The Top Clothing Items you Need to Pack for a Trip

The Top Clothing Items To Pack When Packing for a TripPacking is something I look forward to when I’m gearing up for a vacation. It’s so exciting to figure out what I’ll be wearing, designing outfits for each city I’ll be in, or dreaming about all the lovely pieces I’ll be buying abroad. But, for others, packing can be a real chore. What will you wear? How much should you bring? Will I bring enough? Will I bring too much? There’s a lot of thought that goes into packing just the right suitcase (a fact that has been proven when I leave on a two day excursion: 3 minutes of packing as opposed to the days of packing and list-making for a big trip). So, I decided to make a list of clothing essentials that I always pack for a trip. I had already made a list of must-have skin-care items for the plane that I can never board a long-haul flight without!
Once you incorporate these items into your suitcase, the rest are just fillers. Whether you’re a dresses every day or t-shirt and jeans kind of gal, you could use all of these items when packing for vacation.
If you’re trying to cut down on the items in your suitcase, only 2-3 pairs of shoes will suffice, but here are all the ones you should pack (even if you leave out the heels).
Flip Flops
While I don’t condone walking around in flip flops in Milan or Paris (although I’ve done it in Milan – c’mon I was 17!), I always always bring a pair on a trip with me. Whether it’s for schlepping around the hotel, pools, spas, or running out for a snack from the convenience store across the street, flip flops come in handy. DEFINITELY recommended if staying in a hostel with shared facilities.
I usually end up using a pair of flip flops in my hotel room or apartment as my ‘slippers’, but if it’s a cooler time of year, a pair of slippers can make you feel more homey.
Bring easily packable slippers that can put stuffed into an already too-full suitcase.
Honestly, guys, I can’t get enough of loafers. They’re my favourite type of shoe and are so comfortable and versatile. You can wear them while touring during the day, sitting in a cafe, or heading out for drinks at a restaurant or lounge.
Or, switch these to flats if you’re not a heels kind of girl. Whatever kind of girl you are, make sure you pack one pair of ‘fancy’ shoes. I usually end up bringing a ridiculous amount of shoes with me on a trip, but I’m also an over-packer. Pro Tip: your loafers can be used as your ‘fancy’ shoe if you’re not planning on dressing up a lot during your trip.
Cute Runners
You know, the converse, the H&M cheap ‘converse’, the Keds. The cute stuff that makes an outfit more casual and comfortable, but not like you’re in a scene from Working Girl.
The Real Runners*
*If you’re thinking about taking light hikes (aka when you don’t need your hiking boots) or insanely long walks, then going for the most comfortable is smart. Not into hiking? Get some cute ones and make sure you don’t look like THAT tourist.
The Clothes:
While I always pack numerous versatile items that can be used with one another, I always pack an insane amount. Here are some must-haves that will be able to spruce up any outfit and take you from touring to lounging with a champagne cocktail in your hand.
Little Black Dress
Or, whatever your Little Black Dress equivalent is. Chances are, you’re going to want to go out to at least one good dinner and it’s always fun to dress up. Pack something that makes you feel good about yourself. Whether it’s a Little Black Dress, a Little Purple Dress, or some amazing pants that makes your butt look insane, pack it!
Jeans can be dressed up or down, and can be worn numerous times, making them a perfect item to pack for longer trips. For optimal space saving, pack only one pair and use a dark wash. Dark washes look more put together when you’re dressing them up than the lighter washes do.
Blazer or Jacket
A blazer, or cute jacket, can dress up any outfit and instantly take your day look to a night look and your night look into a day look with a softer jacket. Jeans, blazer, and heels? Classic night look. Dress, soft jacket and keds? Perfect touring or people-watching look.
I pack 3-4 blazers or jackets for a 3 week vacation. Pack 1-2 for a week vacation, keeping them versatile in neutral colours.
Sweat Pants
While these may not take you from day to night, they’re a must-have when packing for a trip. There’s nothing better than getting back from a full day of exploring and ripping off your clothes and throwing on some sweat pants and an old t-shirt, lounging in your apartment or hotel room.
One pair is good enough.
Bathing Suit
Even if there’s no pool in your hotel. I always pack one because what if we end up somewhere where there IS a pool and I look like a fool? Also, if I’m going anywhere remotely warm and it has a beach, I’m wearing a bathing suit. Even if I’m not heading into the chilly waters just yet.
Anywhere from one bathing suit to 5 is suitable. If you’re going for a beach vacation, packing extras (so that you always have a dry one) is a smart choice.
The Undergarments:
Going for a week? Better take 40 pairs! This seems to be everyone’s packing go-to, and honestly, it’s a good one. Maybe you don’t need to be that excessive, but definitely pack yourself a few extra pairs of undies. Make sure you’re not packing all hot pink ones, either. What if you find a beautiful pair of beige linen pants? That calls for a nude thong (or nude Commando) for no VPL. Ladies, remember this same rule for bras. And, no, a white bra under a white shirt does not make a bra disappear. Nude is the only way to go.
I have to admit something: I never pack enough socks. Use the same rule of thumb for your underwear; you should be armed with extra socks in your suitcase. And, remember that ankle socks, sockettes, and wool socks are vastly different. No one wants to see your ‘athletic socks’ reaching for your knees when you’re wearing a pair of cute Keds. No one does.

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