Thursday, September 26, 2013


I attended BlogPodium in Toronto this past weekend. This conference is geared toward Design and Lifestyle bloggers and about 250 of us attended. Below, is just a tiny portion of the loot I came home with. It was like opening up your trick-or-treat bag on Hallowe'en...or even better...your stocking on Christmas morning. Just look at these giveaways from Roots  Annie Sloan  Chatelaine  Style at Home  House and Home  Decorium   to name but a few of the giveaway sponsors and supporters.  

Great brands... Home Depot Canada , the lead sponsor, Delta Faucet  who introduced Keynote speaker Sarah Richardson (more on Sarah in a bit) and Para Paints who sponsored the keynote panel discussion Traditional Media, New Media and Social Media helped make BlogPodium a huge success. A complete list of sponsors can be found here including their logos or 'wordmarks' ... a new word I learned at a BlogPodium seminar. 

BlogPodium 2013 lived up to it's title ...CONNECTION, CONVERSATION AND COLLABORATION as evidenced with Sarah Richardson.  

Sarah Richardson, Canadian Designer extraordinaire, was our keynote speaker.  The audience was completely engaged with Sarah's honest, insightful and humorous narrative of her very humble beginnings as a Designer. She then shared her secrets to becoming a successful and sought after Designer and HGTV star. Honesty and being a good person are key. I had the opportunity to listen to Sarah Richardson a few years ago and wrote this blog post  Sarah Richardson and Other Women of Influence 

Lets talk about the seminars and stuff I didn't know before, OR had hammered into my head again, because I attended BlogPodium.  Very wise folks shared wonderful information.... because that's what bloggers do. 
The seminar What Bloggers Can Learn from Magazines presented by Corinna Vangerwen from was quite an eye opener....

Her top ten tips for bloggers....

  1.  Find your niche
*2.  Think like an editor
*3.  Have an editorial calendar
  4.  Eye catching headlines
  5.  Write for your audience 
*6.  Practice art of packaging
  7.  Edit your content
*8.  Style guides 
  9.  Fact check your work 
10. Identify advertising on your blog

Because of Corinna's seminar, I will be more aware of these *items* in the future while composing my blog posts!!!

Avery Swartz at knows her junk. She is an award winning web designer based in Toronto and her seminar focused on Styling Your Blog.  Her professional design mantra is "make decisions and stick with them"....simple yet powerful wisdom. Waaaay too much knowledge from Avery to impart here, but this is where I learned about wordmark logos. Those  logos we all recognize NIKE  CNN COKE BELL.....these are all typeface logos, easily identified, simple yet dynamic. Avery also touched on the *style guide* thing...something I have not yet mastered...but it must be important if at least two session speakers mentioned it. 
I was so enthralled with Avery's enthusiasm for her job, her passion, I invited her to come to Ottawa for her CAMP TECH  classes and she said YES!  Stay tuned for more info!

As with any away weekend, particularly with friends, there is bound to be some excitement! I came on this weekend with 4 of The TBBs. Not only do we contribute to TBBs Wine, Dine and Design  blog, but we each have our own design blogs. Blog conferences such as BlogPodium are essential forums for connecting, reconnecting, information sharing and gathering.  It was at BlogPodium 2012, that The TBB blog seed was planted and almost a year later, +236K hits on the blog. This trip to Toronto was a win/ every sense of the word. In fact, two of us, Lisa and I each won 2 prizes. 

I won  a closet organizer and a table saw yes....a TABLE SAW....courtesy of Home Depot Canada. Did I mention that we flew to Toronto for the weekend? I was certain Porter Air would not allow the table saw on board the aircraft. Thankfully, one of our fellow Ottawa bloggers Katherine of fame, kindly drove my table saw, closet organizer, Lisa's mirror and our fabulous loot bags back home with her. Thank you again Katharine. My first table saw DIY project is yours.

This post would not be complete without a huge thank you to Jennifer Flores of  the widely successful blog . She and her team organized a wonderful event that has grown from an hour long session to a full day session in just three years. Way to go Jennifer and your remarkable team!! Cannot wait to attend BlogPodium 2014.

Now, if you will excuse me, I have to get my table saw DIY game on. 

If you enjoy reading this blog...please hop over to my group blog  where there is SIX times the enjoyment. 

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Monday, September 2, 2013


I took this picture on my street yesterday, September 1st , 2013 
It is the final long weekend of the summer. In fact, today is Labour Day and I know many of you are noticing the 'nesting instinct' has started to creep back into your lives. From the email requests for consultations I have recieved recently, September seems to signal a resurgance of getting the house in order. Perhaps for the upcoming 2014 winter festivities, holidays and Christmas, or after a long hot summer, you desire to cozy things up in your home, or  you simply need a change.  

Above is the living room in a condo I decorated a few years ago. Notice how the before and after wall colours are similar in value (light /dark) but are very different hues (colour) Also notice how the light cast on the wall in the before photo affects the colour on the wall. Choosing colour can be challenging. If you are moving forward with your 'nesting' projects, I encourage you to read the post I  wrote for The TBB blog ......  Every Colour Under the Rainbow ... How to Choose. There are some great tips on how to make choosing colour less stressful.

Safe and Happy Labour Day to all. 

If you enjoy reading this blog...please hop over to my group blog  where there is SIX times the enjoyment. 

Maureen at Modecor Muses: September 2013

Maureen at Modecor Muses