January 3, 2013

LayerVault – Manage the Design Revision Process

LayerVault is a web-app aimed squarely at working designers, giving professionals a straightforward way to save, store, and track the many revisions that a design project goes through from beginning to end. Along the way, designers can collaborate with colleagues and request feedback from clients to determine exactly which parts their designs need to be changed.

When you use LayerVault, you can stop saving design files on your desktop and move them into the cloud instead. Work on projects just as you always have, using whichever platforms you prefer. LayerVault sits quietly in the background, automatically syncing each time a new version of your file gets saved. LayerVault saves each revision each of your files, making it possible to ultimately see a timeline that shows all the incarnations your projects have undergone. LayerVault’s “wormhole” feature lets you search for specific changes to your designs, to find out where in your timeline those changes occurred. Reverting back to an older version of a design is easy once you’ve figured out where a design went wrong, which is especially useful when dealing with clients who aren’t happy with the direction a project is going.

One important aspect of LayerVault is the web-app’s team collaboration features. Users can work together with colleagues and clients, even if those colleagues and clients don’t have LayerVault accounts. Project collaborators get real-time notifications whenever the files they’re watching have been updated, while LayerVault’s “public pages” serve as an excellent tool for gathering feedback from teammates, clients, and anyone else with knowledge to share.

Practical Uses:

  • Save every version of a web design you’re working on
  • Keep clients up-to-date on the status of their projects
  • Seek feedback on a new logo you’re creating
  • Revert back to an older version of a design you’ve been working on for months

Insider Tips:

  • Activity feeds are automatically updated as a project progresses
  • Create a public page to share your design with friends
  • Highlight a spot on a design and use the Wormhole tool to find out when a change to that spot occurred
  • iOS designers can see projects on their iPads or iPhones with the iOS Closeup feature

What we liked:

  • LayerVault automatically saves every version of a design
  • People can collaborate with colleagues and clients within the application
  • The timeline feature gives users a way to search for past versions of their files
  • LayerVault offers basic design tools that people can use to make minor changes to their projects
  • Users get unlimited storage

What we didn’t like:

  • LayerVault was built exclusively for Apple OS X, and a Windows version of the app isn’t yet available


  • None

Company Info:

  • Launched: October 2011
  • Privately Held
  • Headquarters: New York, New York
  • Founded by: Allan Grinshtein and Kelly Sutton
  • Web site:


  • Freelancer plan is $19/month
  • Small Team plan is $59/month
  • Big Team plan is $199/month

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