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Packing a “Russian Bag” on Holiday

We all know a thing or two about over-packing and paying the heavy price for mistaking ourselves for royal highnesses, but somehow we just can’t seem to learn to pack smartly and efficiently. I for one, was the absolute worst traveler you could pack with; almost 80% of the contents of my suitcase were never worn and it sent the wrong kind of message to my husband, who always asked whether I was moving country. The sight of piles of clothes, shoes and bags in the guest bedroom, made him sweat with worry as I strategized my outfits for every day and evening on our trip.

Yellow leather tote, Cobalt blue and black envelope clutch, Zebra print calfhair purse

Yellow leather tote, Cobalt blue and black envelope clutch, Zebra print calfhair purse, all from Zara

It then dawned on me like an epiphany that the secret to packing smartly for all occasions was to stick to a restricted palette of colours across clothing , bags and shoes and create permutations that could use the same items for different occasions: your carry-on duffel bag should also double up as your beach bag or shopping bag. Your city-shoulder bag should also morph into a smart evening bag, as should your make up bag serve as a money purse for a quick grocery pit-stop down the road as well as an evening purse.

Packing handbags efficiently on holiday

Packing handbags efficiently on holiday

The ultimate packing stroke of genius is to be able to put them all inside of each other and fool those narrow-minded security screeners at European airports, who have once told me off for carrying and handbag and a tote (one piece of hand luggage was allowed on Easy-Jet). At SUF we like to call this packing trick a Russian Bag, knowing that no such term or concept even exists, but is the exact mirror of a Russian doll.

How to pack a Russian Doll-style bag

How to pack a Russian Doll-style bag

Our packing list this season has strong block colours: sunshine yellow tote to make denim , white and black look fresh, cobalt blue oversized clutch to go with the new printed silk trousers and an orange shift dress and a fun zebra print to go with any colour under the sun. We strongly urge you to rediscover High street queen Zara where we only spent 100 quid for all three of these fabulous pieces shown above, and the best thing is that the quality of the leather is great!

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