Tag Archives: Blogging

BritMums Live 2014 |
A Neon Shade Of Pink And Three Goals

Neon shade of pink? Yes. During the packing process, I decided at the last minute not to take my camera bag and forgot my flash in it. It turned out that most of the conference rooms at The Brewery were equipped with some pink lights and my fellow bloggers and I ended up with pink faces too. I rather like it, I find it gives us a festive air!

This was my first BritMums Live experience, as last year I went to CybHer. The dates for BritMums Live 2013 coincided with the Bon Jovi show in Cologne and my favourite band won… Having now been to both conferences, I can say that I prefer the BritMums format, spread over a day and a half as opposed to one day. The hours just fly by and having that extra afternoon is very welcome. It also means that taking a break for some fresh air or a chat is easier. The sponsors/brands representatives were very friendly, I loved the “garden” in the courtyard – featuring wellies! – and there was plenty of delicious food and drinks. The only fault I can find was how freezing some of the rooms were due to an over-enthusiastic use of the air-conditioning.

I had three goals for that event:

1. To get a slot for the literary agent speed dating
2. To attend all of the WRITE sessions
3. To finally meet some of these wonderful bloggers I have been interacting with

Did I succeed? YES.

At 16:30 on the Friday, I met with Luigi Bonomi from LBA Literary Agents. I had two very short nights behind me and felt that I could have been more articulate talking about my book. I had however taken my synopsis and the first two chapters with me; that helped. Luigi told me that I write very well and gave me the name of someone I should send my story to. He is a lovely person and I was very encouraged by his words.

I found all of the WRITE sessions helpful and took many notes. I also attended the SEO, photography and travel blogging ones; quite a few useful tips picked up there too. My favourite keynote speaker was Benjamin Dutton-Brooks. I do not think there was a dry eye in the room after his speech; I even had to provide Charly PODcast with a tissue.

Being in London was also the occasion for me to meet with a few non-blogging friends; I therefore missed the BIBs Awards Ceremony, the Bloggers’ Keynote and the Special Appearance from the new musical Good Enough Mums Club. I was however thrilled when Sarah Older Mum in a Muddle, one of my favourite bloggers, told me she had won in the Writer category. Well done again, Sarah!

As for the bloggers I wanted to meet, I found them just as delightful in real life as they are on their blogs. I also caught up with a few I had met at CybHer last year. The list is too long to write down here, but you know who you are. With some of you we were fortunate enough to spend quite a bit of time together; with others it was far too short, but I am sure we will meet again.

I hope the photos below speak for themselves. I would have included one of the goodie bag, but unfortunately my suitcase is still in London (I presume). When I arrived at the airport on Sunday late morning, I was informed that there was a total failure of the baggage delivery system… I let you imagine what it looked like and I knew then that there was no way my bag would be loaded onto the plane. Emma A Bavarian Sojourn had the same experience and told me that apparently 9’000 bags were left behind. It might be a little while until we see our luggage again, but I remain optimistic.

Finally, I invite you to have a look at the brilliant video The Ginger Warrior produced. I am honoured to figure in it, together with my leopard print hat!

BritMums Live 2014 - The BreweryBritMums Live 2014 - The BrewerBritMums Live 2014 - Morrisons LoungeBritMums Live 2014 - Trish Burgess and Katia FunkywelliesWith Trish Mums Gone To

BritMums Live 2014 - Garden in the courtyard of the BreweryBritMums Live 2014 - OpeningBritMums Live 2014 - Photography Session with Julia BoggioJulia Boggio demonstrating how to pose on the red carpet!

BritMums Live 2014 - Travel Blogging Session with Steve Keenan from Travel Perspective, Trish Burgess from Mum’s Gone To, Simon Calder from The Independent and Emma Raphael from A Bavarian SojournTravel Blogging Session

BritMums Live 2014 - Katia Funkywellies and Sarah HanisonWith Sarah, who also blogs at Sadie Hanson

BritMums Live 2014 - Blogger Badge


BritMums Live! 2014 |
I Will Be There

In exactly one month, I will be joining more than 500 other bloggers at the Brewery in London for the 2014 edition of BritMums Live. I am very much looking forward to this two-day event and thought I would join the linky to introduce myself.

If you are a brand reading this and looking for someone to sponsor, a few facts about my blog and what I could offer in return can be found here. Thank you!


BritMums Live 2014 - Blogging Event - The Brewery London - Katia Funkywellies


Name: Katia. I am a trilingual writer, blogger and MarCom consultant.

Blog: Funky Wellies Random Thoughts

Twitter ID: @funky_wellies

Height: 5ft 7in

Hair: Long, wavy and brown

Eyes: Green-brown

Is this your first blogging conference?
No, it will be my second one. Last year I went to Cybher.

Are you attending both days?
Of course!

What are you most looking forward to at BritMums Live 2014?
To finally meet some of the lovely bloggers I have been interacting with for the past four years and the fact that literary agents will be on site.

What are you wearing?
I have not quite decided yet, but leopard print will be involved…

What do you hope to gain from BritMums Live 2014?
I am hoping to meet with one of the literary agents and to ask for an opinion about the book I am currently writing.
There is always something new to learn in the blogging world so I am also looking forward to add to my knowledge.
Interacting with brands will be great too and might even lead to working together.
Finally, I am sure it will be two fun-packed days.

Do you have any tips to pass on to others who may not have been before?
Try to decide beforehand what matters most to you during these two days: The sessions you want to attend, the bloggers you most definitely would like to meet, the brands you are interested in, etc.
As always when having fun, time goes by rather fast, so plan accordingly.
Take notes as you go along. You will not remember everything afterwards.
And last but not least, no need to be anxious… You will meet lovely people and everything will be fine.

See you there! 🙂


BritMums Live! 2014 |
Fancy Sponsoring Me?

In June I will make my way to London to participate to BritMums Live!, a two-day blogging event organised by the UK’s biggest parent blogging network. BritMums has more than 4’000 influential members and with 500 attendees, the conference is the largest of its kind in the UK. I have already bought my ticket and organised my trip, but finding a sponsor to attend an event where I am certain to learn, network and enjoy myself would be the icing on the cake. 🙂

A few facts about Funky Wellies Random Thoughts:

  • Four years of blogging with an emphasis on lifestyle, fashion, travel and music
  • Loyal and engaged followers
  • Cooperation with brands such as John Lewis, KENNETT Timepieces, Avenue 32, AlexandAlexa, Bags of Love, New Look, etc.
  • Brands featured or mentioned in blog posts resulting in engagement on Twitter and Facebook: Re-tweets, favourite tweets, likes, shares and comments
  • Poem written for the Desigual Share the Magic contest featured on their blog
  • Freshly pressed on WordPress.com 3 months after starting blogging
  • MAD Blog Awards 2014 – Blog of the Year nomination
  • Recent interview for MultiCOOLty, an on-line magazine about multicultural living
  • Invitations to the Berlin Fashion Week and to various fashion and lifestyle events


BritMums Live 2014 - Sponsor Request - Katia FunkywelliesPhoto copyright Resort of Desire

I am looking for a sponsor willing to cover my ticket, travel expenses and two-night hotel stay. In return, I can offer the following:

• A blog post introducing your brand as my BritMums Live! 2014 sponsor (being trilingual, the post could be in any combination of English, French and German should this be of interest)
• A mention and thank you in all the posts I am going to write about the event
• A mention in all my updates about the conference on social media networks
• A linked company logo or advert on the sidebar of my blog for a year
• Links to the posts written about the event on the relevant page on my blog
• A second post later in the year about a product, event, etc. your brand would like to promote
• Supporting your brand on social media networks through sharing, re-tweets, etc. during the whole of 2014

I am of course happy to discuss other ways of working together, such as wearing an outfit from your brand during the conference or partial sponsorship. The posts recounting the event will also be added to the Official BritMums Live! I was there linky on their website and get even more exposure that way.

Interested? My Get in Touch page is waiting for you… 😉

A Conversation With Markus Dohle,
CEO Of Penguin Random House

Last week I spent two days at the Frankfurt Book Fair. It was my first visit and I had of course expected something huge, but the sheer scale of the Buchmesse still impressed me: About 7’300 exhibitors sharing six different multi-storey exhibition halls and more than 275’000 visitors spread over five days. As a writer and lover of books, it was a total delight to be part of it.
Frankfurter Buchmesse 2013 - Ausblick von Halle 4.0 Terrasse Frankfurt Book Fair 2013 - Halle 5.0
I had registered for a press ticket through my blog and was very happy to find out in August that my application had been successful. This meant that I could visit the fair during the week (professional days) as opposed to the weekend only with the general public. I made my way to Frankfurt on Wednesday October 9th and Thursday October 10th, with a couple of events I absolutely wanted to attend. One of them was Re-Inventing Publishing At A Global Scale, the CEO Panel with Markus Dohle, CEO of Penguin Random House. Five different editors or journalists from international trade publishing magazines asked him a few questions. The video is available on the Frankfurter Buchmesse website or you can read the transcript on Publishers Weekly. Here is a selection of my favourite quotes from Markus Dohle:

  • The authors are the center of what we are doing and the alignment with our authors is extremely important for us.
  • Our business model is not changing. It starts with discovering talent and nurturing talent and connecting that talent to the largest possible audience.
  • We are basically saying that even 100 years from now, the print business will be a big chunk of our business.
  • Here in continental Europe, you guys should be very optimistic. Yes, the market is mature, it’s stable. But stable is the new up. And it was always the new up in publishing, wasn’t it?

Frankfurt Book Fair 2013 - CEO Panel with Markus Dohle, CEO of Penguin Random House Frankfurter Buchmesse 2013 - CEO Panel mit Markus Dohle, CEO von Penguin Random House
The hour allocated to the panel went by very quickly and at the end, I approached to take a couple of photos. I then noticed that a few people were lingering for a chance to talk to Markus Dohle and I decided to join them. I figured that this was probably the only time I would get that close to the CEO of a major trade publisher and I wanted to make the most of it. I waited until I caught his eye, then smiled and went up to him. I introduced myself and explained that I was a first time author trying to sell her novel. He chuckled and I reassured him that I was not going to pitch my book to him, but said instead: “If you had one piece of advice to give someone like me, what would it be?” He did not hesitate: “You absolutely must find an agent.” I told him this was my current task and he asked me how it was going. We then had a general chat about where I was based – with part of the conversation in German when he found out I lived in Germany – then I thanked him for his time and gave him my card. He smiled again, saying he liked it very much and that it was very original – I have mini-cards with photos of my wellies taken from my blog, should you be curious!

Markus Dohle was very gracious and this short encounter was definitely one of my personal Frankfurt Book Fair highlights. There is another big one, but this will be the subject of another post…
Frankfurt Book Fair 2013 - Halle 4.0 Frankfurter Buchmesse 2013 - Halle 3.0 Frankfurt Book Fair - Exhibitor Booth Frankfurter Buchmesse 2013 - The Gruffalo Frankfurt Book Fair 2013 - Children Book Exhibitor Booth Frankfurter Buchmesse 2013 - Gerstenberg Frankfurt Book Fair 2013 - Hidden Door Frankfurter Buchmesse 2013 - Taschen Frankfurt Book Fair 2013 - Egmont Frankfurter Buchmesse 2013 - Die MausFrankfurt Book Fair 2013 - Bertelsmann Arvato Frankfurter Buchmesse 2013 - Fiction is RealFrankfurt Book Fair 2013 - Chilling Out Outdoor Area Frankfurter Buchmesse 2013 - Halle 5.0 und 6.0 mit Blick auf der Frankfurter Skyline