You’re about to miss the next jitney for the Hamptons because you can’t decide between your leather Birks or your espadrilles. Sound all too familiar? Make the most of a weekend getaway by packing light and packing smart. Milicent Armstrong, frequent traveler and owner of
Artemis Design Co
., offers us her expert tips.
pack less than what you need
If the forecast says 10% chance of showers, risk it and leave the wellies at home. Instead, bring a few super versatile staples. “I always bring a basic comfortable sweater that I can dress up or down and my favorite gingham dress,” says Armstrong. “I wear the dress over jeans or with sandals during the day and dress it up and layer it with a sweater at night.”
traveling with friends? pack less
Yet another bonus of a girlfriend getaway is having extra wardrobe options without losing space in your own suitcase. Hash it out ahead of time so that if someone is bringing the perfect black dress, make sure you pack the perfect white one.
go minimal with makeup
Though Armstrong admits to having a big toiletry bag of cosmetics at home, she transfers only the staples into a smaller bag when traveling. “Eyelash curler, concealer and lip stain –it’s all you really need when you’re on vacation,” she says.
leave the new outfit at home
If you haven’t worn something before, don’t give it a trial run when you’re away. The same concept goes for that dress you never wear in your closet, but you can imagine wearing on vacation. “If you don’t wear it in your own city, you won’t wear it in another one,” says Armstrong.
long live the iphone
Even though your SLR is ideal for capturing a Saturday night sunset, it’s bulky and takes up a lot of space. “Even when I’m traveling somewhere abroad, I tend to stick to my iPhone,” admits Armstrong. “I don’t want anything weighing me down when I’m exploring, so my phone does the trick.”
ditch the dressy attire
If you’re imagining an Instagram shot of you in a full-skirted dress as you walk down cobblestone streets, be more realistic. “Anytime I’ve packed heels or fancy clothes when I’ve traveled, they’ve sat in a hotel closet,” she says. Be practical about what you’re actually going to wear and what activities you’ll plan. Cute and comfortable is the game plan, so keep those stacked heels at home.
carry just the essentials
Cash, hotel key card, i.d. What more do you need when you’re pounding pavement and exploring a new place? Armstrong relies on a convertible wallet cross-body bag when she’s traveling to keep the important stuff on her person and be hands-free.
take good notes
A classic journal is the best way to take notes of favorite haunts or use it to store receipts. “I’ll often pick flowers when I travel, so I like to press them in my notebook as a souvenir of the place I’ve been,” says Armstrong. “And of course I like to make an entry every night I’m away so I never forgot about my trips.”