How to Build a Versatile Travel Wardrobe

Surprise! I’m headed on a little vacay and I couldn’t be more excited.

The travel bug in me has been itching for something, anything. And I’m finally getting away.

I’ll be headed home to celebrate my Dad’s retirement from the military and I can’t wait to sit on my bum for a week and hang with the family.

I have an early flight tomorrow morning and with the crazy week I’ve had there has been zero time to even think about packing.

But nonetheless, with my jetsetting tendencies I’ve developed a method to pull together a travel wardrobe in no time flat – without throwing handfuls of random things into a bag.

Travel wardrobes should be 100% tailored to your style, be as versatile as possible, and give you something to wear for everything you might want to do.

Essentially your perfect travel wardrobe will consist of all the same qualities of your current wardrobe on a much smaller scale and for a more defined set of activities.

Here is a 3-step formula for putting together a remixable travel wardrobe for anything from extended weekends to a month-long getaway.

To help illustrate I’ll use my 7-day trip back home as an example.

Step 1: Dissect Your Travel Plans

– list your activities

– estimate the # of required outfits

– select 1-2 combinations for each activity

The most important piece to planning your wardrobe is your travel plans – what will you be doing while you’re away?

List every planned activity or group of activities (i.e. sightseeing or going out for dinner) and estimate how many days you will need an outfit for each activity. Don’t worry about getting the numbers exactly right, things can always change.

This will be the profile of your lifestyle during your trip – are you having a rustic holiday in the mountains or glamorous getaway in the Caribbean?

To optimally tailor your travel wardrobe to that lifestyle choose 1-2 combinations of item categories for each activity.

Step 2: Build a Basic Wardrobe Structure

– translate your combos into categories

– decide on frequencies of wear

– add details

Turn your combinations from step 1 into basic wardrobe structures by including the number of items. List every item category you’ll need to create your combinations – these will determine how many pieces you’ll pack per category. Finally, write down ideas of what kind of item can fill that slot.

Step 3: Plan Your Outfits

Now for the fun part! Start going through your closet and select the specific items to wear. Try to choose items that work with each other and plan various outfits.

You don’t have to stick to your plan completely, especially if things change or you actually don’t feel like wearing what you originally planned. However for those days you just want to get dressed and go, having an idea of what you could wear helps immensely.

I hope this helps any of you who may be heading on a trip in the near future!

Any other tips you’d like to add? Share them in the comments.

Thanks for reading!

’till next time


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Top – Mango // T-shirt – American Eagle // Jumpsuit – Mango // Pants – Wallis // Boyfriend jeans – J.Crew // High heel sandals – Just Cavalli // Mid heel sandal – Asos // Yellow sandals – Modcloth // Leopard flats – Victoria’s Secret // Floral dress – Boohoo // Graphic shift dress – French Connection // Striped dress – T by Alexander Wang