Is it possible to pack EVERYthing you want… and EVERYthing you need? AND in little time, in a little suitcase???!
Had you asked me a few months ago, I would have thought no. One or two of those would HAVE to have been sacrificed. (which I know isn’t the end of the world, but let’s shoot for the ideal here).
Let’s go back to summertime, when I went to Europe for 2 weeks with UNO suitcase. Now i understand, people do the whole backpacking thing, but i had a few clenchers.
I needed A TON of versatility as I was going to be in different types of settings (the Amalfi coast to gorgeous Vatican cathedrals to the vineyards in the South of France). And MOST importantly, I needed multiple outfits because I was going to be seeing the ultimate STUD, so i OBVIOUSLY had to be prepped!! The PRESSURE to bring ALL OF YOUR BEST OUTFITS.
The pressure… the pressure… THE PRESSURRRRRRE!!!!
The night before I left, I remember staring at stacks of clothes on the ground (for I’m embarrassed to say how long) wishing they’d pull a ‘Mary Poppins’ and just all fit in my suitcase.
Well…. They didn’t.
So, I just threw my hands in the air and Hail Mary’d it.
Fast forward to this past week. That stud (now my husband- guess my large suitcase wasn’t a deal breaker) and I went to Ireland to watch some rugby and see some friends.
This packing session was a BREEZE. So much so that I “outgrew” my larger carry-on and borrowed his smaller carry-on. I packed quickly and efficiently a couple hours before we left. I felt prepped like I brought a mobile closet! Although to be completely honest, I’ll bring a flat boot next time (the cobblestones get dangerous with tired ankles).
After, I was like... "hmmmm that was so super easy this time."
I reflected a bit why it was so easy for me to get everything I wanted and needed in his small suitcase. What was my thought process? Why was THIS time different? How did I graduate to Brice’s tiny, red suitcase?
Okay, let’s walk through this step by step. Your recipe to pack:
Kick the habit that you pack outfit by outfit. Remove that notion from your head right now!
Start with your shoes. Pull out 1 (mayyyybe 2) pairs of shoes that you’re easily able to dress up or down. You know these are going to have to match your outfits, so get those locked in before you start pulling clothes out from your closet. (for me this trip it was a black leather/suede bootie. I had the comfort, the dressiness, the versatility, and matches almost anything.) Take them out of your closet and place by your bed.
Pull out 3 fun, feel-good pieces that you DEFinitely want to bring. Imagine yourself where you are. What’s the vibe? What’s a piece you picture yourself in on that trip having fun, enjoying your time? (for me this was my coated skinnies, an ostrich feathered top, and a cape-like LBD). Take these 3 pieces and place on your bed.
Pull out your “must-haves”. These are your non-negotiables. Items you’ll have to wear because of weather, work, occasion. (We were going to be outdoors, so I knew my outfits would have to match my cream, black, scarf, pearl beret and fur coat). Take these pieces and place on your bed.
Now we find the "versatile glue" to bring it all together. Look at the pieces on your bed. Now’s the time to find the “glue” that bridges your fun, feel-good pieces with your necessities. (I brought a camel crewneck sweater, black and white striped top, and a ruffle hem skirt). Look between the pieces on your bed, and your spacious and nicely hung clothes in your closet. Look for neutral tones and simple cuts to pull your needs and wants together.
And there you go! You have the satisfaction and excitement of wearing fun pieces yet still all of your necessities (and not to mention, the "glue" that gives you the versatility!).
When I did this, I actually ended up wearing completely different outfits I assumed because I really had so much versatility with this method!
Question: What's your #1 recommendation for packing light and getting the most in your suitcase?