I'm a chronic over-packer, never sure what I'll feel comfortable wearing so I stuff as many items as I can into the biggest bag I can carry. Inevitably when I arrive at my destination I end up wearing the same one or two outfits the entire time, borrowing items, or buying something new (which never fits in my bag to return home).
I do have some smart packing habits: checking the destination weather, identifying the types of outfits I'll need (casual, cocktail, office), and always bringing presentable loungewear. For my short trip to New Jersey for Thanksgiving I tried to pack light and smart - bringing just a few items that can be mixed & matched providing a flexible, fun and manageable travel wardrobe. I'll be at my parents' for 3-4 days with plans to see some friends, run a few suburb-errands (read: go to Target & the Arc), celebrate Thanksgiving, and chill with my family. Let's get packing!
IN MY BAG:
- Makeup Bag
- Jewel-Tone V-Neck Sweater (Target)
- White Long Sleeve Scoop Neck Tee (Old Navy)
- Camel Tan Boots (Payless)
- Sneakers (Nike)
- Book Club Reading - "Hunger Makes Me A Modern Girl" by Carrie Brownstein
- Skinny Sweats (Old Navy)
- Plaid Button-Down (Old Navy)
- Chambray Button-Down (Old Navy)
- Infinity Scarf (Lee Lee's Forest)
- Sweater Belt (Vintage)
- Black Tights (We Love Colors)
- Patterned Tunic Dress (Old Navy)
- Dark Wash Skinny Jeans (StitchFix)
- Mismatched Earrings
- Key Necklace (The Giving Keys) & Pen Necklace (Kate Spade)
- Knit Cap (Prima Donna)
A FEW TIPS:
- CHOOSE A COLOR PALETTE that works for the season and pairs well. I've chosen bold primary colors with dark & light neutrals, because I love splashes of color!
- PACK VERSATILE ITEMS that can be layered and/or worn several ways. Button-down collared shirts are a great travel choice - they can be worn alone, as well as over or under another top. My chambray even looks great under the tunic dress! Added bonus: sleeves can be rolled up or down to accommodate moderate temperature changes.
- PREPARE FOR THE WEATHER. Autumn temperatures are unpredictable, so in addition to layerble items I always grab a scarf and hat that can pair with anything in my bag.
- BE HONEST ABOUT YOUR STYLE to avoid packer's remorse. (Yes, it's a real thing!) I enjoy trying new styles and dressing up, but most days I just want to be comfortable. Pack items that can be combined into several casual and more dressy styles, to your personal taste.
- IF YOU DON'T WEAR IT AT HOME, YOU WON'T WEAR IT. I used to always pack workout gear on any trip I'd take. Sounds smart, except that I almost never work out. Try to avoid being an aspirational packer - opt for items you wear often and are familiar with - they'll be easier to pair and you'll be most comfortable in them.
- HAVE FUN! If you have a favorite top or accessory that doesn't really fit your theme - pack it anyway! You'll be glad you have it and may even be surprised at how you can work it into an outfit.
- DON'T FORGET YOUR TRAVEL ESSENTIALS. I (try to) never travel without wrinkle spray, a stain stick, a small purse, sunglasses, headphones, my mophie, chapstick, lotion, a pen or pencil and a journal or sketchbook.
I've only shown a few of the possible outfit combinations here, but I think you get the general idea! These items easily fit into my weekend tote with room to spare for my travel essentials and any small items I may purchase on my trip.
I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving and if you are traveling, happy packing!