Katarina Blind


This project was part of a studio course. I had access to teachers for project tutoring and different workshop spaces.


3 months (Jan - Apr 2022)


None, workshop masters and course teachers for assistance


FigJam, Figma, Fusion 360, hot wire cutter, laser cutter


Research, design thinking, visual design, content strategy, digital and physical prototyping


Time frame: 3 months (Jan - Apr 2022)

Team: None, workshop masters and course teachers for assistance

Tools: FigJam, Figma, Fusion 360, hot wire cutter, laser cutter

Responsibilities: Research, design thinking, visual design, content strategy, digital and physical prototyping


Crypto is technical, complex and dominated by risk averse young users with an accumulation of prerequisite knowledge.

There is a lack of guidance for initial, non-technical users which creates a generational disconnect in financial literacy, which is the foundation of modern financial opportunities.


I created a web based onboarding guide to use the Kovan test network as a risk free learning environment. This was also supported by educational content curation for crypto.

I also paired the digital experience with physical prototypes to introduce users to necessary hardware without bigger financial commitment.

Key learnings
  • Designing and copywriting for trust

  • Breaking down a complex problem

  • Connecting digital and physical experiences


Besides desk research to understand the field (interesting podcast episode), I interviewed a backend engineer at a DeFi exchange about technical restrictions of the Kovan test network.

I also talked to target users: non-technical, mostly middle aged with no prior use of cryptocurrencies. This especially helped me understand their more emotional perspective.

Key insights

From my user interviews I found out that they didn't know what to expect or where to start. They were also aware of financial risks.

Using my main insights, I established design values I referenced throughout my design process.

  • Trust: establishing a safe learning environment for better outcomes

  • Financial literacy: helping users understand crypto better to eventually confidently make their own decisions

  • Intuitive complexity: breaking down the big topic without removing its necessary complexity

Project breakdown

It was very important to me to create a cohesive project and consider the intersection of digital and physical experiences.

Each of these elements has a specific purpose that contributes to the entire experience.

  • Product design: actual step-by-step crypto/Kovan onboarding guide

  • Marketing design: working around negative connotations and highlighting the opportunities of understanding crypto

  • Educational design: guiding user how to get started while letting them work at their own pace and within specific interests

  • Industrial design: helping users understand crypto hardware (hardware wallet and cold storage backup) without spending a lot of money upfront

To simplify this project, I will be focusing on the onboarding guide (product design).

User flow

I created an extensive user flow which included channels, user's emotions and context. This helped to be aware of my progress and the user's experience.

Based on this strucutre, I created wireframes and started experimenting with visuals and interactions that would positively support the experience.

I really focused on the design values by creating an intentional, step-by-step learning environment.

Content strategy

Since I'm not a crypto expert, I focused on curating content (e.g. from Coinbase) and reformatting it into a more intuitive learning experience.

While I was finalizing the designs, I also adjusted copy based on the project's design values. This slowed down the actual design quite a bit but was crucial for a cohesive outcome.


I created a low-fidelity prototype to give a better overview of the product and interactions. I wanted to make it more responsive and showcase advanced interactions but couldn't make it within the very tight deadline.

Further development

Since this was a design-focussed project there is no implementation as of now. I also didn't have enough time to usertest due to tight deadlines.

I'd love to continue with this project but only see value in it if I can collaborate with someone who can build it.

Measuring success

By adding a feedback loop I could research how user's attitude towards crypto has changed after using the product.

  • How many users actually proceed to use crypto?

  • Do they feel more informed and educated?

To gain a deeper understanding of how the product is used, it'd be very interesting to observe how users go through the flow - especially since digesting educational content can take some time.