How to Pack the Ultimate Capsule Wardrobe for Travel – Beach Edition

Planning a weekend (or longer) beach getaway?  Here is How to Pack the Ultimate Capsule Wardrobe for Travel – Beach Edition

Start here if you are new to the Capsule Wardrobe concept

Black Sandals flip flopsShoes: 

  • 1 pair of flip flops or beach sandals
  • 1 pair of sport sandals or water shoes
  • 1 pair of dress sandals, heels, flats or wedges for the flight or fancier activities

Must Have Accessories – Hat and sun glasses

Dresses (optional):

  • 1 or 2 casual, comfy sun dress to wear on the plane or dressed up for a nice event/meal.  Maxi dress is a great option for day or night activities near the water.

Skirts/shorts: 

  • 1 pair of light weight shorts that can be worn as a swim suit cover-up, or sport activity such as volleyball, yoga, or hiking.
  • 1 skirt that can double as a cover-up over bikini, or paired with a blouse for non-beach-side activities
Island straw hat

Hat and UV blocking shirt

Tops: 

  • 1 natural fiber tunic style shirt that can be worn with shorts or as swim suit cover-up
  • 1 UV blocking short or long sleeve (rash guard) shirt for snorkeling or extra skin protection out on the water or hiking
  • 2 tee shirts (cotton or natural fiber blend)

Bikini for Beach PackingSwim Suits: 

Pack at least 2 swim suits – be sure to rinse and hang your suit after wearing so you always have a clean, dry suit ready to change into.

Lingerie:

Wear a pair, then pack additional pair of panties based on the number of day of your trip.   Panties do not take up much space, and you can wash to reduce the number packed.  Wear one, then pack 2 bras (I usually include 1 convertible bra for strapless, halter, or X back for more outfit options).  Swim suits can perform double duty as bras (including strapless bra substitute) and panties to reduce packing.

Pants (optional):

  • 1 pair of pants or jeans for flight or night time activities (where it might get a little chilly by the water)
  • 1 pair of cotton, linen or other natural fiber loose pants

Extras:  A light cardigan/long sleeve shirt for travel or cooler nights on the water, colorful scarf, and sleep shirt/pajamas.

How to Pack the Ultimate Capsule Wardrobe for Travel – Beach EditionAdditional considerations – Know your hot/cold tolerances!

I find California, Hawaii, and most beaches in the US to be too cold, especially at night, and require pants and sweatshirt.  Beaches closer to the equator (Mexico, Caribbean, and any beach between the Tropic of Cancer and Tropic of Capricorn latitudes) are comfortable year round to me, while many people would find these too hot.

How to Pack the Ultimate Capsule Wardrobe for Travel

Many times while traveling, things do not go as planned and my trip is extended (cancelled flights, opportunity to stay longer, whatever).  My first reaction was to add a couple new items to my wardrobe (yay, excuse to go shopping), then I learned the secret to extend my original wardrobe for another week (or more). I discovered how to pack the ultimate capsule wardrobe for the most mix and match options with a limited amount of luggage.  A little preparation while packing can give you loads of outfit combinations during your travels!

I spent many years traveling for work, and many more years traveling for fun.  Here are a few of my top packing tips to build the ultimate travel capsule wardrobe.
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Capsule Wardrobe 6 Month Progress Report

If you are new to the Capsule Wardrobe concept – start here.

capsule-wardrobe-6-month-progress-reportA little over 6 months ago, I set out to Build a Capsule Wardrobe.  My plan was to assemble a new wardrobe by downsizing my already overflowing closet without buying anything new.  Here is my 6 month progress report on Building a Capsule Wardrobe through reduction.

So, how did I do?  Well, I reduced many clothes from my closet.  My plan to not buy anything new did not work out quite the way I expected.

How did my Closet get Out of Control?

I started to become aware that I was shopping for entertainment.  This was not just for clothes, my entertainment shopping extended to shoes, furniture, office supplies, make-up, and even cleaning products!  I realized as I would put new purchases away, that I already owned several of that same item (4 dresses in the exact shade of blue, 2 still with tags).  Hmm, I started to consider that maybe I do not need any more of those.

The real ah-ha moment came when we prepared for a 3,000 mile move. This was a closet purge on steroids!  I donated bags and bags of clothes and boxes of household items to charity.  I finally acknowledged my Shoe Addiction, and focused on building a Capsule Wardrobe through reduction.  I started with an arbitrary goal to get rid of 5 items per month.

What Worked?

Shopping trips became more focused and less frequent.  I had a current inventory of stuff that I had just moved, so there was no “mistake” buying something that I already owned.  We kept a running list of needs/wants, then only bought off the list on our planned shopping trips.  No impulse shopping, or browsing for entertainment, resulted in less time spent shopping.  We had exactly what we needed (plus a few planned splurges), less clutter around the house, and more money in the bank!  Continue reading

Fall Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Style Challenge with LuLaRoe

I heard an idea for a Fall Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Style Challenge to pick a few new pieces of clothes and style them with only items from my closet for maximum combinations.  Well, I love fashion, and a challenge – count me in!  Admittedly, my capsule wardrobe is definitely a work in progress, so this is a great exercise to continue to evaluate my wardrobe and add/remove clothes as necessary.  This is my first Style Challenge and it is based on one of my guiding principles of simple, classic pieces that fit and flatter.

If you are new to Capsule Wardrobes and my quest to downsize into one, read this.

Basically, capsule wardrobe is the end result of simplifying your closet to a collection of pieces that maximize your outfit choices.  The end goal is to reduce clothes that are ill fitting and unworn, and focus on quality clothes that deserve space in your closet!

I picked my four favorite skirts and one shirt from the LuLaRoe Fall 2016 line, paired with four shirts from my current wardrobe.  Each outfit was then paired with one of three pairs of shoes, also from my current wardrobe.

The result? Check out these four skirts paired with clothes already in my closet for over a dozen unique outfit combinations to start wearing for fall and through winter.

2016-fall-style-challenge-lularoe-daisy-maxi-skirt

LuLaRoe Daisy Maxi skirt paired with a perfectly matching sweater!  I was immediately drawn to the daisy skirt, and delighted that one of my favorite sweaters is a perfect match!

Also try it with an Ivory blouse, or black shirt.  Paired with boots, heels, or sandals.

2016-fall-style-challenge-daisy-maxi-skirt-combinations

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What is a Capsule Wardrobe and How do I Build One?

Capsule Wardrobe is the hot phrase in fashion right now.  I just completed a 3,000 mile move (and corresponding closet purge), so the Capsule Wardrobe is on my mind.  I need to understand what is a Capsule Wardrobe?  Will this work for me? How do I build one?

Capsule wardrobe is a term coined by Susie Faux, the owner of a London boutique called “Wardrobe” in the 1970s. According to Faux, a capsule wardrobe is a collection of a few essential items of clothing that don’t go out of fashion, such as skirts, trousers, and coats, which can then be augmented with seasonal pieces.

Capsule wardrobes apparently have been around for awhile.  It is claimed to be a practical way to manage what is in your closet, deciding what to purge, and what to add.

what-is-a-capsule-wardrobe-and-how-do-i-build-one

Without realizing, I pack for travel using the capsule wardrobe method on a very small scale.  One week’s travel will consist of 2-3 dresses (casual or work attire), jeans, black dress slacks or skirt, one swim suit, black yoga pants, and matching colorful/print shirts.  Shoes to wear during travel, pack another pair of shoes that match everything, and flip flops (to wear around the hotel room, spa services, hotel pool, etc).  For colder weather, add a coat and/or 1-2 cardigan sweaters for layering.

Now how do I apply this to my entire wardrobe?

My Style Sister, Lesley from Working Look, hosts some great videos and practical advice.  Her three principles of defining a Capsule Wardrobe are: Continue reading