Hello stylish reader!
I hope you are having a peace-filled day. Over the recent long weekend, hubby and I ran away to Asheville, North Carolina for a getaway. We had planned to take a trip for our 25th wedding anniversary last November, but my mother decided that for our anniversary, she would gift us a broken hip! Hers. (Note: This was NOT a desired gift.) Obviously, last fall’s romantic getaway did not go as originally planned. Now that things have settled down a bit here, we knew it was now or never, so we jumped on the opportunity to run off to the gorgeous mountains of western NC.
Travel and style are NOT mutually exclusive. Today, I’m sharing a travel debrief. What I packed. What worked. And what I wish I had done differently. (Not much! Yay!) In a previous post, I talked about how I plan what to take for a trip. I’ll show you what I packed (Sort of… The pictures are just examples similar to my pieces. Some of mine are really old, like my long kilt.) (Nor do I own an Hermes scarf. Although… If someone was to gift me one in my colors, I’d be over the moon!) and how I styled them each day.
Weather and Activities
The weather was unpredictable. It was supposed to be sunny and in the 60’s, but turned into sunny in the mid 70’s the day we arrived, but cold, windy, and grey or rainy after that. It warmed up a bit and cleared by Sunday afternoon, and Monday as we left, it was foggy and cool again. We didn’t care. After three years of living in England, and travelling the UK in all seasons (Scotland in November and February, anyone?), a little rain and wind is not a problem. We had a trip to Biltmore House on our itinerary for Friday, and it was a lovely day for walking the grounds after visiting the house. We also had reservations for a Valentine’s Day dinner at the inn on the estate that evening. On Saturday, we walked up the hill to downtown, and spent the day poking around the shops, the science museum, and found the gem for our evening. We punted our trip to the observatory, since viewing would have been non-existent, and substituted an evening at an intimate theatre production of Jeeves takes a Bow. Blessed Providence! If the weather had been good, we would have missed one of the best parts of our trip! And we went out for coffee and dessert after the show. I felt sooooo grown up!
Our plan was to do a LOT of walking (more than 7 miles on Saturday!) and I chose to take my pewter Clark’s oxfords for the heavy walking days. My navy Clark’s pumps are good for walking, too, and did well over 3 miles on Sunday. The red lace pumps were my “impractical” choice. I expected to only wear them to our Valentine’s Day dinner, but they dressed up my jeans and sweater with my red chandelier earrings for Saturday night.
Unless I am traveling for business, I usually road trip in jeans. Shorts if we are beach bound. My pewter oxfords were my bulkiest shoes, so rather than waste packing space, they went on my feet. My jean jacket kept off the A/C chill in the car, and a pink neckerchief and belt gave me the color I needed to brighten up the navy tee.
A chambray or denim shirt is a standard on my packing list. It’s more casual than a white shirt, and doesn’t show dirt as easily. My grey v-neck is lightweight merino, and adapts well to a variety of weather conditions. I planned to wear it on sightseeing days, and to dinner half-tucked into my long kilt. I would dress the skirt and sweater up with my lace pumps and a pair of red chandelier earrings that have a history with that skirt… (Buy me a coffee, and I’ll regale you with a story about Christmas dinner at the Savoy with three small boys at the table, and bottomless glasses of champagne.) My navy sweater replaced a navy tee for the chillier day and evening. I also packed a last minute purchase, a dark brocade print insulated jacket I picked up at Chico’s for less than the price of a large pizza and six-pack of beer. It turned out to be a fabulous buy! I wore it on our chilly dinner date, and even though it is a short casual jacket, the brocade flocking elevates it and worked for evening. It did double duty over my jean jacket on a very windy, wet, and cold Saturday, and kept me warm and dry. I can see it will get a lot of use next winter, and it squashes well for packing.
I am perfectly happy wearing the same color with my neutrals for a few days on a trip. I understand that for some people, that would be boring, but you can easily add a second accent color with accessories, or a top if you need more variety.
Accessories and Bags
My cross-body bag did duty most days, and I packed a pewter clutch to use for our dinner date. It also went to the theatre and helped make my jeans and sweater outfit feel more special. I packed one scarf I never wore, and some jewelry that never made it out of the bag, but they took up no space and gave me options. If we had been staying longer, they definitely would have found their way into rotation. My husband and I shared a medium sized rolling suitcase, rather than taking two smaller bags. Our room did have an ironing board, but ironing pleats back into a wool kilt is not on my bucket list, so I am thankful that my husband took my kilt in his suit bag so that it wouldn’t be crushed in the suitcase.
I hope this helps you think through your next packing adventure! And if you still feel like it’s too much, message me! Travel planning and packing is one of my favorite services… I get to travel vicariously through my clients!
What’s one of your travel Must-Haves? Let’s start a conversation in the comments below! I love to hear from you!