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Dear Pennies & Pens, 

Last Wednesday, I got a chance to spend all day traipsing around New York City for the sake of fashion, technology, social media, blogging, and networking. I spent the day at the Fashion140 conference which was held at Lincoln Center. I originally heard about Fashion140 via Twitter a few months ago so I was excited to cover what was supposed to be a day of learning, sharing, and connecting. However, I must give my honest opinion and say the conference could’ve been better. 

Fashion140 Conference Poster (Credit: Divas and Dorks)

The conference definitely had its highlights, I got to meet up with old friends like @ekelloggny and @shalwah and I did learn about some cool new sites. For instance, I had heard of HauteLook but Greg Bettinelli, SVP, Marketing was able to expound upon the company’s marketing efforts and how they partnered with brands like Diane Von Fursternberg and Jessica Simpson. Also, the Fashion Snoops panel was really cool. They talked about how their role as trend forecasters has changed since social media & blogging. Basically, social media has given them a real time instant connection to people while they are out covering fashion shows, and trade shows. Additionally, the panel discussed how the internet & social media has made it easier to share street style and how street style is starting to dictate retail. 

Carol Brodie, an entrepreneur who sells fine jewelry on HSN was a major conference highlight. She was funny, knowledgeable and real. Basically, she talked about how she built her brand on social media and how she uses it to constantly interact with her audience. Joe Zee (@mrjoezee) came through and briefly spoke about how he uses social media and Yuli Ziv (@YuliZ) spoke about how blogging has changed fashion week. Now that I’m looking back on it (as I write this), the conference wasn’t so bad.

However, next time there needs to be some changes with the following: speakers should get more than ten minutes (you can’t have a rockstar Creative Director of Elle Magazine speak for 10 minutes!), also there should be more panels, powerpoint style is boring and reminds me of why I’m leaving FIT, lastly time should be alloted for breaks. Coffee, tea and lunch breaks allow for networking because it gives people a social atmosphere and let’s face it, even adults need recess. And one more thing, no shameless plug promotion. There were speakers whose speeches were totally unrelated to fashion & technology (the theme of the conference) so there was no point to have them speak. If the organizers wanted to make it a fully well rounded event and have speakers with not-so related topics then they should have presented in a separate room where attendees would be invited to attend if they wanted to. Overall, I think the event was pretty good. There is definitely room for improvement but with new events, that’s usually how it goes. 

And there it is. The Fashion & Style of the Pen…de la Pen.