Friday, August 30, 2013

Baby's First Blogging Conference: 2013 Texas Style Council

Texas Style Council was honestly one of the best weekends of my life. The support and positive, open environment was totally unanticipated and also so incredibly welcome.

The easiest way to describe the weekend will be in pictures, so let me show you the experience I had!

#TXSC13Little #txsc13 details - love this new @lulus necklace I won last night (thanks!) and the details on this blouse. The icons on my badge mean: I'm from Texas, oh deer I'm shy, I'm a cat lover, and this is my first TX Style Council!

This year, Texas Style Council's theme was Back to School. It was my first time attending, so I can't say how it differed, but I really enjoyed the classroom-style sessions and workshops, and to top it all off, the big formal event was prom-themed (but like, way better and nicer and less catty than your prom probably was). 

The classrooms overlooked the Austin skyline. I love my city and I'm so proud that I'm finally living here, so of course being able to look outside and see downtown was a huge plus!

I appreciated the neat nametags we got, too -- the icons on mine mean I'm a Texan, (Oh Deer!) I'm shy, I'm a cat lover, and this was my first time attending TXSC!

Dropping stuff off to swap at @lulus! So excited for the swap #lulustxsc13 #txsc13

The first event on Friday night was a happy hour chat and then the swap meet at Lulu's. I agonized over what to bring since they told us ahead of time our name and blog URL would be listed on it -- eek! I wound up bringing a ModCloth dress, J. Crew thrifted cardigan, and The China Study. All loved, but not used as much as they should be. I wound up scoring a brand-new Lulu*s dress, a Dear Creatures dress from Tieka (!), and The Four Agreements from Bloomers & Frocks. I love all my finds!

Necklace: The Limited | Top: H&M (Similar)
Skirt: ModCloth  (use this for $15 off your first purchase) | Shoes: DSW | Bag: Forever 21

I was finally able to meet Amanda of Dragonflight Dreams in person, and I met Jessie from Altar'd State at the conference! For Friday I kept it pretty casual because I had to go to work before the conference, plus I knew I'd be standing most of the night! I love this new skirt from ModCloth. It's a little longer than I usually go for and I look like a total Longhorn fan, but it's been really versatile so far!

#TXSC13 #TXSC13 #TXSC13 

The classes themselves were phenomenal. It was so inspiring to hear bloggers I've known and loved for years discuss their tips, tricks, challenges, fears, and experiences. Seeing people you follow online in real life is a little bizarre, but in the best way possible. For the first time, you are seeing them as a complete person, not just in text and images. It's so funny to hear people you follow speak in person, or observe their little mannerisms that make them who they are. I was awe-struck at how nice even the biggest big bloggers were. And the best thing was, everyone I followed online prior to the conference seemed totally genuine in real life. I only wish I could have attended every single session!

Learning embroidery with Lindsay at @Kollaborra! Thanks so much, super fun #DIY! #txsc13I made a pair and a half of earrings at @manictrout's class :) #txsc13
DIY workshops with Kollabora and Manic Trout.

Scarf styling 101 with #shopluxe7 ♡ thanks for the scarf guys!  #txsc13 Such a cute setup at the #crownedbird booth! #txsc13 Love these #stelladotstyle cuffs, especially the arrow one! #txsc13 @whitneycf  (and how cool is my temporary tat?!) Having fun at the #lulustxsc13 photo booth! I love hashtags! #ootd
Shout outs to: Luxe no. 7, Crowned Bird, Stella & Dot, Squarespace and Lulu*s!
No photos yet,but I also loved Ruche's booth and gifts!

Prom was way more fun than anticipated! I'd never been big into school dances or anything, and my actual prom was, um, three years ago, so I wasn't really hyped up for it. I wore this same outfit from a while ago, but with my hair in a sassy side bun with a pearl headband. I really enjoyed meeting people in a casual setting, talking with different brands, bloggers, and small businesses, and entering all the fun Instagram contests! I actually won a prize from both Lulu*s and Crowned Bird, a local business here -- I never win anything, so I was totally shocked! I got a giftcard from Lulu's and a dress from Crowned Bird and I can't wait to share with you all.

Top: H&M (Similar) | Necklace: c/o Lulu*s (Similar) | Skirt: H&M
Bag: Betseyville | Shoes: Urban Outfitters
So excited for the @elsiecake and @emmaredvelvet keynote! :) #txsc13Got over my shyness temporarily to meet @emmaredvelvet and @elsiecake! The Android version of the A Beautiful Mess app is coming and they liked my tiger shoes! ♡ #TXSC13

Sunday was full of more workshops and panels. The keynote speakers were the girls from A Beautiful Mess, one of the largest and most innovative blogs out there. I constantly marvel at how creative Elsie and Emma are, and hearing them speak was a pleasure! I conquered my shyness to go up to them after they spoke, and I'm so glad I did. Of course they were super kind and I was worried for no reason, but it's pretty intimidating to speak to people you have loved for years online!

Goodbye, #TXSC13! I love my city.  #ATX

This year's Style Council was everything I'd hoped for and more. I learned lots and came up with brilliant ideas, had the privilege of meeting lots of inspiring women, and best of all, came away with an all-new desire to connect with other lady bloggers.

Have you ever met an online community or friend in real life? How did it go?

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