Packing Light for Italy

Adam and I got home from Italy this week and we’re still jet lagged (waking up at 6am, going to bed at 8am). We had a whirlwind of a trip and traveled all over Italy – from Milan, to Lake Como, to Venice, to Rome. We did a boat tour in Lake Como, a bar crawl in Venice, and a cooking class in Rome. All of these activities meant a lot of different outfits 🙂

For our last few trips, Adam and I have been bringing one carry-on suitcase and one backpack. This allows us to be more flexible with our flights (in case we need to change flights) and is also just easier when lugging ourselves on and off planes, trains, and boats. While this makes packing a challenge for someone like me who loves clothes, it’s also become a personal challenge that I’m always trying to perfect. Here are a few ways that I made the most of my limited luggage in Italy.


I filled my luggage with 3 different hats to switch up my look throughout the week. Let’s face it, a major part of going on vacation is taking pictures and they’re mostly from the shoulders up, so I try to think of ways to switch up my outfits so I’ll have different looks each day. The beret is from Zara, the brown hat is from Forever 21 (not currently sold online), and the black hat I bought at a small boutique in Baltimore last year.

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Another great way to add lots of options to your outfits (but take up zero room in your luggage) is to pack a few scarves. I picked up a handful of scarves from Zara and Forever 21 and wore them around my neck and around my head to be oh so Italiano.

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I brought one pair of shoes. Yep, one. While they didn’t prove to be the best footwear for the 6-10 miles of walking we did each day… they were cute! I bought them from an online boutique that one of my former co-workers started, Alice & Wonder – check it out!

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Since I was initially in Italy for work, I knew that I’d have my work laptop with me for the vacation-portion of our trip, too. I have a behemoth of a work laptop so I needed to find a cute backpack that could fit the laptop, but also serve as my purse for the trip. I tracked down this backpack at my local TJ Maxx and it served me well on the trip! I added a scarf from Forever 21 to make it a little more Euro.

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We had a fabulous time in Italy and I had a lot of fun planning my outfits (and wearing them). I’m already looking forward to our next trip and the packing challenges that arise 🙂



Flying Essentials

So, I woke up at 3:30am to fly to Boston for work. Yes, 3:30am. As bad as it sounds, it really wasn’t terrible. What was terrible was landing in Boston and seeing ambulances and fire trucks all around us cause apparently the plane’s steering didn’t work. Umm, come again? Luckily we had no idea that anything was wrong, so no hard feelings Delta!

Anywhoosie, back to the point of this blog post. Here’s my list of essentials for any carry-on no matter the destination:

1. Book/E-Reader/iPad/Magazine. Not for the purpose of being smart, but solely for the purpose of avoiding conversation with the person next to you. I had my iPad (or Lady Pad as Man BFF calls it) in tow, but I took the opportunity to finish The Heart of the Matter by Emily Giffin (not worth reading).

2. Watch. This was something I didn’t have with me, but wish I had (remember, I have this one on the way!). If you’re like me and it drives you crazy not to know the time, a watch is a must since you can’t always have your cell phone on. Forget Michael Kors, I’m saving up for this beauty!

3. Gin Gin’s Boost – The Traveler’s Candy. For those of you who know me, you know that my brother and sister-in-law got married in India and there was a lot of traveling involved. Seriously, planes, trains, and automobiles. We lived off of ginger candies while there to prevent feeling motion sick or sick to our stomachs. Recently I found these little Gin Gin candies and now travel with them everywhere.

Hope this helps you for your next trip! Check out Man BFF’s blog for more traveling tips!