4 stellar reasons to attend a blogger event

Tis the season to wear a new dress and drink lots of wine! Hurrah! In the spirit of all things festive, I was lucky enough to be invited to the “Bon Prix on the Rocks” event this November. The event was to launch the sparkling new Bon Prix line of Christmas cocktail dresses.

It was a massive hit with more than 30 bloggers getting dolled up in their new Bon Prix finery, over at Malmaison in Leeds. The alcohol was flowing from the get go, delicious canapes were shared and funny props provided more laughs. We had such a good time! A particular highlight was the cocktail making class, hosted by a lone (very brave) male bar tender. I think he left feeling a little shaken, not stirred himself…

Blogger events and meet ups have evolved to be so much more than just networking. (Sorry other brands, but inviting bloggers to ‘learn about your product’ is simply not enough). You must leave an event feeling like you got something out of it and it hasn’t been a waste of time, and I don’t mean branded product.   As well as a lovely evening, what struck me was just how much we all embraced and encouraged each other’s diversity. From food to travel blogs, we were all as different as the dresses we wore.

Over the years I have been genuinely touched by some of the stories shared on blogs, not all are happy and it always amazes me to see how kind our blogging community is online. I can’t speak for everyone, but I have seen some lovely words exchanged between Yorkshire bloggers online, including some on the pictures shared after this event.

Here’s 4 stellar reasons why you should make it your mission to attend an event next year.

 

 

Blogger Events: A chance to connect and encourage

  1. Put faces to the twitter handles and get known

    Social media is great, but sometimes you just really want to put a face to the handle. Events are a great way to do this, to get known and make new connections. Often bloggers turn up often not knowing anyone else, but it’s clear you are always welcome

  2. A place to share ideas

    One bloggers success is inspiration for another. Content created on blogs is often centred around sharing tips and ideas, events are a great place to do this  as well as encourage each other to make extraordinary accomplishments of our own

  3. A support network: We’re women who stand together

    Especially when things are tough. Many blogger connections are made through a shared common challenge; from anxiety and break ups to long term illness. Events can be a place to catch up, see how someone is doing and share support. Guys are of course welcome too 🙂

  4. See each others individual beauty

    Rather than be critical of other women and our own style, bloggers at events compliment. This was apparent just by listening to everyone complimenting each other’s dress choice at this event and how they rocked it in their own way. As long as the event isn’t very small or niche, it’s likely everyone will be very different. Meeting other personalities outside your usual group of friends means you may meet people you never thought you would, but you may well be grateful you did!

THANKS SEARCH LABS FOR MAKING IT HAPPEN!

CX1A7508

CX1A8161

CX1A8114

CX1A8250

Party Fashion | A vintage style Bon Prix Little black dress

Let’s not forget the clothes! It is party season and this is predominantly a vintage fashion blog after all. I wore a vintage look-a-like dreamy lace dress. It was cheekily short and had angel sleeves that would make Stevie Nicks proud. Here’s the full range of budget Bon Prix party dresses for your purse’s enjoyment.

Black party vintage style dress
Black crocheted party dress with fringed waistcoat

 

Hold on a sec…Are you a Yorkshire Blogger?

If this has whet your whistle and you want to join a small piece of the Yorkshire Blogging community,  join our Yorkshire Bloggers social meet ups by dropping me a tweet or email. Everyone welcome! Here’s some previous meet ups.

#ad disclaimer: Dress gifted. All opinions are my own

All Bon Prix Event Photos: Matt at Search Laborarory

Continue Reading

Yorkshire ‘s Himalayan garden and best parks

“I saw old Autumn in the misty morn. Stand, shadowless like Silence, listening
To Silence.”–   Thomas Hood

IMG_5419

The worn Dandelion clocks signaled the end of summer a long time ago, yet at this time of year everything still seems so full of life. Brown, yellow and gold leaves fall one by one as the wind rocks through the trees. It’s the colours that make Autumn one of my favourite times of year, everything takes on a deep orange hue, and I believe there is no better colour than this. Wild and untamed; Yorkshire’s countryside offers so many places to wander about and shake off the daily grind. We regularly visit the forests and parks nearby, strolling round, often staying a while on the benches to just sit and stare at the beauty around us. Time seems to stop and much nothing matters at that moment in time.

Though, I admit, it’s a challenge to get me out the door on a Sunday morning, but fueled by copious amounts of coffee and a bacon buttie I’m usually good to go.

Here’s two of our favourite walks in Yorkshire, just waiting for you to explore.

  1. Harewood House’s Himalayan Garden

The vast range of mountain peaks which arc across Central Asia, has an extraordinary diversity of flora. Harewood’s Himalayan Garden.. is this extraordinary world in miniature, a plant-hunter’s paradise.

IMG_5392

 

The Himalayan Garden is a hidden beauty spot just outside Leeds, and a would-be hippy haven if it was anywhere else in the world. Upon entering the garden bamboo stalks rise up either side of you and little walk ways twist and turn, part covered by hanging greens. Walk a little further and you find a stone paved stream and waterfall.  Need a little rest? Then take sanctuary in the mini Asian pavilion nestled at one end. This, my friends is a Eastern promise, done Yorkshire style and its flippin’ fantastic.

Location: Harewood House, Sand Gate, Harewood, Leeds, LS17 9LG. The grounds of Harewood are open on selected weekends throughout Autumn/ Winter. Please check the website for more information.

IMG_5357

IMG_5365

IMG_5367

IMG_5241

 

IMG_5348

  1. Otley Chevin Forest Park

While the hours away walking down shady evergreen lined pathways at one of Yorkshire’s most splendid forests. A north-facing cliff rises steeply to a height of 280m above sea level and offers magnificent views of the Wharfe Valley. This is one of our favourite spots to spend a lazy Sunday and is only a few minutes’ drive from Otley for some much needed sustenance afterwards.

IMG_6031

 

IMG_5109

IMG_5124

Yorkshire parks and walks
At least my shoes are sensible…

Location

Chevin Forest Park is found either side of East Chevin Road, Otley LS21 3DD.

 

12 go Speed Friending for the Lighthouse Union Autism Charity

What would it be like to have an important conversation at work or at a party and not be able to read the other person’s emotions?

How would you feel? Confused, anxious,? Apparently 55% of all communication is body language, 38% is the tone, and only 7% is spoken.

It is the non – verbal part of communication, like facial expressions, that someone with autism would struggle with. It is common stereotype that people with autism are robotic and without emotion, they do of course have emotions, they just see the world differently.

There are less than 7% of people with a learning disability and 15% with an Autistic spectrum disorder in employment. It is situations like gaining employment that often rely on “appropriate” interpretation of these subtle communication signals.

The Lighthouse Futures Trust is a truly wonderful charity that pushes for equal opportunities for people young people with Autism. They do this by focusing on their talents, strengths and interests and directly aligns employment experiences and opportunities to showcase this, giving them a real chance to have the full and rewarding career they deserve.

Lighthouse Union Autism Charity

The mini experiment: What’s it like to have Autism

A few weeks ago I joined a diverse group of bloggers in a mini social experiment. The “Speed Friending” event was hosted by The Lighthouse Futures Trust at their new shop and café. The aim was to find out how we would get on having a conversation in a mask that showed ourselves with absolutely no expression at all (Cue giggles all round at seeing our mugshots blown up, printed and ready).

Now, of course none of us can really ever know what it is like to have Autism. I wouldn’t event attempt to try and describe what it must really feel like, but this was a way of trying to understand a little more, raise awareness online, ask questions and start an open discussion.

The result

Ok so this was a lot harder than I expected, for one it was a reminder of the learnt communication skills we take for granted, really do make simple things like having a conversation, easy.I found myself looking into people’s eyes in a desperate bid to interpret response- were they interested in what I was saying? Were they looking away? I had no idea!

During, I accidentally found myself nodding intently to what the other person was saying, like an over enthusiastic puppy as if to overcompensate for the lack of expression. At one point I had to sit on my hands at one point, I had no idea I was so animated! We all agreed this “simple thing” it was pretty hard to do without emotion.

Bloggers in the charity shop
Planning our purchases
IMG_3880
Bake off eat your heart out

A brand new café and shopping experience  

Lighthouse Union Store Cookridge Leeds, itself is a natural evolution from what has started at the Lighthouse School. Warm, welcoming and with a treat selection that would make Mary Berry jealous, this new cafe, gift and charity shop makes for the perfect meeting spot. “From Prada to Primark” describes the clothes selection on their website and they weren’t wrong- there are some serious designer treasures to be found. True to form I bagged a few bargains on the evening of course.

Pssstttt …Love thrift and charity shops? Check out my 7 top tips for getting the most from your bargain hunting.