Babes On Waves: here’s what you missed at our Making Waves IWD event

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For International Women’s Day, we partnered with Babes on Waves to empower underrepresented women in male-dominated creative industries. Our “Making Waves” International Women’s Day event, sponsored by Reebok, was split into two parts but united in one aim: provide attendees with the tools, network and mentality to make waves and reach their full potential. 

For “Low Tide” (12:00-18:00) we invited 40 women working across music, photography, fashion, design and more for creative workshops and a connection lunch club. While for “High Tide” (18:00-22:30) we welcomed an additional 80 people for a networking Havana cocktail reception, an insightful panel discussion on “How to make waves in the creative industry” and a size?sessions headlined by Amaria BB. 

It was a joyous affair, where new friendships were formed, skills were acquired and lots of fun was had. However, in keeping with Babes on Waves’ ethos, we’re releasing this size? school blog so that anyone who was unable to attend can also benefit from the incredible learnings from the day, too.

How to host for underrepresented voices led by Stephanie Hulbert-Thomas, founder of Women in Sneakers 

As the founder of the celebrated platform Women in Sneakers, Stephanie Hulbert-Thomas is a seasoned host, interviewer and public speaker. During her two hour workshop, she shared tips on how to take up space in places you never expected and most importantly, how to use your voice and cut through the noise of social media.

First off, she asked the participants to think about what using their voices means to them. From being bold and expressing their creativity, to speaking their truth and standing up for what they believe in, this opening question is important for anybody getting into the presenting space to reflect on.

STEPHANIE’S HOT TIP 1: Social media is a powerful tool, but it’s not everything. You need to be present offline, too. If there isn’t a space, make one (like she did when she founded Women in Sneakers).

STEPHANIE’S HOT TIP 2: Focus on what you’re doing, not other people. Define who you are and what you specifically have to offer.

STEPHANIE’S HOT TIP 3: Just start, there is no such thing as a stupid idea. 

An exercise to try at home with friends: 

Pick a topic that’s important to you and develop it into a concept, keep in mind these pointers:

Something you’re passionate about.

Why is it needed?

How does it educate?

What do you want people to know?

Who do you want to reach?

Think about how you’re going to do it. 

Take it in turns to present your idea to each other and provide feedback. 

Build your own AR clothing store for Instagram with Perola Janice

Perola Janice is a self-described technophile, specialising in UX (user experience) and XR (extended reality). As the founder of Odd Space, an experimental design and technology company, Perola has created metaverse-ready products for Net-a-Porter, Alexander McQueen and Atlantic Records. 

Considering women made up only 20% of Microsoft tech jobs, and 23% of tech jobs at Facebook, Google and Apple in 2020, as well as the 2021 findings by the Institute of Digital Fashion and the Circular Fashion Summit that digital avatars do not accurately represent user identities online at this point, Perola’s work as Black 3D women designer is disruptive and necessary.

We were extremely lucky to have her host a two-hour workshop, where she gave attendees a crash course in all things augmented reality. Simply put, augmented reality is the integration of computer-generated effects to enhance or “augment” the real world and according to Goldman Sachs, AR and VR will grow to a projected $80-billion market by 2025. 

Perola gave a live demonstration where she showed the 20 attendees how to build an AR Instagram storefront using free-to-download softwares Spark AR and Blender – perfect for those looking to elevate their Depop shop or clothing brand game. 

Connection cook-up lunch club

Babes on Waves’ infamous connection cook-ups are beloved by their community. Over a tasty two-course meal, guests sit down and strike up meaningful chats around important topics such as mental health, work and relationships through conversation card games. 

For our IWD connection cook-up, we had Indonesian food from Eat with Spoons. Founded by Rahel Stephanie in 2019 as a means for the 27-year-old to pay respect and reclaim her culture, the talented chef served tofua balado and pandan raspberry blondies. While Babes on Waves designed an exclusive career edition card game in collaboration with size? and Reebok for the attendees to have genuine interactions over surface-level networking. 

Here are 10 prompts from the card game you can talk through at home:

What expectations have I set for myself that are actually hurting me?

How much of your mental health do you sacrifice for your career?

Are you most driven by: Money, Status, Freedom or Self-expression?

How has your upbringing affected your attitude to work?

If you won the lottery would you still work? What would you do?

What did you want to be when you were 10? How does it compare to what you are doing now?

What’s your wildest goal that you’ve not told anyone?

What advantages as a woman in your career?

Describe your dream working day.

How has your personal definition of “success” changed over the years?

Check out our blog for more IWD content. This blog was written by Amy Francombe.

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