Last week I was lucky enough to take a trip to Cannes, during the film festival, fulfilling a long held dream of seeing the red carpet up close. I was still a little far from the dresses but have a look at my Pinterest page for my pics of the best looks of the festival http://bit.ly/1kq3lil
Newly returned from being a spectator of the high life and luxury yachts got me thinking about small spaces and my own packing. It’s all very well for all the stars but what happens when you don’t have the luxury of travelling by private jet or boat and travel on the rather less glamorous budget airlines? How do you remain stylish for your break? Here are my tried and tested packing tips.
Don’t look in your wardrobe – This may sound odd but if I actually look in the wardrobe I have the urge to take everything, the road to overpacking this way lies. To avoid this I grab a cuppa and a notebook. I make a note of how many nights and days I will be away and what activities I am likely to be involved in. Then I mentally peruse my wardrobe for items that will be suitable and list them under headings by clothing type, shoes, trouser etc. When I look at the list I can clearly see in black and white whether I am taking too much or too little, in one case 10 Tshirts/tops for a 3 day trip! Only once I have identified specific items or in some cases how many of a type of outfit, i.e. two evening outfits do I actually go to the wardrobe.
Multi Tasking – It may not work in real life but it’s a must for any holiday wardrobe. When you look at your list (or if you are more visual, when you have laid out the items in your list, again grouped into clothing type) every item should match more than one other item. This is the way I like to build in a choice of outfits without necessarily taking extra items. Selecting shoes with multiple outfits in mind can be particularly helpful. Also choose hardworking items that can take you from day to evening or be worn for either situation. I like maxi dresses for this. I have a gold lace detail strapless one which I dress down with flip flops in the daytime and dress up for evening with elegant wedges and complimentary jewellery. A pair of patterned silk trousers can also work well, worn with a t shirt for daytime and and embellished fine knit for evening.
Accessorise, Accessorise, Accessorise – A subset of multitasking, accessories can change the look and feel or even create a new outfit. Glamour and drama can be created by adding the right necklace and bracelet. A beach cover up can be transformed into a chic dress simply by cinching in the waist with a statement belt and adding heels. The added bonus is that accessories generally use take less of your precious luggage allowance than clothes.
Colour Theme – As a result of multi- tasking I often end up with a colour theme to my holiday wardrobe. This time around it was yellow, which I thought the perfect compliment to my French Riviera destination.
Roll don’t fold – An age old tip but so effective, I couldn’t leave it out. It maximises your space and minimises wrinkling, what’s not to like?
Avoid luggage loss crisis – If you are not travelling alone then try putting an outfit and a change of underwear in your travelling companion’s suitcase and vice versa. That one way if one suitcase gets lost you both still have some clothes. Chances are if one of you has everything and one of you has nothing, especially if you are travelling in a couple, there will be a less than harmonious start to your break. Obviously nothing can be done if everyone’s luggage doesn’t make it (of course there are always shops, but who wants to spend the first part of any holiday shopping because you have to?) but some well chosen items in your carry on can help with this. I usually go for a bikini, a day to eve dress, a change of underwear and some make up. I also try, climate permitting, to ensure what I am wearing to travel doubles as a holiday appropriate outfit. A well packed carry on means even if you arrive and your luggage doesn’t, you can still hit the sights/beach/pool/bar without delay.
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Tags: Cannes 2014, holiday packing, holiday wardrobe, packing tips, suitcase