Snap Conference Recap! (Part Two)

So sorry this has taken forever! I'm in the midst of planning for Breathing Space, and major stuff at work, and cutting back caffeine… Blech! I have 3 partially finished project posts, two more Snap posts, a Color Me Rad post, a freaking cute family pictures post… You'd think that with all these topics, life would be easier! Sigh. So, let's continue the Snap class wrapup, and I'll try to get the Social Snap post up before Breathing Space and I meet even more awesome bloggers.

Basic SEO

This class was taught by Dennis Geodegebuure (The Next Corner is his personal site; he's also got his fingers in many other pies). I got there about 15 minutes into the class, and I was really glad that he focused on general SEO stuff instead of things that were specific to Wordpress or Blogger. I left this class so inspired to make changes on my blog and the way I organize things!

  • Linking: link to your stuff internally, as part of the site structure (?? I need to look up what that really means). External links are best when they are natural language.
  • Be remarkable: you wouldn't stop to take pictures by a cow, but you'd take pictures by a purple cow.
  • Do guest posts!
  • URL structure: only have your post name, not the date, unless your content is time-sensitive
  • Customize your meta tags!
  • Your titles should be short and snappy: 70 characters is optimum for Twitter sharing. Thing magazine headlines.
  • Set up Google Webmaster Central
  • Page content: Structure your page. Make your most interesting content in the title, images, and first few sentences. People skim!
  • Observe seasonal trends in your hits and content, try to get ahead of those trends (post Christmas stuff in early Nov, Valentines Day in January, etc)
  • Add alt text to your images!! Also, make file names readable, not "IMG_3021"
  • Get the Google Plus button set up!

Trend Spotting: What's new, What's next?

This is one of the classes I was most looking forward to, and the one I felt like I needed the most! I've mentioned before that I'm always several years late, and that this year I want to try and change that… This panel was headed by Jeanee of Dirty Laundry, Lara of Less Cake More Frosting, Mandi of Vintage Revivals, and Jen of Tater Tots and Jello. So much amazingness in one place! These notes I divided into who-said-it sections.

Jeanee

  • Look for colors/shapes/pattern/lettering/graphic design in fashion/home decor/advertisements/blogs{ampersand design}/e-magazines{Rue, Paper Runway}/Pinterest{cargoh}/trendwatching.com newsletter
  • Get offline! Wallpaper stores, antique stores
  • Figure out why you like something, what exactly you like about it
  • Compare trends online and off
  • Don't get overwhelmed! Do you trend-research in 20-minute chunks
  • Organize your pinboards/inspiration book/whatever every few months
  • Make trends your own: Combine trends, do your own spin on things

Lara

  • Look at color in a new way—how does it affect your mood?
  • Decide why combinations appeal to you
  • You never know what will inspire you: Tampon box
  • Mix trend and timelessness, so that you won't be too off trend in 6 months
  • Be the "tre"

Mandi

  • Do what makes you happy
  • Be respectful of other people's happiness, even if you don't like it. They do!

Jen

  • Go somewhere unexpected to find things you like
  • Put your own spin on things
  • Figure out how to name your style

Discovering and Defining Style

I'm not quite sure what I was expecting from this panel, but what I got out of it was great! This panel had some more rockstars: Ana White of Knock Off Wood, Shelley Smith of House of Smiths, Emily of Decor Chick, and Kate of Remodelaholic

Ana

  • Style is how you present yourself
  • Decide what I'm about
  • Be consistent and passionate
  • Remind yourself of the things that are important to you

Shelley

  • Just do it→be confident in yourself!
  • Define your writing style and stick to it
  • Your favorites will always be your own stuff—put it somewhere you can be inspired by
  • Take risks and step out of your comfort zone. You'll be glad you did!

Emily

  • Mixing styles all over is OK, as long as it's all you!
  • Remember the details! (molding doesn't have to be the same all over, it just has to flow)
  • Decorate for YOU (and your family). It can always be changed if you need to sell!

Kate

  • Wear your style with confidence, and share it!
  • Map out your vision of what you want and love
  • Note to self: learn better photography tricks!

Epic Guide to DIY Survival

Whew! Last panel (I went to the Poppyseed Projects make and take in the afternoon) and honestly, I was exhausted… I can only take so much socializing and noise before I start to shut down, and I was getting to that point! Luckily, I was able to pay attention to Stacy of Not Just A Housewife, Britney of Pretty Handy Girl, and Sausha of Sweet Pickins during this panel, because I learned a lot about what you can do with various power tools, and I even got the confidence to use a belt sander last week (more on that later, mostly because the project is half-finished in my garage).

Stacy

  • Basic safety: common sense, inspect your tools, KNOW your tools, don't wear loose clothing/jewelry
  • Nails, levels, screws, etc: use the right one for the job
  • Get a jigsaw! $20 black and decker.

Britney

  • Have confidence in yourself—you can do it!
  • Compound miter saws are cool (make sure blade is full speed whenever it's touching wood)
  • Get as many safety features as possible!
  • B's preferred brands: DeWalt, Craftsman, Nakita, Rigid, Ryobi, Bosch, Porter Cable, Dremel
  • Resources: familyhandyman, thisoldhouse, 5min

Sausha

  • Painting laminate: gloss off, greased lightning. Tinted primer!
  • Water base everything!

(There was more, but Jeff and Nathan came for a visit, so I left to give my boys a hug!)

Whew. That was a lot! I hope that these notes are not just helpful for me, but helpful for all of you, too! Whether you were in the same classes as me, went to different classes, or weren't at the conference, there should be something to learn in there! Going through and typing out all my notes was great, because not only did I get reinspired my things I may have forgotten, but I really saw the theme of the conference: Just Be You. I wish I had a good picture of my lovely Amy Cornwall necklace, but it's home hanging with my other jewelry… I have one more Snap recap post in the works—that one about all the awesome people I met, and the wonderful swag and other things provided by the sponsors! Should we place bets to see if that happens before Breathing Space…?

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I'm a working, crafting, loving, baking, home improving Mamma, trying to make my corner of the world better. I also happen to write a lot about my little boy, because I think he's fantastically hilarious!

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