Haven Conference 2017

As I’ve mentioned, I’ve been flying in so many directions lately and there’s so much I want to share with y’all!  The 6th annual Haven Conference was one of those things taking my attention lately and it was a huge success again this year.  It was like we all birthed a baby and now we’re seeing her grow and grow! We are so thrilled that the conference has grown and evolved to where it is now and so supported by the home and DIY bloggers every single year.  It was one of those things dreamed up several years ago and to see it come to fruition and last for 6 years is a huge blessing and milestone.

I couldn’t let this year pass without sharing some pics with all of you too, so here’s the recap of Haven.

The Haven team, back row, Chris and Traci, Kristin and me on the front, along with Ryobi folks at Haven. Ryobi did several live broadcasts from Haven and interviewed us one morning, which was fun.

The Haven team arrives a day early to catch our breath and get caught up with each other and what all will be going on with Haven.  This might have been the smoothest year yet on having everything go right.

We always take time for a team dinner that first night and this year we went to The Atlanta Fish Market, really good place.  It takes a team to pull off Haven and I’m so grateful for these girls who pull together and make it happen.

Thursday morning in the ballroom, we start filling our swag bags and that’s a huge task, since there are about 500 bags to fill.  We usually get several volunteers who help us out and we are thankful for them.

This year’s swag bags were so cute with nautical navy stripes, a nod to next year’s destination which I’ll share with you at the end of this post.  Everyone loved the bags and of course all the sponsor goodies inside.

We have the BEST sponsors and couldn’t do this without them all.  They are so generous with their swag giveaways and attendees always look forward to this part.

Another shout out to Nashville Wraps, who is so gracious to send us gift wrapping, boxes, bags and more to make our speaker and mentor gifts look really pretty.  We are so thankful for their support, please check out their website if you’re looking for wrapping and party options for any occasions.

Our opening cocktail party was on the terrace once again and although it started out with a nice breeze, it did get pretty hot and sultry, but that’s Atlanta in July. You can just about count on that weather!

One of our sponsors, Delta Faucets sponsored the opening party and did a fantastic job with the decor.

It was beautifully set up with such pretty displays on both terraces.

Haven spelled out in balloons along with vibrant and very colorful balloons that you could not miss were a big hit.

Live music, appetizers and drinks rounded out the evening.  It is always such fun to gather that first evening and get to see all the people coming in greeting each other again.  There have been so many friendships and relationships forged from Haven and we are so happy to see those.

Atlanta designer, Brian Patrick Flynn, was with us to say a few words that opening evening and he is always so hilarious. A fun guy to have around and such a talent too, he’s responsible for the design of most of the HGTV dream homes and urban oasis homes you’ve seen the last couple of years.

The Haven Team took the opportunity for a group pic in front of the Haven sign.

Brian kicking things off with his wit and humor.

I was thrilled that this long time friend of mine, Layla, and her hubby, Kevin were at Haven this year teaching classes.  She’s a dear and I hardly ever get to see her anymore, so I grabbed a pic while I could.

We also had a night out with our ad company, AdThrive and got to meet a celebrity.  Anyone remember Andrew Shue with the 80’s show, Melrose Place?  Well, he’s now a partner in the media network, Cafe Media which has merged with my ad network, AdThrive.  Haven has launched so many wonderful partnerships and it’s been so great to see AdThrive launch from Haven and grow to what it is today, helping 1500 bloggers with their ads.  Pretty amazing!  Traci and I are both with AdThrive and love that we don’t have to worry about any of that, they take care of it for us.

I always like to get pics of our wonderful Haven Sponsors and took a few of them around the main ballroom floors and surrounding spaces. We couldn’t do it without them and are so grateful for the partnerships.

Home Depot has been our Platinum sponsor for 6 years and we love them!

Frogtape friend, Allison was there once again too. We love our Frogtape people, they have been with us since the beginning too.

Haven has been such a welcoming place for home and DIY bloggers to come together and get to know each other and we love seeing all the friendships that have come from Haven.

Liberty Hardware had a little surprise in the Gold Man who was walking around, all painted gold. You can imagine what a stir he caused!

Wonderful Shaw Floors who I work with as a blogger has also been with us since the beginning.

Elkay sinks sponsored a breakfast one morning.

Haven also has several sponsors who do make and takes and hands on creative opportunities like painting a tray. Everyone loves the creative classes!

This year, Dremel brought in the famous Clint Harp, with Fixer Upper for a meet and greet and a session, which was so inspiring.  We all got our pic taken with him and he was just as cute as can be!

Me and Clint with a selfie!

We had a fun girl’s night in on Friday night that was so pretty and festive.

Lots of goodies to eat and drink.

We had a blender bar for smoothies and lot of eats.

And a blender bar for sugar scrubs to take home.

Cute labels on the wine bottles.

A fun time was had by all and everyone enjoyed it!

There were tables for creating things like learning watercolors.

A table for making macrame.

And a hand lettering table.  The girls loved all of this!

Our ending session was a really good one and had everyone cheering at the end.

Sweet KariAnne from Thistlewood Farms shared her blog heart with everyone and got a standing ovation. She’s such a cheerleader of Haven and we were happy to have her.

All in all, what a fantastic year for Haven it was this year.  A time for reconnecting with each other, reconnecting with brands, talking about blogging, and just enjoying being together in person.  We had several bloggers gather in our room for talking and chatting and the night got away from us, but what a fun time it was.

At the end of the conference, the Haven team announced that we are moving Haven next year to Charleston, SC and the crowd went wild!  We loved hearing everyone scream and they all seem to be so excited about the move. We decided it was time for new scenery and a new venue, so we are heading to Charleston next year in a beautiful setting by the water and we couldn’t be more excited about that.  If you’ve never been to Haven and want to join us, follow the Haven Conference Facebook page for all the latest news!

Check out the video that Traci made for Haven Charleston announcement!

Charleston from Beneath My Heart on Vimeo.



- Rhoda


  1. Can not wait for next year!!

  2. Marianne A. says

    I could never do what you do, but I wish I could! Just so I could go to the Haven conference!! It looks awesome even for non-bloggers. Or, should I say, blog readers!

  3. I loved reading your re-cap! I’m hoping to make it to Haven next year, and I’m excited to hear that it will be in Charleston!

  4. Congratulations on a great Haven conference! The product booths looked amazing and I know you will have a great time next year in beautiful Charleston, SC. So happy to see Clint Harp at Haven and I hear he got his own show. He is truly a talented man.

    P.S. Where did you get your top in the first picture? I love it and it looks so boho chic on you!

    • Thank you, Teresa, that top came from TJ Maxx recently and I haven’t had time to blog about it yet. They have such great prices.

  5. Rhoda, what a wonderful reply of Haven. It’s great to relive a fabulous conference. It was my third year and it’s just better every time. Classes and instructors, loved meeting our mentor early, loved the craft night. Can’t wait for Charleston next year.

  6. Lou Clifton says

    I am not a blogger just a blog reader and I would love to be able to go to a Haven event. To meet all my favorite bloggers that I feel I have a bond to and the sponsors that show you new products and how to. What a great event. I love the Southern Living shows and cannt wait to the next. I am sure Haven would be the same way.

  7. Do you have to be a blogger to attend Haven? I am a DIYer and follow many bloggers.

    • HI, Dee Ann, no you do not have to be a blogger to attend Haven. We just like to let people know that 1/2 of the classes are blogger related classes. Many are hands-on though, so you would probably enjoy it.

    • Charleston is my home town, so will plan to come!

  8. I was so looking forward to your REcap on Haven– again, I wasn’t able to come based on dates. So your news of an earlier date and change of location was really exciting news and I look SO forward to going next year!!! And LUV the video!
    ConGRATulations on your new life, happiness, marriage Rhoda!!!

  9. Barbara Hunnicutt Moore says

    Outstanding job all around. I had a blast and learned so much. Can’t wait till next year. Charleston, here we come!!

  10. Your energy!
    A testament to working out!!
    Such a role model in many ways!

  11. Great post on your Haven conference!


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