Whew! I packed a lot in today and promised many of you I’d blog about the time I spent at the first-ever Creative Connection Event in Minneapolis. So, here you go (warning: it’s long!). It was great to be surrounded by hundreds of women from 46 states and Canada – all creative dynamos looking to learn something new, be inspired and grow their businesses.
I started the morning at a great panel about blogging. From left to right were jewelry designer Lisa Leonard (sweet as can be, just like her blog!), Flea Market Style senior editor Heather Bullard, internet expert Susan Mernit, PBS host and author Brett Bara, and funny, long-winded Loralee Choate (again, just like her blog!). It’s always fascinating to see and hear from other women who sacrifice sleep and sanity to stay connected with friends we’ve never met in blogland. Loralee talked about the dark days after her four-month-old died of SIDS, when the only human interaction she had was with her “friends in the box on my desk.” Meanwhile, Lisa picked up blogging after leaving a life of teaching to stay at home with her kids and make jewelry. Her husband said she needed to earn $200 a month to afford staying home. Her blog not only allowed her to connect with other women around the world, but is the main reason for her store’s success, she says. Nowadays, she easily earns 200 bucks with the sale of just two or three Lisa Leonard necklaces!
Following that panel, I got to hang out in the Handmade Market – a convention hall filled with over 100 female artisans and crafters selling their wares. Oh, people. I’m like a kid in a candy store at these kinds of events. I so, so, so love seeing all the ways women create something out of nothing . My first “find” was Chicago artist Debbie Egizio of The Beat of My Art. Her mixed media art is stunning. I was especially taken with her flower-filled shadow boxes…and her sweet demeanor.
I stopped by friend Cheri Meyer’s booth; she’s the creative force behind From Out of the Cracks. She works with lots of beautiful earth tones like this “fern” peyote stitched bracelet (swoon!). She’s getting to be a pro at these kinds of shows and I have a lot to learn from her. She encouraged me to try selling my art at an upcoming arts & craft show; eeek – sounds scary! But I’ll add it to the maybe list. 🙂 By the way…stay tuned for a Happy HeART Giveaway from Cheri on Choosing Beauty later this fall!
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