At the end of last month I was lucky enough to be invited to come along to Weekend:In at a converted building called the Chicken Shed, situated among the rolling hills of Monmouthshire. I was really excited about going to this as I loved the idea behind this event which was all about bringing together a small number of influencers and local independent brands in a unique and intimate way over creative weekend full of activities, styling and workshops.
The event spanned two days with a few people staying the whole weekend but with many going to just either the Sat or Sun meaning. I had been following it on social media and had seen the Saturday involved a wreath making workshop which looked lovely and I wandered what we would be doing on the Sunday.
First I picked up fellow welsh blogger and friend Laura from Cardboard Cities and we made our way up through the Monmouthshire countryside to the most idyllic location. We arrived just in time for some fresh pastries and granola while getting to know everyone else and I love the idea of such a small event where people get to connect properly and spend the whole day together and not feeling rushed and given the time to share ideas and be inspired.
After coffee and getting aquatinted we where introduced to the The Juice Collective and cold press juicing which was something I thought I knew a little about but the founders of the Juice Collective Amy & Emma had a wealth of knowledge about the subject and I didn't realise how much more nutrient dense cold press is in comparison to normal juice. It was also really interesting to hear their story so far and how their brand has grown and developed and how committed they are to sticking with an organic fresh product. We also got to have a little taster session of all their current juices of which I can all say are truly divine!
After our juicing session we moved onto a little creative styling session with Seven Boot Lane, a shoe company which still produces shoes in the traditional way. After we had been given a run down about the background of this small independent brand and with the Chicken Shed oozing that Scandi style we where inspired by the word "Hygge" to bring together images capturing the idea of cosiness and happiness. For this I paired ups with Laura and it was really fun to see what everyone else came up with as well, in a completely relaxed and supportive environment.
After a morning of styling, photography and enjoying the wonderful view it was time to sit down and enjoy a light lunch with some delicious fresh rye bread, green salad and lots of roasted veggies with some local sausages for the meat eaters and a cheeky glass of wine. This was followed by the most amazing carrot cake I have had all year which came from a Bristol baked bakery which I need to find the name for because I would be more than happy to travel there weekly simply for their divine cakes.
Our last session of the day was just perfect for this time of the year as the talented Karl and Rebecca from Wildflower Illustrations Co inspired us all to try our hand at homemade Christmas Cards using watercolours. It was so relaxing and therapeutic to sit down and paint while having a warming cup of coffee and some biscuits. I enjoyed it so much that I continued to make Christmas Cards this year at home and is something I am going to try and do from now on. Rebecca's illustrations are particularly wonderful and if your looking for some unique stationary they are amazing.
I honestly believe smaller events like these that allow more a more in depth opportunity for influencers and independent business to connect is the way forward and it's always fantastic to hear the story behind each brand and how they have grown from strength to strength. I also felt like the companies enjoyed bouncing off our ideas and as a collective it was a fantastic way to spend a day.