I know there must be people out there who love packing, but not me. A day before travelling I am loudly huffing and puffing around the house, still putting off the deed. Then, when I eventually do start, I put everything in my case. Why? Well, just in case I need it of course! This obviously results in what is essentially an overstuffed wardrobe on wheels and that horrible feeling on holiday when you look at all the clothes and think ‘why the hell did I bring all this stuff?!’
But luckily, after studying this style advisor malarkey, I now know that it isn’t the actual packing that’s the problem but the indecision as to what to take. So, if you have the same problem and long to be one of those traveling light, co-ordinated types, then I’m about to share with you some tips on making the whole packing debacle a lot easier.
Here’s a mood board that I made earlier (I always wanted to be a TV presenter). It shows a good example of a two week beach holiday capsule wardrobe.
The neutrals are your basics and the colour adds the va-va-voom. Don’t add more than three other colours to your neutrals though because the more colours you add, the less ‘capsule’ your holiday wardrobe becomes.
Mix and Match
The idea is to make sure that you can mix and match pretty much everything that you’ve packed. For example, the patterned skirt can be worn several times but with different colour tops - the same applies to the shorts. The shorts, which can obviously be worn for daytime, can also be worn with a dressier top, jacket, heels and clutch bag for an evening look. The black and white dress on the far right would make a lovely evening outfit, but when you’ve worn it once (or twice, depending on how liberal you are with your food or sweat!) it then makes a perfect beach cover up.
What makes this wardrobe even more versatile is the use of accessories. These are the clever, often overlooked, items that can transform an outfit, so don’t forget them - add them to your list NOW! Beachwear becomes daywear and daywear becomes evening wear with clever use of bracelets, necklaces, handbags and/or scarves. A bold statement necklace and clutch bag can make a simple, throw-on daywear dress, into something perfect for an evening out. And a pair of heels can take loose fit, patterned trousers, from cosy-comfy to trendy-wendy quicker than you can say ‘mine’s a mojito’.
What to pack?
So, you’ve got the theory, but what should you actually pack? My mood board is based on the 6 bottoms and 1 dress rule. But I’ve tweaked it slightly because following all of the rules all of the time can be so very boring. So, I have snuck in more dresses because if you’re like me, I think a holiday is the perfect excuse to feel more feminine and wear dresses.
Here’s a list (I love a list!):
- 6 bottoms trousers/jeans/skirts/shorts
- 2 dresses (or more but reduce bottom count and tops accordingly)
- Selection of plain tops for daytime and a couple for evening
- 1 or 2 cardigans
- 1 jacket
- 2/3 bikini’s/swimsuits
- 1 sarong/ or kaftan to match
- Beach Towel (though if you can hire them, do that!)
- No more than 5 pairs of shoes including flip-flops/sandals, high heels and trainers/walking shoes if needed
- Selection of jewellery - necklaces, bracelets and earrings
- 1 or 2 wraps/pashminas
- Evening bag
- Day/beach bag
Roll or Fold?
And of course there’s then the ‘to roll or fold’ question. Well, rolling does reduce creases and can save space in your suitcase, so I would go for that if I were you. Though I do know Victoria Beckham, queen of style, goes for the folding option. So, how does she appear so crease free you ask? Collagen pills and bee pollen apparently.
So, whether you’re catching a flight or vacuum packing the kids and the kitchen sink into the back of the car, I hope you have a wonderful time and feel happy in what you’re wearing every day of your holiday.
Oh and please don’t pack your troubles as the song and title of this blog suggests – leave those at home if you can. However, if your troubles are your kids and the other half, then that could be tricky! I suggest you lose yourself in a good book.
Mange tout amigo’s, mange tout.
P.S. I need to pack a bag or two this weekend actually - but I won’t need many outfits. I’m going from dressy wedding on Friday to messy camping on Saturday. Best make sure I pick up the right bag for the right day, huh?!