Today's post is brought to you by multi-tasking. Despite having today's schedule being wide open (with the highways being closed preventing me from getting home), I'm finding myself suddenly frazzled after a day of relaxation!
The major issue with packing (especially when your trip has been delayed due to weather) is that I don't know when I'll be back. Ideally, I'll be home Sunday, giving myself a couple days back at the apartment before we head back east for Christmas. However, there is a chance that I might stay right through until Christmas is over. It all depends on the weather. These tips are based on how I'm packing for my 3 OR 11 day trip.
All right so here are my tips!!!
1. Pack decadently for the minimum number of days plus one. This doesn't mean bringing 4 pairs of jeans when you could conceivably only be there for 3 days. I'm just suggesting that you don't plan on having multiple wearings of something like, say, a shirt within the min+1 period. This way, you'll have lots of pieces to remix if your stay goes past your minimum.
2. Pick coordinating items, particularly those which mix and layer well. This is when colour wheels are great tools!
3. Bring a mix of dressy and casual peices. Of course, balance it as necessary for your trip. You'll get the most use out of those which you can dress up and down (particularly on business trips). Unless you know for sure that you'll need something more classy like a cocktail dress, don't bring items unless you have a clear reason to bring it. A nice skirt / pats and a nice shirt / sweater will work well dressed up or down.
4. Think of how you can wear items outside their intended purpose. Scarf as a blouse (under a jacket, of course), tank top as a vest. You could even get crazy and wear a skirt as a shirt. (I've never done that, it scares me).
5. Make sure you choose articles of clothing that can survive multiple wearings. Linen wrinkles easily, cheaper and thinner sweaters stretch out. Unless you want to do multiple laundry loads, and lots of ironing, choose more wrinkle resitant and stretch resistant clothing.
6. As for socks and underwear bring minimum+1 or 1/2 of maximum, which ever is greater. Sure, you can bring enough for every day, but if you bring 11 pairs, and only wear 3, you might feel a little weird unpacking them later. Of course, if it's a 3-5 day trip, 5 pairs doesn't seem excessive.
7. Consider your laundry options: can you do laundry part way through? Or will you be restricted to washing stuff in the sink? If you stain something, is it something that needs immediate attention, or will a Tide-to-Go pen suffice?
8. Keep any weather changes in mind - not only the difference between your current location and your destination, but also any potential weather changes you may encounter (in the Canadian prairies, it has literally gone from freezing to melting and back in less than a day). While you probably don't need a winter parka and a pair of daisy dukes, remember that layers are wonderful wonderful things!
9. As for shoes, as much as it pains me, keep it simple. However, feel free to go wild with accessories. They're smaller and easier to pack.
10. I'm a big proponent of rolling. Rolling works for me! But pack as efficiently as you can!