We are headed off to Chicago for a little family trip soon and I am so excited! I love exploring new places and can’t wait to see the city in person. We are going for five days and my goal is to pack myself and my two kids into one small suitcase. I’m serious.
I’m not going to lie, I lay awake at night and think about all the cute stuff I want to bring and wear, but the reality is that I have limited space and can’t wear all the things I own, so it’s time to condense. The gist of packing lightly for a trip, either short or long, is to bring only neutrals and items that can be mixed and matched into different looks. Below is what I am bringing with me to Chicago!
I’m bringing only three tops with me, and as you can see, they are all neutral. I wear these ones constantly in my non vacation life and feel that they have that fit and look I want while visiting the city. I like that they can be dressed up or down with accessories, and that I know they look and feel good on.
In my opinion, camo and black patterned palazzo pants ARE neutrals, and are a great way to add interest into any outfit without being too stuffy, you know? I love that all my tops will mix and match with each of the pants I pack and I’ll have a lot of options when I get there. Isn’t there nothing worse than under packing and realizing that you didn’t bring enough? (Shudder….)
The hardest thing for me when it comes to deciding what to bring is not knowing the weather. It could be 40 and raining, or hot and eighty degrees. I get that I can check my weather app a couple of days out, but I don’t trust it. Those things can lie! Sticking with my neutral theme, I thought my tan (beige?) sweater would work over everything (I’m thinking the white tee and jeans with this on top would be fun!), and what on EARTH does a denim jacket not work with? My wildcard add on that I couldn’t leave out is my floral H&m kimono. I love that it can be worn with the printed palazzo pants for fun pattern mixing, or over the white tee and jeans, too.
Awe man, shoes are my downfall when packing. I want to bring them all! The trick is to pick a color and stick to it (brown or black), but I figured the neutral road would work for me and wanted a mix of pretty sandals, go with everything ankle boots, and comfy birks would be best.
With all this neutral going on, sometimes it’s fun to pack something a little unexpected and fun, right? Along the lines of the floral kimono, these dresses can be worn for a day at a museum or for a night out exploring the city and then out to dinner. It’s Spring (finally!), so HELLO!, florals are a must for my suitcase. These can both be rolled up really small, too, so that’s always a bonus when it comes to bringing a small suitcase.
This is where it gets fun. I love, love, LOVE accessories and often pack a zillion different options. They are so small that it doesn’t really matter how many you pack, so go nuts here and toss in your favorites. I love that I can pack really basic clothes and shoes, but by throwing on a headband, multiple necklaces, interesting rings, and other such baubles, you make your look more FUN. And isn’t that the point? I don’t want to stress myself out in a hotel room picking out an outfit while my family waits for me (not so patiently) in the lobby. I want to throw something on I know I’ll feel good in and GO.
Tell me, how do you pack for trips? Are you a planner, or a fly by the seat of your pants gal?