In this special and very important post before your big holidays, we have carefully compiled some tips and tricks to produce the Zero Regret guide to packing for your summer holidays. Have you ever found yourself rummaging through your suitcase thinking you have nothing to wear or worse having packed the wrong items?
Based on these two locations, you will need to find some common denominators: trendy pieces that will take you from beach to city, key accessories that could work well in either place.
For 2016, we picked white crochet tops or dresses, off the shoulder dresses and tops, denim shorts as they work in any kind of weather and sneakers and espadrilles that are comfy and great for walking.
The piece de resistance that will make you look instantly up to date is without a doubt a crazy pair of sunglasses: there are so many options around this year from the priciest at Dior to the edgy at Gentle Monster and more accessible ones at Ray-Ban.
Last but not least a trendy cross body bag by a boho chic brand like Chloe will take you from beachside drinks to strolls around the city effortlessly.
Shop some of these key essentials here:
Although we are no advocates of matching shoes to bags, there is at least a minimum of colour matching you need to do in order to pack efficiently: for example if your bag has gold toned hardware, it would be best not to pack a silver coloured pair of shoes. Certain colours like tan and black will save you from the matching accessories to outfits headaches, as they tend to go well with leopard prints, gold, and black. If you stick to predominantly neutral outfits in white, denim, greys and black, you can easily throw in a pair of bold-coloured trainers or as a safer bet a pair of white sneakers.
Traveling to multiple destinations with different climates can take really weigh down your suitcase if you don’t pack the right array of shoes.
For beach holidays, you can really do with 2 pairs of sandals, one for the day and one for the evening, which you could also wear during the day when you get to your city destination, a pair of Havaiana slippers that you could probably fit in your hand luggage and one pair of comfy rope espadrilles which will make walking around the small cobbled towns super easy.
For city breaks, comfort is paramount, 2 pairs of sneakers, pointy lace-up ballerinas that will take you from smart day looks to comfy evenings out around the city, espadrilles and maybe sandals when the heat wave strikes and maximum two pairs of high heels. For heels, pick one style in a neutral or metallic colour to match with everything and one statement pair in a bold “bird of paradise” style to elevate and instantly update your whites, pastels and blacks.
Shop Summer shoes essentials:
As European cities like Paris and London tend to have unpredictable and mostly greyish weather, it is important to pack a variety of items: leather track pants or leggings for when it gets really chilly, a leather jacket, tops in whites, greys and blacks and denim shorts or tailored shorts in black and navy. Classics such as breton stripe sweaters, denim shirts and white jeans are also key pieces to have with you at all times.
The key piece that will update your summer 2016 look instantly is without a doubt an army jacket in khaki, preferably with some funky details like colourful badges. If you happen to be in Asia, make sure you stop by a Korean brand called Gentlemen Prefer Blondes which you won’t find online unfortunately, but you will be able to get your hands on in major department stores around Asia.
Be ready to cool down on hotter days with your off the shoulder tops and dresses and your folkloric tops, which you would also wear on a beach getaway.
Shop city neutrals:
When traveling, do yourself a favour and carry your nicest bags around, so you can easily take them from day to night. A cross body by Jerome Dreyfuss, Valentino, Prada or Chanel will ensure you look smart whatever the circumstances. Since it is also the year of bohemian chic, make sure you have a romantic piece by Chloe, in a shade of nude or tan which will elevate your off the shoulder dresses and bohemian tops or denim on denim.
Pack one embroidered bohemian bag for the beach that won’t make you feel sorry about getting eater or sand inside, there are plenty of good options at Accessorise or Star Mela.
What about beach carry alls? Well… these have no business being packed away, they will just eat up valuable space, so make sure you use them as on-board hand luggage to carry your iPad, iPod and Havaianas.
Shop small cross body bags:
Save on space and help keep your prized purses in their original shape, by stuffing your accessories such as jewelry, swimsuits and sunglasses inside them. Leave your sunglasses inside hard cover box clutches to avoid breaking them and wrap every bag in its original dust bag to prevent scratches.
If unpacking and re-packing your entire suitcase sounds like an absolute nightmare, best to plan your packing in reverse chronological order. Let’s say your first destination is a beach holiday and your second is your city break, you will need to pack your last destination first so that all those items will stay neatly packed and untouched until your next stopover.
It may not sound very obvious, but the best way to maximise your suitcase real estate is to pack your clothes as flat as possible, especially jackets, tops, and dresses. You will most likely have to fold them in two if you are traveling with a medium sized case, but that will still allow plenty of room as opposed to folding them in squares.
Last in, first out… keep your beach and island wear on top of the pile so you can unpack everything and hang in cupboards at your first hotel without hassle. Keep scarves, sarongs, swimsuits and accessories last, for you to fill in the gaps.
Make sure you pack: denim shorts, bohemian tops, crochet cover ups in white, tropical print kaftans, sarongs that turn into scarves or the other way around, a bikini for every day at least, to ensure you always have a dry set to wear, 2 pairs of sandals and some funky jewelry to smarten up your look at night. More to come over the coming few days about what to wear on a beach or island holiday…
Shoes are the bulkiest items , therefore it is important to store them in fabric shoe bags. Each pair of heeled shoes should be broken up into two shoe bags to help fill in the gaps inside your suitcase.
Leave your bulkiest shoes such as trainers or ankle boots to wear in-flight, this will ensure you save on valuable packing space and that you are super comfy during your travels.
Last but not least, leave your worries behind and take your enthusiasm with you as travel really does buy happiness and creates long-lasting memories…
Exciting Bikinis by Mara Hoffman and the Swan Float
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