Design Details episode 81, live at Etsy

Bryn Jackson and Brian Lovin run Design Details, an interview podcast with designers. They came to Etsy to do a recording of a panel-style interview with me, Justin Edmond, and Joel Califa. It was super fun but a little scary—it was recorded in front of a live audience! I had a ton of fun talking about things like how we all became designers, management vs. individual contributor roles, and Neopets.

Listen here:

Sharing Our Work: Testing and Feedback in Design on A List Apart

I had the honor of writing an article for A List Apart on the role research can play as we make our way through the design process. I had been reading A List Apart and referencing it since the earliest days that I was building websites, so this opportunity was especially exciting to me!

Thanks to Sara Wachter-Boettcher and Lisa Maria Martin for their incredible editing

Redesigning with Confidence at Industry Conf

This past April I spoke at Industry Conf in Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom. Industry Conf covers practical topics about the web, ranging from research to design to backend development.

I spoke about two major redesigns that we did at Etsy, a redesign of our seller onboarding and the Listings Manager redesign, and contrasted the different methods we used to gain confidence in the major changes we made.

Watch other videos from the conference here

Post on Code as Craft

Today we launched a huge redesign of Etsy’s seller tools that was the culmination of over a year’s worth of work (more on this later). I contributed to a post on Code as Craft, Etsy’s engineering blog, on some of the interesting technical challenges we faced and what happens when you have a blank canvas with which to work.

Read here: Rebuilding the Foundation of Etsy’s Seller Tools


The other day I had a yoga-fueled epiphany.

It’s hard to avoid, actually; true yoga practice relies much less on the physical and more on the spiritual than popular culture would suggest. There’s usually varying degrees of meditation during class. It’s not why I practice yoga, and to be honest I always resist it a bit for inexplicably stubborn reasons.

This particular class was with a teacher I’d never had. New Years was approaching, and it was the first class I had attended in quite some time (something I hope to amend in the new year, of course). It was a small class, maybe five or so people, and the teacher saw it as an opportunity to get to know us a bit better in this unusually intimate setting.

“There are some new faces here. Let’s start practice by going around and saying our names, plus one word that describes our intentions for the new year.” Oh god. Here we go. Part of me wanted to bolt, or sink into the floor. But I knew what I was going to say before it was even my turn.

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Jessica Harllee is a product designer at Etsy in Brooklyn, an avid crafter, and an amateur writer.

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