In a few weeks, the family and I are off to a fabulous vacation in Singapore, and I Can. Not. Wait! While it hasn’t really been that long since our last trip, we are all feeling like we really need a getaway at the moment, so it couldn’t have come at a better time. But, as regular readers will know, half the fun of a trip for me is in the planning and packing stage, so as usual, I have been planning my holiday capsule wardrobe.
Singapore is always a funny one for me, packing wise; while it is a tropical location, it is a very cosmopolitan city, so I need my wardrobe to be suitable for the sticky and humid days, but not look as if I have just come from the beach. As such, I’ve planned my wardrobe around cooling natural fibres, but in shapes and pieces that won’t feel out of place in a bustling and vibrant city.
As with any capsule wardrobe, the first place I start is with my colour palette. Be guided by what you normally wear at home – a holiday is not really the time to be busting out a full suitcase of bright tropical prints if all you ever wear is black – even if you look spectacular, I guarantee that you won’t feel that way. In my case, my regular closet has pretty much evolved into a minimalist palette of black, camel/natural/beige, blush pink, navy and white. For this trip, I honed it down even further to just three neutrals: natural/beige, and white.
On the plane, my ethos is stylish comfort. Obviously, sitting in a cramped spot for hours is never going to be a barrel of laughs, so choosing clothes that are breathable, stretchable, and just down right comfortable becomes a necessity, not a luxury. However, and this is a big however, that doesn’t mean you need to sacrifice some style. Think about all the celebrity pap shots you see at airports.
Granted, they have all just alighted from a spacious and luxurious first class cabin, but if you break down their outfits, they invariably follow the same outfit formula.
- Comfortable jeans or pants. This is where you need to consider your style of pants. I have a great pair of Blue Illusion Bengajeans that I would happily wear on a long haul flight, but a regular pair of skinny jeans, no way! For this trip, I am not planning to take any jeans (too hot!) so I am wearing my Eileen Fisher wide legged cropped washable crepe trousers. Made out of a stretch knit fabric, they are incredibly comfortable, but will get great use on the trip as well because they transition from casual to dressy with easy. Black leggings also make a great choice, IF, like Chrissy Teigan above, you wear a longer top – no one wants to see your butt hanging out!
- A relaxed and/or stretchy top. Again, anything with some stretch and some breathability is going to make your flight more comfortable, and leave you looking presentable at the other end. Obviously, stay away from anything that is going to crush or wrinkle! Personally, I like to keep this piece black, just to minimize the impact of any spills that may happen, especially travelling with kids. My pick is an Eileen Fisher viscose jersey tank – the fabric looks more polished that plain cotton, but feels like I am wearing pyjamas.
- Large scarf. Not only does it add a touch of colour or pattern to a simple outfit, it can be a great solution when the weather is cold at one end and hot at the other. Also, planes are often freezing, so a scarf that can double as blanket is a great idea. For this trip, since it is only short haul, and we will be going from warm weather to hot weather, I have packed a light weight scarf, rather than a blanket weight scarf.
- “Third Piece”. This third piece is what can elevate any outfit from ho hum to stylish. Whether you go for a cuddly long line wrap cardi that can act as a blanket on the plane as it surrounds you in warmth, a blazer or a light weight sheer kimono, this third piece really helps to complete your outfit, and if not needed while seated can be easily stashed in the overhead bin or your carry on bag. This time, I’m going the blazer route a la Jessica Alba above, in a natural coloured linen blend blazer from Blue Illusion. My top tip is, once again, look for something that doesn’t wrinkle. This blazer is a linen BLEND and the the other fibres means that jacket will still look presentable even after wearing it on a plane for 5 hours. For longer flights, a knit or ponte blazer is probably a better option comfort wise.
- Slip On Shoes. Note, I’ve specifically said shoes, and not sandals! With travel security (necessarily) the way it is, it is highly likely you will need to remove your shoes at control points. This means a) for ease, you want shoes that slip on and off easily with no fuss, and b) you want to be wearing socks, so you don’t need to walk bare foot over that dirty floor. This is a great time to wear your (stylish) sneakers so they don’t take up room in your luggage, or else, a great pair of patterned flats, or a sleek ballerina shoe. I decided on a pair of leopard print espradilles, also from Blue Illusion; the colours match perfectly with my chosen palette, they are super comfortable, and they look great with pants, but also fab with dresses, of which I’m planning to pack two. Feel free to wear heels if that’s your thing; I’ll be honest, though, while I am a heels lover, trying to navigate through airports with two kids, a husband, luggage and with heels on ain’t going to be a thing for me anytime soon!!
- Hat. I love carrying a hat so I have something to put on at the other end to cover up my flat airplane hair. You may not have this problem, but I have super fine hair, and the minute I hop on a plane, it doesn’t matter what I do, what products I use, my hair ends up flat and lifeless and a little bit too oily for dry shampoo to rescue. Hence, whacking on a hat!
- Oversized handbag/backpack. But not too oversized! As a family, we still take one carry-on onboard, that carries my son’s and my medications, toiletries, as well as a spare set of undergarments and our swimsuits, just in case out luggage gets delayed we are set for the first night and day. As well as this, the kids and I each take one backpack, to hold our inflight entertainment (iPads, headphones, snacks, colouring books etc). Travelling with kids, I prefer a backpack rather than a handbag as it keeps my hands free, and my backpack from Michael Kors is a great size and a fantastic colour.
So here is the collage of what I will be wearing on the plane so you can get a visual of the pieces put together. Most importantly, all of the items will be a key part of my holiday capsule wardrobe.
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