Event Recap: TCF Style Expo 2019

Here it is an entire week later after TCF Style Expo 2019 and I am ready to give you all the juicy details about the weekend that was! If you’re new here and not familiar with what TCF Style Expo is, that’s perfectly ok because I’ve done you the service of placing a link right HERE for you to catch up!

So the easiest way for me to break it all down is just taking it day by day; so here we go!

Friday the Kickoff

Friday began with what I like to refer to as the kickoff to the weekend. To start, bright and early Friday morning Marie Denee hosted the Blogger Mastermind Class. This class debuted at TCF Style Expo 2018 and was designed to help bloggers to elevate their blog into a business or maximize their blog potential if it is already a business. This year the Blog Mastermind Class was sponsored in part by Mediavine. Alongside Marie was guest speaker Corissa Enneking editor and chief of the blog Fat Girl Flow.

 

As the evening hours rolled in; from 5-7 a brand to blogger speed dating event was held. This gave bloggers and brands the ability to meet face to face to discuss potential brand collaborations and provide each other advice from their perspective places within the industry. While I didn’t get an opportunity to participate; from the feedback of those who did I gather it was a purposeful addition to the evening.

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Blogger AP Young wearing Torrid

The brand speed dating event was followed up by the VIP mixer where the fabulous folk of the plus community got to get together to network, reconnect, and party a little something something. While I didn’t stay long because I’m secretly 80 years old and have to be in my bed by 9; I was able to catch up with some of my favs and do a lil shimmy before I headed home!

Saturday Day 1

Blogger Brunch ft. Project Runway Alumni

Saturday morning the expo kicked off with an intimate brunch featuring a panel of innovative and inspiring women in the plus community. We had the pleasure of a Q&A session hosted by Marie Denee featuring a panel of women who were plus community representatives on the hit show Project Runway.

The panel consisted of Kenya Freeman (season 16 finalist) designer and owner of Sylvia Mollie, Plus model extraordinaire Liris Crosse (season 16 model winner), and Project Runways first plus designer to win Ashley Nell Tipton (season 14 winner).

 

The ladies spoke candidly and honestly about what it was like being front and center in the fashion industry which is not known for it’s celebration of plus size bodies. Each of these ladies shared the stress and the triumph they experienced while breaking barriers in the fashion industry and doing so on national television.

 

While America was watching carefully edited and curated clips; these women were enduring their own personal trials while standing tall and ensuring that plus representation was occurring outside of the plus community. They were inspiring to listen to and I would bet my bottom dollar that whomever was present for this brunch walked away with a nugget or two of wisdom.

The Expo Hall

After brunch was wrapped up, I made my way to the expo at last! When I walked in I was taken aback by how the TCF Team had seamlessly turned a simple ball room into a one stop shop of fashion and fun.

There were so many vendors to checkout! Some of the vendors were: One of my personal favs, Lorenza James by Elle Dove, Courtney Noelle, Paint by Shawn Denise, Big and Purty, Fashion to Figure,Curved by Sylvia Mollie, Ashley Neil Tipton Designs, Curve Athletics, Curvato by Nicci Daniels, Ella & Oak, Bawdy Love, Apples Peaches Pears, Big Boys are Cute, J. Bolin, Ruth E. Closet, and Big Fig Mattress. This isn’t even the complete list but this gives you an idea of how dope of an experience this was!

 

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Now, we know TCF Style expo is all about the shopping, but of course it’s all about fashion too! So of course you know our favorite hosts with the most Big Ray & Chenese Lewis were in the building to kick off all the fun to hit the main stage for the weekend. Some of the fashion shows on Saturday included Fashion to Figure & MVP amid others over the course of the weekend.

 

I left the first day of the expo feeling good about everything I had seen and the networking I had done. While the party was over for me it was not over for others as TCF Style Expo hosted a Pajama Party later on in the evening!

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Flyer courtesy of @tcfstyleexpo Instagram page.

Sunday Day 2

Sunday morning we showed up bright and early to have Coffee and Conversation with the esteemed Tasha Cobb-Leonard.

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Marie made sure that we got a good-good message on that lovely Sunday morning of the expo. Tasha shared the stories of her highs, lows, victories and losses all while motivating each person present to take control of their choices. Tasha  is a renaissance woman in her own right being an award winning Gospel artist, entrepreneur of 2 businesses (Fritz Eyewear & Curve Athletics) all while balancing newlywed life and motherhood. It was such a pleasure to get to hear her speak.

As we moved into the rest of the day, the expo did not disappoint! There was more fashion shows, more panels including one moderated by Shainna of A Thick Girls Closet featuring speakers  Liris Crosse and Karla Tobie sharing their tips on how to maximize your social media reach.

 

And of course not to skimp on the panel menu, J. Bolin, Nicci Gilbert and Ashley Nell Tipton came to educate us about Finding Your Own Style.

 

The entire expo was a complete blast! Marie Denee delivered all the sauce with her 5th expo. She made sure to top off the weekend with a cherry when she announced that TCF Style Expo would no longer be Atlanta based and was transitioning into The TCF Style Experience that would be traveling around the country in select cities including Los Angeles, Chicago and Dallas starting in 2020! While I will be disappointed one of the largest plus events will no longer be in my own backyard; I am certainly excited for the growth of Marie Denee and the TCF brand!

I couldn’t possibly wrap up my recap without showing ya’ll the awesome swag bag provided to us courtesy of some dope sponsors that include Cricket Wireless, Ashley Nell Tipton, Eloquii, Anthropologie, Sol de Janeiro, Love Anybody, Valentia Artisan Skincare, Chenese Lewis, Good Clean Love, Grow Girl, Mediavine, Curvy Cuties, Hyperbiotics, Lane Bryant , Dr. Bronners, Glow Beauty, 21 Squared, MVP Collection, The Travel Divas, Bloom Bras, Koils, Purple and Pink Beautes, Sun Grubbies, and Azazie. 

That’s a mouthful right? Always super thankful for the bomb gift bags!

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On a special note:

In 2017 I was a newbie to the plus blogging community; Marie and her TCF Team took a chance on me and granted me a press pass to the expo. I got to meet her there and she was so kind and genuine and told me she wanted to help me in whatever way she could to bring my vision to life.

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Left: AP Young Right: Marie Denee TCF Style Expo 2017

I am forever humbly grateful that she saw past a follower count on social media and took a chance on me in more ways than one! Congratulations on all that you do in the future and I can’t wait to see what the TCF Style Experience brings us in 2020!

Until Next Time A-Team,

AP Young signature with kiss print.