Agenda 2017

Sunday, March 5, 2017

12:00PM – 8:00PM


Pick up badge and swag bag. The badge is your admission to the conference program, breakfast, lunches, receptions and official after parties.

1:00PM – 5:00PM

Exhibitor Set Up

1:30PM – 5:15PM

Pre-Conference Workshops

We are excited to offer four workshops this year and realize that you may want to participate in all four.  For your convenience we are repeating the workshops on Sunday  – see times below and  please note each workshop is limited in capacity to 60 participants.

1:30PM – 2:15PM

Workshop 1: Make $100K a Year Selling Digital Interior Design

This 45-minute workshop is included in your registration package –  workshop space is limited and open to the first 60 participants. We are repeating this workshop on Sunday from 3:30PM- 4:15PM.

Whether you choose to sell design products on your blog, want to grow your design business with online merchandise sales, or even yearn to offer an online design course, this workshop is for you.  Laurel Bern has been successfully generating six figure annual income online and is willing to share her tangible and actionable secrets from knowing if you are ready, tactics for creating digital assets, e-shopping cart selection, payment gateways, building a following and more.

laurel-bern-1Instructor: Laurel Bern
Founder, Laurel Home and Lauren Bern Interiors
A Westchester County NY Interior designer who also works in Connecticut and in New York City, Laurel has been a residential interior designer and decorator since 1988.  After a short career as a dancer, she went back to college for an interior design degree. She has always been a passionate admirer of all of the arts and thinks that any attempt to make this world a more beautiful place is a good idea.

1:30PM – 2:15PM

Workshop 2: Advanced Mobile Photography for Designers & Content Creators

This 45-minute workshop is included in your registration package – workshop space is limited and open to the first 60 participants. We are repeating this workshop on Sunday from 3:30PM- 4:15PM.

Design pros, social media enthusiasts, and bloggers will learn from photographer Connor Dwyer, Instagram endorsed photo sharer, how to ratchet up professionalism and engagement for your mobile photography. From mobile phone tools and tricks to lighting and styling, this workshop will transform your images and brand.

connor-dywerInstructor: Connor Dwyer
Connor lives in Atlanta while working on his masters in graphic design at SCAD. He has amassed 76.4k followers on Instagram with his compelling photography. He thinks graphic design and photography for building brands, but mostly enjoys making people feel loved and maximize their potential. He has designed or photographed alongside some amazing brands such as Warby Parker, Gap, Pizza Hut, Coca Cola, and more. He also has helped brave startups and small brands develop a visual personality.

2:30PM -3:15PM

Workshop 3: Create a Killer Online Bio: Promote Your Design Stardom

This 45-minute workshop is included in your registration package – workshop space is limited and open to the first 60 participants. We are repeating this workshop on Sunday from 4:30PM- 5:15PM.

If you’re like most design industry professionals, your online bio is an after thought or even a bust. Chances are, it undersells you and secretly disqualifies you for the kind of projects and clients you require. Learn how, where and when to use the tool to position yourself as a uniquely qualified leader in your field. Craft a website and social media bio that dramatically differentiates you for success.

You’ll learn how to:

  • Create a bio that dramatically differentiates you
  • Pinpoint, promote and prioritize your most powerful and unique assets
  • Identify your “Only” statement (“____ is the area’s only design professional who…”)
  • Use your bios for maximum impact
  • Recognize the best bio words, and avoid the worst ones.

fred-bernsInstructor: Fred Berns
Fred is the only interior design industry business coach and speaker who creates personal bios and other promotional materials for design professionals worldwide.

Fred has more than 25 years experience training design professionals from Dallas to Dubai, and creating their online profiles, website and social media copy, blogs and marketing forms. In addition, he offers a wide range of business coaching services, ranging from his High Performance Coaching Program to his Bio Briefing and Website Onceover.

2:30PM -3:15PM

Workshop 4: Styling Photo Shoots Like a Pro

This 45-minute workshop is included in your registration package – workshop space is limited and open to the first 60 participants. We are repeating this workshop on Sunday from 4:30PM- 5:15PM.

Whether you are a brand ambassador shooting sponsored product, a designer shooting your finished projects, or a blogger creating images for blogs or other media formats, planning to style makes all the difference.  Learn how to style sofas, rugs, tables, flowers, vases and more for putting together rooms like they belong in glossy design magazines. Courtney, an accomplished brand ambassador and trained photographer, will share her secrets and sensibilities.

CourtneyInstructor: Courtney of French Country Cottage
Courtney believes in the power of patina, that fresh flowers and a chandelier belong in every room and that the mix of rustic & refined is perfection. When she isn’t behind the computer blogging- she works freelance as a photographer and stylist for magazines, loves to travel and you might also find her sitting on the beach with her toes in the sand and a beach bag filled with peonies.   Courtney writes the blog French Country Cottage where she shares lifestyle, design, DIY & the ongoing renovations of her 1940’s cottage. With a style that is a little bit shabby, French country, and a touch of cottage mixed in- she loves the mix of rustic & refined and doesn’t like to follow all those design rules (except for the one about decorating with what you love). She thinks if it makes you happy when you walk in a room- it is perfect.

5:30PM – 7:30PM

Welcome Reception at the Beverly Hilton

All attendees are invited to attend our kickoff reception at the Beverly Hilton.


Sunday Official After Party: Sponsored by Traditional Home

Location to be announced.

Monday, March 6, 2017


Registration & Coffee in Exhibitors and Sponsor Pavilion


Welcome And Intro

Adam_Japko_41Adam Japko is founder of the Design Bloggers Conference, Home Design Digital Marketing Summit, and Esteem Media, Inc. Leading up to founding Esteem Media, Adam was President of DigitalSherpa, a high growth SMB social media and internet marketing business offering content, social media, reputation management, local listings, lead generation, web business intelligence, and other internet marketing programs. The company served over 4,000 SMBs.

These experiences, along with the success of his wine blog, WineZag, reaffirmed a deep belief that digital community engagement, quality content, and in-person networking are lethal tools for transforming brands and businesses in meaningful ways.


Opening Keynote: Amber Lewis 


What started out as a small interior design blog focusing on the documentation of Amber’s experiences as a first time homeowner and her passions for all things interiors, has since turned into a successful design-build firm with clients all over the country, a line of furniture and home goods, an e-commerce business, a brick and mortar retail operation, and a social media following with an audience reach in the millions.

As principal at Amber Interior Design and founder of the blog, Amber Interiors, she has garnered clients and followers from around the world. Hear how Amber assigns her success to blogging, Instagram, Pinterest, and a myriad of other social content.  She will share thoughts on getting focused on your message, how to share it in a personal way to facilitate connection with your audience, remaining aware of the competitive content around you but not letting it influence or discourage you, getting focused, and how to say no and when to say yes.

Today Amber Interior Design, Inc. provides designs for everything from large-scale residences to extensive commercial projects. Amber and her team work with architects and contractors to bring the distinct visions seen in her work, on her blog and in her retail Shoppe, to life. Amber imbues a bit of bohemian elegance in all of her projects, but craves a design challenge and opportunities to show off her ever-evolving style. No matter what the style she is asked to create, each space designed by Amber feels cozy, eclectic, and unique.


The Brand Ambassador Pitch & Leveraging the Design Blogosphere

As design blogging turned more organized, bloggers working with brands for mutual benefit is now de rigueur. Alexandria, Blogger Relations Specialist at Wayfair, shares experiences in commanding attention inside cluttered luxury consumer inboxes and how to build functional relationships in your brand ambassador role.  Linda Weinstein, founder of the One Room Challenge, will share insightful ways to connect and network with other bloggers while developing audience and brand. Linda will share field-tested insights for connecting with bloggers and cementing relationships that lead to material outcomes.  Benefit from her insights into the do’s and don’ts of working the blogosphere as simultaneous ambassador for both yours and third party brands.

Attendees will walk away with information on:
· How to find the right brands to work with
· How to write a great pitch
· How to evaluate how much to charge for sponsored work
· How to remain top-of-mind for brand contacts for future projects
· What things put you at the top of the list of people a brand never wants to work with

alex-byerAlex Byer oversees strategy for Wayfair’s blogger program, The Homemakers. Prior to working at Wayfair, she ran social media at Simmons College, the only all-women’s college in Boston. Outside of work, Alex runs marathons, blogs about life in Boston, and remembers the lyrics to most late ‘90s and early ‘00s pop songs.

Naples, Florida resident Linda Weinstein is the creator and owner of the widely anticipated event, the One Room Challenge™. In her role as director of the One Room Challenge™, Weinstein has motivated, supported, and inspired the design blogging community to transform spaces while encouraging one another in a noncompetitive, positive, and uplifting way. Everyone who takes the challenge is surrounded by endless encouragement. To date, the One Room Challenge™ is responsible for the transformation of over 1,000 rooms worldwide. She has partnered with dozens of corporate brands like Farrow & Ball, Karastan Carpets, Lowe’s, Wayfair, and so many more, vying to have their products featured throughout the One Room Challenge™. This past spring, the challenge announced a media partnership with House Beautiful


Refreshment Break

Networking on Exhibit and Sponsor Pavillion.


Google Shares: Tips On Increasing Content Monetization Through Engaged Audience 

Learn from Google (from the horse’s mouth)! With 10 million+ online publications including blogs and corporate spin sites competing for space, how do you keep your audience engaged long enough to monetize your content? The challenges content creators face are complex, but with tools, success can be had! Learn from the world’s leading search engine how best to monetize your content, keep your audience happy, and stay relevant with the ever-changing tech landscape.

Best practices on building your site for todays users which include:

  • Engaging your audience and what to do when you’ve run out of ideas (tips on creating the new/right content)
  • Driving traffic to your site (social media best practices)
  • Unlocking revenue (tailored/targeted advertising discussion/monetize content through surveys. ad alternatives through matched content)

Nancy Hwang leads global programs for the Online Partnerships Group targeted at helping small to medium size business use Google products to grow their business. In particular, Nancy’s teams touch over 1 million content creators and developers, offering targeted growth strategies at scale. Prior to Google, Nancy worked in consulting, where she advised companies ranging from technology to health care on business strategy. Nancy holds a BS from Stanford University and an MBA from UCLA Anderson. Outside of work, Nancy is an avid triathlete and music lover.


Want PR? Understanding the New Media Landscape’s Impact on Design Industry Public Relations

Learn from a panel of Design Industry Public Relations Professionals about ways to think about earned media, social media, blogging, and traditional media in a changed world of millions of self content creators.  Hear how to stand out in the noise without crashing into roadblocks, and ways to leverage the new content channels and hierarchies along with the more familiar yet elusive traditional print design media.

elizabeth-blitzerElizabeth Blitzer
Founder and Owner of Manhattan PR firm
Blitzer & Company




Kristin Giese
President, All Moxie Inc.

Andrew_JosephAndrew Joseph



Christina Juarez
Christina Juarez & Company, LLC


Lunch at the Beverly Hilton Hotel

Lunch is served with time for networking with Exhibitors and Sponsors.


Conference Scholarship Awards

The Design Bloggers Conference Scholarship is awarded to five worthy bloggers, and provides the opportunity to attend the conference to expand knowledge and networks in the interior home design blogosphere. The scholarship is established to assist serious bloggers and home design professionals that otherwise could not attend while in the process of building businesses, reputations, and brands.


Book Deals and Lines: New Interior Design Marketing Hoop?

Having worked with more than 100 design clients, Jill Cohen has arguably become the leading specialist in illustrated books and brand extensions for successful designers since she launched her agency in 2006. But, are books and line extensions the right path for every designer or blogger? Jill addresses that fundamental issue along with the ins and outs of book concept development, creation of outstanding presentation materials, author representation, book packaging, and brand marketing.

One time antique dealer and, even more famously, one of the original core group of Material Girl Blog authors, Julia is now a design brand on fire. As a Jill Cohen client, hear Julia speak about the process and strategic planning leading up her soon to be released new book Julia Buckingham Modernique.

julia-buckinghamAs a former antiques dealer, Julia Buckingham’s passion for antiques, artifacts and found objects translates into beautiful modern homes with a timeless quality that is so relevant to how families live today. Her skill at artfully blending styles and periods has made her a tastemaker and trendsetter with a reputation for flair and a genuine desire to create special places

jill-cohenJill Cohen is an accomplished book publishing and brand marketing professional. Her thirty years of experience has focused on marketing through the publication of illustrated books. After a distinguished career in the industry’s most prestigious companies, Jill has built her agency into what is today considered the “home” for illustrated books


Google Analytics For Dummies: Who Is That On Your Blog and Website & How the Heck Did They Get There?

Visitors leave an arrival trail to your website/blog, visible footprints of where they wandered on your site, and a clear mark of where they exited the scene.  Most importantly, this information is available to you through Google Analytics.  Learn how to navigate this research tool with a goal of attracting more visitors, creating content that is more interesting to your target audience, and bringing visitors to the places on your site you want them to visit most.

Corey PadveenCorey Padveen is the Director of Global Social Business Strategy at t2 Marketing International, and Google AdWords Certified, Google Analytics Certified, as well as a Certified Inbound Marketer.



Refreshment Break

Networking in the Exhibitor and Sponsor Pavilion.


Instagram, Instagram, Instagram!

Instagram is now the world’s leading social platform according to engagement metrics.  So happens, the visual marketing platform is perfectly aligned with the visual world of design.

sydandshea-mcgeeShea McGee will bring you behind the scenes of how it all started for her when she signed up for an Instagram account to promote her part time business three years ago.  With 30 employees and a successful design business, Shea did a lot of the right things, insisting today that growing her Instagram following was her single most important tactic.  She will help you understand how to provide value to followers, find your niche, target influencers, and hone your images for maximum engagement.

connor-dywerConnor Dwyer is a photographer that creates visuals and branding for businesses and people who are passionate about what they do. This SCAD grad can be found rocking the world of Instagram at @Connortd, @Connor.dwyer, and @Thadthefinger.  Hear Connor share his success in achieving Instagram Recommended User Status.  He will share his views on Instagram Stories, Boomerang, and Snapchat as well as his vision for power marketing on Instagram. Last year, Connor gave his take on Visual Marketing at the Design Bloggers Conference and was rated  #1 top speaker of the conference by attendees.  Guaranted to fall in love with Connor, your business will also be glad we invited him back.


Keynote: Ken Fulk

ken_fulk-1His website says “for a good time, call Ken Fulk 415-285-1164”.  So we decided to take him up on that and invited Ken to join us at DBC. Like a magician pulling a white rabbit from a top hat, Ken Fulk is a master of surprise.  Ken Fulk, Inc. is a creative think tank specializing in multi-disciplinary design for homes and commercial projects…..but extends way beyond all that too.  Ken will share his approach to his work and developing his brand into one of the most compelling, mysterious, sometimes elusive, but always fresh and exciting spectacles in the world of luxury design.

Ken Fulk is a designer of experiences big and small. He is renowned for his layered interiors and over-the-top parties. With a team of 50 “magic makers” to help bring his ideas to life, Fulk leads a team of architects, designers, branding and event specialists in both San Francisco and New York.

The Virginia-born designer has spent the last 20 years developing a business from turning his clients’ dreams into reality. Fulk has become the curator of lifestyles, not only designing homes, restaurants and hotels but also choreographing unforgettable weddings, parties and family getaways


Networking Reception at the Beverly Hilton

All attendees are invited to attend – held at the Beverly Hilton.


Monday Official After Party

Location to be announced shortly.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017


Coffee in Exhibitor and Sponsor Pavilion


Opening Remarks


Keynote: Brooke and Steve Giannetti 

giannettis-344Design blogger at the roots, Velvet and Linen, served as their start.  Brooke now runs her company’s design studio.  Steve, her husband, is a renowned architect specializing in unique combinations of classical and modern architecture.

Together they are authors of the books Patina Style and Patina Form and own the store Gianetti Home in Los Angeles specializing in custom furniture and imported antiques.  Their work has been published in Veranda, the New York Times, Milieu, Santa Barbara Magazine, C Magazine and more.

From blog to luxury home design empire, Brooke and Steve will share secrets and sensibility for building their sparkling brand and sticking to the work and styles they covet.


Hall of Fame Awards Presentation

DBC--16-HOF-Logo-400x400The role of the Design Bloggers Hall of Fame is to recognize excellence in blogging and new media in the field of home design. Each year, a new set of outstanding design blogs will become eligible through an open, online nomination process leading up to the ultimate recognition as Hall of Fame inductee.  We will announce the winners of all categories here at The Design Bloggers Conference.


Marketing Design Businesses: Era of Digital Disruption 

Drew and Chad have become focused on today’s tech saavy “Luxurians”.  In this session, both will establish who these buyers are in today’s commercial marketplace and top social channels, sharing success stories in mining these new digital client prospect pools.  They will cover approaches from both designer and showroom/company/brand perspectives.  Both are actively nurturing the brand>designer>client commercial food chain, and are wisely looking to the future with digital strategy practice and development intended to intersect disruptive online development in the world of luxury design commerce.

chad-starkChad Stark, Sr. Vice President and President of Decorative Furnishings Association, is the main figure behind the scenes at Stark. He continues to direct the company as an industry leader, while growing business in the digital age. As the operational wizard behind Stark, he manages all the technical details while remaining focused on providing the highest level of customer service to trade clients.

drew-mcgukin-638The New York Chapter of the International Furnishings and Design Association [IFDA] named Drew McGukin a ‘Rising Star’ in 2012; Departures Magazine has included Drew as a member of its Home Design Council since 2014; and, the leading online platform for home remodeling and design, continues to honor Drew with its “Best of Houzz” distinction in design for driving extraordinary online traffic through his online portfolio.


Refreshment Break

Networking in the Exhibitor and Sponsor Pavilion.


Turn Your Website and Blog Visitors into Clients: Inbound Marketing 

Hubspot is the leading thinker in today’s exploding world of inbound marketers.  Dylan will share the basics of inbound marketing and how to make inbound marketing tools work for your company.  During his presentation, Dylan will disect a few blogs and websites for attendees of the conference in real time, providing an interactive analysis of these audience members’ digital marketing strategies.  Not to be missed!

dylan-sellberg-speaker-headshotDylan Sellberg is an Implementation Specialist at HubSpot in Cambridge, MA. Dylan started his first business at age 11 and has been learning ever since. His day-to-day includes helping HubSpot customers implement software and adopt the inbound marketing methodology. At night, he attends business courses at Harvard. Prior to HubSpot, Dylan spent time at Catalina, managing accounts for Coca-Cola and Johnson & Johnson.


Keynote: Timothy Corrigan
The Big Reveal: Everything You Wanted to Know About Building A Successful Brand & Design Business, From One of the World’s Top Designers!

Whether you’re a novice blogger wanting to gain more followers or designer seeking to gain clients, you won’t want to miss this chance to learn from AD100 designer Timothy Corrigan, who will share his combined knowledge as a former top executive of one of the world’s largest advertising agencies and now one of the world’s most acclaimed interior designers. As one of our highest ranked speakers from past Design Blogger Conferences, Timothy will make a command performance as he reveals insider tips on positioning your brand, establishing sound business practices and utilizing social media to attract the attention of potential clients, editors, influencers, and licensors.

timothy-corrigan-newHailed in Architectural Digest as “Today’s Tastemaker,” Timothy Corrigan’s work is showcased in some of the world’s most extraordinary properties, with clients including European and Middle Eastern royalty, Hollywood celebrities and corporate leaders.  Timothy has designed fabrics, trims, furniture and floor covering for Schumacher and Patterson, Flynn & Martin, as well as two tabletop collections for Royal Limoges. He is designing passementerie for Samuel & Sons, wallpaper for Fromental and plumbing and door hardware for THG Paris, all to debut in 2017 & 2018.  Prior to forming his design firm in 1998, Timothy Corrigan had a successful career in advertising where he headed up Saatchi & Saatchi’s Bates Worldwide’s international operations.




Measuring Your Influence on Social Media and The Internet 

Have you wondered about the hours invested in social media, blogging, and website development?  How are they paying off for you and where do you stand visa vis your competitors?  Learn how professional measurement companies of social media and web influence analyze that.  What’s really important and what moves the needle.  It is time to stop wondering if your time is well spent, focused on the right content and channels.


Podcasts: Insights From Design Industry Stars

Podcasting is taking our community, and others, by storm.  There is a higher barrier to entry in this social content channel, but James, Nick and LuAnn have made the investments for the right reasons.  As a result, they have the opportunity to speak with the most successful and famous design professionals and brands every week.  Hear their top experiences interviewing design celebrities and what they learned.  Understand how social media is not just about sharing, but about learning from the key design influencers you network with to produce memorable content.

james-swanJames Swan is an award-winning interior designer, author and renowned podcaster, Million Dollar Decorating. He has spent the past 18 years, crafting classically influenced interiors for homes, restaurants, hotels and retail stores. His work has been featured in House & Garden, House Beautiful, The Los Angeles Times, The Boston Globe and The Chicago Tribune and his book “101 Things I Hate About Your House” won the 2011 American Bookseller’s Award.


If you’re in the field of interior design, then you’ve likely heard of Nick May. He’s the guy behind the mic at The Chaise Lounge podcast. Talking the business of interior design  each week, Nick May interviews successful interior designers from around the world to find out how they have grown their successful interior design business. He covers topics like marketing, client management, staff management, and all the little things that go into creating a great design business.  If you’ve listened to his podcast, you will know that aside from being a charming host, quick with the questions we all want answers to, Nick is a painting contractor with a business in Denver, Colorado, Walls by Design.

luann-nigara-200LuAnn Nigara is an award-winning window treatment authority, author, host of one of the most popular podcasts for the design industry, and overall business dynamo. Based in Livingston, New Jersey, LuAnn got her start in 1982 when she, her husband and cousin purchased a franchise of the Florida-based window treatment company, Window Works. With LuAnn at the helm of sales, they quickly expanded from New Jersey to serving the entire metro area from Philadelphia to Connecticut, and became the leading showroom in gross sales of the more than 120 stores Window Works stores around the country.


Website and Blog Income Generation: Curating Commerce

rewardStyle has extended itself into home design networks and luxury consumers, having established the business model in fashion first.  Hear about the opportunities for Interior Designs digital content publishers.  rewardStyle is not just for sourcing product for your projects.  Learn how Holly Phillips at The English Room has found a sensible path to income generation with rewardStyle through her blog.  Find new revenue streams for your business.

holly-hollingworth-269Holly Hollingsworth Phillips is a residential interior designer and owner of The English Room, which is based out of Charlotte, North Carolina. Holly’s style is elegant, eclectic and colorful. She has completed homes all over the east coast that have ranged from the super modern to very traditional while keeping it true to her style.

chelsee-adamsChelsee Adams is Director of Marketing at rewardStyle.


Digital Branding for the Marketplace of the Future: Millenials 

Millenials represent the future pool of luxury design clients.  Both Barclay and Michelle have found success in the market, but it requires focused branding tactics.  Hear how these two designers, wildly successful over years of stunning design projects, are mining the millennial marketplace with a purpose.

Since 1994, Barclay Butera has been the creative force behind his eponymous design firm and showroom in Newport Beach, California. His success in Newport prompted Butera to establish showrooms in West Hollywood, California, and Park City, Utah. Butera is renowned for his approachable elegance and glamorous, coastal-chic interiors.

barclay-buteraBarclay Butera’s inspirations are drawn from a diverse variety of grand architecture from coast to coast, European and far eastern influences including everything from the high-fashion runways to his far-flung world travels. But, he readily credits old Hollywood and Palm Beach as among his greatest muses. A media favorite for his humble yet confident demeanor, good looks and incredible talent, Butera continues to garnish continuous editorial coverage in all major shelter and lifestyle publications.

michelle-nussbuamerMichelle Nussbaumer’s Instagram description reads “Wife, mother of four, designer, lover of beauty, peace monger, tree hugger, and globetrotter.” She says, “That’s really who I am. In that order.” She has a reputation for making Dallas—and the world—a more beautiful place through her interior design, textile and furniture lines, and beautiful shop, Ceylon et Cie, located in the Design District. Her journey from West Texas wild child to Dallas design doyenne with four children includes detours through Rome and Los Angeles, tons of travel, and stints in everything from writing and juice-bar design to product development.


Wrap-up and Closing Remarks