I’m already thinking about the clothes I’ll pack for my upcoming two-week trip to Europe. Last week, I received a fantastic question in my inbox. Written by Cheryl J.
Hello, Kate In July, I’m traveling to Paris. I took note of your 2016 trip and am taking notes from your blog post. Have you ever shared what you wore in July in Paris? Perhaps you could offer some advice on what has worked best for you in terms of packing for trip. Simply inquisitive. I’m grateful. Cathy J.
I appreciate you asking Cheryl! I wholeheartedly agree that one should pack as little as possible when traveling. Limiting the amount of clothing I bring is important to me, and I’ve mastered the art of carefully packing all the garments I’ll need for two to three weeks into a single carry-on luggage.
I follow a lot of travelers on Instagram, and many of them are poised in stunning clothing while gazing out into breathtaking scenery with their backs turned. Although the pictures are fantastic and appear lovely, I’m just not that fancy. My top priority while traveling on a budget and seeking an experience is comfort, but I also want to appear nice when I’m out and about in a new city.
Here’s my philosophy: It’s foolish to pack outfits just to appear cute if they’re completely uncomfortable. Be wiser than that; bring clothes that not only look beautiful but also make you feel good all day. What I think is crucial is as follows:
COMPACT TRAVEL HAT In order to protect my skin while traveling, this adventurer always makes sure to pack a hat—usually two. When I’m outside all day, I don’t enjoy the sun in my eyes or on my face. Most days, I travel many miles while seeing historical monuments, meandering through little alleyways, and unwinding in cafés or beer gardens, which, in the summer, exposes me to a lot of sunlight.
Hats are a need for me, but they don’t take up much room and can be a bit difficult to pack, so here’s how I do it. I deliberately wedge the hats into the middle of my carry-on bag, stuffing the crowns with socks or undergarments and using other clothes to support and shield the brims. Not just for sun protection, but also because every women looks adorable in a hat and sunglasses, I advise taking at least one hat!
CONSCIOUS KNIT DRESSES When I spend my days wandering the city, standing in art galleries, or dropping into shops, I carry a few soft, flexible dresses that are both fashionable and comfy. A fantastic travel outfit transitions well for dinner in the evening at a café when you add jewelry. Because knit dresses roll up so easily, I’ll bring three or four.
I suggest buying at websites for athletic apparel like Athleta or Pategonia since they offer high-tech fabrics that are quite comfy. Bring clothing for travel that won’t stick to you in odd places or irritate your skin by rubbing against it.
AFFORDABLE SWEATERS In the summer, the weather in Europe is erratic. One day is sunny, the next is cloudy, and mild summer rains are frequent. I never really need much more than a thin sweater when there is a threat of rain (and small umbrella). I bring two thin sweaters or one thin sweater and a thin jacket for my vacation, and I normally wear one of them on the plane because I frequently get cold during flights.
We ladies adore gorgeous shoes, so I know it’s difficult to live without them, but you have to give up your collection. I try to just bring three pairs of shoes, and no more if two of them are sandals. I carry one or two pairs of walking sandals, a pair of adorable closed-toe sneakers (you could also wear ballet flats), and a pair of evening shoes with a short heel (which I only wear once or twice to dinner and could probably live without.)
The most crucial factor to consider is comfort, but style doesn’t have to be sacrificed. Invest in some nice walking sandals and some adorable, comfy shoes because you’ll wear those 90% of the time! I recently ordered another pair of the white travel shoes after wearing out my first pair, about which I mentioned in a previous post.
Stick to a small color palette for your complete wardrobe so you may mix and match items. I often bring separates in black, white, and gray with a pop of accent color, like red or pink.
For daily excursions, think about bringing a small backpack instead of a handbag. I’ve discovered that many Europeans also carry backpacks, so I feel more at home when I do.
Avoid the impulse to bring anything further to the bare minimum. Avoid overpacking. Take only what you really need because you’ll likely be hauling your suitcase up flights of stairs, through cobblestone streets, or into a tiny elevator.
Instead of a hotel, think about renting an apartment. One of the reasons I use Airbnb accommodations is that I can do laundry in the middle of my trip, allowing me to pack only one carry-on bag and use everything twice.
When I travel to Europe, I always bring the following items with me in addition to clothing and toiletries: an international adaptor with USB, a portable charger, a travel camera, a fold-up tote (for trips to the market, souvenirs, or sorting dirty clothes), foam earplugs, headphones, an umbrella, an eye mask, ziplock bags for toiletries, ibuprofen andamp; antacid, protein bars, sunscreen, and a digital copy of my passport
You may find my favorite travel camera, eye mask, and other items in my Amazon shop , which I previously listed as my needs for flying.
If you have any further inquiries, please contact me! Please feel free to share your list of must-have travel items with me!