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Back in August we announced the first ever Shopify Design Awards.

The goal was to celebrate the talented designers that create and customize themes for the Shopify platform and showcase the best ecommerce sites that display exceptional design, creativity, and usability.

In order to participate, designers were required to submit a screenshot of a live and working ecommerce site that they had designed and created. In addition to becoming a featured Shopify Expert, prizes for the competition include a $5,000 Apple gift card for the winner and $500 Apple gift cards for the two runners-up. 

Watch this video featuring the winner, Out of the Sandbox's design for Whipping Post:

The Judges

When we were creating the Design Awards, we knew we needed an expert panel of judges to go through the submissions and pick the best of the best. Here they are:

Tina Roth Eisenberg @swissmiss

Tina Roth Eisenberg is a graphic designer and creator of the popular design blog swissmiss. She has established numerous startups including TeuxDeuxCreative MorningsStudio Mates, and the Shopify store Tattly.


Jeffrey Zeldman | @zeldman

Designer, author and publisher. Founder of A List Apart magazine and Happy Cog. Jeffrey is also co-founder of the An Event Apart design conference and is the first inductee of the SXSW Interactive Hall of Fame.



Daniel Weinand@daneilweinand

Shopify's very own Chief Design Officer, Daniel is responsible for managing the design team, its good looks, as well as UI and UX design. He is passionate about design, photography and composing music.


The Winners

To determine the winners our judges took into account the overall aesthetics, creativity and usability of each site. Without further ado, here they are:

Winner: Whipping Post

Website: http://www.whippingpost.com
Designer: Out of the Sandbox

Tina: Whipping Post is a beauty of an ecommerce store: a clean, well balanced site, beautifully echoing the design of their products. The Whipping Post site feels thoughtful and intentional: Strong photography, tasteful typography, appropriate white space, as well a beautifully balanced color palette. An e-commerce site should first and foremost celebrate and elevate the products, Whipping Post does that.


1st Runner-Up: Greats Brand

Website: http://greatsbrand.com
Designer: Wondersauce

Daniel: GREATS shows off big images in a catalog grid style fashion. The crisp photography gives me a good sense of the texture and quality. I am immediately drawn in, clicking through handsome footwear, only to see it all beautifully deconstructed on a very focussed product page. GREATS delivers a very well designed & tangible experience (try rotating the shoes).


2nd Runner-up: Goodwin + Goodwin

Website: http://www.goodwinandgoodwin.com>
Designer: Goodwin Studio

Jeffrey: When your product epitomizes beauty and elegance of design, your website and shopping cart had better demonstrate those same virtues. Designers and design fans will be scrutinizing every pixel, ready to pounce on the smallest imperfection. Fortunately, the browsing and shopping experience at Goodwin + Goodwin's website lives up to the high bar set by the company's product line. The photography is exquisite; the hierarchy's clear; the type has been well considered, from the home page, through the category and detail pages, right into the shopping cart. The color palette is neat and warm; and the responsiveness of the layout, if not ground-breaking, is cleanly and elegantly done. The home pages and landing pages could stand a bit more copy, but what's there is choice. A beautiful site. And an effective one. I got lost shopping when I was supposed to be judging.

Congratulations to all our winners!

Honorable Mentions

We received so many amazing submissions that it was impossible for us not to showcase some of them. Here are 10 'honorable mentions' that we think look great. As a special bonus, we've decided to award these designers with $250 Apple gift cards. 

Website: PureFix Cycles
Designer: Shopaholla


Website: Jennifer Torosian
Designer: By Association Only


Website: Society Clothing
Designer: Kenny Rosenberg


Website: The Ghostly Store
Designer: Daniel Hunninghake


Website: Sanctuary T Shop
Designer: Barrel

 


Website: The Horse
Designer: Paul Hanna


Website: Mr Parker
Designer: Underground Media


Website: Rare Device
Designer: Aeolidia


Website: Belief
Designer: R&Co.


Website: REBEL8
Designer: Radiator


Thanks to everyone who participated in the first ever Shopify Design Awards. We look forward to seeing more great design work come out of the Shopify community in the future.

And if you're a merchant looking for a little help customizing your site, make sure you check out these designers as well as the rest of the Shopify Expert community.


Do you know any other examples of beautiful ecommerce websites? Let us know in the comments!