I'm writing this 30,000 feet up in the air, because I think it's important to talk about this experience before the euphoric memories are further in the distance. My overall feeling about DBC is that anyone who is a blogger should go to this. Although the conference speakers are from the design business, the blogging tips and tricks are relevant to all bloggers. Since this is my second year, I can't confidently say that this is my annual resurgence for blogging. Lets dig deeper into who I heard from (that really resonated with me) and what my key blogging takeaways were!
The Power Of Saying Hello At A Interior Design Conference
This was my first year flying solo at the blogging conference. I'm not going to lie, I thought it wouldn't be as fun... But I was mistaken! When you go to an event with a coworker or friend, they're your security blanket, but when you attend something like this alone, you're pushed outside of your comfort zone (in a good way)! I made it my mission to say hi and reconnect with familiar faces, but also to connect with unfamiliar ones too. Boy did it work. I met very successful, respected and well traveled bloggers/designers, but I also met the "newbies" who were equally inspiring and provided a lot of learning lessons.
Hunky And Successful High-End Interior Designers
Timothy Corrigan and Jeffrey Alan Marks are very talented, high-end designers that have brilliant stories. Since I'm not a designer and have a business background I found that Timothy's branding session was incredible, relevant and spot on... I mean he was SVP of an advertising agency at the ripe age of 30, which allowed him to position himself in the upper echelon of the design world. The both of them followed their passions in unique ways, sought other business ventures that helped enrich their design experience and continue pushing their careers to the limit. I learned to be smart about your branding, because that's what will set you apart.
The Best And Largest European Antiques Touring And Buying Services Company
Going back to my original comment about saying hi to people... without knowing how incredibly successful Toma Clark Haines, The Antiques Diva was, I bonded with her the first day. She was in a sassy leopard print dress that made her stand out. We chatted a little but she had a special something about her that drew me to her. It was until she took the stage that I was really able to hear her story. She went from a little dreamer that wanted to travel (I can relate) from Oklahoma who didnt draw your typical kindergarten house when she was asked to draw a house. unlike the other kiddos, she drew a palace from some far away country. From that moment on she followed where life took her. Fast forward lots of her life, she landed herself in Paris shopping the antiques market while her husband worked in Paris (it wasn't her choice, but France only granted her and her husband one working visa!). First, she shopped for herself (until the money and space ran out), to her friends (until the money and space ran out), to her friends' friends, etc. Her success was directly attributed to her blog, because she chronicled her journey and passion as she found her ways through Europe's windy roads and stores. Now she owns the largest guided antiques tour company in Europe! Her life lesson she taught me was to say yes!
Candice Olson The Fabulous HGTV Star Is A Great Hugger
I fell in love when she ran down the isle of the dimly lit conference room with heels and a coffee mug in hand. I like people who aren't always "on" if you know what I mean. She was raw, wasn't looking for acceptance but in a way that wasn't the "I'm better than all of you" attitude. Her time talking was too short in my opinion, but she was able to teach me something that I think is important for all bloggers and designers...Show the ugly and the pretty! Before and after shots actually underscore your fabulous work. Many designers just want to show the pretty, but audiences want to see the transformations. Candice, your warm embrace was real and equally as fab as you!
La Dolce Vita + Many More Tell You To Find Your Niche And Stick With It
Find your niche and stick with it. As a business lady, I remember the days when I wanted to provide some commodity that EVERYONE would want... As I continue maturing in my career and life, it's become clearer and clearer that you can't be everything (or something) to everyone. Find your passion and your niche. Live it and your fans will follow!
I could write fabulous things about everyone I met and heard from but space is limited. In the end, be authentic, transparent and passionate and your followers will follow!
If you ever have a chance to attend the Design Bloggers Conference, don't miss out on it. They do offer scholarships in case price is a factor. Straight from the lips of several bloggers and designers, they say the conference is the "meatiest" of all conferences, and I couldn't agree more!
Yours in sharing my passion, Elena