2017 Eco Chic Design Conference Recap

2017 Eco Chic Design Con VIP Seats

If you didn’t make it to the 2017 Eco Chic Design Conference, this is your chance to get a glimpse inside this day of food, fun, shopping and inspiration with celebrity guest speakers, The Pioneer Woman and HGTV’s Chip Wade.

Photos by Morgan Schleif, Paul Flessland, Tracy Nicholson and Becca Opp
Feature photo by Morgan Schleif

If you didn’t make it to the April 22 Eco Chic Design Conference at the SCHEELS Arena in Fargo, this is your chance to see some of the most memorable moments of the day. This year, event founder and owner of Eco Chic Boutique, Maria Bosak once again knocked it out the park with guest speakers, The Pioneer Woman-Ree Drummond of Food Network and HGTV’s Chip Wade. Get a glimpse inside this full day of food, fun, shopping and inspiration, including behind-the-scenes interviews with the most anticipated speakers of the day.

Maria Bosak

Photo by Morgan Schleif

“Our goal with the Design Conference has remained the same from the very first day this idea struck: deliver an event that inspires you, encourages you and leaves you feeling a sense of joy,”

 – Maria Bosak, Eco Chic Design Conference founder

2017 Design Con

A Day at Design Con 2017

10 a.m.

Doors opened and 1,400 guests were greeted with a gift of exclusive vendor coupons and goodies. Local vendors offered shopping and socializing with specialty coffees, breakfast, lunch boxes and dessert by Cracked Pepper, Ladybug Latte, Libby’s Cupcakes and Michele’s Table.

Eco Chic Design Con 2017


Audra Mehl

Eco Chic Design Con

Design Con

Design Con

Design & Living Booth Eco Chic Design Conference 2017
Design & Living’s booth was styled by The White House Co. with a floral arrangement provided by Love Always Floral.

2017 Eco Chic Design Conference Host

2 p.m.

The show began with an introductory video that prepared the crowd for the day’s host, Patrick Kirby, to hit the stage. At this time, the stage was empty, but ready for an overhaul.

VIP Seating Eco Chic Design Con 2017
Near the stage, VIP seating offered guests the ultimate experience with bottled water, gorgeous flowered cupcakes and specialized gift bags filed with goodies, coupons and Ree Drummond’s latest cookbook.

Grain Designs Eco Chic Design Con

2:15 p.m.

The guys of Grain Designs showed the crowd how to create focal points with reclaimed wood and barn doors, using the stage as a blank canvas.

Grain Designs Barn Door

Photo by Morgan Schleif

“The space-saving and feature-wall aspect of a barn door is not going to go out of style anytime soon.”

– Blain Mikkonen of Grain Designs

Maria Bosak Eco Chic Design Con

Photo by Morgan Schleif

3:15 p.m.

Event founder Maria Bosak took the stage and offered advice from her own farmhouse project on updating kitchens and creating a vision board. She then demonstrated the joys of chalk paint by refinishing a set of cabinets right there on stage.

2017 Eco Chic Design Conference Stage

Photo by Morgan Schleif

Julie Alin Trever Hill

Photo by Morgan Schleif

3:30 p.m.

After the addition of focal points and a fresh coat of paint on the cabinets, the stage was ready for some finishing touches. Then local designers Julie Alin of SCHEELS Home & Hardware and Trever Hill of Trever Hill Design and The Private Collection demonstrated proper staging and design techniques.

Chip Wade

4 p.m.

The day’s first celebrity speaker, HGTV’s Chip Wade, took the stage. Wade spoke of his beginnings as an engineer and his present-day career. He offered valuable tips on how to orchestrate your perfect design around your everyday life.

“We all look for inspiration and try to cram beautiful images into our own spaces and in fact, it just doesn’t work. The best case scenario is that you end up with a pretty picture. The worst case is you don’t do it right and it doesn’t function well.”

– HGTV’s Chip Wade

Dinner with Ree Drummond

Photo by Morgan Schleif

5:15 p.m.

All attendees took a dinner break with offerings from local vendors and the arena. Those with a special, reserved ticket made their way to a private room to attend “Dinner with Ree.” These guests dined with Drummond and enjoyed a catered dinner made entirely with Drummond’s famous recipes.

Ree Drummond Pioneer Woman

Photo by Morgan Schleif

6:30 p.m.

Keynote speaker Ree Drummond took the stage to an ecstatic audience on their feet. Drummond spoke about her early beginnings as a blogger and her much applauded career as The Pioneer Woman on Food Network.

She took questions from the audience and spoke of her family, sharing embarrassing stories from her youth and the challenges of transitioning to life on the ranch.

“I grew up on the seventh fairway of a golf course, so when I first told my friends from my hometown of Bartlesville and my college friends at that time that I was getting married and moving to a ranch in the country, they fell on the floor laughing. I was the last person on earth anyone thought would live in the country, so they started calling me ‘Pioneer Woman.'”

 – Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman

Ree Drummond kids

Photo by Morgan Schleif

The Pioneer Woman, Ree Drummond, invited the audience’s littlest fans on stage where she polled them on their favorite foods and offered a picture opp for the parents.

Design Con Meet and Greet

Design Con Meet and Greet

Ree Drummond Meet and Greet

8 p.m.

VIP seat guests were invited on stage for a meet-and-greet with Ree Drummond, Chip Wade and Grain Designs.

Get Social

If you have photos from the event and want to share, make sure to use the hashtags #EcoChicDesignCon and #DesignCon17. You can also get event updates, home inspiration, remodeling tips and Eco Chic’s Design Conference Recap sent straight to your email. Subscribe at

For more information, contact:
Eco Chic Boutique
955 17th Ave. S, Fargo


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