Packing for a long trip

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Recently I assisted a client in packing for a well deserved month long trip to Europe. My client wanted to feel put together, confident and prepared for city walking tours, museum and gallery days, and lovely dinners and evening strolls.

The secret to packing for a trip over two weeks long is that no matter how long you are going for you actually pack the same amount. Pack for two weeks with the intention of doing washing (of some variety – hotel laundry service, local laundromats, or good ole over the sink type washing if not stopping with a friend along the way). Because you will be washing as you’re on the move – consideration of material and washing care is a must. Natural fibers are best too as they usually bounce back after a night of airing.

We began planning my client’s two weeks worth of packing by taking stock of what outfits made her feel fantastic in her everyday life at home. This gave us a starting off point and we were able to look at the elements of those outfits and tweak to ensure that they were suitable for the demands of the itinerary. One outfit looked great but the ballet flats she usually paired it with were not going to withstand an all day walkathon. Going through her shoes we did find a pair of shoes hardy enough for long treks and that still made her feel good.

These we declared her day shoes and as shoes are generally the heaviest and bulkiest of items, we ensured that they went with the other outfits as well. It was here too that we had a play with what items could be swapped in and out to create a variety of looks (nothing worse than getting sick of every combo and item in your suitcase when travelling).

For my client’s night time events we first chose a pair of shoes that were dressy enough for dinner but would also work as an alternative day shoe to shake things up. Using the night shoe as a guide we then picked a dress that would travel well (minimal creasing) and that could be layered with other items to contribute to more looks.

My client’s overall packing list was:

  • Underwear – enough for one week, and wash
  • 2 bras
  • 2 sets sleepwear
  • A lounge wear set
  • Workout gear – 2 outfits and running shoes
  • Clothes:
  • 1 pair jeans
  • 1 pair tan pants
  • 1 pair black pants
  • 4 solid t-shirts that go with above pants
  • 2 patterned shirts
  • 1 dressy shirt
  • 2 button down shirts
  • 2 singlets
  • 2 dresses (one night and one day – bonus that the day dress can be worn with tops)
  • 1 solid jumper
  • 1 jacket
  • 1 wrap in neutral colour that goes with everything
  • 1 wrap in crazy print that goes with nothing so funnily enough goes with everything
  • 1 day shoe
  • 1 day/night shoe

And there you have it! Bon voyage!

Bonus tip:

  • Create compartments Packing cubes are freaking marvelous! If you have distinct parts to your trip (such as a wedding and general travel), packing cubes will keep your suitcase organised and save you from having to pack and unpack those specific items until they are needed.
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