratios, so I had to make an extended version where most of the important visual information lives in the middle of the image. I also switched the orientation of the title "Future of Fashion" to read top-to-bottom so it flows with the user's vertical journey.
Behind the Scenes
Now for the fun part: a look at the cutting room floor! I sifted through hundreds and hundreds of images in the process of designing this package, and made a multitude of iterations on the design as well. This is a peek into the alternate versions that didn't get picked. Everyone has their favorites—what are yours?
If you want to see more behind the scenes fun from the editorial side, Elle posted this TikTok about how the editors conceptualize this package each year (and you can see some of these layout alts in action)!