Events,  Lifestyle

Lessons for Design and Life from Design Bloggers Conference 2014

Jeffrey Alan Marks ID   Me with Jeffrey Alan Marks from Million Dollar Decorators

Last week I attended the Design Bloggers Conference in Atlanta and the Atlanta Decorative Arts Center’s Digital Day.  It was an opportunity to learn from leaders in the filed of interior design and blogging.   Besides being filled with invaluable information it was a great opportunity to meet some of the people behind blogs I admire.   I thought I’d share some highlights of my experience that are applicable to life as well as interior design with you.


I had lunch with Candice Olson from Divine Design (and totally ignored that 150 other people were there too).  Candice inspired everyone with her jaw-dropping room transformations from ugly ducklings to the glamorous contemporary designs she’s famous for.

Candice stated:  “One of the most important tools is to inject architectural interest in a space.  A deep intense color can have tremendous power in a room.  It (color) can have the biggest and least expensive impact.  Color can solve problems too.”

Candice showed us a before /after where she changed the color of a piano and the wall behind it and the difference in the feel of the entire room changed.

Major Take Aways

Be Clear about what you want to achieve – People blog for many reasons including it’s a personal journal, steps to writing a book, to share what they love, and to sell a product or service.  When you are clear about your objectives it will  help you focus.  Also, having a specific goal in mind will help you define and measure your success.

Be Authentic – Atleast 3 of the speakers with audiences of 50,000+ facebook fans stated a critical component of the success was to establish their unique voice on their blog.  In fact each one still write their blog themselves (even though they might have others helping them).  They also said it was important to publish as much original content as possible.

Be Consistent – If you want to establish a relationahip with readers you must be consistent in your blogging activities.  Make a commitment on how often you will post and follow through.

Know Your Audience –  Listen to your audience and give them more of what they want.  Examine your analytics and comments from posts.  Whatever posts receive the most engagement do more like them.  You’ve touched something they want.  Also, try other related ideas to get readers to come back and to share your posts with their friends.

Have a Niche – Write about what you are passionate about and you will connect with your audience.  That’s how communities are created.  Many bloggers have discovered new opportunities by passionately pursuing what they love and sharing it on their blogs.

Jan Bills of Two Women and a Hoe built her readership primarily using facebook, but I think showcasing her larger than life personality and infusing humor in her posts helped her create a loyal following.

From the moment I walked into Design Bloggers Conference 2014 I was informed and entertained.  I enjoyed meeting face-to-face the women behind so many design blogs I read.   There is nothing like good company and what an AWESOME group of design bloggers I met.  How fantastic is that!

Paloma DB conf
Paloma Contreas of LaDolce Vita – a blog I admire.  She was such a sweetie too.

I asked Paloma how she grew her readership and gets so much done being a staff of one.   Her response:

  • Develop an editorial calendar
  • Guest post on other blogs to expand your reach
  • Create something for readers to come back to
  • Paloma has added contributors to expand her postings


White Wine DoBianchiA great end to day one with wine from Jeremy Parzen of Do Bianchi blog.

Caleidoscope Color FounderNew Georgia based textile company Caleidoscope Color makes beautiful linen fabrics.

VividHue @DBC2014

Having lunch with VivdHue

Bed Cake It’s a bed, no it’s a cake – at Peacock Alley’s new showroom at ADAC

Digital SHerpa clinic with Joanne

Thank you DigitalSherpa and all the Sponsors of Design Blogfest 2014. My Cup Runneth over – it’s the best money I’ve spent this year!