Friday, November 16

What's Really in my Suit Case

As you know I've been doing a lot of planning for this trip, especially in the area of packing. I've previously shown you what I was planning on bringing in my Personal Carry-on, my Suit Case, and my Beach Bag -- well now you get to see what really made it to Mexico. I also have a few packing tips for those of you who struggle to make room for all their items!

If anyone of you ever struggles with what to pack I would highly suggest taking pictures as you go and thinking about building outfits instead of building piles of clothing. This has helped me immensely!

Here's how I started:

1. La Vie En Rose Polka Dot Tankini 2. Baggu for JCrew Bag 3. JCrew One Piece.
4. ASOS polka dot bikini 5. Various bikini bottoms (ASOS, Old Navy, and La Vie En Rose).
One tip I really bought into on this trip is the idea of packing a series of neutral, simple, multipurpose items. The following four tops will combine to go with both of my skirts, and my shorts which means I've made about nine outfits (all nine possible combinations are pictured!) using only seven items (I can also use some of the shirts as bathing suit coverups). Mixing and matching is the key to stretching any wardrobe, vacation ones included. 

Forgive my random numbering system -- these are the shirts/tanks I'm bringing. 12. ASOS 6-7. H&M 8. American Eagle.
Here's the first set of outfits -- one striped skirt (ASOS) and three neutral shirts.
Second set of outfits -- one patterned skirt (ASOS) and three neutral shirts.
Third set of outfits -- three neutral shirts and a pair of denim shorts (RW&CO).
Three sundresses - 13. H&M 14. Shop Ruche (this one almost didn't make the cut, but I love the color! It reminds me of a tropical sunset!) 15. Modcloth
16. Gap maxi dress paired with my H&M bib necklace.
17. I had to pack this one, despite being over my dress limit, because I purchased it in Greece and have never worn it at home. It needs somewhere tropical!
18. Paisley tunic from Polly Magoos in YEG, and 19. Rickies Leggings (I'll be wearing these on the plane.)
And that's it! I have three pairs of shoes -- sports sandals, my Saltwaters for the beach, and runners I'll be wearing on the plane/hiking. All together I have a total of 19 (15 not including bathing suits) items and 15 possible outfits (Although I'm sneaking in another dress, my pink polka dot one, which I will be wearing on the plane). I'm planning on buying most of my accessories in Mexico, and my toiletries are mostly being packed in my personal bag so as to make going through security easier.

Now, for one week in Mexico where I will probably spend the majority of my time on the beach and in my bathing suits this might be slightly excessive. I am a notorious over packer for a reason.

As to how I fit everything into a 20 inch carry-on bag? Well I have to admit that I have a pretty awesome secret that I'm willing to share with you guys.
Vacuum seal, roll up, space saving travel bags. I know a lot of people, including my packing maven Seventeenth and Irving, swear by packing cubes -- well I swear by these. Instead of using a vacuum to remove the air you simply squeeze the air out and wallah! all your clothes fit in your suit case.

I start by folding everything carefully into a square, trying to get them around the same size and shape. Next, I place them in a space saving bag and seal it.
The next step is pretty fun -- carefully and slowly roll the bag to squeeze the air out. In a matter of seconds you will get this:
Tommy wanted to help out. That, or he wanted to be packed into my suit case to come with (We have a good friend looking after him while we're away, don't worry!).

Once all your clothes are sealed in the travel bags you can place them in your suitcase and marvel at how much room there is. Here's mine:
On the right I have my one piece bathing suit which I left out of the bags in case I want to change into it immediately, haha, and my shoes. The toiletries I'm packing in my suit case also fit into this corner.

In the zippered pouch on the left I have my beach bag and sun hat.

Now, the best part about using these roll bags isn't the space you'll save. I know, that's a weird statement right? Magically, they also help reduce wrinkles and if you're traveling for long you'll notice that your clothes never start to smell musty. Does anyone have that problem? I did, on my first trip to Europe. On my second trip across the pond I used these guys and didn't have that problem again.

Well, by the time you read this I will be signing off the internet for a week! I have a few post scheduled so check back, and I hope everyone has a great week while I'm away! I'll be sure to take a lot of pictures. ;)

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