If you follow me on Instagram then you've been inundated with travel photos over the last week and a half. If not then I'm happy to tell you if you are reading this the day it goes live I'm away from my desk and having an awesome time traveling through Eastern Europe. So far Scott and I have made stops in Oslo (not Eastern Europe but we had a long layover so we ventured into the city), Prague, Budapest and now we are in Vienna. On Friday we are headed to one more European stop- Bulgaria. This one probably seems like an odd choice and rather out of the way given our other destinations but its actually the whole reason we came, this weekend friends of ours will be tying the knot in Plovdiv Bulgaria. Today I want to share with you some tips and tricks for packing for an overseas holiday and particularly one where you need to dress up.
When I travel internationally packing light is my motto. I'm a huge fan of travel writer Rick Steves and his thing is that you should be packing light, right and in a backpack. For two weeks I'm living out of the 28 liter pack that easily fits on my back. Lots of care and time when into the decision of exactly which pieces would be making the trip with me.
One of my biggest tips for making this kind of travel work for you is basing all of the clothes you bring on one neutral color so that everything can mix and match. This time around black is my color, all the shoes I brought with me are black and all the garments themselves work with black as the neutral. My next tip is related and it is to make sure all of your garments are related or can be worn together or mixed and matched- think of it as making a capsul wardrobe.
First I needed to sort out what precisely I would wear to the wedding. The temperature In Bulgaria in June hovers between 90-100 and chances of air conditioning in really old places like churches is slim to none. I thought also about the fact the streets in really old places tend to be cobblestone- so heels would be problematic and not to mention take up a ton of luggage space. This made my decision to hunt out a great maxi dress easy, it would be stylish and can be worn with either sandals or flats.
I ended up stumbling on a perfect dress for the occasion at the Loft outlet (checkout my Instagram this weekend for a photo!) it's a sleeveless maxi dress with an all over purple botanical print. The key factors though are that the fabric is lightweight, I am carting this around on my back over 4 countries after all, and it's a synthetic material that is virtually wrinkle free.
To wrap up here are my biggest tips:
1. pack footwear that is appropriate for the surfaces you will likely be walking/ standing on
2. go for wrinkle resistant fabric
3. for a summer wedding lightweight garments are your friend not only for staying cool but also for transportability
Are you headed out of the states for a wedding this summer? If so leave a comment on how you are managing to fit all of your essentials in your luggage. Also, stay tuned for a fun post Bulgaria wedding wrap up on all of the exciting wedding traditions I'll be learning about on this trip!
Wondering how on earth I've managed to pack everything that I will need for a two week vacation in a backpack. I'm including this bonus list of all the items I brought with me:
- 1 maxi dress for the wedding
- 2 transitional knee length dresses, these can be worn during the day or I can change the jewelery and add a large scarf as shawl and wear them to the opera
- 1 casual dress, this one is just for day wear because it is warm here this time of year
- 1 pair of jeans
- 1 pair of comfy black pants (these can be worn any day but I always make sure to wear these on flight days becuase they are so cozy)
- 1 pair of grey crop pants
- 1 pair black shorts
- 1 jacket, I picked up an excellent one at Eddie Bauer last year before a Europe trip and it rocks. It has a hood for bad weather, reflects moisture and is still cozy enough to wear on the plane when it gets chilly
- 2 long sleeve tops
- 3 short sleeve tops
- 2 sleeveless tops
-7 pair underwear
-3 pair socks
- 1 bikini
-1 robe doubles as swim coverup
-1 one slip
- 1 cardigan
- 1 belt
- 1 pair of sandals
- 1 pair black flats
-1 pair of comfy black leather shoes for long days on my feet sight seeing ( to me it's important that these lace up and can keep my feet dry if it rains)
- 1 big scarf
- GHD flat iron
- small first aid kit
in my toiletry bag I've got the basics in travel size and then a small makeup kit which includes:
- Mac studio fix pressed powder
- Urban Decay naked basic eyeshadow
- Bobbie Brown corrector
- Bare Minerals warmth
- Kat Von D eyeliner
- urban decay eye shadow primer
- 2 shadow brushes and one blush brush
- Tart lipstick
- various pairs of earrings, necklaces and my watch
Again all of this in one bag on my back and the best thing is that it's small enough to be a cary on- no waiting for check luggage for me or paying an extra fee for it. All my items do get packed in travel cubes to compress them and keep things organized the cubes are then loaded into my pack. I've also got a black cross body Baggalini as my purse/day bag. In that is my iPad, phone, sunglasses, charging cables, power converters, headphones, travel information and documents and a black wristlet that doubles as wallet.