On a warm Brisbane day, the room started to fill up with the excited chatter of voices coming together to enjoy the yearly Create and Connect conference 2022.
This year we savoured the light and airy space of The Lussh at Woolloongabba, brimming with the smiling faces of people who were collectively experiencing that joyful sense of belonging.
Our emcee extraordinaire Kirsten Devitt welcomed everyone from their diverse backgrounds and experiences while acknowledging and paying respect to the traditional owners in a vibrant opening speech. Kirsten is indeed the beating heart of this event year after year.
To kick things off, Claire Ritchie and Kirsten had a meaningful conversation sprinkled with wisdom about Claire’s experiences as an artist in business. Bonnie of Peppermint magazine hosted a panel discussion about turning your passion for sewing into an ethical business featuring Kasey Rainbow, Christina of Made590 and Kathy from Meta Design Co
The audience was thrilled to hear from Troy and Amanda, head of the team at Blaklash Creative, Open House, Aboriginal Art Co and the new owners of Magpie Goose about their work as a First Nations business supporting Indigenous artists all around Australia.
Then it was our turn!
We, Renee and Angela, hosted our panel with a focus on building your own brand with our lovely guests Cas Thompson of Paxxy and Flora and Claire Ritchie, discussing everything from logo development, building trust to brand expression at markets and even branding pie.
Closing the day with an enjoyable conversation between Kirsten and Christina Kelly of Made590, long-time retail collaborators who only met the previous evening, sharing insights about shifting from a retail centred business to one with a renewed online focus and how sometimes your business isn’t what you expect it to be.
We all enjoyed having our very own fashion illustration generator Eugenie Zhan on site, tasty coffee from a cute little cart, delicious catering and of course the traditional slide notes created by Brisbane’s own Jimmy Patch. You could even enjoy watching ceramics educator and creator Bonnie Hislop doing her thing during the breaks.
Renee and I are always honoured to support and participate in this event. The sense of community and belonging is energising and we always participate with the knowledge that there’s respect in the room, a thirst for knowledge and inspiration all around us.
Props to Rachel Kimberley for catching these sweet snaps. It’s always a lovely reunion with Rach.
Thanks as always go to the sharpest event manager in the east, Eleanor Miller, and to the committee and members of BrisStyle Inc. who provide the resources to make the Create and Connect Conference 2022 what it is. Kudos to Brisbane City Council for supporting an event that provides so much joy and advice to an important cultural influence on the city itself.
Our love, hugs and bundles of appreciation go to Bel Harris, the queen of all things BrisStyle, who continually strives to create experiences and opportunities for the maker community to feel welcome, informed and inspired.
Last but not least, a huge thank you to everyone from the maker community who purchased a ticket and joined in on the day! We met so many incredible folks and reconnected with plenty of familiar faces and our cups are still very much full.