LA Original is so much more than an online shop. It’s a hub for makers local to the city, a brand that defines LA as the creative capital of the world, and an organization that gives back to the community.

The website is the embodiment of the LA Original brand developed by the Mayor’s Fund for Los Angeles and the creative gurus at 72 and Sunny. The online home is a hub that highlights artists and their LA Original branded products. People can browse apparel, accessories, and gifts as well as learn about the people who created them.

We’ve created an online community that calls attention to the artists that make Los Angeles the creative capital of the world. And by doing so, have been able to provide a portion of the proceeds to the Downtown Women’s Center.


Average number of pageviews on LA Original’s website per week


Number of LA Original branded products sold online and in stores since the 2017 launch


Clickthroughs from LA Original product pages to maker’s shopping cart

It was an absolute honor to build this website. The team at 72 and Sunny created a beautiful brand and logo, so I had one heck of a head start with design. And a lot to live up to! Creating a website worthy of the brand was a massive undertaking with its share of challenges. Addressing and overcoming each hurdle took a lot of planning and strategizing so the end product would work for the launch as well as in the future.

Creating an online shop

The LA Original website needed to be a hub that highlights the diversity of creators within the city, as well as a marketplace for their products. An online shop is the obvious solution, but there are a lot of options out there. A lot of time went into exactly what the website would need to accomplish and what experience users have as they move through it.

Once we had our user flow nailed down, I did a case study on our options and the pros and cons of each. With all of this information, we decided to build the website using Shopify since that platform would fill our immediate needs and be able to grow with the program.

Handling the Shopping Cart

One of the biggest hurdles was how the shopping cart would be handled. Since LA Original is government adjacent, we would be unable to actually process payments through the website (because of tax reasons). A typical marketplace wouldn’t work. So we had to make the tough decision to direct users to the maker’s websites to process payments. There was a substantial amount of custom coding involved to make this a seamless process, especially for products that have multiple variations.

Instead of a traditional shopping cart, I integrated a wishlist so users could shop around the website and have all of their desired items organized in one place.

Custom Maker Profiles

Another custom area of the website that needed to be built was for the maker profiles. I created a template and integrated custom fields, so all of the content could be easily managed and updated.

This was one of the most intense websites I’ve worked on to date, but it was also one of the most rewarding. Being able to build a home for such a gorgeous brand was truly an honor!

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