packing for summer vacations with one LBD

Nicole asks: Hi Mr. Kate! I was wondering if you had good ideas for packing when traveling! I found myself in a dilemma trying to figure out how to neatly keep my dressy clothes and JEWELRY (long necklaces, big earrings, rings, etc). How do you pack when you travel? Especially when you are trying to keep it to one suitcase? Thank you! Answer: Hi Nicole! Summer vacation is upon us and hopefully that means you will be doing just that... taking a vacation! I love challenging myself to pack items that all work together and can be used in casual or dressy scenarios. For this post, I challenged myself to put together 6 outfits, all using the same LBD (little black dress) as my base! You can see how with one dress, some add-ons and 3 pairs of shoes (one sneaker, one sandal and one dressy/platform) you can have a great variety of cute ensembles without bringing a ton of clothes! You may be thinking, "wow, that's gonna be one stinky dress if I wear it every day!" but if you make sure to use a 100% cotton LBD and bring some travel laundry soap with you (Woolite makes little travel packets)- you can just rinse out your dress at night and hang it up near a window or AC and it will be fresh and ready for the next day! As far as packing jewelry, I like to use a jewelry roll or separate clear plastic bags for my rings, bracelets and necklaces - I usually wrap my necklaces in tissue so they don't tangle together. I also like to roll my clothes as opposed to fold them, this makes for easier packing and less wrinkles! See some other packing posts: guest post from a stylist: Get Packing and Packing For Italy and then don't forget your DIY traveling vanity and cosmetics case!

So here it is: our black dress, 6 ways for your Summer vacations!...

  • Start with: 1) a little black dress in 100% cotton and a fit that you just love (mine is by Bizz) - 2) 3 pairs of shoes: sneakers, dressy/funky platforms/heels/wedges and sandals - 3) a purse - 4) a fun hat
  • Outfit #1 Daytime: Add a denim vest, your sneakers, hat and accessories
  • Outfit #2 Daytime: Add a lightweight, colorful, scarf (in your hair or loose around your neck), your purse, a thin belt, your sneakers and statement earrings

  • Outfit #3 Day to Night: Add a khaki vest, a statement necklace, your platforms, a bracelet, your hat and sunnies
Outfit #4 Nighttime: Add a lightweight striped jacket, your platforms, your purse, layered fun necklaces, and red lipstick

  • Outfit #5 Day to Night: Add a colorful belt, your purse, your sandals, your hat and layered gold necklaces (all of the above Mr. Kate)
  • Outfit #6 Day to Night: Add a lightweight denim button-down shirt to make your dress into a skirt, your sandals, a rhinestone collar necklace, layered bracelets and an ear cuff.

And look, it all fits comfortably into a carry on bag (if you wear your sneakers and purse on the plane) with room for undies, socks, pjs and cosmetics! Hope that helps and have a blast on your Summer vacations!!!

The Deets:

  • dress: Bizz
  • sneakers: Forever 21
  • sandals: Sergio Rossi
  • platforms: Jeffrey Campbell
  • hat: vintage Pork Pie hat or wide roll Boater - shop one like it here!
  • bag: Orange Caramel
  • denim vest: Forever 21
  • khaki vest: Topshop
  • striped jacket: Zara

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