When it comes to vacation, for me the most fun part is packing! Deciding what to take with you on a trip is like daydreaming about how you'll spend your days off. Here are my tips on how I pack for vacation.
1. PULL ALL THE PIECES: First I look at my closet and pull all the items I'm excited about. This could be pieces I've purchased with the specific destination in mind or items in my closet I'm looking for an excuse to wear. And I always pull a few things that I've been wearing a lot lately because I know I'll get a lot of mileage out of them on my trip.
2. PUT TOGETHER THE OUTFITS: Place all of the pieces on hangers and hang them together as outfits. If when you're done you look back at your pile and there are pieces that didn't make it into an outfit, they shouldn't make it into your suitcase. This is also a good time to review your trip itinerary, if you have one, and assign these outfits to specific activities and events you'll take part in on your trip. If you can't think of a reason to wear an outfit on your trip you should probably leave it behind.
3. PREPACK: You now have a good base of items that you love and know you will wear on your trip so it's time to see how much room these pieces are going to take up in your suitcase. Try to pack all of the items so that you leave half of your suitcase empty. If they don't all fit take everything back out and repack in order of priority. When you're suitcase is half full look at the outfits that didn't make it in and see if those are still must haves.
4. FIND ONE SPECIAL PIECE: Vacation is an escape from your day-to-day life and you should dress like it. Pick one item that will make you feel like you're on vacation and throw that in your bag. For a trip to an exotic beach location I wanted to pack this beautiful caftan I picked up at the Goodwill Greater Washington 80th anniversary event.
5. ALWAYS PACK YOUR BATHING SUIT: This has been my personal packing mantra since my very first sleepover. You never know where you'll find a pool and of all the last minute things you'd want to shop for on the fly a bathing suit is NOT one of them. Besides, swimsuits are tiny and take up no room - so why not throw one in and be prepared for the unexpected beach bash.
6. GET CASUAL: Don't forget that you may want to explore your destination so a pair of shoes that are both comfortable for walking and cute enough for an impromptu dinner are essential. I like to bring a pair of shoes that DON'T make me look like a tourist and a jacket that keeps my core warm, but isn't too bulky to carry around. These Nike Air Dunks have a hidden wedge heel so they give me some height and are cute enough for walking around a museum or sitting at a cute cafe.
7. PACK A PARTY DRESS: Just like a pool, you never know where you'll stumble upon a party or an event that requires an evening look. Packing a simple little black dress (or little white dress in summer) is always a good idea. You don't want to miss out on a fun last minute invite because you didn't pack the right clothes.
8. LOAD IT UP: I don't abide by that rule that says leave space in your suitcase for souvenirs. By the time I pack everything I need for my trip my suitcase is always full and if it isn't then I bring a smaller bag, but I always throw an empty expandable Longchamp bag (any empty dufflebag works) in case I come home with more than I left with. This is also helpful if you oversleep the morning of your flight home have to pack in a hurry and can't fit your same items neatly back in your suitcase, not to mention its a great way to separate your dirty clothes from your clean ones.
How do you pack for vacation? If you used my method hit me up in the comments or on Twitter or Instagram and let me know!