Posted: May 25 2016
With summer fast approaching and the days dwindling down to that long-awaited vacation – have you begun to think about the crucial elements… like what you’re going to wear?
Images courtesy of Collage Vintage
In the past, I've fallen into the trap of thinking we need X amount of outfits for X amount of days that I would be in *insert exotic location*. Sometimes I'd even pack two outfits - depending on what activities we had planned – and different outfits for day and night, of course. Lugging my overflowing suitcase to the airport, I’d reach the check-in desk and cross my fingers, hoping that my luggage was under the 50-pound weight limit. I’d see the number jump on the scale, hitting the maximum and then surpass it, often dancing between 58 and 60 pounds. To my chagrin and utter dismay, I’d have to unzip and unload pieces from my bag, then distribute them to whomever else I was traveling with (shout-out to my brothers for being team players all those years). The thing is, this didn’t happen just once or twice, this was my modus operandi when it came to packing; I’d even allot extra time at the airport because I knew the suitcase shuffle was inevitable.
Image courtesey of WhereTraveler
That is, until a few years ago, when I learned about the art of traveling lightly and packing outfits that you can easily mix-and-match. I’d strategically plan my outfits for the trip, making sure not to pack double of basic items (denim, flats, sneakers, tank tops, a good jacket). Similar to the “capsule wardrobe”, I’d narrow down my travel wardrobe to what was really essential, and find different ways to pair items like never before.
Some tricks of the trade:
*Don’t plan too much for “what-if” contingencies and circumstances – the times I’ve done that, I’ve never worn the *ball gown* that I brought (okay, maybe not ball gown, but you get the picture)
*Take wardrobe chameleons – these are the pieces that you can layer and that work in multiple situations
Tops: Basic tanks that you can easily pair with shorts, jeans, over a fitted maxi dress
Bottoms: Depending on location and weather - you'll likely want two to three pairs of bottoms that you can swap in and out... Plus shorts for warmer locations! One color of each is a good rule of thumb to go by.
Shoes: This is always where I tend to overpack. It's usually best to just pack shoes that are neutral colors to limit yourself. Make sure you have a good pair of shoes to walk around in, and maybe a pair for going out.
Sweaters + Other Items: Two cardigans/sweaters to layer over pieces are perfect - black goes with everything and the stripes add a bit of pattern over a simple dress. Mix in a couple blouses, and a romper or two in a fun pattern for good measure and to add a little bit of variety.
Try to limit yourself to one bag – preferably the one you are taking as a carry on!
Everything here can easily be paired together for a multitude of different outfits and will have you looking like a rockstar on your trip... and save you the embarrassment of doing the infamous airport suitcase shuffle.