How to Maximize Your Suitcase this Summer

How to Maximize Your Suitcase this Summer

Ok, raise your hand if you’re an over-packer 🙋🏻. I mean yeah…I tend to over pack ok? It’s something I am actively working on. With that being said, I have tried a few different tips and tricks that I have found to be very helpful. I decided to condense these for you into one post!

Number 1:

Research the climate. This is probably something you already do, but when you’re packing for vacation, you should definitely research what the weather will be like, temperature, humidity, that sort of thing.

I am going Holden Beach soon and it looks like the weather is going to be in the 80s with humidity at about 45%. Now, this is in NC and it is HOT. In my suitcase, I have packed three pair of pants. This is because I typically find myself getting chilly when going out to eat or going in to stores. If you do not get chilly easily, your suitcase may look a little different. Also, if I am on the beach, I won’t be wearing anything but a bathing suit and sunscreen 😎.

Number 2:

Make a list. What? Make a list? Are you kidding? Nope, it actually REALLY helps me to make a list. Now, you may be thinking what a time consuming thing to do when packing for vacation. But I decided that if I made a realistic list of items I wanted to pack, it would save me time in the long run.

I literally used to just grab stuff off of hangers and throw it in my suitcase…big mistake. I rarely wore ANY of it and ended up washing it all when I got home and taking up too much time to unpack.

Ok, with that being said here was my list:

  1. Basic tops (tee shirt, button downs, tanks)
  2. Shorts
  3. Pants
  4. Bathing suits
  5. Shoes (limit 5 pair-this was a personal preference, you can limit this even more if you want)
  6. Accessories (a good rule to follow with accessories is to pick some that will go with MULTIPLE outfits. I also limit myself to two purse options)

I am a visual person so I layed out all the pieces I wanted to bring:

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P.S. I packed two other swim suits, but wasn’t able to find a picture of them! The leopard swim suit can be found here. My other swimsuit is by Kortni Jeane!

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The pink and green earrings are by Jules Co.

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(FYI, you can find the linkable items here)

 

Number 3:

Make sure you select items that can be mixed and matched. I treated this like a capsule. Making sure my pants worked with multiple tops and vice versa. With that being said I came up with, drumroll please,

44 outfit options!

I know…probably overkill, but hey, I told you this gal likes options! See below all the outfits I put together!

Everlane Jeans styled 8 ways!

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Madewell Overalls styled 6 ways!

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Madewell Shorts styled 8 ways!

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Abercrombie Pants styled 8 ways!

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Madewell Slim Wide Leg Jeans styled 8 ways!

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Madewell Midi Dress styled 6 ways (this exact dress is sold out, but here are some similar options: Cami Tier Midi Dress, Silk Cross-Back Midi Dress, Lanhtropy Linen Cactus Button-Front Dress)!

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Number 4:

Have “fold awareness” (I just made that up). Be sure that you are folding your clothes in the most efficient way. For example, Marie Kondo folds like a champ. Now, her whole angle is to love your clothes and it isn’t about making your clothing more compact, but for me it is 😂. I want to fit AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE in my suitcase that I share with my husband 😳.

Bonus tip: Make sure your cover the bottoms of your shoes as well, a good trick is to use shower caps or plastic bags. Shoes are germ-y (haha). You could pack your shoes in a completely different bag as well, which I have done before, but I try to limit packing to three bags.

  1. Clothes
  2. Toiletries (including makeup)
  3. Towels (for the beach and bathing)

I hope this somewhat helped you! If you want to see the final product of my suitcase, let me know and I will post some photos! Be sure and share any tips and tricks you have with me, I would love to hear them!

Same jeans, four ways

Same jeans, four ways

Let’s talk about jeans for a second; if you follow my Instagram or you read “A Short Girl’s Guide to Madewell Jeans” you know that I love Madwell! I truly believe in their brand and their jeans fit my body so well.

With that being said, I often end up with jeans that are similar in style and vary in color. Don’t get me wrong, that’s cool and all, but I have challenged myself to go for jeans that are different!

I love a good pair of skinny jeans, I think they are so versatile and can be worn in so many different ways. However, I ave a closet full and I really wanted to venture out, so when Madewell came out with the new Cali Demi-Boot Jeans  I knew I had to try them on for size!

When I purchased them, even the woman that worked at Madewell said that people were afraid of them. I thought, you know what…I am gonna buy these and wear them with confidence, because want to! Below I have styled these cuties 4 ways. if you caught my Instagram stories I did a little style session, but for those who didn’t, I wrote this blog post!

These jeans fit tight through the hips and have a super stretch through the legs with a slight flare. As I’ve mentioned before, I am 5 feet tall so I tend to purchase petite or short clothing items. I got the petite size in these and they hit above the ankle to create a really fresh spring look!

 

The French Gal

Is it just me or is this “French girl style” the epitome of a fashionista? I am in love with the tied scarf around the neck look! For your inner french girl, I decided to pair these beauties with a simple, classic white shirt. The Courier Button-Back Shirt by Madewell  goes great with just about anything. My theme is versatile style so I try to only get pieces that I can style over and over and it not be obvious 😉. I gave it a front tuck to enhance my waist line and paired the Tropical Coral bandana (or scarf) with this simple outfit to add a pop of color and add a stylish little detail. I, of course, wore mules with this outfit. I mean I cannot get over mules and how perfect they go with jeans, dress pants, and even some dresses! These are the Willa Loafer Mules in Brown (not sure that these are still available at Madewell, but they might be at Nordstrom)!

*If you haven’t quite channeled your inner french girl or you simply don’t care for the bandana around the neck, you can always utilize yours differently (see above how I styled it as a headband).

 

The Valentine Gal ❤️

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To keep it true to Valentine’s Day this week, I decided to add in a cutesy valentine’s day inspired look that can totally be worn any other day of the year! I decided to pair a mock-neck black and white stripe shirt with the Cali Demi-Boot Jeans  and an oversized cardigan. I decided to tuck the mock-neck, because anytime I wear a longer layered piece, the tuck helps create a waistline and make you look taller!

The mock-neck is from Target’s Universal Thread line and I purchased it last year. I am not sure if they have it anymore in that color, but here is a link to a different colored one. You might also like this one from Anthropologie, but it is on the pricey end. They shouldn’t be too hard to find, since stripes are in style always ❤️! The cardigan is also from Target’s Universal Thread line and is no longer found in stores, however, they have some similar options here and here! Note that it is a little longer on me because of my height and I bout it in an XL even though I wear a M, because I wanted the baggy look.

I paired my Willa Loafer Mules in Glitter, because they instantly make me feel fancy, but keep the comfort levels high 👏🏻. I also used the Tropical Coral bandana again as a hairband to add some visual interest! I also thought the red and pink combo made for an extra Valentine’s Day appearance.

 

The Casual Gal

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For this look, I went for a more casual denim on denim approach. I, again, paired my Cali Demi-Boot Jeans  with the same top from my Valentine Gal look, because as I have mentioned, I am in to versatile style and pieces that I can wear over and over. The denim jacket is a little darker than the jeans so it adds some contrast and I decided to leave my shirt untucked, which is a rarity for me, to add some length since my jean jacket is shorter. The jean jacket pictured is very old (by about 2 or 3 years), so I know J. Crew doesn’t still carry it; however jean jackets are EVERYWHERE. You can find some that are oversized or fitted depending on your style and comfort level!

I, again, paired my Willa Loafer Mules and Tropical Coral bandana to keep this look fun and “put together”. You could also pair some cute white tennis shoes with this look if you are going out for a day of walking and want something more supportive, but I will say that these mules don’t hurt my feet in the slightest bit once I broke them in. Switching them out for tennis shoes would completely change this look which is another amazing thing about versatile style! The bandana adds a nice pop of color and helps hide that day 3 hair am-I-right 🤗?

The Working Gal

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This look gives me serious #boss vibes. I mean fist of all, the bright pink blazer is an eye catcher and I think it gives these jeans such a sophisticated look. I am wearing The Courier Button-Back Shirt again and tucked it in all the way around. I popped the collar too, because “ever since I can remember I been popping’ my collar” 😂 (anybody else remember that song?). The blazer is Halogen and I got it from my TrunkClub box! It is such an amazing piece and I couldn’t be happier with it. I got it in a MPetite and the length is perfect. It covers my butt just a bit and I roll the sleeves to create a more casual look. You can button the button if you want to look even more professional! You can find the blazer here, but it looks like there are limited sizes. Click here and here for similar options.

I paired The Frances Loafer Mule in the color Vintage White with this outfit. These are also from Madewell and are a great shoe, especially if you want to add some sophistication to your wardrobe! I have a wide foot and these feel great!  I skipped out on the bandana for this look, but you could definitely incorporate it if you wanted to!

 

There you have it, same jeans, four ways! I hope this inspires you to go out of your comfort zone and try some new pieces. I also hope this helps you shop your closet! Re-using pieces to create different looks is so fun and nice for the wallet 😉! If you decide to try and recreate any of these tag me on Instagram @budgetandbrunch and use the #budgetandbrunch hashtag!