So I was down in southwest England for a bit of R&R away from the hustle and bustle of busy London life and previous to packing was thinking a fair bit about what to bring. As I'm sure is true for most people, I'm not keen on spending an hour or so planning what I'll be wearing for the next week, especially considering the oh-so-changeable English weather. I've never been one for planning
outfits... how will I know what I feel like wearing on the day before the day? So, needless to say, packing is not my favourite of past times. However, I find myself rather good at it. I hate bringing things I end up not wearing or using so I'm pretty good at packing just the essentials (which ends up being pretty light and my bag-carrying shoulders thank me for it). So here are my tips for making the most out of your suitcase essentials.
Plan your activities
If you know what you'll be doing, you'll be able to plan what'll be appropriate and comfortable to wear whether that's casual, sporty, smart, or a mixture of each. This doesn't mean you have to plan out everything you'll be doing each day, but getting an idea of whether you'll be doing more walking, dancing, adventuring, or lounging will be helpful.
We can all get swept up in to a holiday frenzy where we decide we'll ditch our usual monochrome t-shirt and jeans look and fashion a tropical boho dress instead, but let's be honest, we'd feel more comfortable in the former. So that's exactly what you should pack. This doesn't mean you should the holiday spirit all together... by all means pack that floaty beach cover-up, but just remember that holidays are for being free from stress and totally comfortable so wear what makes you feel good, not what you saw in a holiday trends article.
Lay it out
Instead of jamming all you can fit into your suitcase (a la sitting on top, keeping it closed enough to zip up... we've all been there ladies), grab what you want to bring and lay it out on your bed or floor first. That way you can see what you have, plan your outfits, and really see if you definitely need everything. If you've doubled up on anything, put one back. If you need more room for essentials (knickers, toiletries, towel... no, three pairs of heels do not count as essentials), lighten your load elsewhere (do you really need more than one pair of good jeans? or the same top in three different colours?). At this point you may want to plan your outfits day by day. This is my least favourite task but it really comes in handy when you're trying to get rid of excess weight.
Mix and match
Remember those flip books you could get in the 90s that pictured a person cut into threes - head, torso, legs? An ingenious way of teaching kids to mix and match their wardrobe staples (that wasn't the intention? Could have fooled me). Keep it to the staples to begin with. The favourite pair of jeans, the smart/casual shorts, and the maxi skirt. Now choose a top half that'll work with all. A plain white top (t-shirt, blouse, or tank depending on the weather and occasion) would work just as well with all of these. That's three outfits sorted and half the space taken up.
Once you've laid everything out, count how many outfits you've planned. If it's more than the number of days that you're away, it's time to narrow it down to your favourites.
Did this help? What're your packing tips this summer?