Consulting & Freelance Portfolio

Small Ecommerce Website


McStuffies, PhD is a crafter who sells their handmade items at craft fairs and online. Their main offerings are crochet stuffed animals and dolls, but more recently they’ve branched out into buttons, stickers, and other custom designed items.

The client had been using Square for both payments and an online storefront, but was dissatisfied with aspects of the inventory management and tagging offered by that platform. They purchased a domain and hosting for a WordPress/WooCommerce site and hired me to help them migrate to the new site.

There was no budget for themes, and while I’d worked with WordPress before, this was my first experience with WooCommerce.

Before: Screenshot of Shop page


There were several tasks to complete itself:

  1. Import data from Square and troubleshoot ongoing sync issues. This was the client’s responsibility, but I offered support as needed.
  2. Adjust category/tag taxonomy to better suit client’s needs and make the site more navigable. Because the client maintains these, I did not make significant changes to the labels themselves, but created a hierarchy and made suggestions. Some categories became obsolete thanks to WooCommerce’s default features, including “Sale.”
  3. Identify and test suitable WooCommerce themes and layouts. Options were limited, but we landed on Boutique, a child theme of Storefront, due to overall layout preferences and customization options.
  4. Create custom color scheme, CSS, and assets as needed. Client had an existing logo that I was able to incorporate into a default placeholder product image and site favicon. The logo also served as the basis for the overall color scheme, its dark teal and coral red finding balance with a deep purple, earthy yellow, and pale mint.
  5. Build a new homepage to feature categories and products according to the client’s needs. For the sake of simplicity, we launched with top categories featured, but as they grow into the site, they might take advantage of functionalities like “featured products.”
  6. Migrate static informational pages and develop new features, including a basic contact form to replace a simple email link and a new events schedule. I created a simple blog post template for the client to enter craft show information and added a plugin to make copying posts easier. The calendar was embedded into the new homepage using a plugin.
  7. Take feedback from the client and testers to make adjustments to the layout, especially on mobile.
After: Screenshot of Shop page built with WooCommerce


I wanted to leave the client with a website they felt confident with, and in that, we succeeded. The new offers a cleaner layout with a pleasing color scheme that’s easy to browse on any device and easier to maintain for the client. It’s designed with a certain amount of whimsy, as appropriate for the nature of the products available, without being content-heavy, slow, or overwhelming.

The homepage includes two important features to drive sales and engagement: a display of “latest” products in popular low-price categories (stickers and buttons) and a list of upcoming craft fairs and events where visitors will find McStuffies, PhD in person. The calendar in particular gives the client and customers alike a central place to locate this information (which might otherwise be found in scattered social media posts) and promotes events within their regional community.

Having never previously set up an ecommerce site, the whole project was a great learning experience, especially in terms of problem-solving when it came to technical and display issues. We weren’t building something from scratch or reinventing the wheel, just trying to make the client’s life easier and better present their work within constraints. It’s also given me a few things to better incorporate in future projects at an earlier stage, such as improving content for accessibility and a stronger focus on the mobile experience.

Consulting & Freelance Portfolio

Queer Silicon Valley: LGBTQ+ History Digital Exhibit

Freelance project working with a small team to organize an online history website about area queer communities over the last 50 years.

Screenshot of homepage homepage shows some of the 17 topical categories offered.

I was hired as an independent contractor to support the development and launch of a local history website. Originally intended as an in-person exhibit,, a website documenting the history and culture of LGBTQ+ communities in and around Santa Clara County, California, was developed and launched in the summer and fall of 2020. Ken Yeager, BAYMEC Community Foundation’s Executive Director, spearheaded the effort and hired a small team of SJSU students to assist. Yeager’s “garage full of stuff” and a shared Google Drive was nowhere near exhibit-ready when we started. My role included project coordination, content wrangling, and helping set up the website.

Planning and communication via email alone quickly became untenable. During the early task breakdown phase, my teammates and I used a project management tool to assign and prioritize actions and research, but without the buy-in of our lead, the tool was abandoned to more lightweight methods. Part of the problem was that our lead would routinely communicate different requests and concerns to individual team members. To ensure the team was communicating those updates with each other, we established a private group chat, and I maintained a list of tasks related to whatever piece(s) of the project were active at a given time, along with who was responsible for them. I would also send an email as needed with this list as a status update. Team rapport was built via chat and Zoom meetings and was critical not only to our success, but social support during a sometimes-difficult process.

Each element of the project had its own tasking system, usually in Google Sheets, for managing notes, metadata, and status. This process became even more critical once the project hired a developer to build a custom WordPress site for us, meaning we had very specific content structure requirements to meet, as well as a needing a central place to note, report, and manage bugs and requests.

Throughout the project, I advocated for language and content changes to ensure the site was as inclusive as possible, such as including a content warning before stories involving violence (approved). I also helped the team learn some of the tech tools we used by creating a WordPress tips and tricks document and personally training our lead on how to navigate the site’s admin tools. I created a style guide, worked with our website developer to take ownership of several front-end display issues and fixes, and supported outreach and marketing efforts by creating slides, a media coverage page, and a ‘social sharing’ category. I did not stick to the letter of the project brief–if such a brief ever existed–and routinely offered suggestions and found ways to make things work.

Although I have not been actively involved the website management since December 2020, I know that new content being added has a clear place and format thanks to my efforts, and the team is empowered to carry out the work. Furthermore, the organizational systems I helped put in place set Ken Yeager and the History San Jose team up for success with an in-person exhibit opening mid-2021. It was by no means a perfect process–what is?–but having access to a variety of management theories and ideas meant I had ample tools to deploy as needed to keep things moving. website/online exhibit

Consulting & Freelance Food Blog

Cooking with Spade & Plow!

When COVID-19 hit, we signed up for the CSA of one of our favorite Campbell market vendors, Spade & Plow in San Martin, Calif. And they asked me to do a guest post on their blog in exchange for some really beautiful extra veggies they wanted to highlight: spring shallots, radicchio, squash blossoms, and summer squash. I really enjoyed it, and you can read about it here: