Fashion: 10-Day’s Worth of Fashion in a Carry On

I absolutely disdain packing – but as stated before, I consider myself to be somewhat of an expert packer.  Why?  Because how hard is it to pack for a weekend with just a carry on alone?  Try 10 days worth of fashion in a carry on.  What did you say?  Check in a bag?  I’ll save my $25.

And if you want to save your money, here are some pointers you can follow in order to pick your wardrobe for 10 days and pack most efficiently!

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Write out your itinerary.  What will you be doing while you are out of town?  Plan an outfit for each one of the activities – weddings, funerals, night out with the girls, shopping trip with mom, working out… whatever it is, write it down.
Check your inventory.  When I was younger and in this “ultimate baller” mentality (we all have been there) I would buy new clothes for the occasion of simply traveling to some other place (even it was down the street).  As I have gotten older, I realize that the joy of not living in the place of travel is no one knows what’s in your closet!  Shop your own closet, figure out what you have for each occasion (because more than likely you already have it) and pull it out.  

But I have worn this black dress so many times and it’s all over every social network! If this is you, I commend you for wearing your favorite black dress as often as you like (ain’t nothing wrong with that), but I also encourage you to take joy in accessorizing.  If you absolutely have NOTHING and I mean you have nothing to wear, write out what you potentially need, but don’t go shopping just yet!  Build the wardrobe that you can with what you have before shopping.
Choose items that you can mix and match.  What’s the point of packing separate outfits when you space is so limited?  You may actually have to wear some items multiple times (multiple ways) so it’s best to pack items that will not dirty easily.  
Start with your shoes (remember to limit yourself to four pair, including the ones you will wear), then clothes, then your accessories.  Think like this: Your shoes are your foundation, your body is the frame, your clothes are the exterior of your “house” (your body), and your accessories are the finishing touches/decorations (in that order).
If you are afraid that you need to wash these items before wearing them again, pack some powder detergent so that you can wash them at night and hang them to dry (assuming you will not have access to a washer/dryer).
Try on the items you pulled from your inventory.  I cannot stress this enough – try on EVERYTHING from your head to your shoes exactly how you envision it on your body.  Doesn’t look like you thought?  This is where your accessories come into play.  Switch up your accessories – add a scarf, take away a necklace, add some bracelets, maybe it needs a hat – try on EVERYTHING.
Take a picture in the outfit or write down what you have picked to pack.  Use your smart phone and snap a picture of what you have decided on before you take it off.  It takes all of two seconds, really…  To expedite the process, I change my shoes and accessories, maybe add a jacket or whatever, and snap another picture.  Small little changes in your outfit constitute as a whole, right? RIGHT.
Not feeling the pictures? Just jot down what you have planned to wear with what.  Either way, you will be able to remember what you tried on and what you liked best so in case you have to get dressed fast, you can change clothes and go!

Clean up.  Put away the items that you will not use and make your closet come back into order.  The worst thing is coming home to a dirty closet (this has happened to me TOO many times, and I can say that I actually prefer to clean it before I leave than when I come back)!

Go shopping.  Optional.  This should be your absolute last step in the process, so don’t wait until the last minute to pack your bag JUST IN CASE you need to go shopping.  Trust me, if I am trying to save $25 to avoid checking in a bag, I know I don’t want to drop $25 on new clothes… I’m just saying!

Look forward to a post that details exactly what I packed and how I wore it.  I think it’s necessary to have a visual associated with this type of task (some of us are visual learners).
If you would like pointers on how to pack an actual bag, check out this post here.

Have you ever packed for a 10 day trip in a carry on bag?  What are some points you have for picking out your wardrobe?
  • I really needed to read this because I am heading to DC this summer….I don’t know if I will pack well!! 🙂