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How to Pack for a Summer Vacation: 9 Looks 1 Suitcase

10-looks(1)Most summers, I go back home to visit my parents, old friends and extended family.  This summer, I’m bringing Rocco with me so I can introduce him to everyone.  The thought of lugging an infant and all of the things he needs so I can take care of him while away (diapers, formula, baby food, wipes, clothes, etc. etc.), is a fairly stressful thought.  Since packing for him is much more of a production, I’m glad that I’ve mastered the art of packing for myself.

I’ve become something of a master packer, so I thought it would be fun to share my summer packing tips to alleviate the pre-trip packing stress that some people feel.  I decided to create looks for a long-weekend getaway at the beach.

The words light, airy, comfortable and versatile come to mind when I think about dressing for summer. As with all trip-packing, I think about the environment and what types of places and/or events I will attend.  Once I’ve narrowed down the types of clothing I’m going to need, I think about pieces in my wardrobe that are extremely versatile, meaning they can be worn with a lot of different items to a lot of different types of places.


Of the items I selected, the black dress is the perfect go-to piece to wear for daytime or dress up for evening. It is simple enough that it can be layered with the chambray shirt (tied at the waist in a little knot is very of-the-moment), worn alone with the scarf as an accent, or the gray vest can be worn over the dress to create a blouse/skirt effect. One dress, and at least three looks, but without seeming like you are wearing the same dress.


Everywhere I turn this summer, I see cut-off jean shorts.  Jean shorts are casual and comfortable, but can be dressed up and worn over and over without anyone thinking you are wearing the same thing.  I chose these medium-wash shorts because they give the option of a cuff, or if you unroll them, they are a bit longer and give the casual cut-off effect. The shorts can be paired with the airy white tunic, worn simply with the plain gray tank and scarf, or dressed up a bit with the gray lace vest.  Another three possible outfits.


For your days at the beach or pool, I threw in a very cool tie-dyed effect cover-up that could easily pass for a dress if you needed another dress option. Another easy beach look would be to pair the shorts and tunic with the swimsuit as a cover-up. You could also use the scarf as a sarong or throw the chambray shirt over your suit (just don’t wear the shorts at the same time!). Speaking of the suit, I chose a simple black one-piece that has built-in cups, adjustable straps, and ruching at the waist, all which create nice clean and slimming lines.

You will notice the color palette of the clothing is very simple and neutral.  The reason to go neutral is because it is less obvious that you are repeating clothing.   Since I only made room for two pairs of shoes, I chose very neutral shoes that can pair with any of the looks.  I like subtle wedges over flats because they are a bit more dressed-up and also flatter a woman’s calves and legs more than flats do.

The accessories give the needed pops of color.  I like the idea of a brightly colored beach bag that can be used for daytime, and a cross-body red leather bag for evening.  Both bags could really pair with any of the outfits.  The scarf could go with almost all of the outfits too, although I would shy away from pairing it with the lace vest.  And the modern cat eye sunglasses are simple yet stylish enough to go with any of the outfits.

As a final mention, I would throw a few pieces of jewelry that are versatile into my travel bag.  I love this necklace because it is the type of piece you could leave on for the duration of your trip to give just a subtle accent and bit of sparkle to your outfits.

Packing Inventory: a. sunglasses; b. necklace; c. scarf; d. denim shirt; e. tunic; f. vest; g. tank; h. dress; i. cover-up; j. suit; k. shorts; l. bag; m. black shoe; n. silver shoe; and o. tote.

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