I love packing. Possibly because it means I’m going away, but actually I think it’s just an excuse to be organised. Everyone I know seems to hate packing, giving me the opportunity to step in and put my skills to good use.
The first thing I do is look at the weather for my destination. There is literally no point in filling half your suitcase with jumpers when it is going to be 23 degrees and you are probably going to want to be wearing a bikini all day. Knowing the weather is pretty much the main thing I need to know what I am going to take. I have a good idea of what I want to wear when it is cold, and what I like when it’s hot.
tip to help with this is to make a list of clothes for holiday when you come home from holiday. The best time to do this is on the plane home when you’re still in the holiday mindset and you can easily remember what you have and haven’t used. I used to take a huge suitcase with me away, with 3 pairs of heels, 15 outfits for 5 days covering day and night and all occasions in-between which is just so unnecessary.
What I started to do was make a list of the things I actually wore after a trip and this list was tiny in comparison to the mountain of clothes I had take. I started to pack based on this list instead and it was a total life changer for me.
I always travel with hand luggage 1. because I hate carrying a big bag for no reason, struggling to a from the tube when getting the airport and then lugging tonnes of stuff when searching for air BNBs etc. I’m a small girl and lugging 24 kilos of unworn clothes is not my idea of fun haha! 2. It’s so satisfying to stroll off the plane and walk past everyone waiting for their luggage. I’m at my apartment sipping gin while everyone else is staring at the bag carousel (ok not quite but this is what I like to imagine)!! Also, the added bonus is your luggage won’t be lost or damaged because it’s always with you (just don’t leave your money purse with all the cash you have in the overhead locker by mistake…).
So anyway, back to the list. I have a list for weekends away, summer holidays, cold trips – basically anywhere I’ve been I’ve created an honest list of the things I need. I mean, it’s normal to have a panic moment and shove another 7 things into your suitcase 10 mins before leaving for the airport but if I can avoid this, I will.
Ok so we know the weather, now you need to write the days you’re away and what you’re doing. If I join my family on holiday in summer, I’ll be spending every single day in my bikini and maybe need 2 evening outfits, so putting together lots of daytime looks is a waste of time, however if I’m going away with my boyfriend or a group of friends, we’ll probably be sightseeing and spending a lot more time out and about and a lot more nights out.
I write down the days and whether I have anything planned and then figure out if I can use the same outfit a couple of times, or chop and change outfits using the same pieces to minimise packing.
I try on the outfits and this is THE MOST IMPORTANT thing as so many times I have an outfit in mind, take it away and then realise it isn’t how I imagined, or is too hot/too cold/not comfortable. Try everything on and take pictures. I create a folder on my phone for that trip and take a picture of the outfit and any accessories I want for that look so when I have a quick 5 mins to get ready and am in outfit panic, I have something to refer to making life so much easier.
Once I have my outfits nailed, I fold them into piles which make them easier to pack. I do this by putting specific looks/types of outfits together. Either day outfits/evening outfits, or if it is only a short trip like a weekend away, I would do a pile for Saturday, Sunday and Monday. I use packing cubes to pack them in these piles which makes getting ready a dream as everything is organised and neat rather than shoved in different sections of your suitcase and all muddled together.
I’m well aware that I’m way over the top when it comes to packing, but I genuinely enjoy it and find that putting the time in when packing makes everything so much easier on holiday when all you want to be doing is getting out and about exploring and doing fun things, not worrying about the stuff you can’t find because you overpacked, or wishing you had brought something you left at home because you didn’t try things on.
To tip it over the edge completely into psychotic packing disorder (if there is such a thing), you can use a Polaroid to take the pics so that you can take them with you or stick them to the packing cubes with the outfits inside.
There you go, there’s no excuses for bad packing!
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