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Spring Travel Wardrobe

Spring Travel Wardrobe

spring trip clothes

Thanks to years of travel and hundreds of trips (52 last year and 11 so far this year), I’ve got packing down to a science – especially since I like to travel with only carry-on. However, my current trip to Europe was a little challenging due to several different climates, events, Terminal 5, and length of time so I had to really think about what to bring.

Dressing for comfort is essential followed by flexibility (how many times to how many places can I wear something) followed by is it appropriate (for weather, people, dinners, daily touring). Above is my essentials which was all nicely tucked into my Orla Kiely roll on bag (which worked as carry-on!).

So far, everything has worked really well and been very comfortable. I’ve been able to go to some big events but then walk on cobblestone streets in freezing temperatures. There were a couple of items that didn’t make it in (a bright orange dress and a shawl I wear – you can see those in some of my Flickr shots). The purple Rachel Pally dress has been heaven for flights because it’s easy to sleep in. My Born boots have been crucial to walking around. And the hat comes in perfect when rain hits and the hair frizzes. And big sunglasses cover up late nights and hours of travel.

There is the cliche saying that you can spot a tourist because of their running shoes, khaki pants and t-shirts. I find this is often true and it’s confusing to me how comfort is almost always equated to sweat pants and runners in North America. Or how when people travel they don’t “take the good stuff” because they fear it getting lost on a flight. This is my fear, too, which is why I do carry on. If I have too much to fit into a carry on (which is very, very rare) I take a second bag, packing all the things that could be easily replaced or I could afford to lose (often this is computer gadgets, chargers, shoes, books, toiletries). Things that I don’t want to lose (clothes, computer, personal things) I then put in the carry-on.

The other trick for me is to pick things that all work well together colour-wise. This way I can extend the life of my clothes by mixing and matching so that I don’t get so sick of wearing one thing over and over (especially after a month of travel!). I also stick to materials that don’t wrinkle or, if they do, I wrap the item in tissue paper (usually I ask for some extra pieces from Anthropologie and wrap it up – wrinkles are avoided!).



  1. KerryNo Gravatar
    May 8, 2008 / 11:15 AM

    Great article Alex! I have been a fan of your sites for a long time now, and I enjoy all your helpful travel info and tips.

    If I may ask, how were you able to pack so many things in just a carry-on (including boots, etc)? Do you have a packing technique or do you choose materials that are thinner? Thanks!

  2. miriaNo Gravatar
    May 9, 2008 / 1:05 AM

    Hi, I have a question, don’t you ever wear trousers? I like very very much dresses and skirts but not on me, plus I don’t have the courage to wear them so I always end up in trousers… but I would like to change this habit…so you wardrobe is very inspiring.
    Hilsen fra Oslo

  3. Hygge HouseNo Gravatar
    May 12, 2008 / 12:17 PM


    If I travel with boots, I wear those since they are hard to pack. So everything above with the exception of one pair of boots fits into the Orla Kiely. I ended up bringing a second bag just for checked luggage because I had to bring a lot of winter and computer gear so the second boots went in there. I do pack things in my boots (umbrella, cords) to maximise space. Summer travel is so much easier!

    A lot of the items above are bulky (sweaters, sweater dresses) but I just lay them as flat as possible with little folding. This really helps. I’m against those air compression bags – they wrinkle clothes and don’t really work. But this all fits so it’s just like putting a puzzle together!

  4. Hygge HouseNo Gravatar
    May 12, 2008 / 12:19 PM


    I own one pair of pants that I wear if I must – and that’s not very often. I just personally don’t find pants comfortable – especially whilst travelling. And if I wear pants, then I have to think of a top to match and shoes and socks and on and on đŸ™‚ I’m lazy – a dress is one layer and easy to make look nice. And being short, pants always have to get hemmed and that’s another step I just am too lazy for.

    I know a lot of people who fear skirts/dresses the way I fear pants so I totally understand. But there isn’t anything I can’t do in a dress that one can do in pants, except maybe a handstand.

  5. DebbieNo Gravatar
    May 13, 2008 / 8:30 AM

    Hi Alex!

    I love your blog and wondered what the name of the Born boot is? I go to Europe once a year with my husband for business and would love some comfortable boots for tons of walking.

    I love the idea about dresses! I have never thought about that! Great idea especially when traveling for business with my DH and need to look good.

    Thank you PS Do you have names of other comfortable boots for walking?


  6. May 18, 2008 / 7:17 PM

    Wonderful post.
    My daughter and I went to England for 2 weeks and packed everything we needed into one carry-on each. No waiting in lines at the baggage for us.
    I love your traveling wardrobe too.


  7. May 27, 2008 / 2:38 AM

    I love your style. This may be a ridiculous question, but how do you end up with the perfect little photos of all of your pieces? When I buy things at the Anthro store, I usually don’t see them on the website…

  8. Hygge HouseNo Gravatar
    May 27, 2008 / 9:20 AM

    Hi Sarah,

    Before Anthro did their redesign (about 6 months ago), they used to have the .jpg images on their site that were easily downloadable. Those are the images I have. Now I use an image capture program to get them but it’s true, not all things they sell in the store are online but I try to get as many as possible (and the description) should I ever sell it on eBay.