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Tuesday 28 July 2015

40-plus Blogger Meetup Flashback, Part 1

The bar was set rather high for the International 40+ Blogger Meetup in Vancouver, but reach it I did, several times in fact. It was no easy feat. I had to practise being nice and a good co-host alongside Our Fearless Leader Suzanne (Suzanne Carillo) and Sue (A Colourful Canvas), while fretting how to maintain the gross facade of my blog. Plus, a doyenne of hostessing, Trina of Tea Time with Trina, would be attending. Gaaa! This blogger attendee sadly picked up my anxiety.
Heh heh, there was a mini-pyjama party. I have several TOP SECRET photos worthy of a mini-VOGOFF at a later date. My stress, by the way, instantly melted away with my first blogger meetup, lunch with Sylvia of 40+ Style and her son, followed by an afternoon of shopping. From then on, I knew this event would be a joyful experience. 
Pao of Project Minima tried to help brace me for the ensuing onslaught of manners in the midst of chaos. True to form, I was more interested in the sweaty naked men on her vintage fabric than what Dr. Blah Blah had to say. Anyway, I'm already a top pro at stress; I don't need lessons on it. With the thoughtfulness of a true hostess, I generously shared my wisdom and experience in the field with all our blogger guests.
40-plus blogger meetup in Vancouver, Pao
Greetje of No Fear of Fashion seemed untouched by my sagacity. As you can see, my tutorials had no effect on her whatsoever. No wonder...
40-plus blogger meetup in Vancouver, whaaaa...?
Photo by Tracey Rossignol of Fashion Forward 40
In the photo above I am wearing a tiger playsuit with palazzo pant legs and a matching maxi quilted overskirt from Pao. Her mother made and wore it, and although she has sadly passed away, this outfit and her cool taste will live on.  I hadn't brought a change of clothes for dinner at Boston Pizza and didn't have time to zip home, then there was Pao to the rescue!! Thank you! (You'll probably see better photos of it elsewhere.)
Greetje had her own master technique for handling stress: baby steps. Professionals everywhere recommend this approach. The genius of Greetje is that she has exponentially enhanced its impact with a literal interpretation and an assistive accessory.
40-plus blogger meetup in Vancouver, baby steps
This photo was taken on Sunday afternoon at My Sister's Closet, a charity shop which funds support services for abused women. Purchases were made. I bought some oversized white Olsen brand baggy pants. Afterwards we headed to Timeline Boutique, a consignment shop a block away.
On Friday afternoon, a group of us took refuge from the rain at Holt Renfrew, Vancouver's upscale fashion department store. The positive energy blasting from our little group was contagious and we definitely got special treatment as result. Very special thanks go to Sales Associate Corey Mah. Holts, you need to give this guy a Big Promotion!! Everywhere our group went we heard this: Are you artists? Do you work in the style business? Heh. Of course, darling.
Now that I look back on the blogger event, it is mostly a blur.
40-plus blogger meetup Vancouver, it's a blur
On Sunday, ready to hit the road back to California, Anne of SpyGirl kindly dropped me off at My Sister's Closet with the bags of unclaimed clothing swap items. Pao joined us. The swap was a blast but there was no blood-letting at all. Hm. Sheila kindly lent us her room for the event and helped me pack up afterwards.
The lack of focus could perhaps be attributed to the smoking of dodgy substances at Prohibition, the speakeasy at Rosewood Hotel Georgia. In this photo Greetje and Suzanne display their uber-cool, sophisticated Pretz smoking style. As a rank amateur I put out the flame when I tried to light my stick. A word of caution: these particular unfiltered Pretz leave a distinct garlic aftertaste.
40-plus blogger meetup Vancouver, smoking Pretz
Yes, we were being juvenile. Absolutely. On Friday night, after dinner at Boston Pizza, quite a few of us went to the bar. It was dark and lovely with a jazz/blues band and candles, also great as lighters in a pinch. We were nestled together in a cozy corner. And yes, there was dancing involved. On Sunday night, I met Patti, Sylvia, and Pao for drinks at Hotel Vancouver.
Here is Patti after she had just executed a lovely sidewalk twirl. I think this photo kind of sums up how I felt about the meetup.
40-plus blogger meetup Vancouver, smoking Pretz
And a few bloggers about town, very Sex and the City.
40-plus blogger meetup Vancouver, bloggers in the city
I was so caught up in what was going on that I didn't pull out my camera at all on Thursday night, which involved an impromptu pre-event dinner with lovable Trina and her husband, and Sylvia, Greetje, and Suzanne down at English Bay, nor on Saturday, the day we went to Granville Island and Earls. I did, however, manage on Sunday to get photos of 11 people for my street style blog, which I resurrected. 

If you would like a full chronological rundown of the goings-on, Sheila of Ephemera has done an outstanding post, which also includes a list of attendees. I suspect there will be many more posts more coherent than this one, heh, and I can't wait to read them. Click HERE to see the Instagram posts on the event. You don't have to be signed up to view the photos.

Thanks to everyone who came, especially those of you who travelled far to get here. You are all schtellar!! I've never felt such an affinity with a big group of people before, except maybe in clubs at school. Smart, funny, talented, stylish - each and every person I met was a true beauty inside and out. I was worried that I wouldn't be able to connect with everyone in such a large group, but people naturally broke up into smaller groups off and on throughout the event. 

To those of you who couldn't make it, don't worry, we were talking about you all the time. Heheh. But in the best possible way of course. 

And now I need time to recover. I'm wiped out!! Gaaa!

I also put up a photo-only post to give you a sense of the time we spent together, Part 2. 

Finally, a huuuuge thank you to Sylvia40+ Style, for her gobstoppingly 
humbling post she did on me. 
She was smitten with my flowy robe. Heh.

Cheers! I'm off to take a nap, another one.

(Photos in Part 2 are HERE.)


  1. Thank you for this, and for everything you did to make the event schtellar! I had an unforgettable, giddy-making time with you all. I look so happy in that sidewalk picture because I had just found a restroom nearby, Ahhhhhh. xox

  2. LOL-Patti I know THAT feeling!

    Melanie, you are so awesomesauce, as the kids I used to teach would say. Thank you for helping to host this wonderful event and for just being you. There is so much more I want to say but cannot articulate as my brain has gone to mush. xoxoxo

  3. I saw your flowing robe featuring in the pics. Did you order wind specially? Or eat beans?
    Maybe it was the stress making its way out!
    What a manic and fun time it looks. Now go and rest!! Xo Jazzy Jack

  4. I too was smitten by your flowy robe and loved Sylvia's post, in honor of the star that you are. Yes, smart, funny, talented, stylish! I can see it in your photos and in every post that I read on your blog and the blogs created by the amazing people that gathered for this event.

  5. Melanie! Thank you so much for these photos. I'm so sorry I had to miss this. I pretended I was there by emptying out my closet and having a clothes swap with myself. You were quite clearly the Schtar of this and probably Every gathering.

  6. Loved this post. Had to laugh so much. Over this post and while I was at the blogger meet-up. Like you I enjoyed it so much. You have said it all. It is going to be hard to make a post about the event myself. Perhaps I should make a post consisting of links to other blogs haha.
    Now I will be late for work.

  7. I knew you all would have a whale of a time and it certainly looks like you do! Fantastic photos that capture the vibe of the meet up. And in the photo of you and Greetje, Greetje looks like she's grabbing her boob, so maybe Melanie you DID have an effect on her!

  8. gorgeous!
    all this fab women in one place!
    happy lounging :-)

  9. Ha! I love this post. What an amazing meet-up. You all clearly had so much fun :D



    And wonderful, all of it wonderful, all of you wonderful. xo

  11. looks like so much fun! It's the first time in my life I wanted to become 40+ sooner to hang out with you gals

    Inside and Outside Blog

  12. It's so cool to see the women who seem so calm and composed (like Sylvia, for instance) on their IG and blogs, cutting loose and letting their hair down (so to speak). I'm so glad everyone was able to make it and they had such a good time. I'm off to read everyone else's recap of the weekend!

  13. Congratulations, Melanie! You survived! Love your post and photographs. Even though I wasn't there, I feel like all you wonderful women are friends. We all share a love of fashion as we stumble our way through our crazy, hectic lives.

  14. This is a great post ! I love your photos , comments and behind the scenes peeks ~ Okay - I was there.... looks like I missed out on some of the after hours fun , still I had a great time , and it's all new for me so I'm hoping there will be another meet up next year ? Thank you for the fantastic dresses from the swap - I wore one Sunday to a bbq - and felt your creative vibe. I need to take more pics to share - but now I get to go pack... we are moving this weekend walk in closet - yay !! Cheers !, Wendra

  15. just testing my new Wordpress identity - it's like having a twin in a separate dimension.

  16. This sounds like such a fun event that I missed. I hope this will be an annual event and I will be able to attend next year.


    Would love to see you Thursday for TBT Fashion link up.

  17. Yay! I've been dying to see some photos of you lot! So glad you had a blast. xxx

  18. wheeee! Who is that first person in b&W?? Thanks Melanie for all you did, I couldn't believe you were just non-stop. Along with Sue and Suzanne, what an amazing trio. And thank goodness others took photos, I'm so lame with that. Now how big should they be to post? I know the 72 dpi thing, but what about size in inches or pixels...? I never knew I was doing it "wrong." I love the jewelry, the shirt, oh my. My do over. The whole weekend was marvelous.

  19. Awwww, it sounds like it was so much fun! And that tiger playsuit - I saw it on another blog. It's perfect for you! :D

  20. SO much fun!!!!!!! This is truly the most epic blog meetup to date! Well done for being the gracious loony host! ;-)

  21. Great shots! The mood is palpable ! Love greet with her pants down, the huddle of "smokers' :), and your fish face....
    You caught the mood of this trip, I think you. I wish i could have come!
    XX, Elle


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