Project: Libre
Role: Lead Designer, Writer
Duration: October-December 2021
 Responsibilities: User research, wireframing, prototyping, UX Writing.

Project Description:

Libre is a subscription service for book lovers who want to explore curated literary themes or topics; like a book playlist following real an individual’s life events, emotions and mood, or whatever their preferences.

This project was inspired by ~bibliotherapy,~ using books to supplement therapy and emotional wellness— introduced by the School of Life.

The problem:

Between the professional and social life, Libre’s potential customer does not have enough time to plan for leisure or hobbies such as pleasure reading. And when one carves out time to incorporate reading into their daily lives, there is the difficulty of spending a lot of time wading through the books and book recommendations out there.

The goal:

Create a seamless experience for subscribers to opt-in for curated collections directed by their preferences and reading needs.

User research: summary

Libre started with the goal of building a website that helps book lovers receive book subscriptions tailored to their mental and emotional needs. The website includes guides and a short questionnaire to help the Libre team understand their customer’s needs. The primary solution was to reduce the time spent looking for new book recommendations and provide individuals the opportunity to receive thoughtful crafted book hampers on a timely basis.

I conducted a design and user research, a competitive audit of other subscription processes. While a digital biblotherapy service is a first of its kind, I was able to move beyond merely filling a gap to designing an experience that is as pleasurable as reading a book for the Libre community.

As a first experiment, I spoke to prospective users before begining the design process. It was a mix of people who were already readers and familiar with library systems and people interested in cultivating a reading habit.

User Persona

Tony is a user model for busy and working professionals.

User Journey Map

User Pain Points

Included user prefrences from other user personas: students, hobbyists, a librarian.

Starting the Design

I decided to begin with a stacked website structure to give a quick overview of Libre’s services, reviews and community. 

Selected Paper Wireframes

Paper wireframe mobile and ipad screen size variations

Paper wireframe mobile and ipad screen size variations

Digital Wireframes

Digital Wireframes for different screen sizes and webpages.

Low-Fidelity Prototype: Interaction Map

 User Testing & Observation

After the first low-fidelity prototype I conducted an usability study through an interview with five participants. The first round of design sought to solve user pain points of time, community, accessibility and specificity. So the questions in the survey and the interview was guided by how the current prototype solved for that.

For example:

  • How easy did the user find the task?
  • How long did it take for them to make a purchasing decision?
  • Did the user get a strong sense of Libre and its service?

5 of 5 users in this study affirmed that the service that Libre offered is useful and could improve emotional wellness. Most of them were excited to try Libre out when it launches. The users also found the site easy to navigate.

One insight that was especially helpful was one of the participants asking “what the process of this bibliotherapy is going to look like” i.e an automated or personal consulation.

2 of 5 users also mentioned that the option to leave additional notes after selecting categories or themes will be useful.

Current Webscreen Prototype:


Libre received a lot of positive feedback as a product that will be incredibly useful. Choosing to simplify an idea that could easily become complicated paid off. While this can be daunting, the design process allowed me think clearly about how best to present a service like this in the most seamless way possible.

 Quote from peer feedback:

“ No only does the website bring the functionality of successfully susbcribing. It encourages enthusiasts to be repeat customers by its well-designed community page.”

“ I like the very meaningful idea of bibliotherapy as a digital service. There’s all these things we are using in this age like astrology, tarot/pyschic readings, etc. but there is something about receiving books every month that feel more grounded to help in real everyday situations.”


While I was designing the product, I had relied on a model for automated bibliotherapy service that required no human-to-human consulation. Asking open questions helped figure out that this design decision would not be of service to everyone.

Moving forward, I am interested in thinking about accessibility in even more diverse ways.