Craig of That Dapper Chap attends the Next Blogger Network awards and collects the first prize for fashion blog of the year.
When I received the invitation to the Next blogger network event and award ceremony, I never thought for one second that I’d win an award. I know that’s probably what you’d expect me to say, but it’s the honest truth!
When people suggested that I might win something I replied “Maybe I’ll get nominated or at a push I may get a runner up prize, but I won’t win” little did I know!
|As always there were great nibble available at the event|
This years event was an all day affair and was held in the very swish Soho Hotel in London. Arriving just before 10am (it was a whole day affair) I was looking forward to a coffee and finding out what the day held in store for us. Soon after I arrived other bloggers from across the UK arrived, the level of chatter increased and coffee and tea was poured as we all caught up with each other and also made a few new friends who we hadn’t had the pleasure of meeting before.
|Sent a tweet and get a treat at the Next NBN event|
|New friends were made and selfies were taken|
|More great food on offer at the Next NBN event|
|Yours truly engaged in conversation|
|Bloggers mingles and swapped stories at the event|
Soon after we were all informed of what the day would hold and we were then ushered into the auditorium where guest speakers waited for us before they shared their own stories and valuable insights in to the world of professional blogging. On the panel was Danielle from Idle Lane, Sammy from Beauty Crush, Jen Stanbrook from LoveChicLiving and lastly Rosie Fortescue from Made In Chelsea and At Fashion Forte
|Guests took their seats for the talks from established bloggers|
|The panel shared knowledge and answered questions|
After the talks we once again found ourselves back in the main room eating mini burgers & chips, bowls of delicious pasta and finger foods to tempt every palate. The anticipation built as the time came for the awards and people speculated about who they thought would win.
|Guests in the main room, enjoying the lunch|
So once again we poured into the auditorium and took our seats. As each runner up and winner was announced for the various categories their face appeared on the big screen alongside a picture of their website.
Then came ‘Best Fashion Blog’ knowing that the attendance was predominantly female I was sure that the winner wouldn’t be a guy. How wrong was I! After the runner up was announced Gemma, our host, began describing the winner “We’ve known this guy for 2 or three years now”. “Oh” I thought, “It’s a bloke!” and I started to work through in my head how many other guys they had worked with for that period of time. Gemma continued “He loves a suit and he’s recently been on holiday”.
“I’ve recently been on holiday” I thought “And I do love a suit!”
Then it happened “The winner of Best Fashion Blog of 2015 is Craig, of That Dapper Chap” It took a split second to realise it was me and I’m pretty confident that I emitted an expletive at that moment!
Then it was my face on the screen and a shot of my web site. The music started and the spot light found me as I made my way to the stage to collect my award from Made in Chelsea Star and blogger Rosie Fortescue.
|Me, collecting my award and goodie bag from Rosie Fortescue|
Also representing menswear at the event were British footballer and blogger Richard Offiong and Akash, one half of A Savvy Gent. Both of whom won an award. Akash accepted one of the runner up prizes while Richard won Best Photography. It was great to see the guys represented so well in such a female dominated arena.
|Of the four guys there, three won an award. Akash, Richard and myself|
Following the awards it was time for cocktails. Blinis, and passion fruit and vodka cocktails were most welcome and I can safely say that I enjoyed one or two!
The official photographs were taken and following consumption of cocktails I had my picture taken. I then immediately proceeded to drop my glass award on the floor. As the room gasped in the anticipation of shattered glass and embarrassment, it luckily bounced and remained in one piece. Phew!
|I blame the Blinis for my loose fingers|
|My official winners photograph|