The travel capsule wardrobe I take with me on my post-vaccine trip
It’s been a hell of a year. Whatever shoes you stand in and what you’ve been through, I think it’s a safe bet to say that you can use a vacation right now. But the pressing question is not or you will go (although it matters, of course), but what you will wear and take for your first vacation after the vaccination. It’s a chance to look and feel great, step out of your quarantine uniform cocoon, and planning what to take can be as fun as the trip itself. But, if you’ve been through anything like me over the past few weeks as the world opened up, I’m a little rusty when it comes to getting dressed, let alone packing a whole suitcase of clothes, shoes. and bags to last. all summer. Enter: a travel capsule wardrobe.
What is your request? This is basically an edited bunch of essentials – think of jewelry you never take off that works day and night, shoes that can be worn comfortably while walking the town square as well as the city square. beach, or versatile pajama sets that can be taken apart and worn as real clothing (now there are many great options, you will see below). A travel capsule wardrobe is smart and efficient, and you won’t be bogged down by unnecessary “stuff”. that you won’t wear. You will also look more like a traveler and less like a tourist without multiple pieces of luggage.
If my summer trips to Italy are any indication, I found comfort in having less choice, but better choices in my wardrobe. I’m a lightweight packer by culture, a skill I’ve taken years to perfect (warning: my husband says I’m still not), but as a person who works in fashion and shines on every iteration of luxury of a Teva sandal and a gingham print anything in the spring, I’m pretty sure I am. I mean, I can fit all my stuff and my two kids’ stuff into one check-in bag. I think it’s really good. I’ll let you decide.
So what will I pack for my first international trip since getting vaccinated? The place and the culture determine a good part of it. I will be traveling to Italy, more specifically to Bologna and to a city in the northeast of Sardinia, to spend some long-awaited time with my family. As one is a city and the other a seaside town, I realize that whatever I bring has to work for both destinations.
I have been going to both of these places for ten years now so I am quite familiar with the climate, the ability to walk to and from the places and the scene in general. But how and what I pack can also be translated to other summer cities and beach destinations. Below is a guide to what I pack to minimize my time deciding what to wear while on vacation and maximize my time living in the moment and enjoying. la bella vita.
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Easy and light dresses
It is hot in Italy during the summer, and getting around is usually done on foot or by public transport. Add the fact that culturally Italians don’t tend to turn on the air conditioning until it hits 95 degrees (or at least my in-laws), I know I will want to wear well ventilated clothes and not tight to my overheated body. I prefer flowing midi to maxi dresses and caftans that protect my skin from the oppressive sun. I’ll be away for almost two months and pack five dresses in total. I will make sure to include a variety of sleeve and hem lengths, printed and monochrome, and colors that are not neutral.
Stylish flat shoes
Even in New York City, I tend to wear flats rather than heels. So, for me, choosing flats over heels is a no-brainer. Getting to Town Square from my family’s house is about a mile and a half which includes cobblestones so I make sure to bring a range of options – a pair of white sneakers and soft that works well with dresses as well as shorts, trendy options like mary jane and leather slides, in case I stay for a sundowner, and sandals that work for both city and town. range (see the pair of thongs below).
Mix & Match Pajama Sets
I’ve always loved wearing pajamas as my clothes outside the bedroom, but with this market expanding over the years, the options are even better. From my favorite Italian brand Loretta Caponi in the USA Lake, sets include puffed sleeves and self-tie tank tops that can easily be worn with your favorite cotton voile skirt or this season’s biggest trend, Bermuda shorts. While pajama shorts and pants are the perfect cover-up for your swimsuit when you hit the beach. I will be taking two sets of pajamas with me for this trip.
Finally, shorts that I can wear without feeling like I’m pre-teen. These straight numbers – plus a lux version of biker shorts – are styles I can wear with a cropped tee (this one is my favorite) as they are all available in a high waisted fit, as well as with a swimsuit when you head to the beach. This is what I’ll probably wear the most, and I’ll take one in white and one in blue.
Island Life Swimwear
I’m kind of obsessed with swimwear. I’m in love with the beach life and the way women from different regions wear different variations of swimsuits. In Sardinia, the style tends to have a minimal design and less coverage when it comes to stockings. Beyond aesthetics, I also have to think about functionality. One of my favorite things to do is island hopping, and I need to make sure my wetsuit doesn’t fall off or get irritated while doing so. I take a set for more sporty outings like this and others purely for leisure. Since they are small and light and will be there for a while, I will be taking four sets for my trip.
Unless you plan to travel with a hat box or pack a foldable hat, it’s quite a feat to bring one that won’t easily be ruined. I know, I tried. I once wore a hat from New York to Bologna to Amsterdam, and I regretted it! And felt stupid, nonetheless. But no sweat. Below I have included hats styles that are easy to carry and that won’t require you to don an oversized straw hat in the airport terminal.
I prefer not to wear jewelry that is too precious or that must be removed and put back on. I love a nice mix of layered necklaces, yellow gold layered rings, and a thin bangle or two as part of my daily uniform. Since it’s summer after all, I go for pieces with a pop of color like the Davidor cord bracelet and stones like jade that will complement any outfit I put together. Sometimes I swap my earrings for more assertive ones, but knowing myself I’ll stick with a pair of smaller sized earrings like Dezso’s by Sara Beltrán below . Remember to remove this jade pendant before jumping into the sea.
Neutral tote bag
I know micro bags are back, but for me, I need a sturdy tote bag that I can easily store my things in, and that can hold more than just a wallet and a phone. I love a tan shade for the summer because it tends to go with all of my clothes, but most of the options I’ve included below are available in other neutral tones as well. I will only bring one handbag on my trip.