Monday 19 September 2016

Missi does a conference ~ My first Problogger Experience

So as those who follow my Instagram will know, this past weekend I put on my big girl pants and flew to another state to attend my first ever Problogger event. I can already hear many of you, through your computer screen going 'Problogger what?'. That was honestly my response too when I was first told about it. But in regards to my blogging and seeing how far I've come with my social anxiety and anxiety in general, its been one the best experiences having a blog has enabled me to have. So what is Problogger and how is it I ended up attending? Well, it all started with an amazing man.

I kind of felt I'd hit a wall recently with my blogging. I'd been wanting to grow my blogging space into something more than it has been. I wanted to get off the treadmill of just reviewing things and start including content that means so much to me. As pinup bloggers, I find our blogs can sometimes become superficial and be about nothing more than how things fit and where to buy stuff. Not saying this is a problem or that anyone else should change how they run their blog. But for me, its been bugging me for some time now and I just wanted be able to give more, share more and make my blog space something more than what it currently is. The only issue is: I didn't know how. As stupid as that sounds, it was a real problem and it was one I was struggling to overcome. Here enters my amazing partner. He had heard about the conference and felt that it was important that I should go. He thought I could get a lot out of it in regards to learning new media types, building content and blog design. Even though we were due to move he went above and beyond and made sure I got there and I am eternally grateful for his hard work and his belief in me! I've never had someone believe in me like he does before. So last Friday, at the brisk hour of 4am I was awake to get myself ready to head to the airport for a 6am flight. I can tell you now, 4am isn't a pleasant hour to be awake for anything, especially with having my pole dancing class the night before I wasn't able to head to bed til around midnight as I needed to finish packing. With a lot of gentle encouragement (my hair hadn't set and I was rather panicked) and support I was soon bundled into the car, massive suitcase in tow to head on my first big adventure on my own as a young woman.

Pre-Flight Ticket Photo
Waiting for my mammoth suitcase
On the train to the resort
I am so incredibly grateful that flights were without any issues. I found myself sandwiched between two business men and I was soon napping happily between them. I woke just as the plane touched down and soon found myself navigating the comparatively small Brisbane airport to collect my massive suitcase and head to the train down to the gold coast. The train trip was 42 minutes longer than the trip planner online had estimated (ouch!) and I must admit, by the time I got off the train to get a cab to the resort I was feeling a bit worse for wear, very worn down and incredibly anxious about what I was facing. As someone with anxiety, the prospect of going to a conference was beyond terrifying. The fact I was getting there late just heightened the panic I was feeling. The cab trip was a matter of minutes and I soon found myself outside one of the fanciest hotels I'd ever been. I was staying at the RAVC Royal Pines Resort on the Gold Coast and it is pretty much the fanciest hotel I've ever stayed at. I went to check in before I headed down, so I didn't have to take my bag and to my initial confusion and later delight my room had been upgraded to a suite. Feeling a bit overwhelmed I headed up to my room, to find it the most beautiful room ever.

Pano View of my suite
Bathroom of my suite
Outfit day 1 (Accessories Daisy Jean, Miss Lady A Broad and Debstar Designs. Top & Skirt are Pinup Girl Clothing)

So with my bag dropped off upstairs and a quick outfit photo I swallowed my fear and headed down to register and head in. The first thing I saw was there were a LOT of people. SO SO many. Feeling overwhelmed by this sea of people I sat down at a table by myself, took out my booklet and took notes. Of course, I'd walked in when they were doing a meet new people exercise (oh the irony!!) and I found myself being asked to introduce myself to the people at my table but alas, I was sitting at a table by myself. The lovely ladies who run Aussie Blogger Podcast (Tan and Amanda) waved me down and got me to sit with them at their table to introduce myself. These lovely ladies use their blogspace to showcase Australian bloggers, as we are sometimes forgotten in the big world of blogging. Amanda, who very happily explained she was an introvert that learned to be an extrovert was lovely enough to take me around at morning tea (the food was incredible) and meet people. This simple act of kindness really helped me push myself forward and step out over the coming days to connect with new people. It did become incredibly obvious very quickly that retro bloggers were pretty few and far between at this event. In my first few hours I didn't come across a single one. The most prominent bloggers were mummy bloggers and food bloggers as well as modern fashion bloggers, which I found rather interesting. There were also a number of people who didn't have blogs at all, but were interested in starting one. I attended two workshops that morning around content creation before attending the lunch. By this time (midday) I was feeling pretty buggered and since my ticket included getting all workshops in video form after, I bowed out to go and have a bath and a nap, as I had a ticket to the networking meeting that evening. The hotel bed was INCREDIBLE and I had a good hour nap after a bath in that incredible spa. I got up and went down for the afternoon recap which featured an inspiring story about the founder of Thank You Water, an amazing company that uses the profit from its products to fund projects to improve the lives of people living in third world countries without access to water, food and other medical needs. It was an incredibly inspiring speech and I must say I was a little teary. I finished the afternoon recap and headed upstairs to get ready for my first ever networking night. 

Networking Night Outfit (Accessories ~ Daisy Jean & Debstar Designs. Dress is Pinup Girl Clothing. Shoes are Royal Vintage Shoes)
Outdoor Tent by Katalane Tents
Outdoor Tent by Katalane Tents
The networking night was an incredible experience. I'd met two other retro style bloggers (I'll introduce them a bit later) and I was able to have a good chat with them. I moved around a lot and tried to chat with a few different people, though being a pinup blogger meant we often had little to actually discuss that we both could relate to. I met some really amazing people, I was one of the last to leave the event (shock horror!) and I was feeling a bit of a happy buzz by the time I crawled into bed around midnight on Friday, my hair fresh in curlers for another big day the next day. I felt proud of myself and how far I'd come. 12 months ago I couldn't have faced a room full of people like that and been able to mingle and talk to them. That is such an achievement for me and I went to bed feeling incredible.

Outfit for Day 2 (Scarf is Daisy Jean, Earrings are Retro Resins, Necklace is Debstar Designs. Outfit is Pinup Girl Clothing and shoes are Royal Vintage Shoes)
Pano view of the morning speech
With Retro bloggers My Vintage Childhood and Lisa of Make Plus Do

Me with Nicole of Blank Pages and Empty Spaces
I donated to one of the sponsors while I was there. Orange Sky Laundry are a volunteer initiative that allows homeless people to have access to clean clothes
 I feel like I had more success on day 2 of this conference. i'd found my groove. I wasn't as scared to talk to people. I had morning tea and lunch with the lovely Nicole and her friend Mime. It was lovely to chat and get to know these ladies over the course of my time in Brisbane (we also did breakfast together on the Sunday and I hope to one day be able to catch up with them again when I get to head down to Melbourne in the new year!). I also got to spend more time chatting to the other two retro bloggers who attended the event, who I've tagged above. I had an especially great time chatting to Lisa, who is a keen retro sewer who made her outfits for the conference and looked amazing. 

I got a lot out of the workshops that day and took SO many notes. This conference was amazing on so many levels. It not only connected me to some incredible people, but it showed me that I can create the content I want for my blog space, I can expand it outside of just clothing reviews and there are ways to grow my blog space into something amazing. The whole experience left me feeling empowered, inspired and motivated to knuckle down and get things happening that I wanted to and I am SO incredibly grateful to my fella for making it all happen. I cannot wait to start making plans to work on new content for my social media and share more of the things I love with you all! This will definitely not be my last pro-blogger and I'm hoping to do more in the Olympus workshops next year!

Final Networking night (flowers ~ Daisy Jean, Dress is vivacious Vixen and bag is Lola Von Rose)
Finally got to meet Miss Honey Holloway!
I wrapped up my Problogger experience with an appearance at the final drinks on Saturday before slipping into something casual to finally meet the gorgeously hearted Miss Honey Holloway, who I've been following online for EVER. We had dinner and a chat which I found incredibly inspiring and reaffirmed a lot for me personally about where I want to go and what I want to do. We enjoyed the most amazing food before chilling for a chat. I was feeling incredibly by the time I rolled into my fluffy hotel bed, ready for another big day!

The Lovely Cassie and me

Getting inked by the lovely Nikki Palmer who works at the Painted Tattoo Lady Studio in Brisbane

The Start of Oscar the Dumbo Octopus
 Oscar the Dumbo Octopus all finished!

Sunday was an equally busy day! I had the absolute pleasure of shooting the lovely Cassie for something very special on Sunday morning, though we can't share it yet! Her and her hubby were gracious enough to give me a lift back to Brisbane so i didn't have to do another mammoth train ride and she came with me to get my first real ink (I kind of don't count my back tattoo as its a small script word). I've been following Nikki online for AGES and when I saw she was finally tattooing I knew I needed to make time to see her on the Sunday. And so Oscar the Dumbo Octopus was born! Inspired by this totally cute clip I saw online, Nikki captured exactly what I wanted and I'm absolutely smitten with him. He's so adorable and while it will be at least 6 months before I go under the ink needle again, I'm loving having this guy on my thigh! I handled the whole thing better than I expected (I was worried about it being super painful on my thigh but it was manageable) and Nikki was so awesome to get inked by! As I'm intending to come back up to the Gold Coast next year for the next event, I'll definitely be stopping in to get more ink done by the lovely Nikki then!

After spending my afternoon with the lovely Cassie and her hubby, they very kindly gave me a lift to the airport I was soon all packed up, my bag checked and on the plane home. The whole experience was absolutely incredible and while I loved it, I found that its taken me a fair bit to settle back into my routine this week, as it did leave me feeling incredibly drained.

I am so excited to implement the things I've learnt and start shaping my space to what I want to do, instead of simply doing what everyone else does. I cannot wait to start planning for the amazing things I want to share and bring to this space!

Watch this space lovely people and keep your eyes peeled for more amazing stuff coming soon!


  1. Missi - it was an absolute honour to get to know you. Amanda and I had such a wonderful time with you and learning all about you and your world of retro! Loved the time together and can't wait to feature you on Aussie Bloggers Podcast! ❤️

  2. That is so awesomely, wonderfully exciting on all fronts. Thank you for this detailed look at your conference experience. I thoroughly enjoyed it (and am beyond in love with your adorable new tattoo).

    xoxo ♥ Jessica