Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Did you miss me?  I certainly missed you.  As I mentioned once or twice before,  I was in New York City last week for Blogfest 2011, a fab event for design bloggers dreamed up by the folks at Kravet.   It exceeded my expectations and with the exception of a flu virus that I caught while there, it was a stellar week.

I arrived the day before the conference began to do a little shopping before checking into the Ace, our very cool home away from home.


A shopping highlight was the
Madeline Weinrib sale at ABC Carpet and Home.


We ended the day at Balthazar’s, an authentic French bistro.  We booked our reservation a month in advance and it was a good thing as every single table was occupied.  (Speaking of a good thing), you can listen to Martha’s recent interview with restaurant owner Keith McNally here where she candidly shares a wild night  spent at one of his restaurants.  

With Toronto area blog friends Amy, Dane and Vie.  Had so much fun with these girls!

Blogfest 2011 Day 1

Blogfest’s first event was a kick-off lunch hosted by House Beautiful at the Hearst building.



Via  Kate.

It was great to meet bloggers in real life who I have only tweeted with or know through reading their blogs.

Here’s a photo via Dane of Abby meeting Kimberly.  Making connections was the icing on the cake during Blogfest.

Beth Greene, VP Marketing and Communications for Kravet (far right) moderated a panel discussion with the Editors in Chief of (from left to right), Town and Country (Mark Rozzo), House Beautiful (Newell Turner) and Veranda (Dara Caponigro.)  Some takeaways:

Newell:  bloggers are like beat reporters of the past; like when bloggers talk about things happening locally; blogs are becoming increasingly influential; edit, edit edit!
Dara:  inspired by travel and books; as a blogger, be true to yourself and have a point of view.
All:  credit photographs using only photos with watermarks or mentioning the source.

Two other panel discussions were with the Veranda editors and the House Beautiful editors providing an peek into what goes in to producing a successful shelter magazine. As I have been a magazine addict for years (and have about 1000 magazines that I can’t part with – don’t judge), I found the panel discussions informative and inspiring.

Next up, we were treated to a champagne reception hosted by Town and Country.  So fascinating to hear  the charismatic Mark Rozzo talk about the magazine’s beginnings.  Who knew a leisure jacket could be so hip?


Canadian design bloggers (a few were missing) with Jennifer Powell (3rd from left), Kravet’s Social Media Expert and a key person (along with Beth Greene) in organizing the 3-day event.

We were then transported to the Elle Decor Modern Life Concept House where 10 “Designers to Watch” created spaces using leading brands. You can watch a short video of the house here.

A highlight for me was meeting designer Sara Story (photo on left) who designed the study using furniture from the New Traditionalists.   I also had a chance to chat with Janell, a blogger who I have long admired and who recently launched the online mag House of Fifty. (Thanks Nyla and Amy for the photos.)

A party organized by Amy and Jonathan of Design TV tweetchat in partnership with Joss & Main ended the day. I didn’t take any photos of the event as I was too busy meeting and chatting with the other bloggers.  You can see photos of the event in Amy’s post.


Me, Amy and Roslyn (Thanks Kimberly for sending the photo!)

I want to thank Geovin for sponsoring my blog and making it possible for me to attend Blogfest.  You can read my earlier post on them here.

If you need decorating assistance, please contact me at vanessa@vanessafrancis.com.


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