Tuesday, May 11, 2010

For when you're leaving on a jet plane...

Right now I want to get on a plane and go on vacation more than just about anything in the world.  Sadly, I'll be going no further than Austin and College Station until August.  But then, N and I will be busy travelers/wedding guests and I'll need to look chic and comfortable.

The NY Times slideshow about packing inspired me to look for some travel-friendly items for summer (and after) in hopes of avoiding the pajamas as daywear trap you see all over the airport.

First, you'll need a good suitcase.  I'm the proud owner of an 8 year old red carryon bag from Ross, and want to get a slightly larger, hard shell suitcase for my honeymoon and any trips longer than 4 days. has some great options, and will ship for only $2.95!  The girly girl inside of me wants to get pink or baby blue, but I'll probably get silver so N can use it too.  Sigh...

Next, you'll need the essential drapey cardigan.  I love these because they're warm when your neighbor is blasting that little vent of cold air onto you, but can be stuffed in your bag if it gets too hot while you're hanging out on the runway for an hour waiting to takeoff.  My favorite option is the Martin + Osa Beach Hoodie Cardigan because it's only $35 (but final sale) and super soft.  The Limited's Smocked Solid Cardigan is also a good option, but costs slightly more.  I'd pair both with a long knit tunic dress and black leggings since I like to curl up in my seat on long flights.

I prefer to wear ballet flats when traveling since they slip off easily at security, and I can kick them under my seat during the flight and wear socks.  Martin + Osa has some Corso Como ballet flats on final sale for about $42, which is a steal for such quality.   If you're not looking to invest, Endless has lots of options for about $25, like these from Charles Albert.


Next, you need a travel jewelry box.  I didn't even know how much I needed one until I got it for Christmas this year.  I like being able to protect my jewelry and keep it all in once place each night rather than leaving rings and watches on the bathroom counter.  However, be sure to get a box that's deep enough for chunky necklaces and bracelets like this one or this one

Finally, if you're like me, you need a chic tote bag to carry your collection of headphones, magazines, books, and your purse.  I like the classic tote from Lands End, but my favorite is this one from HaydenJ on Etsy.  I could stuff a lot of things I probably won't use in there...

Is there anything you find particularly useful when traveling? 


  1. Definitely ear plugs and a journal...

  2. A good traveling purse. For longer trips I'll take my every day purse but for shorter trips I like to bring smaller ones that have my essentials. It's easier to keep track of and you don't have to lug around a giant bag around the airport.

    I also like having a good set of luggage. Nothing deflates you more than getting your luggage at the carousel and finding it's been torn to pieces from the throwing in and out of the plane.

    And a good travel bag is a must! While I usually take business trips and need a good backpack the bottom pic you posted almost has me tempted enough to buy and use for my personal trips!

  3. Good call on the earplugs. That might help me sleep in the air (I can't... even on a transatlantic flight).

    I want that tote too! But I can't justify $56 for a canvas bag. :(

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  6. I’m a huge proponent of the roll method personally, but as for clothing, I pick a color palette or theme and stick with it. I’m packing a lot of red, navy, black, and white. It’s worked well, especially with summer coming and the nod to nautical. Everything is interchangeable, but looks like you brought along a whole closet inspired by Audrey Hepburn. A black dress pops with red heels for dinner when you arrive; white jeans, navy top, denim jacket with red beads for exploring on Saturday, then for drinks out that night, keep on your white skinny jeans and change into a black silk top, red shoes and clutch, etc., etc.,

    Costume jewelry from Forever 21 is a must have. I’ve never shed a tear for leaving that left behind in a hotel room, but if I had a $1 for all the compliments it’s brought me I could afford the real thing;)

    Oh and nude heels! They make you look taller skinnier, and go with every single item in your suitcase.

    And a BIG YES for the ear plugs they are a must have, as well as a healthy trailmix so you don't sucumb to pricey and fattening airport food. But forget the Kindle, I load audiobooks onto my iPod shuffle. They weigh less and are free from the library :)

  7. Jaclyn,

    Although I don't know you, I think you are truly a genius! GREAT travel tips. My dog JUST ate my awesome nude heels (grrrrrr...) so I'm in the market for another affordable pair. I also love getting books on tape from the library. Such a guilty pleasure!

  8. I think I found someone to take over the blog while I get married! ;)

    It must run in the family... Jaclyn and I are cousins.

  9. * Eagle Creek luggage and packing pouches--love those things. Our bag have the "swtchback" feature that converts them from wheeled suitcases to practical backpacks.
    * socks rolled individually and shoved into breakable things
    * gallon size Ziploc bags for wet or otherwise messy things
    * My Haiku purse/day bag--even has a place for my coordinating umbrella (purchased separately)
    * Walking shoes (Keen) and one pair of fairly flat sandals for dress-up (can be carried in bag all day while sight-seeing
    * A new trashy book--mass market paperback so it's small. This trip I'm thinking about trying one on my iPod Touch instead. I also bring an audio book that I get from the library. Young adult books are fun--nothing too heavy for vacation!
    * Extra batteries/charger for electronics (iPod, camera, phone, etc.)
    * Neck pillow--my favorite is the Bucky one that you blow up with air, so it packs into a tiny space. Plus, it's kind of cool and asymmetrical.
    * Toiletries in small squeezable bottles that I got at REI. Cute bottles and my regular brands makes a huge difference to me. I have wavy hair and once was on a 2 week vacation with no conditioner. ((shudder))
    * Speaking of toiletries, the last time I went on a trip, the few days before, I set aside everything I actually used and then packed those things--I usually either forget things or take way too much
    * Outfits that work together--dress, khakis, nice jeans, cardigans that go with all, denim or corduroy blazer, cute raincoat with hood. Most things I'll wear again, especially in another country or if it's cool, but don't skimp on the extra undies and socks. I can (and have) wash them in the sink, but it's a pain
    * This trip we're taking plastic wine glasses (stackable) that we got from Crate and Barrel, small bamboo plates, tea towels for place mat/napkins, and plastic silverware for picnics. That way we save money on lunch (or sometimes dinner) and the cheese, bread,cookies and all of those things are delicious! I just shove those things in my Haiku bag and they're really light--hubby carries the groceries and wine/cider--and it feels a little more civilized than eating out of packets with our fingers.

    I'm packing for a trip to London right now, so it's on my mind...

    I just found your blog and love it!



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