A couple of weeks ago, I was fortunate enough to attend the first ever, Cosmopolitan’s Self-Made Summit at London’s County Hall, in association with Very.co.uk.
The event was targeted at those who want to enter into or new-starters in the fashion industry. As a new starter in the fashion industry, I definitely felt welcomed and appreciated at the event, with the warming company of the delegates and a satisfying breakfast, lunch and cocktails. The event was segmented into elected breakout sessions and 2 Keynotes.
The day started with the opening keynote from model and notable fashion influencer, Olivia Palermo, interviewed by Editor-in- Chief of Cosmopolitan Magazine, Farrah Storr. Olivia spoke about her work, her exciting, upcoming collaboration with Banana Republic and her disciplined work ethic; she workouts for an hour, six times a week; she does her own makeup, ‘We’re women, we should be able to glam.’ Olivia Palermo is on the cover of this month’s Cosmopolitan magazine.
The second Keynote was delivered by stand-up comedian, Writer and Performer, Katherine Ryan, who not only left the audience in stitches, but also made us understand that humour is part of growth; being able to find humour even in painful life events makes us stronger and is not a sign of weakness.
I attended three breakout sessions. The first one, ‘Blog to Brand’, which included a discussion by Rosie Fortescue, Fleur de Force, Sam Chapman, Sedge Beswick and Lottie Lumsden. You can imagine the wealth of information these women shared. The second session I attended was ‘The Art of Networking: A speed Networking Masterclass’. This included a speed-dating-style discussion with four amazing networkers; Simon Jones, Vanessa Sanyauke, Rosette Pambakian and Georgina Holt. I received advice on how to approach people by email and face-to-face and was advised to tactfully aim to attend one fashion networking event a month. The last session I attended was a conversation with the mighty Alfie Deyes (Zoella’s boyfriend) and Caroline Flack – ‘Turning your Hobby into your dream job’. Yet again another inspiring discussion.
The event was thronged with competitions and goodies, including Pitch Palace, where you could win a six-month office space at Second Home in central London, plus a work wardrobe from Very.co.uk. Attendees could also enter a competition to win a 2 week internship with Very.co.uk and Cosmopolitan Magazine.
Plus, the best goody bag I have ever received. It was overflowing; the Spectrum Rain Glow Luxe Fan Brush (a God-send), the book, #GIRLBOSS, Wolford tight socks, Accessorize earrings, Givenchy and Olivia Palermo perfumes, Maxfactor Voluminous False lash effect mascara and loads of vouchers for manicures and restaurants. I also received a personalised business card holder from Mon Purse, worth £45.
The event was the first networking event, (after the Fashion Blogging Course), where I have introduced myself as a blogger and a model. And it felt great. Honestly, honestly, honestly, I have a self-inflicting fear about introducing myself as a blogger and a model. But being around like-minded people made me feel more confident to talk about who I am. I always believe being confident about who you are opens the way for those life-changing opportunities to come. Here’s hoping.