alt summit

Alt Summit // Winter 2015 Speaker Schedule Announced


Ask the question.

Whenever I'm asked about the best advice I could give someone that is trying to follow their dreams those 3 little words pour from my mouth and from my heart. Ask the question. 

For so long I used to sit and watch as other people succeeded and accomplished things I only dreamed of. It baffled me, made me envious, confused and lost as if there was a secret ingredient that I seemed to be missing out on. It was only later did I realise that there was a secret ingredient that at the time escaped me: courage.

I'm been so, so lucky and there have been some incredible opportunities that have come my way and I attribute those to a wonderful combination of hard work, good timing, pure luck - and courage. I've realised now that if you want something to happen you have to ask for it. Not the sexiest advice but it's true and that's just what happened when I set out years ago with the dream to someday speak at Alt Summit. 

I carried that dream around with me for years until I worked up the courage to apply to speak. I had nothing to lose but when I got the email from the event founders a few weeks ago announcing their 2015 Speaker line-up and congratulating me that I'd been chosen to speak it was moment I won't forget. I stood there amazed, in that sort of dazed, surreal feeling of dreaming about something for so long and then having it actually happen kind of moment. Then of course I jumped up and down because for me it was a really big moment - and still is. It's a bit strange to think that in a few weeks I'll be off to Salt Lake City to speak to hundreds of bloggers at an event that I've admired for sooo long. I'm nervous, excited and filled with a million different emotions but the simple fact is, this moment never would have arrived if I hadn't of asked the question.

Don't wait, don't hesitate, don't talk yourself out if it. Find the courage....and ask the question. See you all at Alt Summit...

Behind The Blog Scene // Gabrielle Blair of Design Mom


Blogging is a balancing act. Anyone that has tried to juggle work, family, partners and friends while maintaining a blog schedule knows that it's not always easy. The ideas keep coming but sometimes squeezing in that last post before bedtime just isn't a reality. I have a slight obsession with understanding how people balance time, especially busy women whom I admire and who are doing great things.  One of those women is Gabrielle Blair - the force behind the super successful blog, Design Mom and found of of Alt Summit (yes, Alt Summit).

As if those two projects weren't enough to make you stop and take notice, Gabrielle also has 6 kids and up until recently used to live in the French countryside - can this woman be any more amazing? The answer is yes and her smart, witty and insightful advice below proves why. Thanks Gabrielle for sharing your thoughts and look forward to seeing you at Alt next year...

Describe your blog in 3 words…
Design-Parenting Intersection
What is your blogging manifesto?
Hmm. I don't think I have one. Or at least, I don't think I've ever put it into words. Off the top of my head, I would say my blogging manifesto is: To bring happiness to my readers' days. To bring inspiration and learning. To bring support and kindness.
Top 3 blogging essentials?
DSLR, Photoshop, Curiosity
My biggest blogging moment/milestone was?
Having Time Magazine name Design Mom Website of the Year. A total surprise! I had no idea before they made the announcement. I learned about the recognition on Twitter.
Right now I'm listening to?
I'm on a flight and listening to the 80's channel which is playing lots of Depeche Mode.
Best piece of advice to a newbie blogger?
Just start. Publish a post, any post. Like everything, blogging takes practice. I'm 5000+ posts in and still learning.
If I wasn't blogging I'd be...
An art director in New York. In fact, that was my job before blogging. Or, I might be designing textiles — something I've always wanted to try.
Behind the scenes of my blog looks like...
Me, possibly still in my pajamas, working in a home office surrounded by ample evidence of a big, creative family (meaning: it's very messy).
In 2014 I'm most excited about...
So many things! A series I'm working on about women and style and beauty and identity — I hope to launch it in June. And Alt Summit (I'm a founder and owner) is launching some big new events. Also, a series about teaching kids cooking skills.

Blogging talent runs in the family...if you missed our interview with Gabrielle's sister, Jordan Ferney from Oh Happy Day you can check it out here.