If you’ve never been to the TCF Style Expo, you may not want to miss the next one because this year was definitely one for the books!
I arrived at the Omni Hotel on Friday morning with just enough time to iron my dress, shower and beat my face. I was out the door to the different festivities of the day. First up was lunch (forgot to take a pic), we feasted on baked chicken with a sun-dried tomato puree that included peppers, onions, spinach, and wild rice; a wedge salad with all the fixings including cucumber, bacon, blue cheese, and tomato. For dessert, we had cheesecake covered in a peach glaze. OMG! You’ll it was the bomb! And to wash it all down they served the best sweet tea that I’ve ever had. Since I was mainly at the event to help out where needed I didn’t participate in the blogging mastermind class. I popped in and out to take pics and do insta stories for the TCF Style IG page. But, what I did get a chance to hear was very informative.
Me & my roommate Pepper Martin of Pretty Plus Pep
Me and Alysse Dalessandro of Ready to Stare
Marie Denee, as well as others including Media Vine, spoke about how to gain revenue for your blog, the best platforms to use, driving traffic to your site, and more. I’m hoping to get the workbook from the class to use as a guide for myself. I’m always open to learning more about the business of blogging, especially from someone like Marie who’s been in the game for years.
Me and Marie Denee of The Curvy Fashionista & Creator of the TCF Style Expo
After the mastermind class, there was a blog/brand speed dating session hosted by Mimi of the Fuller Side of Things. She taught us all how to be better at networking and being comfortable with forming the relationships needed to take our brands to the next level. My favorite part of the session was when she made everyone get out their phones and video record themselves saying, “No more missed opportunities”, a mantra (so to speak) that will stick with me forever. I don’t want to ever be in a room where I could have potentially formed a relationship that I missed the opportunity of forming due to fear or anything else.
Me & model Liris Crosse
Me & fashion designer Kenya Freeman
After the speed dating session was the blogger mixer. We sipped on root beer, orange cream soda, and snacked on caramel, butter and chocolate popcorn as we listened to music, danced and made connections with fellow bloggers. It was a great time!
Saturday morning was an early start at 7:00 am. I was exhausted. Did I mention that I flew in from Florida? Yea, I was on a separate trip before arriving to Atlanta. And although it was a vacation, I was still tired. We tried to stay up all night, every night in Florida like we (my husband and another couple) were still in high school. Chile, my body quickly reminded me that I was thirty-six. LOL! Any who, the first session of the day was the VIP blogger brunch. We ate french toast with berries, bacon, and some of the tastiest pastries I’ve ever had. Before the brunch, the hotel waiters served us mimosas with strawberries. Very fancy! During the brunch Marie hosted a panel discussion with two plus-size designers, Ashley Nell Tipton and Kenya Freeman and plus-size model Liris Crosse from Bravo’s hit show, Project Runway. If you follow me on Instagram then you were able to hear some of the discussion that took place. I cried, felt empowered, felt proud to be a minority woman! It was amazing! Like I said earlier, don’t miss out on the expo next year. It was just too good.
Me & Shainna Tucker of Thick Grls Closet
After brunch, we headed to the expo where there were vendors selling everything from lipstick, dresses, to bras, and mattresses, yes mattresses! I got a chance to catch up with so many of my blogger boos. Ones that I’ve seen before, ones that I’ve only communicated with through social media, as well as new bloggers. While the expo was going on they had a fashion show with plus-size female models, a show with plus-size male models, as well as a cosplay show including both men and women. I think it is so dope that Marie created a space for plus men to be included also.
Me & Nikki Free of Nikki Free Style
The last event of the day was the pajama party. It was LIT! And to think, I almost didn’t go. The DJ was fire. He played everything from Montell Jordan to Frankie Beverly & Maze. After the PJ party, I headed back to the room to pack and get some rest before my flight the next morning. I was a little sad that I missed the last day of the Expo, but I knew the panel discussion was what I needed to be there for.
In closing, the expo was so much fun! I’m so glad that I had the opportunity to be apart of it. If you’ve never been, you have to attend at least once. I promise you won’t regret it!