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travels

Carry On Essentials: Pack and GO Minimalist Travel Wardrobe + Packing List Guide

Omg, I’m leaving tomorrow.

It finally hit me today when I was going over my packing list and getting rid of anything I deemed unnecessary.

“How did those get in there?”

I’m often asked what my process is for putting a travel wardrobe together. Well, it’s similar to putting a capsule wardrobe together, actually, it is EXACTLY like putting a capsule wardrobe together. I choose a color palette and then build from there starting with bottoms, next tops, shoes, and leaving the accessories for last. I choose cotton, wool, and denim because they are good while on the road. The end result is a cohesive wardrobe with all items matching one another. I get my color pop from patterns and textures. I’m a sucker for plaids and florals.

Lastly, I keep my makeup simple and neutral with the color emphasis on the lips. My style is minimalist and classic. Yours will vary so adjust it to suit your needs and style.

It’s a guide and not set in stone! I switch pieces and modify the wardrobe to fit my trip activities and weather. No point of bringing snowboarding pants if I’m not going to go snowboarding. Just in case items need to stay home. Aside from cost, I don’t want to have to worry about anything getting lost.  As a rule of thumb: if you aren’t prepared to lose it DON’T BRING IT WITH YOU! Also, don’t bring anything you don’t want to lug around. I learned that the hard way in Seattle when I thought I needed to bring my entire mobile recording studio because MAYBE I was going to get inspired and create music. Did I use any of it? Hell no! I was on vacation!

What about socks, underwear and bras/undershirts? I always bring a week’s worth of socks and underwear. You can never have enough. As far as bras (undershirts for the dudes), I’d say three is a good number.

What about formal wear? “Make it work!” says Tim Gunn. The guide goes into further detail.


Alright, so I’ve put together two guides:

Start here if you’ve never put a travel wardrobe together and need a step-by-step guide. I provide examples and there’s a checklist of what you need to bring with you! Do it enough times and it’ll become second nature. Download the FULL travel wardrobe guide + packing list.

Are you a travel junkie and just need a few tips? Download the SHORT VERSION travel wardrobe guide + packing list.

Want to see what I’m taking on this trip? Keep scrolling!


My airport outfit. I wear this on the first day of travel and on the last. They consist of my heaviest items.
Three scarves?! Yes, for me it’s how my monochromatic outfits get a pop of color. A black one never leaves my travel bag!
The downside? Bring a lint roller. The dusty rose is perfect if you don’t want to deal with a white tee, but need something other than black or navy.
Oooh, she’s dark! The top ones are Ponte Joggers, which will be worn on my flights. Therefore, I’m only packing three bottoms.
Two pairs of shoes. C’est tout. These work for me. My Chucks aren’t meant for long walks!
All you really need, if that. Not pictured: Silver Bar earrings (currently wearing them).
One bag travel. I chose a cross body this time around. (Kuilted Crossbody by Karl Lagerfeld)

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