Yes, I realize I don't leave for 23 days, but I'm already thinking through what to pack for BlogHer '10. My mom and dad were here this weekend and I showed my mom what I was thinking of wearing. She's never been to NYC or BlogHer, but she thought my choices were good. (Thanks, Mom.) I've read some great guides and posts about what others wear and I think the best advice I've read has been to dress in something that's comfortable yet professional. It is a conference, after all. I'll be networking all weekend, granted for myself and my own little site here, but I still want to convey a professional attitude. So I've decided to dress as I would for the first day of rehearsal for a new show. I'll wear things that are practical, yet stylish, comfortable, yet show my personality.
The biggest challenge for me is going to be the fact that I'm not staying at the convention hotel, but rather with a friend in my old neighborhood in Queens. I don't mind the commute and I certainly don't mind all the cash I'm saving by not having a hotel room. That said, I'll have to plan for outfits I can change into in the bathroom or maybe the Serenity Suite. (Unless a blog friend offers me use of her room to change, or I could always call up a friend in Manhattan and drop by their apartment, I suppose.) Either way, I need my stuff to be portable and easy to care for, especially since I more than likely won't have access to an iron in the middle of the day. I'm bringing Dean's small rolling suitcase, which should be compact enough not to kill me on the subway, but big enough to hold my laptop, camera, makeup and a change of clothes.
My packing list is starting to shape up. Here are my thoughts about what to bring:
- Laptop with all its accouterments.
- Camera--I'm going to try to talk Marcus into letting me bring his Olympus camera because it's 1000000 times nicer than my point-and-shoot. I not only want to take pictures of the conference, but of my IRL friends and favorite places in the city. Plus, there are some awesome breakout sessions about photography for your blog, so I'd like to have the camera with me so I can fiddle with it while learning new tricks!
- Cute dress for parties that will go with the shoes I wear to the conference that day.
- Regular AND travel makeup bags. The regular one will be what I use in the morning, then I'll bring my travel-sized one with me for touch-ups throughout the day. (Yes, I'm that vain.)
- Priority Mail flat-rate box. I'll use this to mail my swag home to myself!
- Snacks. I keep hearing how hungry you get (and I believe it!), so I'm packing my favorite trail mix: almonds, craisins and M & Ms. If you sit next to me, I'll share with you.
- Business cards. I'm ordering mine from Vistaprint.com.
- Clothes: khaki pants, jeans, a couple of dresses, blouses/t-shirts, pj's, yoga pants (not for BlogHer), super-comfy (but cute) shoes, sunglasses, rain slicker, rain boots if they fit into the bag, shorts or capris for Sunday and Monday.
Fortunately, I spent several years navigating the subway with everything from luggage to giant binders for work to a baby stroller, so I know what I can and can't handle on the train. I'm putting cab fare in my budget for at least Saturday night, since I'll be coming home late from CheeseburgHer and hopefully toting lots of cool swag.
If you're going or have gone to BlogHer in the past, what did you pack that was a life-saver? Anything you wish you'd packed, but didn't? Be sure to let me know if you're going this year--I want to meet you!