Hi Frugalistas! One of the things I love to do is read other blogs about packing light. I’m particularly fond of specialist packing websites. One of my very favorite sites is www.travelfashiongirl.com, a brilliant website that combines packing light with current fashions in a mouthwateringly colourful and aspirational combination. The editor and owner of Travel Fashion Girl, Alex Jimenez, very kindly agreed to an interview for frugalfirstclasstravel to share some of her favorite tips with us.
What are your top tips for traveling light & stylish?
Plan your travel outfits in advance and choose items you can mix and match. Once you play around with the various combinations you can make, you’ll realize it’s not quantity, but quality. You can make up to 3 weeks’ worth of outfits with just ten items if you choose each piece carefully.
You don’t have to stick to one color but sticking to one color story helps you mix and match and also allows you to use prints with ease.
As far as style goes, so long as you pack clothing you feel great wearing then you will be stylish. Style is a matter of confidence, not fashion.
Many women who read my packing posts seem to struggle terribly with the shoe question. What is your strategy for choosing the minimum amount of shoes for max impact?
Shoes are always the worst because everyone’s needs vary and activities on trips differ. The magic number for shoes really is three: one for comfort, one for function, and one for fun. Then you decide what type of shoe falls into these categories depending on your itinerary.
Comfort should be the pair of shoes you can use to sightsee and walk for hours at a time. There seems to be a general consensus with Travel Fashion Girl readers that the new style friendly Crocs such as the Carlie Flats are the way to go for comfort.
The second pair of shoes should be for function and more purpose driven such as trainers or hiking boots. Merrells are very popular as they offer a trainer/boot hybrid type shoe.
Lastly, there is always room in every bag for a thin pair of flats or pretty sandals that you can wear when you want to dress up a bit for a nice dinner, nightlife, meeting, or just when you’re tired of looking like a traveler.
Find out more about these travel shoes in Alex’s post: Fashionable Travel Shoes.
What are your favorite choices for multitasking pieces that can be worn for different occasions or climates?
My favorite multi-tasking piece is a basic but chic button up top in a vibrant color like royal blue because it can be dressed up in the city, worn as a light jacket by the sea, used as a shield from the sun, and worn with a long sleeve top underneath in the cold. You can also wear it over dresses, tucked into skirts, loosely over leggings, and casually with jeans.
What is the one thing I will always find in your bag regardless of your destination?
My NARS multiple makeup stick, St Ives Apricot Face Scrub, and Abba Leave-in Conditioner. I never leave home without them. If I only had three beauty items, these are it.
What are the outfits or garments that make you cringe when see them on other travellers?
No outfit is cringe-worthy so long as the traveler is happy wearing it. If you love the way convertible pants look on you, that’s awesome. If not, then you should know it’s okay to wear regular clothing on your travels, too.
That’s why I created Travel Fashion Girl – because 5 years ago there were only travel technical clothing lists available that misled me to believe I needed $50 quick dry shirts that I never wore or that I had to buy convertible pants in order to travel. I was in for a big shock when I wanted to have drinks at a nice bar in Auckland or walk around in Sydney.
Pack clothing you feel great wearing especially because you have to wear it all the time and remember you can replenish your clothing on the road practically anywhere in the world!
What is your dream destination and your dream outfit to wear there?
My dream destinations all consist of beaches and Bora Bora is at the very top of that list! My dream outfit would be an ivory, lace trimmed shift dress with brown leather studded sandals, a fedora, and a new wedding ring to match ha-ha! 😉
Thanks so much to Alex for sharing her experience and ideas. Do check out her site, have a drool, and be inspired to not only travel light, but right on trend!
Learn how to travel stylishly and practically on her website Travel Fashion Girl. Like Travel Fashion Girl on Facebook; follow on Twitter; and Pin on Pinterest.
Photo credits: Travel Fashion Girl unless otherwise credited
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Megan @ Roamancing says
Great interview and great tips! I like that she considers no outfit cringe-worthy if the traveller is happy.
Yes, I love that too! One of my 2013 not-resolutions was to not be judgmental of others’ travel choices, so I think Alex has suggested a good place to start.
I love this! I’m a big fan of Travel Fashion Girl, too. And it’s my life’s work trying to master the packing light art, as you know! I’m going solo for almost a week to Holland soon, and I’ll be packing carry on only with no husband to carry my bag, so I need to get it right!
Glad you enjoyed the post. Yes, there’s nothing like having to travel independently to hone those light packing skills!
Thank you so much for the interview! I really enjoyed doing it and I hope your readers find the tips useful 🙂 Thanks again Jo!
Thanks to you too Alex! From the feedback here and on Twitter I think readers have really enjoyed the piece and love your ideas
Awesome, I live there. Let me know if you need advice and if you haven’t already been in the meantime 🙂
On topic: I love this interview, her motto on outfits is my motto on travel: no form of travel is wrong as long as you’re happy (and it’s not harmful). I follow her website, and it opened my eyes really. Planning for a long backpackingtrip is very stressful for a fashionista that also wants to be practical 🙂
I’m doing much better on the ‘no judging’ thing!
Stay tuned, as I’ve got a fab post coming up of travel blogger packing tips that’s going to be awesome!
You know, I personally hate packing light and all that hype around it. I like to be prepared for everything. Now mind you, I am no backpacker, so there really is no need for it. I like to pack smart, so it really makes no sense to take 10 undies on a 3day trip.
But I basically never travel without at least one suite and chic shoes, swimwear and one sportswear outfit – no matter where i go. But then again i like to travel so much more versatile than most other people do *shrug*
How you pack is entirely your choice Norman. Personally I love to pack light, but if that isn’t your style, then more power to you.