Capsule In a Carry-On: Styling Your Vacation
All the vacation outfit planning tips you need and quite a few that you don't.
As the world opens back up (and even while it was “shut down” for some of you…), plenty of people are itching to get back out there and explore the world. I, personally will be both going to Vegas for my birthday (which, at the time of publication, is two days from now!), and to San Diego to catch up with a friend. While I won’t be flying (you won’t catch me on a plane anytime soon), I still prefer to pack for road trips and train rides as if all I’m able to bring is a carry-on, just for my own peace of mind.
For short, or “event-centric” (birthdays, baecations, etc.) trips, I like to take an outfit-based approach, where I pack a diverse array of outfits but, for longer excursions, I tend to go for a capsule approach to get multiple wears and looks out of a selection of items. I'll give my tips for both but, first:
Does Your Airport/Travel Outfit Matter?
According to Twitter, Mo’Nique, and people who inexplicably think they’re celebrities: what you wear to the airport has the potential to ruin not just your trip, but your romantic prospects, positive representation of your race as a whole, and even international relations. I’m putting this portion above the paywall to finally put the debate to rest:
Your travel outfit absolutely does matter. But not in the way that you may think.
Your travel outfit should be, above all, comfortable. That said, with the world of fashion as vast as it is now, looking good is not something you ever have to sacrifice in the name of feeling good. That also said, if you don’t care about “looking good” while traveling, you don’t owe the world beauty, perfection, or anything else regarding your appearance. But if you do…
Personally, I’m most comfortable in a long, loose-fitting dress, typically with a slip-on shoe, but I still like to look put together enough that—say I get to my destination and want to immediately go out to eat, or my room isn’t ready and I have to go post up by the hotel bar—I can walk into any venue and still be among the best dressed in the room.
If you’re like me, but don’t really know how to look effortless with little effort, I have some easy recommendations based on your personal preference.
If sweatpants or joggers are your thing, try an easy switch out like a button down instead of a T-shirt or hoodie. Go all the way with flowy separates like a lightweight tank and full maxi, especially in a chiffon, or baggy/wide-legged linen pants with the top of your choice if you’re flying to a warmer location (layer a sweater over it if you get cold on planes). And, if you want some truly high-level comfort without sacrificing a lick of style, go for a light and loose shirt or T-shirt dress.
Read on for my personal tips on how to plan your vacation looks, as well as two worksheets to help with the process!
Disclaimer: I’m only here to help with the style stuff, I don’t know how to pack it!