You may have remembered me mentioning that I was heading down to Exeter for a weekend, or more specifically, for the South West Blog Social. Juggling a strange mixture of nerves and excitement, I boarded my train from Waterloo and headed into the unknown.
Because not only was this my first big blogging event (and my second one ever), it was also when I would finally get the chance to meet Jodie. As founder of Britfashblogs she is actually my boss but I would also like to think of her as my friend, especially after spending such a lovely weekend with her, when she somehow found time to play host while throwing such an amazing event. I don’t know how she does it all!
Between Jodie and Albertine of Dippy Writes, they had organised a jam packed day, even including four talks from women in particular fields. I only managed to make it to two: Maria McCarthy’s ‘Getting Published’ and Ruth Douglas on finding your blogging voice. However, I was told that the other two (by Jessica Debrah and Emma Coles) were brilliant as well, which caused me slight pangs of jealousy. I picked up some really useful advice that I couldn’t wait to try as soon as I got the chance, especially about getting work printed in magazines and book publication.
Once I had excited my brain cells, it was time to let somebody fix my appearance so I took full advantage of the hair and make-up artists on hand. Sometimes it is nice to be pampered and trust someone else with your face and locks, especially when they were as talented as the team from Elk Salon and the lovely Liz, who shared plenty of her tips and tricks with me as she contoured and mascara-d her way around my face. There was also a nail station where some lovely nail art was being done by Rachel from Monkey Nail Art but I didn’t get a chance to ask her to jazz up what was left of my nails (yes mum, I know I should stop biting them already).
Lots of smaller independent brands were also involved on the day which allowed me to see some of my Exeter – though my mini tour, was still nowhere near enough to see as much as I wanted to. Our goodie bags included vouchers for a necklace from Erin Cox which was absolutely beautiful. I haven’t had a chance to wear it yet but I can’t wait. I love delicate jewellery like this.
I also made it to the Real McCoy, which is somewhere I would have loved to spend some more time at. It is a vintage store but with the cutest little cafe attached. If I had had a bit more time, I’m sure I could have lost many an hour in there. I guess I’ll just force myself to go back and spend all my money. I did pick up an adorable polka dot scarf that I couldn’t resist wearing on my way back to London the next day.
It was lovely to meet so many bloggers, although I did get a little star-struck when I got to say hello to people whose blogs I have been reading for ages. For a ‘baby blogger’ like me, their successes are so inspirational (and far away) for me. If you are reading this after meeting me at the social, I’m glad to see you didn’t get scared away by bumbling attempts at socialisation…I also got to finally meet Vicky and we got to chat about exciting BritFashBlogs plans so watch out for what is coming next.
We rounded off a lovely day with a raffle and goodie bags, which were the best I have ever seen.
They looked even better on the inside, containing three full size Yves Rocher products, So! perfume, biscuits and so many samples of wonderful products. I am so excited to try these when I actually get home. I made even delve into the realms of beauty blogging as I am so excited to share them with you.
After such a fun (and long) day, all that was left to do was finally take of my shoes, which though pretty hurt something horrid by the end of the day. Jodie also made me the most amazing dinner (I told you she was Wonder Woman) before we opened a bottle of wine and collapsed onto the sofa.
The only problem was that my train was far too early the next morning; I would have loved a lie in!
Thank you #swblogsocial ! You were real good to me and I can’t wait to see you again soon,