If you are not sure what Haven is, it is where I went last week – the first ever DIY themed blog conference. It was held in Atlanta and I saved up my pennies to make sure I could attend. I am sure glad I did!
It was 2 1/2 days packed with educational sessions, food, friendship, and fun. It was inspiring receiving everyone’s colorful and creative business cards and finding faces come to life that I had previously only seen on a computer screen.
I learned a lot of new tips about blogging and will surely be implementing them, but what was more interesting and meaningful for me was making a real connection and bond with so many woman and a few men that I have only known online up until now. It was a hotel full of kindred spirits with the same fuel and passion that I have. Everyone just clicked – like we had known each other for years.
I saw many of the bloggers I had met at previous events and hung out with them a bit, but since the conference was about meeting new people, I set out to do just that. Everywhere I went or sat – I felt like I already knew the person – everyone was smiling, laughing, learning, and having fun.
I shared a room with Jessica from Décor Adventures.
She was so much fun –we were like two college roommates staying up too late into the night gabbing about everything. If you have never been to her blog, wait to you see what she made using a wire cage style hanging planter and wax paper.
One very modern chandelier!!!
I had met a few of the Haven team at previous events, but had never met Kevin and Layla Palmer from The Lettered Cottage. They taught a session on Photography and Styling. Layla was like a rock star – so gracious posing and smiling with everyone who wanted a photo with her.
I came home with lots SWAG – paintbrushes, Frog Tape, 3M Products, Stylish Tote Bags are only a few of the items I can think of off the top of my head. I even won a quart of Chalk Paint at the Annie Sloan booth, but my suitcase was filled and it weighed too much so I gave it to Kari Anne over at ThistleWood Farm who didn’t have to get on a plane to go home.
Here is Carrie who I flew down to the conference with trying her luck to win a quart of Annie Sloan chalk paint.
I didn’t get a chance to take many photos as I was too busy meeting and chatting with everyone.
Kari Anne from ThistleWood Farm took this Instagram photo of me. I was sitting in the row in front of her during the PR session and while we were waiting for the session to start she saw my phone and liked the cover and wanted me to pose with it. She is a hoot! When we got to talking and she told me who she was I was thrilled that I had turned around. I have been reading her blog since she linked up a post to a party I had. She was so full of happy positive energy.
I love her writing style and her kitchen, and now I love her!
The session rooms and rows were packed and it wasn’t easy to turn in my seat, but I as I said above I was so happy I did during that session – sitting right next to Kari Anne was Kristin Jackson from The Hunted Interior. I found her blog a few months ago. She made the Live Edge table with the ice bucket insert after the glass in her outdoor table got smashed to smithereens after a storm. You can see the post here: DIY Live Edge Table She does super affordable high end looks really well!
I felt as if it were meant to be… two bloggers I had wanted to meet right next to each other. The session started soon after that and I didn’t get to talk to either one of them again until the following day.
I met so many other bloggers and didn’t get enough time to spend with bloggers that I already knew. There just wasn’t enough time to do it all.
The conference was a complete success and I know that everyone in attendance loved the experience and will be eager to go back next year.
The Haven team did one remarkable job getting this conference together. I can only imagine how great the next one will be. A big shout out to Rhoda from Southern Hospitality for coordinating it.
To read more recaps of the conference click on over Rhoda’s blog – Southern Hospitality where she has a link up of recap posts.
I haven’t even unpacked my suitcase from Haven and I am in Michigan now for another conference and will be back on Thursday.
Till then I have a few more giveaways for you and will be back to my regular posting schedule on Monday.