The conference was held in Milk Studios, in downtown Manhattan. It was absolutely pouring when I first arrived, and was supremely grateful that I choose to wear pants and a vintage sequined jacket. Oh - leather pants, y'all.
While waiting outside Milk to be let into the conference, I ran into Katy of Modly Chic and Marissa of The Well-Appointed Catwalk, two people I really wanted to meet in person. They were as lovely as they are on their blogs. Oh...and I also saw Justin Timberlake. Well, I caught a glimpse of his back as he headed into Milk. But it was totally him. I swear.
Once we were let in, volunteers gave us name tags and swag bags filled with products, including cosmetics from Urban Decay, a mini straightening iron, Butter nail polish, hair products from KMS, and Luna bars. The space was filled with bloggers, photographers, and representatives from Magnum Ice Cream and KMS. There was also a gigantic installation featuring Missoni for Target that bordered on creepy. Conference attendees were offered free hair touch-ups and Minx manicures, along with free ice cream from Magnum. Which I promptly ate for breakfast.
Once we all got settled, the conference began with an introduction from Jennine, founder and president of IFB. I have to admit that I was a bit distracted by all the fantastic fashion in the space. I was struck by how individual everyone's personal style was. The variety of outfits and accessories were wide - I saw everything from sleek, modern pieces to ornate vintage attire; from floor-sweeping maxi skirts to skinny pants and shorts. It was like being in the pages of some fabulous fashion magazine.
While sitting in the audience, I mingled with Grechen of Grechen's Closet (whom I spent most of my trip with...love her), Wendy Brandes, Anika of By Anika, Bella of The Citizen Rosebud, and Jill of Everything Just So, my NYC soul sister. I was also thrilled to meet Sammy of Sammy Davis Vintage, who was as fun and spunky as I'd imagined she'd be.
|Bella and Jill|
|The beautiful Wendy Brandes|
|Sammy, ready to film a segment on indulgences for Magnum. Check out that gorgeous vintage jumpsuit!|
At ten, the panels started. It was kind of thrilling to sit in the audience and hear bloggers speak on topics ranging from monetizing your blog, advice on developing strong content, thoughts on how to create a strong social media presence, and their personal experience of balancing a career with blogging.
|On the Balancing Act panel: Natalie Suarez, Natalie off Duty; Annie Tomlin, BellaSugar; Aimee Song, Song of Style; Kristina Medhus, Pretty Shiny Sparkly • Ari Goldberg, StyleCaster; Coco Rocha, Oh So Coco. |
|The Man Repeller herself, Leandra Medine|
|Jennine, introducing the first panel|
In between panels, we mingled, took photos, talked to the panelists, ate more ice cream and took notes. At six, the conference was over, and we poured back out onto the sidewalk and into the rain. It was a long day, and my head was swimming a little by the end, but I was so happy I was there.
Attending the conference made it possible for me not only to learn more about blogging, and consider the possibilities of monetizing my blog and developing a stronger social media presence, but also provided the opportunity for me to meet bloggers I have long admired and consider role models. I was impressed with how polite, grounded and humble the panelists were, and how approachable everyone was. Huge thanks to IFB for putting together such a fantastic day!