How do you determine what to pack for your weekend getaway? In my work as a personal fashion stylist, I’ve found there are two types of packing styles. Those who like to have a lot of options. And those who prefer to streamline and bring less.
There are benefits to both of these packing styles. When you bring plenty of options, you feel prepared for whatever shows up. And when you bring less, your bag is lighter to cart around. Plus, if you are travelling by plane…bringing less saves you time by skipping the baggage claim.
Personally, I love having options on my trips. But for weekend getaways, I simplify and pack lighter. This doesn’t mean I sacrifice my style though. There is a way to bring less and still feel stylish. But it requires planning ahead. So if you’re leaving Friday afternoon, don’t wait until then to throw everything in your bag. Do it Thursday. Give yourself plenty of time. This investment up front pays off on the other side as you’ll know exactly what to wear on your trip!
Click play to watch the video and get the 3 simple steps that I use for myself and my clients when packing for short trips.
And read on for how to pack for your weekend getaway.
Start by visualizing your weekend. What are all the activities you will do? What’s the weather going to be like? What types of locations and venues will you attend? These all contribute to your styling non-negotiables which are the circumstances of your style. Your clothes have a job to do. They must support you in your life so you feel comfortable. So if there’s rain in the forecast, you’ll bring your good rain shoes so your feet don’t get wet. You may want to call specific venues, or go to their website to get a feel for their ambiance. This way you’ll bring things that help you feel appropriately dressed. By locking in your styling non-negotiables before you pack, you’ll bring the right things.
Next, sort through your wardrobe and pull out possible options to bring. Keep the following in mind as you choose items from your closet:
My grandmother used to pack tissue paper between her garments to keep them from wrinkling. You don’t have to do that! Choose wrinkle resistant fabrics. And unless you plan to iron, leave the linen at home. Also keep in mind that prints can camouflage wrinkles better than solids. And unpacking as soon as you arrive also helps. You can also bring a travel size of downey wrinkle release.
Wear your bulkiest items while you travel. It’s much easier to have them on your body then packing them in the bag. So if your 4”platform sandals are a must-have on the trip, wear them on the way there.
This is so you make the most use of what you bring. If you can narrow down your color palette, this helps everything match. In general, you want your tops and bottoms to work together. Not only does this make your travel capsule more versatile, but it gives you more options. So if you decide to swap out one top for another, it works!
Finally, using all the information from above you put together your outfits for the weekend. This means you are making all your wardrobe decisions in advance. So rather than bringing multiples for the same activity, decide up front what you’ll wear. It’s true that making these choices in advance limits your flexibility, but if you’ve only brought items that work with each other, you can make last minute switches based on your mood.
Recently I helped my client pack for a trip, and we went through every event on the calendar. This included discussing who would be there, and how she wanted to feel at the event. Don’t forget to take these details into consideration so you feel confident with your choices.
And keep in mind that sometimes your favorite at-home items don’t work while you’re away. When I’m at home in NYC, I wear my metallic clogs everywhere! So I brought them on a recent trip to the country and those clogs sat untouched. So did my everyday jeans. At home, they’re my go-tos. But on this country vacation they weren’t right.
That’s why it’s important to categorize your clothes and discern where they’re most suitable. City looks don’t always work in the country. Beach looks don’t work in the city.
After The Trip
When you get back home and unpack, take note of everything you wore and did not wear. Then start a photo folder and take pics of the worn and unworn items. This will be a great packing resource for your next trip. For example, my metallic clogs and everyday jeans will go in my unworn photo. By taking note of what you didn’t wear, you’ll be more mindful of what to pack on the next getaway.