My head is still spinning from Design Conference 2016 (or maybe it is the lack of sleep). I can’t believe over a week has already gone by since that magical day.

My, oh my, what a day it was!

So many of you have reached out to let us know how much you enjoyed the day. This warms our hearts so very much. We are very proud of the event, and our team worked REALLY hard to make it a success.

We designed the event in a way that we hoped would stir emotion and cultivate creativity in each of you. We know that leading up to the event we focused A LOT on our keynote speakers Clint Harp and the Scott Brothers, but we really wanted the event to be a day that touched you on so many levels. Whether you were there for the shopping, the speakers, the bloody marys (oh my goodness you were thirsty), or just needed a day away from the kiddos and time with your girlfriends, we hope that you were nourished and fulfilled when you left.

Let’s take a look at the special day.

The doors opened at noon for two hours of shopping before the stage show began…and boy did y’all shop!

2016-04-23 at 00-25-51I love the random guy in the middle smiling for the camera. His gal is looking at him like… “What are you smiling at you big goof?” Ha!

2016-04-23 at 00-22-11Grain Designs working their booth and talking all things reclaimed wood.

IMG_9738The creative and beautiful Jessie with DeUglied Designs preparing her booth. She is even cute from the back, but if you would like to see her front (that sounds weird, but you know what I mean), you can find her at Junk Market on May 2oth and 21st where she will be selling her incredible furniture pieces.

IMG_9732Also joining us in our shopping section were the lovely girls from Baker’s Nursery.

IMG_9735Look at those smiles. Thank you to McNeal & Friends and Katie Stromlund for also having booths at Design Conference.

Thank you to all our shopping vendors! Here is a complete list of all the shopping booths.

Baker’s Nursery
McNeal & Friends
Katie Stromlund Originals
Shotwell Floral
Inspired Designs
Spruce Lane Co.
Trever Hill Design
Vintage Renewed

The stage is set, and boy it is puuurty!

Do you remember the blue couch from last year? Well, this year it was all about coral. My goal was to bring a little color and spring into the arena and warm the place up. We hope you found the stage inspiring and the details inviting.


IMG_9744Yes, this couch is for sale, you can see it in person at our Fargo store.



Intro, Maria, Grain Designs 9Once I welcomed the crowd it was time to introduce the guy that would walk us through the day.

The Host with the Most!

Mr. Patrick Kirby is the kind of friend that says, “We got this!” Even when he doesn’t have to be part of the “we” but he is just that nice of a guy. It was Patrick who offered to emcee the event, it was Patrick who suggested the opening videos, it was Patrick who held my hand and said, “IT’S GOING TO BE GREAT!” on those days when I was nervous about the event and wondering if I was in over my head. It was Patrick who warmed up the crowd and stole your hearts. Yes, he was most definitely, the HOST WITH THE MOST!

Here are some shots of him in action…and true form.

Thank you, Patrick, you were AHMAZING!!

Clint 3

Intro, Maria, Grain Designs 21

Property Brothers Meet and Greet 279

Clint 30

Session {1} Creating your Life Lovely ~ with Grain Designs

It was with great demand that we brought back the guys from Grain Designs again this year. They stole the hearts of many last year, and this year was no different. They not only inspired us to get out there and try our hand at reclaiming and building ourselves, but they surprised their mamas by bringing them up on stage and having them battle to see who could assemble a reclaimed wood frame the fastest. You would have thought that each audience member was just handed a free puppy by the ‘cooing’ and ‘sighing’ that came from the crowd. It was a sweet, sweet gesture and we all left with a few extra cavities and a secured admiration for the guys with the wicked good looks, amazing talent, and not so subtle love for their mamas.

Grain Designs 93

Grain Designs 95

Grain Designs 109


Session {2} Painting your Life Lovely ~ with Maria Bosak

Next, it was my turn to share my love of painted furniture with you all. I once again got up on stage and shared how simple it is to create dream pieces of furniture with Chalk Paint® by Annie Sloan. I also shared a little bit about the journey Tate and I took to get to where we are today with Eco Chic. I finally, openly, admitted that Tate is the brains behind our success and more than just my cute sidekick (and one heck of a good fisherman).

Maria 59Maria 49I grabbed a guest to join me on stage to demonstrate how easy it is to use Chalk Paint®, thank you, Kristen, for your help.

Then it was time for the man who stole all our hearts that day…

Session {3}  #LoveBuildRun with Clint Harp of Fixer Upper

Clint Harp ran right into the hearts of everyone in attendance that day, and we mean ran. Clint joined us on stage with a hilarious video produced by Logan Little and Patrick Kirby showing Clint “running” all over Fargo and then down the steps of the Scheels Arena and onto the stage. With a quick costume change, he was on stage ready to share his heart, his humor, and his story.

Clint 24

Clint 43
Here is Clint putting himself together and making sure all his clothes are on before continuing on (sorry Clint, next time we promise to actually let you get dressed before pushing you on stage).

Clint 45Once he was all dressed, Clint openly and humbly shared his personal journey, his meeting of Chip Gaines at a gas station, and his current story of being on the hit HGTV show Fixer Upper.

Clint 59He captivated the crowd with his kindness and character.

Clint 57He made us laugh with his story of running into Chip Gaines at a gas station and not knowing it was him.

Clint 54

Clint + QA 45He encouraged us to reach for our dreams, take that chance, and start that business even when it might be frightening.


Clint + QA 8I was honored to join him on stage for a fun Q&A session and a hug.  {my life is complete}

Clint + QA 76

Clint + QA 68

Clint + QA 50

File May 03, 4 56 58 PMClint was also kind enough (even after a long day of travel and us running him all over Fargo shooting a video) to stop at Eco Chic and then join us at our home for dinner with our team.  Here we are, at the end of the night standing in front of the fireplace in the great room. We wanted to document the evening and how the fireplace looks now, because when he joins us again (and gosh we sure hope he does) it will look VERY different (ignore the skull mount, Tate thinks its “funny” to decorate when I’m not home).

File May 03, 4 55 52 PMAfter Clint spoke we took a dinner break and then it was on to the final keynote speakers, the Scott Brothers, and boy did we have a surprise for the audience.

Session {4}  Keynote with the Scott Brothers

Thanks to Heather and Thistle Pipes and Drums, we welcomed the Scott Brothers into the arena with a sixteen piece bagpipe & drum band. It was awesome and caught everyone by surprise.

Property Brothers Intro 7

a Property Brothers Intro 29 (1)

a Property Brothers Intro 39 (1)

a Property Brothers Intro 3

a Property Brothers Intro 2When that drum started to rumble in the back of the arena you should have heard the crowd. It was electric! They all stood up and started to look around, I don’t think anyone expected such an exciting entrance at a design conference.

Once the bagpipers left, the crowd enjoyed the antics of the Scott Brothers as they shared their knowledge and experience with real estate and flipping homes.

Property Brothers Intro 41Property Brothers 188There was dancing…and later a little singing and all around shenanigans.

Property Brothers 34Property Brothers Intro 57They took questions from the audience.

Property Brothers Intro 20They lounged on the coral sofa.

a Property Brothers Intro 29Property Brothers Intro 45And in true Eco Chic fashion, I invited a little girl from the crowd to get up on stage and have a photo with the guys after she had bravely asked them a question. Here at Eco Chic, we tend to go to mush when the kids come out. (But look at her, how adorable is she? I see a tv career in her future…)

Property Brothers 198Afterward, the stars met up in the VIP lounge and took photos with attendees and our staff. Here they are posing with Lexie from our Fargo store (they must be standing on risers…right Lexie?)

Property Brothers Meet and Greet 234Property Brothers Meet and Greet 15Property Brothers Meet and Greet 144Clint Harp Meet and Greet 95Clint Harp Meet and Greet 265Clint made fast friends with the Eco Chic team and they can’t wait until he returns.

Clint Harp Meet and Greet 178Clint Harp Meet and Greet 275I know what you’re thinking…Maria, you lost weight (and changed your shirt)…but don’t be fooled, that is just my younger and much prettier self…my sister Tanya.  (WooHoo! Famileee!)

Clint Harp Meet and Greet 271Clint Harp Meet and Greet 260Property Brothers Meet and Greet 352Property Brothers Meet and Greet 342The day was so much fun and I’m so very proud of our team and all those that helped bring it together. We look forward to next year!

Now I’m going to go sleep…but not for long. We will see you at Junk Market in just TWO short weeks.





See You at Design Conference
Cara's ReDesign Plan


  • Julie says:

    Loved it – thanks for putting this on – this was a great day.
    My one suggestion is for the vendors to be spread out more – there was lots of space as you walked around that could have been used. The booth spaces were way too crowded and close together.
    Looking forward to next year!

  • Kjersti Maday says:

    Thanks for you feedback, Julie! We will definitely be making some adjustments for the next Design Conference.

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