Networking At Cosmo’s Self Made Summit

When you think of Cosmopolitan magazine you might still think of pages full of sex tips and advice on “How To Please Your Man” but that is a thing of the past. Gone are the racy pages and you’ll see more about issues that are relatable. This would be things that you feel are really aimed at you. With the main audience being 29 or younger (amongst others), jobs and careers will be a popular factor. With cracking a career that is right for you in the current climate, they hit the nail of the head with their Self Made Summit. I headed to County Hall last Saturday.

The day started with registration and breakfast. We then had an introduction to the day by Farrah Storr, the editor of Cosmo. The first keynote speaker was Olivia Palermo, who you might recognise from reality show The City but she is a key influencer in fashion. She spoke about how she works, how much detail goes into her website, social media etc and gave out advice.

There were 3 sessions for everyone at the summit. The first I went to was “Make Me Famous: The Power Of Social Media To Launch a brand. The speakers were Hugo Taylor, Made In Chelsea Star turned business owner of Taylor Morris London, Alice Liveing founder of Clean Eating Alice, Youtuber, blogger and writer Louise Pentland and Jess Ronan, the Head Of Small Business at Instagram. It was interesting to see how people started and how they control their social channels. It was really interesting to hear from someone who worked for Instagram as it is seen as one of the most powerful social media channels.

The second session I went to was From Blog To Brand. The speakers were Rosie Fortescue from Made In Chelsea and owns her own jewellery line, Sam Chapman from Pixiwoo who you will recognise from Youtube and as an owner of Real Techniques brushes, Vlogger Fleur De Force and Sedge Beswick, the managing director of SeenConnects. Sam, Fleur and Rosie have used their blogs and websites to launch a career, build a brand and assist with social media and content. There was a mix of planning and those who post when they have something to post.

Lunch was such a pleasant surprise! I was expecting sandwiches and nibbles but instead got a bento box with lemon chicken, salmon, spiralised veg, potato cakes with haloumi and olives. It was all delicious, light and helped make the day feel special. If you wanted to feel even more special, there was lots going on to pamper you. There were hair stylists on hand, you could get HD Brows, get a manicure, get your make up done and more! If you wanted a decent headshot you could get some for free! There was even an option to get a monogrammed leather purse from Mon Purse!

The second keynote of the day was Katherine Ryan. She spoke of the struggle she had when first starting out and how she worked hard to get to where she was.

The third session of the day was “Turning Your Hobby Into Your Dream Job” with Alfie Deyes. You might know him as PointlessBlog and boyfriend of fellow YouTuber Zoe Sugg (Zoella). I myself am a big fan of PointlessBlog and other YouTubers so I was excited to hear him talk. He spoke about how he started and how he copes with the work, the fame and how to handle it. I may have shamelessly gone and asked for a selfie at the end but I truly admire someone who puts their life out there so publicly.

The overall thoughts of the day was positive. I met some great people, made friends and networked. I got to hear from some people I really admired. The speakers that made my day were Sam Chapman and Louise Pentland. They were down to earth and came across as so friendly and lovely. Louise is a massive inspiration to me, working hard, keeping a work/life balance and writing a book. Ultimately that would be my aim.

I am so happy I went to the Self Made Summit and I would urge people to check out Cosmo events. As well as all the amenities, the great goody bag and food – I met fabulous people and got a lot of it. THAT is how you host an event!

Being A Tourist In My Own City – London

I have a love/hate relationship with London. Being from the outskirts, I am used to the tube, the sights and everything in between.

Working in Soho means I usually steer clear of central on a weekend all together. If possible, I try and stay in Hackney, going as far as Liverpool Street.

When we have family visiting, it’s usually a time that we can see a few sights. This weekend was no exception.

We did the classics; Borough Market, Tower Bridge, The Southbank, Big Ben, Parliament, Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace and Covent Garden. Sounds like a lot for one day but not all that far from one another.

It was nice to see London through a tourists eye. To be honest, I can walk through these places so quickly because I have seen it all before. London really is beautiful and it’s so easy to take it for granted.

The Southbank is one of my favourite places in London. It may be touristy but it feels laid back. There’s kids running around, tourists taking pictures, music playing and incredible views.

When you are next in the city, take a second to look up at some of the great buildings and architecture. It’s the true heart of London that can take your breath away!

Christmas In London

Christmas time comes round so quickly! I have been fully excited for a good month or so. ¬†We put our tree up just before we went to Amsterdam and I have been in the full flow of catching up with many people’s Vlogmas’s on YouTube (yes, I am one of those people).

The lead up to Christmas can be quite a stressful and frantic time at the best of times but London seems to go into absolute overdrive. Thankfully, working in Central London means that I can pop to the shops on my lunch break. Soho is a stones throw from Oxford Street so it was perfect if I needed to pick anything up. The downside to working that central was how unbelievably busy it was. Journeys became even more of a nightmare and wanting to do anything after work meant you had the same idea as everyone else in London!

I live in Homerton. The great thing about East London is that it can be pretty self contained. I live near Hackney Marshes and the canal, I have supermarkets in Leyton and Hackney and it is only a very short bus journey to Stratford and Westfield. If I wanted to, I wouldn’t have to go anywhere else. This made a difference in the lead up to Christmas.

After a team lunch for the content and SEO lot at work on the Wednesday, there were drinks and the option to go home early. I took advantage of a quiet train time and got home for 4pm which was bliss! After tying up all loose ends on the Thursday and the Friday morning it was that time – my out of office was turned on and I had nothing to do until the 4th January!
I met my boyfriend in waterloo as he works nearby. We went for a wander and ended up in a place called the Olympic Cafe for lunch near Lower Marsh Market. For just over a tenner, we had a great lunch that I can’t recommend enough. I had a duck noodle soup whereas Andrew had a pork noodle soup with crackling. So tasty and exactly what we needed before the stressful food shop.

We went to Stratford as there was a larger M&S to get the rest of our food for the weekend. It was rammed, there was hardly anything on the shelves so we gave up a few minutes into the chaos. We hopped on the train and got off at Hackney Central where the M&S was much quieter and relatively stress free!

On Christmas Eve we headed to Hackney to go and get our Turkey. I didn’t want to leave the food shop til the Saturday as the thought of going on a wild goose chase for food was not what you wanted! Christmas was just me and my boyfriend this year, with the chance to see family a few days after Christmas instead. We did the same last year and it means our time is pretty chilled out and it is nice to relax after a frantic month or so. We’ve nailed the roast dinner too so there are not any disappointments along the way either.

When walking back home we picked up some cinnamon buns from Charles Artisan Bread on Lower Clapton Road. They were delicious and really similar to some incredible ones we had last year in Copenhagen! After an afternoon of chilling – Andrew playing FIFA and me watching Zoella and Tanya Burr – we headed to the pub.

Our local is great. Good food, beers are pretty cheap and a nice local feel. We love the Adam and Eve, it is a good spot to go for a drink or two. We then walked to The Elderfield (if you watch Tattoo Fixers they go in there regularly) nearby us for a few more beers. It had coo board games to get stuck into as you drank so we played a bit of draughts.

Christmas morning is different when you are a child. The excitement was still there but it was more because we saw lots of presents under the tree we wanted to rip open. It is a harsh reality when you realise how much of an adult you actually are. I now LOVE candles, pens, notebooks, blankets – all the stuff you found boring as a child. I got a moleskin notebook, a parker pen, lots of candles, books, smelly stuff or make up.

Our Christmas dinner was later in the day and was so good. When it is just the two of you, there doesn’t need to be a rush of having dinner early. I remember there being a rush to eat before 3pm and it isn’t necessary.

Christmas Day and Boxing Day were both incredibly relaxed. As we are in London, a Boxing Day walk means you can see some great sights of London. As we didn’t want to go too central we walked along the canal instead. Seeing the river boats and people walking their dogs felt like we weren’t even in London. It was only when you looked up and saw Stratford and the Olympic Park.

The one thing that is great about spending Christmas away from our families is that our festivities are only going to continue! We are going to spend a few days with my family then off to Newcastle. More presents, more lush food and more time to celebrate! Christmas in London does have its perks!

Love Rebecca xoxo