Friday, 23 April 2010

Paris Packing: It's an Art Form

I find that when you travel it really makes you aware of the items in your wardrobe you value the most. Of course the clothing you pack depends on many variables including the weather in the destination you are traveling to, the feel of the place and what you will be doing there. But packing also reveals which garments you truly love. It asks the question "what can I NOT leave home with out" Your MUST haves for a trip. I feel like have gotten to a point where I know my wardrobe really well. My clothes and I, we're pretty tight. I definitely have a deeper connection with them than I have had with many of my ex boyfriends and in some ways more love and respect. Haha (sadly, I'm only slightly joking.) But I digress.....

I have definitely developed a uniform of sorts. In a way I think we all do. I spent years being bowled over by the newest trend and passing fad trying to wear them all until I realized that somethings simply don't suit me. I know that I am not much of a girly girl. A ruffle or a light pink makes me feel like a silly oaf and I hate anything with a kitten heel so much it makes my teeth hurt. Oh ugh even their name, terrible. I have widdled my jean collection down to about 5 pairs that love and I re buy them as they wear out. If I really love a cut I may buy 2 pairs at the same time. This is a trick I picked up from an old friend of mine who is definitely not one for pinching pennies and I admit that at first I thought it was superfluous and wasteful. Although if you know you really love something and have the means, it's a great idea especially with brands constantly changing cuts. JBrand jeans are definitely my all time favorites. And the essential little black dress? I've got about 6 with different cuts, lengths and fabrics. I've almost gotten to the point where I absolutely adore everything hanging in my closet.

So Paris! In the Spring! What does one pack?? My necessary objects were:
Joie Tank Tops
These have really become staples for me. They are the best material, the best cut for me and they go with everything. I had a similar shirt to them for years which was a vintage find. When it finally went caput, Joie started making these tanks (thank you oh gods of fashion). The Joie tanks are almost identical to my old trusty top and they now make them in a plethora of different colors and patterns. Many brands have since re made it ie: Club Monaco, Theory, Old Navy, Banana Republic and so on but I find Joie to be far superior. They are not exactly inexpensive starting at $108 and then moving upward in price depending on the pattern and length but these circulate in my wardrobe so often that I really feel they are worth it.
I brought 4 pairs of jeans for the month. Black skinnies, Grey skinnies with a zipper leg, Distressed Blue Baggie Boyfriend jeans and my dark Blue Straight/Wide legs. This gives me enough color/wash and shape variation to cover any outfit option.

Shoes I brought 6 pairs. Ok this may be a bit over indulgent to some, but a shoe and a jacket can really spice anything up so I like to have options. Here's what I packed:

Classic Chuck Taylors in white which I wear with mostly skirts and dresses to make them feel more casual and fun. High Heeled Lace ups Boots that I bought at Century 21 last year. I wear them on the plane as they would take up a lot of space were I to pack them and they slip on and off like a breeze so they are perfect for the inevitable "debooting" at security. Steve Madden Men's Inspired Woven Flats. I love them because they are completely comfortable and have a air of casual but can look quite put together. Brown Wedge Buckle Sandals from 9 west. My friend John John has a pretty graphic phrase to describe these little numbers. Let's just say, the boys definitely take notice when I am wearing 'em. High Heeled Black Booties again 9 west. They are sexy but practical and pretty basic. Lastly Simple Black Ballet Flats. Urban Outfitters has a great selection of perfectly shaped ballet flats. I love the ones which the material is similar to grosgrain ribbon and they come in basic black and cream as well as a bunch of beautiful jewel tones.

Then there are my Jackets and boy do I love a jacket.
My Paris Flea Market find

This is the hardest decision for me when packing. This trip I opted for: A
Vintage Yves Saint Laurent Black Blazer, my Vintage Army Green Short Sleeved Coat with a really cool cut that I bought at the flea market here in Paris during my last trip, a Nicole Farhi Black Swing Coat that I thrifted at the Portobello Market in London and a lined and Hooded Black Leather Jacket for the chillier nights.

As for my skivies and undergarments well you just mind your manners! But nothing took up too much room. I was all set for a month in Paris with one medium sized suitcase and a carry on. I find this to be a great feat. The best part is I knew I had all my essentials.

Oh and did I mention I packed an extra duffle bag to bring home some Paris pick'ens?

Gros Bisous! ~taryn xx


Maria Ana said...

I completely agree that when we pack we see what we love! There is no doubt that not everything is suited for a trip, as I am a flat shoe girl, I have almost 100% of my choices "free" for a trip:) I love your tanktop, looks cute...

Gina said...

I am not sure why, but packing is so tough for me. It seems the things I love are not necessarily things I can wear to the place I'm going ie, not "practical". Any tips?

taryn smith said...


Packing IS kind of tough!
It can be especially so if the destination is far different than where you live.
I think in the end you need to really know your clothes. (maybe you need a wardrobe consultation?)
Another good way is to flip through some magazines/fashion blogs and look to people who you respect their fashion sense and try to pick apart the look.
Figure out what works about their outfit and then tailor it to you.
You may think "I love how the length of the shirt falls over her jean" or "I love that pattern".
You may find you have something similar.
I think inspiration is always good!

Happy Packing!
~taryn xx