Strolling onto the airplane carrying only a duffel and a handbag for 7 days in two totally different areas of France (and a cease in Germany!) was my aim. And right here I’m standing on the airport, proper after John dropped me off and took this shot. Yup. Only a purse and a duffel. I did it (with area to spare!).
And since I’m nothing if not a minimal wardrobe hype lady (extra on that right here), please enable me to sensually tip your head again and shout straight into your mouth: “figuring out tips on how to maximize your choices with out dragging your total closet with you is an actual precise life hack.” So learn on to see how one can get probably the most out of packing this manner (it was my first journey to Europe – so I positively didn’t wish to overlook something!). And when you already pack with an analogous mindset (I definitely didn’t invent it)… welcome to the membership 😉
Not solely does packing mild imply there’s nothing you need to verify and fear about getting misplaced in transit, you additionally don’t normally must gate-check a small duffel like this on a packed flight (these carry-on-sized rolling suitcases are inclined to get gate-checked much more when a flight is full, which suggests extra ready once you land).
Fast word: you’ll be able to completely use this packing methodology & put your personal spin on the appears to be like, so please don’t assume that is me telling you to pack these particular issues. I’m simply sharing what my mind does to get a complete lotta flexibility out of a comparatively small variety of items (all of which I put on – nothing goes into the suitcase and rides world wide & comes dwelling unworn). That is extra of an “intentional” packing strategy than anything.
Additionally, my outfit poses within the mirror are actually terrible. Please chuckle after which instantly erase them out of your thoughts. It’s like I instantly don’t know what to do with my fingers. #somethingsneverchange
What I Did In France
For anybody who missed my Instagram Tales about my France journey final month, I went on a portray retreat with 14 girls hosted by the wonderful Jessi Raulet, an artist (also called Ettavee) who lives in Strasbourg. She made this whole journey doable together with the wonderful Liz Lidgett.
I paid for this journey similar to everybody else (it wasn’t sponsored or something) and there’s an archived story referred to as France Journey underneath our IG profile. Scroll over to the proper and it’ll be one of many circles underneath our bio that may get you all caught up on many issues I loved doing in Strasbourg, Baden-Baden, and Paris.
Shout out to Elsie Larson who agreed to return with me after I despatched her a one-sentence pitch about why we should always go, in addition to to all the different superior girls I met whereas I used to be there. Additionally, hat tip to my wonderful husband who mentioned “It’s important to do that. We can be effective. Go have the most effective time!” It was actually the journey of a lifetime & I got here dwelling feeling so impressed. Insert all of the magical twinkle emojis right here.
I really feel prefer it is sensible to say the vary of issues I used to be doing for these 7 days overseas – as a result of it was fairly the smattering. Listed here are only a few of them:
- portray in a studio a bunch of occasions
- a strolling food-and-wine tour
- touring a cathedral
- soaking in swimming pools & the sauna at a spa in Germany
- an African dance class
- a night riverboat cruise
- a bunch of largely informal meals
- one fancy meal at a Michelin five-star restaurant
- miles of flea market searching in Paris with Elsie
- and a lot extra (together with getting a number of extra tiny tattoos)
It’s protected to say that a complete lot of floor was lined, and I wanted every thing from the standard suspects (like informal on a regular basis outfits together with a high layer like a jacket for heat and comfy footwear) to a showering swimsuit for the swimming pools in Germany and exercise garments for the African dance class.
What I Packed
My duffel bag was brimming with choices. As a result of once more, my methodology of packing mild isn’t about bringing nothing – it’s all about technique. I had 3 pairs of footwear with me, 3 purses, 3 clothes, 2 pairs of denims, and three jackets to select from! To not point out 5 tanks & a leopard sweater for layering choices galore. My packing strategy doesn’t imply giving something up – it’s actually simply all about determining what pairs effectively with what *earlier than* you allow (and figuring out which greater gadgets to put on on the airplane versus pack). A whopping 9 gadgets within the infographic under weren’t in my duffel bag, which is why the remainder of them simply match. However extra on that in a second.
After all I additionally had underwear, socks, and PJs packed in my duffel – however these aren’t going to get an infographic. So let’s get to my first tip, which covers how I prefer to hold issues organized.
Tip #1: Packing Cubes
As you’ll be able to see under, I used 4 of these packing cubes that simply slipped into my duffel bag to maintain myself organized and to group classes of clothes collectively. Yup, these packing cubes under are all the garments I packed for this whole weeklong journey – they usually additionally include two pairs of footwear! Right here’s what was in every one:
- Backside left: socks, underwear, my bathing swimsuit, exercise garments, & PJs
- High left: a jean jacket, my inexperienced blazer, 3 clothes, and a pair of denims
- High proper: my comfiest stack heel sandals
- Backside proper: 4 tanks, a leopard sweater, & a pair of Rothy’s flats
Be aware: these portions don’t add as much as the general variety of gadgets I listed earlier as a result of they don’t embody the gadgets I wore on my physique whereas touring too 😉 Extra on that in a sec.
I really feel like packing cubes are onerous to know at first as a result of they sound like this stylish pointless factor. I imply, we didn’t have them for many years and all of us survived. However as soon as I bought them it was INCREDIBLY HELPFUL. I really like that now I don’t must dig by means of a complete duffel to search out one thing on the backside (pull out the packing dice together with your PJs or socks, and there’s mentioned factor – with out anything getting jostled round or unfolded). In addition they assist me keep organized whereas I’m packing (that is the place the tanks go, this retains my socks collectively, and so forth).
Oh and for anybody questioning the place my chargers, European plug converters, and even my two additional purses had been (I introduced a small black crossbody bag & a brown leather-based one too) – they had been all in my massive purse, together with my telephone, pockets, passport, and so forth. I additionally had a small waterproof pouch in there with minimal toiletries (folding toothbrush, small tube of toothpaste/deodorant, and minimal make-up like mascara & lip gloss). It was good to have a big black purse, a smaller brown crossbody one, and an excellent smaller black one (you’ll be able to kinda see it within the picture under) for… as soon as once more… say it with me… a wide range of choices! All of them principally paired with any outfit I introduced. Three cheers for purse versatility!
There should not one however two photographs of me on this outfit, and I’m sorry to say you could’t see my black crossbody bag any higher on this second one. But it surely’s this bag when you’re curious. I additionally wore it with denims for a lot of hours of strolling by means of Paris flea markets. It’s at all times sensible to have a small bag that zips in entrance of you in Paris so you’ll be able to keep watch over it 😉
Tip #2: Plan What Pairs Properly
Okay, so now that I’ve my first tip (PACKING CUBES!) out of the best way, I’m simply going to point out you ways I plan for a visit earlier than I’m going. Principally, I strive on outfits and after I like one thing and wish to convey it, I strive to consider not less than a number of methods I can put on one or two of the gadgets. For instance, packing a jean jacket and a pair of sneakers for one outfit is a complete lotta bulk… however when you can put on each of them with a protracted cozy black gown…
… after which once more with a special gown on one other day – they really feel like good staples that may turn out to be useful a number of occasions every, proper? It’s price noting that each of those outfits can be worn with each of the opposite footwear I packed. So though I deliberate to put on sneakers with the lengthy gown, as you’ll be able to see in my image above…
… I really ended up sporting my stacked-heel sandals as a result of it was hotter that day and I wished my toes out. Ha! Additionally, how handy is that this big mirror by the resort elevator that I used to snap a number of outfit pics for this submit (so long as no one was there – in the event that they had been… no pic for you 😉
I assume my level is that I’d by no means set out 7 totally different full outfits on the mattress for a weeklong journey and try and wrestle all of them right into a suitcase (after which shove in a number of fancy issues in case you might have a pleasant dinner or want that particular hat or one thing). I feel that’s how folks find yourself with heavy big baggage they must verify (and many issues they don’t find yourself sporting).
As a substitute, I like to consider layers and combo strikes. Bringing three pairs of footwear (pointy flats + stacked heel sandals + sneakers) was SO VERSATILE. Similar with having three totally different purses. And three totally different clothes. And two totally different blazers + a jean jacket that may be paired with 5 totally different coloured tanks and a patterned sweater.
It simply provides as much as so many MORE outfits than seven, due to totally different pairing choices you could make on the fly (relying on issues like how heat it’s that day, what footwear your toes really feel like sporting, and so forth). Let’s do some fast math:
- The three clothes I packed, which could possibly be paired with any of the three jackets I introduced = 9 outfit choices proper there. After which any of the three shoe choices I purchased could possibly be chosen, together with any of the three purses… which ends up in SO MANY OPTIONS.
- And the 6 tops I introduced (5 coloured tank tops + 1 leopard sweater), which could possibly be paired with 3 totally different jackets = 18 extra outfit choices out of the gate. After which I bought to decide on any of my 3 totally different shoe choices together with any of my 3 purses. THAT’S A LOT OF COMBO MOVES!
- In less complicated phrases, if day by day was a mixture of selecting some tank/sweater/gown (of which I had 9) + a jacket pairing (of which I had 3), I had 27 totally different outfit pairings to select from. To not point out these 3 purse choices & 3 shoe choices to additional customise issues.
That’s what I imply after I say this manner of packing is versatile! And it’s additionally what I imply after I say that being intentional and making certain that your outfits can combine & match is so significantly better than bringing a jacket or a gown that doesn’t go together with anything – or perhaps a pair of footwear that solely work with one or two outfits as a substitute of selecting issues that working interchangeably with all of them.
I additionally must acknowledge that somebody who clothes extra boldly can reveal this thesis much more clearly. Think about one of many gadgets being a floral gown, one of many tanks being checkered, one of many jackets being brilliant purple. An excellent colourful shoe within the combine? It actually can add as much as so many various and enjoyable choices. Once more, I’m simply primary 😉
I must also point out that I’m not re-wearing something soiled over & over once more with this methodology. Completely different coloured tanks underneath blazers & jackets (together with my leopard sweater) every usually get one put on (as do the clothes I packed – and socks & underwear in fact). So when you discover I’m sporting a black tank in France in addition to on the airplane, it’s as a result of I wore one and packed one other one (together with a white, inexperienced, and taupe one). Tanks are superior as a result of they take up so little area.
It’s solely the outer layers like my jean jacket and my blazers (I purchased my inexperienced one and a traditional black one) that may make a number of appearances with various things underneath them, incomes me a bunch of various appears to be like with these key items. Like so:
See what I imply? Completely different footwear & a special tank + a traditional jacket or blazer is an effective deviation for me. Once more, somebody might make this outfit look much more totally different with patterned tanks or a floral gown underneath the inexperienced jacket. Put your personal spin on it for certain.
I’m additionally an individual who doesn’t thoughts sporting denims a number of occasions like the specialists advocate, however do no matter works for you! Packing one other pair of denims (or two) wouldn’t make or break this strategy. Truthfully, I had a lot room in my duffel that I got here dwelling with a fairly large portray I made whereas I used to be there, together with a lot of treats for the youngsters.
I do know these two photographs in a row of my inexperienced blazer with totally different tanks & footwear may make you assume… uh, these outfits nonetheless look fairly comparable. It’s like Clark Kent placing on glasses. How might that idiot anybody? The secret’s that I wouldn’t put on the identical inexperienced jacket two days in a row – and when these outfits are amongst a mixture of different issues, they really feel loads much less repetitive. So when you noticed me in a special gown in between every of these photographs and added in some outfits with the black blazer between them as effectively, you’d get extra of the total image. Image per week of clothes that I’m mixing & matching trying extra like this:
The factor I really like about this methodology is that it’s versatile. Nothing is ready in stone, so you might have an simply pivot-able sport plan with a lot of choices for deviation. For instance, I ended up pairing the taupe high with my black blazer and leopard flats, not the sneakers. The secret’s that you are able to do issues like change footwear on a dime in case your toes wish to – or convey a bigger purse primarily based on wanting extra room to hold stuff that day. And you are able to do that as a result of every thing you introduced works collectively (no lengthy denims that solely work with a sure top of heel for instance – or a selected gown that clashes with each jacket besides one).
It’s actually nearly not packing as: I’ve seven days, I have to stack up seven full outfits in my suitcase – as a result of that’s when it will get big. I additionally assume that planning outfits you want beforehand beats throwing every thing you personal within the suitcase “simply in case” since you arrive at your vacation spot with a thoughtfully thought of plan. Each morning of this journey I bought wearing a couple of minutes. It wasn’t a panicked course of within the resort mirror attempting to determine what to put on. And I liked that for one thing so simple as “my toes can be happier in sneakers at the moment” I had that choice with each outfit.
Tip #3: Optimize Your Aircraft Outfit
Let’s revisit the outfit that I wore on the airplane, as a result of technique #3 is: put on one thing cozy on the airplane that features a few of your bigger gadgets so that you don’t must pack them. Once I’m touring and I wish to have boots and a winter coat, you wager your buns I put on them onto the airplane. On this case, it was about 50-70 levels whereas I used to be in France, so there was much less stress to get big issues onto my physique, however in sporting the outfit under, I knew I didn’t want to search out room in my bag for my sneakers, my black blazer, and this second pair of denims. All of them bought to return with me on my physique – and the blazer, sneakers, and denims all bought to reappear in different outfits – in addition to the purse.
And like this (image me shouting REMIX!):
Briefly, a thoughtfully thought of airplane outfit = effectivity at its best.
Sidenote: please do no matter works for you – like when you want a sweater on the airplane, the leopard sweater I packed is about as massive as my black blazer, so you might journey in that and pack the blazer. And please keep in mind that utilizing this methodology can look SO MUCH MORE VARIED when you don’t at all times put on fundamentals and a complete lot of black. I similar to what I like 😉
And when you keep in mind me saying that 9 complete gadgets on my infographic of what I dropped at France didn’t find yourself in my duffel, these gadgets are: my bracelet, my sun shades, all 3 purses (2 had been nested inside the largest black one, however none had been within the duffel) and naturally the black blazer, sneakers, black tank, and second pair of denims that had been on my physique weren’t in that duffel both 😉
Tip #4: Issues Don’t All the time Have To Be Mixed
This might sound apparent to level out, however simply because you’ll be able to layer issues doesn’t imply you need to. A sweater doesn’t must be underneath a blazer, however it’s good and versatile that means. I ended up sporting this outfit through the day…
… after which added a blazer for heat through the night riverboat cruise.
And on considered one of our portray days, I wore simply this black tank within the studio with an apron, then walked round city with my inexperienced jacket & brown crossbody bag added to the combination.
Similar for this white tank. It was simply that + an apron whereas portray in a workshop, however then round city I added the jacket & my brown purse once more.
Tip #5: Analyze Your Journey When You Unpack
You’ll at all times study one thing once you journey, so taking a second to replicate on what labored additional effectively and what you may change for subsequent time is certainly price these ten minutes whilst you load issues into the washer. One factor I took away from this journey was that generally I simply convey sneakers and a nicer heeled sandal or boot – however these Rothy’s that I’ve had for years had been actually the MVPs of the journey, they usually’re so small to pack. So my takeaway from this journey = you don’t have to decide on between sneakers or cozy flats when the flats are so tiny and straightforward to pack! I’m at all times simply going to throw them into my bag.
I additionally actually preferred having a big purse + two smaller luggage with me to select from – so as a result of I now know they’ll nest into my bigger purse so simply, I feel these can be coming with me on much more journeys as effectively!
Truly, these two realizations are an important instance that packing mild isn’t all about attempting to simply convey fewer and fewer gadgets each time – it’s about attempting to convey a pleasant mixture of helpful issues that provides you with a lot of choices and make you’re feeling good. It may be extraordinarily luxurious to have so many selections come out of 1 purse and one small duffel. Possibly we should always name it the Mary Poppins strategy 😉
P.S. In the event you’re in any respect intrigued a few minimal wardrobe and why I really like mine a lot, this submit explains how one can simplify your closet & get monetary savings. Plus you’ll acknowledge a number of items that got here to France that I owned again in 2018 after I wrote that submit!
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