This past weekend I was lucky enough to attend the Heart Home Conference hosted by Wayfair. It was a weekend full of insight, tips, ideas, and creativity. I met with local + distant bloggers, entrepreneurs, and creatives that specialized in an assortment of different fields. Though I learned a weekend full of information, I wanted to share some of my new-found knowledge with you.
5 Things I learned at Heart Home
1. Your home is a path, not a place.
The keynote speaker, Maxwell Ryan shared this tidbit of information that I couldn't agree with more. Our homes should be everchanging - a continual representation of our hobbies, interests, careers, and lifestyles. They shouldn't strive to be a something they're not, and our homes should lead us to a vanishing point instead of a dead end. By the time you reach your first vanishing point, there is a new one to reach in the distance. I love thinking about this bit of information as I strive to create a place for Brandon, Olive, and I to enjoy and function in knowing that it will continue to change and grow with us. (We each got a copy of "Complete + Happy Home" by Maxwell and it perfectly embodies that thought.)
2. The digital spaces you inhabit should be as beautiful as the physical ones.
Carley Knobloch really picked upon this guiding principle during lunch. There is nothing wrong with looking for a good-looking app that also helps with functionality and problem solving. We look to live and work in places that are pleasing to look at, so it's important to look at the digital world in the same light. Software design should be a priority since it's becoming the screen that is "lived in" the most during work.
3. You need to validate your creative brain and delegate tasks.
During a panel with Meredith Mahoney, Emily Wright, Alexandra Ferguson, Mat Sanders, and Christine Koh the idea of the creative brain came up. Everyone agreed that you are the only one that can come up with the ideas that you create. (Seems simple, right?) They all then agreed that creates a conundrum when delegating tasks because you begin to overanalyze every aspect of your business and spread yourself too thin. Since your main focus should be your specialty, other tasks should be delegated to people who understand their roles. For example, Mat Sanders talked about how he didn't have time to focus his time and energy on the MyDomaine instagram account, so he outsourced and hired a social media guru. Though not everything that goes up is 100% Mat, he agreed that giving the social media to another talent with brand guidelines took so much off his plate and allowed him to focus on aspects of the business that needed to be run by him.
4. Magazines and publications work with bloggers a lot because they have something to add as experts in their field.
One of my favorite panels featured editors from Coastal Living, Real Simple, Good Housekeeping, and (swoon!) Lonny. Stephanie Sisco from Real Simple talked about how magazines are always looking to work with bloggers because blogs have an audience that follows them based on what they specialize in. This knowledge and expertise is great when it corresponds with the look and feel of a larger publication. The example she focused on was A Beautiful Mess' Habitat for Humanity Home. This collaboration helped Real Simple gain a younger audience and helped connect A Beautiful Mess to a larger and more diverse reader. It was a total win-win!
5. Making an envelope back pillow cover is very simple.
My last workshop of the conference focused on making a pillow cover with the ladies from Simple Simon and Co. They were great teachers and so absolutely sweet! Liz and Elizabeth helped our group create pillows similar to these using adorable fabrics and sewing machines they provided for us. It was such a great ending to the weekend and you can see my results below (the adorable tan and white hash pillow).
I had so much fun, made so many new friends and contacts, and learned more than I could have even conceived. It was my first blogger conference, and I can't wait to network and meet-up with friends at the next one. Thanks again, Wayfair!