A day of inspiration at Stylist Live

I was late to the Stylist bandwagon. Not just because I didn’t live in the UK until two years ago, but because, shamefully, I was always of the impression that nothing of value could be sitting between the pages being waved in my face by a tube-dwelling touter every Wednesday morning. 

All that changed last year when I was lucky enough to be a part of a project called 10 women, 10 stories, where we created an anthology of tales from powerfully inspiring women who had previously won a Women of the Future Award.

One of the women featured was Lisa Smosarski, Editor of Stylist. Her recollection of being a young girl dreaming about being a writer resonated with me. As did her desire to produce a magazine that the new generation of women would identify with; not just men, fashion and gossip—but career development, travel and current affairs.

In Stylist, I find a community of like-minded women—one where we are spoken to intelligently and openly. So, you can imagine my excitement when I discovered that Stylist hold an annual live event, where this community can transition from living in the pages of a magazine to real-life interaction.

I treated myself to an early-bird VIP ticket and, upon arriving at the venue, was immediately assured that it was money well spent.

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To start my day right, I was treated to a delicious Pip & Nut creation—berries and all—before having my portrait painted by the incredibly talented Poppy Waddilove.

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Next up was the fashion show, where I was lucky enough to sit front row.

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Evocative of the style pages of the magazine, the Stylist catwalk, sponsored by Swarovski, was filled with pieces that were as on-trend as they are accessible.

As long limbs strode past, we were taken on a journey that explored everything from an autumnal-inspired spice market to a futuristic world full of metallics.

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With the show coming to an end and beautiful textures and colours on the mind, it was time to shop.

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As someone with a penchant for truly unique products and boutiques, I was thrilled to see Not on the High Street, who is all too familiar with my credit card, showcasing some of it’s beautiful gifts and home wares.

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A few isles over, Hopscotch, creators of hand-made soy candles, stole my heart with their Fig + Melon concoction.

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After a quick stop-by Urban Decay to pick up an old favourite and mentally adding a MU DU London hat and Starkeys Lane botanical print to my Christmas wish list, it was back to VIP for some complimentary Chambord cocktails and sweet treats. 

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As usual, my fondness for documenting everything I do meant a phone re-charge was vital. I found a seat, and made some new friends, at the charging station—which also created the perfect environment for a mini digital detox with some colouring in.

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A session called ‘How to write your first novel… and actually finish it’ with best-selling author and actress, Janet Ellis, left me eager to put pen to paper (watch this space) and was yet another reminder of the power of shared ideas.

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From coding master classes to panel discussions about confidence, and hair treatments to independent boutiques, Stylist Live truly does have something to inspire all. I for one am already counting down to next year—hope to see you there!