Hi, everyone!! First – I apologize for what seems like a lengthy hiatus from an actual blog post for you. I am so happy to be back 😀 These last few weeks have been a whirlwind and part of it is because of the story behind this post!
I just returned from a week-long vacation and I have SO MUCH fantastic content that I am working on to share with all of you over the next couple of weeks so stay tuned. This post is about my very first blogger adventure that took place last week.
A couple of months ago on my Instagram account I eluded to some exciting news that I had received. Due to confidentiality and some other legalities I am not able to divulge all of the specifics to you but I can share an overall background of the project that I get to be a part of for the next 8 months. Myself, along with 14 other fantastic Midwest bloggers were selected to serve on a Fashion Panel with a marketing company who is working with a national retailer on their brand, stores, etc.
After a lengthy interview and selection process I was notified in March that I had been chosen as one of the final 15 to be a part of this exciting project. The Fashion Panel entails three separate trips/sessions over the next 8 months that involve detailed focus group work with the other women on the panel as well as executives from the retailer we are working with; all run by the marketing company.
The first of these three trips took place last week and all of us got to meet for the first official session in St. Louis, Missouri! While I can’t share details of the session it was an incredible experience and was made so wonderful by getting to know and work with the other 14 women. I am already so looking forward to our second trip in a few months when we can all work together again. I will be sharing more about these gals on Instagram so that you can get to know them as well 🙂 Below is a group shot of all of us on the final day of session one!
We stayed at a boutique hotel in STL called the Moonrise Hotel in a neighborhood called the Delmar Loop. It had the ever-popular multicolor lighted staircase that was perfect for photos during the session! Even though I can’t share specifics from inside the session I wanted to share a few other tidbits from my time in general in STL. I had never been there before and the neighborhood we stayed in offered up some great food and the 15 of us were able to make some fun memories over the meals we shared as we got to know one another!
On the first afternoon I arrived a little bit early and had some down time prior to our first evening meet and greet. I asked the bellman if there was a coffee shop within walking distance where I could sit down and read for awhile. He suggested an Italian pastry and coffee shop a couple of blocks away and he said I wouldn’t be disappointed! I enjoyed my afternoon spent at Piccione Pastry. I indulged in an indescribable cannoli and an iced mocha while soaking in some inspiration from my two favorite sources: HGTV magazine and the Magnolia Journal.
The two evening meals we shared as a group were within our neighborhood of our hotel. The first evening we enjoyed Italian cuisine at Tuvolo and I had a piece of lasagna that I think weighed about 3 pounds and some excellent wine. The second night it was only appropriate that we enjoyed some downhome STL BBQ so we dined at Salt and Smoke for some family style barbeque and the best potato salad I have ever eaten.
All in all it was an excellent experience and I’m so excited that the project is only getting started. I will look forward to sharing parts 2 and 3 with all of you as we progress through the remainder of the project and 2 other fun travel destinations together! As I reflect on this trip I am so thankful for the opportunities that sugar, spice, and style that’s nice has brought to me so far and I look forward to hopefully more things in the future! A huge thanks to all of you who take the time to read and follow along with me 🙂 I am certainly grateful for each of you.
Next up: straight from STL I hopped on another jet plane and went even farther south to visit some of my best friends who live down in Austin, Texas. My next post will break down that trip with all the details and of COURSE…more food!!!
Lastly, if you aren’t following along with me yet on Instagram I post daily content there and would love to have you join me – you can find me at @sugarspiceandstylethatsnice
Be back soon,