Saturday, May 18, 2013

Packing for cobblestones

Here is what I packed for my 16 days trip:

trench coat and motorcycle jacket
jeans: denim, white and black
leggings and yoga pants and yoga tshirt
tees: short sleeve blue, navy, black and white, long sleeve navy, red, black, stripe
sweaters: black v-neck, green and black long cardigans
dressy tops: punk top floral, tie neck polka dot, black t-shirt with leather sleeves
navy blazer
blue print cotton skirt
black dress
pink cashmere wrap

cross-body purse
leopard clutch
short and long necklace, pearl earings and black bracelet
colorful scarf
brown belt
ballet flats in gold and black
black Valentina pumps
black sandals
flip flops and sneakers

bikini and black cotton dress as cover-up
underwear including few tank tops
pajamas

My initial difficulty was the unpredictable weather at this time of the year. The temperatures ranged from lower 50s to mid 80s but I had a good mix of warmer and colder weather choices.  I wasn't sure if I should bring my Banana trench (I was first going with just the moto jacket), but I am glad I did. I was blending with the locals well, because almost everybody was wearing either a black leather jacket or a trench coat and the scarves seem absolutely obligatory.    



On the coldest days I wore my black merino sweater from Ann Taylor and black JBrand cigarette jeans.  Right before my trip I got the jeans hemmed to the ankle length and they instantly became much more wearable and up to date.


I walked a lot, so I mostly wore jeans and t-shirt uniform.  


Here I am sporting my Jagiellonian University t-shirt that I bought on the trip.  I have a lot of college pride.  The school was founded in 1364 and counts Copernicus as one of its alumni. It is located in the very center of the town.



I was hoping to do some running, so I brought my yoga outfit and sneakers. Sneakers are not the most stylish but I loved them on long walks with my mother and on our visit to the Wieliczka salt mine, where we had to descend about 400 stairs.


Colorful silk blouses take a very little space in the suitcase but were a great way to dress up a simple jeans-and-blazer outfit.  I wore my polka dot blouse (WHBM) exactly the same way.


When the weather warmed up my all cotton Brook Brothers skirt was just perfect and super comfortable. It also goes with white or navy t-shirts and the navy blazer, so I had some options.

I knew I was going to the theatre with my friend, so I brought my LBD, leopard clutch and pink cashmere wrap.  I was going to wear my black Valentinas, but decided on ballet flats, so I can navigate the cobblestones. 


Overall, I was happy with what I packed and I used almost everything. My biggest mistake were the heels.  But I was very comfortable in my ballets. I brought two pairs, gold and black and they went with all my outfits. 

My personal travel formula is to keep everything neutral then add some light packing colorful touches.  I brought 3 pairs of jeans with several short and long sleeve neutral colored t-shirts.  I topped it off with couple of sweaters, navy blazer, trench coat, motorcycle jacket and a purse that goes with everything. This was my base, all in black, white/cream, blue and navy.  Then, I added a skirt that goes with few t-shirts, a black dress and dressy black tee to go out, couple of silk blouses and a scarf.

When in doubt, I wore black. My black jeans went with short sleeve scoop neck and long sleeve v-neck tees,  Club Monaco top with leather sleeves, long merino v-neck and boyfriend cardigan, all in black.  I added scarf or a necklace and gold flats for some color.  It was also good to have saddle color bag to lighten it up.  It was easy and made me feel chic and pull together.  

My other favorite was to wear jeans and a navy blazer with colorful silk blouses.  Switching up the jeans for a cheerful skirt worn with plain t-shirts was also a nice change.  

I don't wear dresses that much, but once the temperature rose they were everywhere.  If I was going in the summer, I would definitely pack at least one, preferably in some non wrinkling easy knit.   

Mom, watching the cobbles


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That's all folks!

What is your travel packing formula and what are your favorite travel outfits?
    

26 comments:

  1. Welcome home ajc! It looks like your trip was amazing and your packing up was perfect. Love the pink wrap with the LBD and leopard, that's a very ajc look I think! I can understand why you didn't wear your heels, on the cobblestones forget it!
    I'm not going on a big trip again until next year when we go to England for a month but I am going to remember this post!

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    1. Thank you Dani! Nobody does packing post with the color story like you do, I have learn so much from your posts!

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  2. I am disappointed I didn't make it to Krakow. Yet anyway. I would love to visit. You look lovely in your travel pics, especially the first one. Gorgeous! Glad you enjoyed yourself

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    1. mommydearest, there is always a next time! thanks!

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  3. ahhh, our lists are similar. i'm even starting to think about not taking my blazer as it is so cold there and really it seems i'll either be warm in my fatigue jacket or less warm in my long cardigan. the blazer seems redundant at this point. here is my main issue. it's great if the weather is cold and i'm wearing all the warm things but we are going to be on the move a lot and if it's warm then all that cold weather gear has to be in the suitcase and i'm not sure if it'll all fit. i guess i'm gonna go pack it and see. sheeesh.

    thanks for this post!

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    1. Janet - it is so cold, I was wearing gloves this week, in Mid May!

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    2. I think we do have similar style, hence the twin packing list. I don't know how big is your suitcase but mine had quite a lot of room to spare and it wasn't too heavy, so hopefully your blazer will fit with no problems. My trench was the item that I thought I would take if it fits but in the end it did.

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  4. oh and i forgot to say just how beautiful you look in all the photos. love the scarf with the stripes! makes me want to pack a stripe t. prob will. :)

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  5. Thanks for posting all your deets ajc. From the photos you look very happy and relaxed, that's excellent! I "live" for a good packing post, formula, so thanks for sharing yours. Here you on pretty shoes and uneven pavement too. The road to hell is paved with wobbly intentions.

    My best one yet is 10 pieces (outside of PJs, undies-tanks, accessories/ scarves) for 7 days when we were doing boats, very small planes with a weight limit (Easy printed blouse/ shell in silk or thin cotton that dries overnight, jeans, chambray shirt or tunic, printed "fancier" pants, Brora cotton cardi, cotton skirt, denim or leather jacket, neutral bermuda shorts/ capris, scoopneck tee. + flat sandals, sand shoes, ballets, hat & packable tote.)

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    1. I like your 10 pieces set, GetFresh, I could definitely go with it.

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  6. Black, white and flats! Cobblestones are an everyday occurrence here whenever I walk out of my front door. And yes, you look so beautiful and very relaxed.

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    1. you know I did not even remember so many cobbles, I guess I did not pay attention since at that time (college years) I was always in boots or tennis shoes.

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  7. Great packing list & outfits! It is hard to pack for varying weather, but you did it well. What kind of cross-body bag is that?

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    1. thanks cate! It is Kate Spade from couple of years ago.

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  8. Wow, you're a great packer. Loving that neckline of the black dress on you - perfect. My packing technique is chucking loads of disparate items into a big bag at the last moment and hoping it somehow combobulates into going together when I arrive. It never does.

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    1. lol about your packing technique, but you always look great, so I think it works!

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  9. Your trip sounds lovely and your outfits are adorable.

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    1. Also, there is nothing like going home.

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    2. thank you A! I miss my mom but yes, it is nice to be back home :)

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  10. Great post and great outfits. Shoes can take a real beating on those cobblestone streets. Good that you thought to bring some dressy ballets as an option.

    Your packing strategy is almost the same as mine. Neutral basics in different weights for temperature fluctuations with color added via tops and scarves, jersey dresses for casual days, a few shoe options based on comfort and outfits, workout wear and at least one party-ready outfit like a LBD.

    Your post is very upbeat. It seems as though you had a wonderful time and came back refreshed and happy.

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    1. xoxo, I think you have to get used to walling on cobblestones. I saw quite a few women wearing heels and my mom can do it but it would be embarrassing to trip...
      I prefer neutrals as a base because they are less memorable when you have to repeat.

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  11. blogger ate my earlier comment, so I'll try again - your packing is inspirational! I'm wishing I could wear flat shoes, I need old-lady oxfords for exploring.

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    1. Thanks fred, I know ballets are uncomfortable for many but I was fine with them. I cannot wear oxfords but I have a pair of black patent penny loafers that I wore to death. They have huge holes in the soles or I would have brought them with me.

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  13. I loved reading your post! I'm heading to Italy in September so am already starting to think about what to pack. I was in Europe over the winter holidays so it was pretty much the same weather most of our trip. I brought a lot of neutrals - long and short sleeve tees and interchangeable sweaters with a few pops of color, along with a dress and one or two dressy tops.
    What brand are your ballet flats? I'm on the hunt for walking shoes for our trip and would like a good pair of flats for those cobblestones! Thanks for sharing.

    The Fab Life

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