PersonalTravel 29 September 2015
Packing light: how I’ve put together my suitcase for Bali

It goes without saying that I’m super excited to head to Bali for a three-week break. (No laptops included, woah! I’ve definitely taken this Blog Class at heart…). But even though I’m leaving work at home – with 4 flights 6 boats and countless tuk tuk rides in that time, it can be hard to figure out what on earth to pack.

My vision on packing is: bring as little as you can to be comfortable, and only bring things that make you feel good. I’m super specific about what I bring whenever I travel; I only want to pack things that have a specific purpose or that bring me joy. Do you get what I mean? Something like a small travel candle in my favourite scent or a super soft sweater, will bring a smile to my face. Some might find it superficial, but being able to look nice and feel a 100% comfortable, really gets me in a good mood.

As I’ve become a frequent traveler through blogging, I’ve settled on a technique for traveling with as little as possible. It’s all about creating as many outfits with as little items as possible. In this article I’m showing you how, because it’s always great to brush up your suitcase skills and simply because it’s fun to peek into others’ on-the-go wardrobes.

First step: check the local weather and your travel program.
Know what you’ll be doing during the days and evenings (a global idea is fine too), and what the weather is like. Does it cool off a lot during the evening? Should you prepare for rain? Key is to pack versatile pieces that go well together in terms of style and colour scheme. For me, the base is usually black, white and grey with one of two more outspoken shades (like mustard and forest green) for wearability mix and match potential. I might go as far as photographing every possible outfit, so I have something quick to reach for while I’m on location.

Breaking it down into categories:
Putting together my travel wardrobe starts with the tops, because those are the pieces you’ll want to switch up of the most. Cami tops and white, light blue or striped men’s inspired blouses can be styled in a dressy or more casual way and look great with anything from cut-off denim shorts to palazzo pants. I’ll bring a mix of black, white, grey and striped tank tops and t-shirts, a mustard yellow top, a black silk cami top and a white and blue striped one. I’ll pick one lightweight knit and one jacket to cover me up when it cools off or for during my flight.

I tend to want to bring a ton of shorts and skirts, but in reality end up only wearing two or three of those all the time. On this trip, I’m bringing three bottoms: cut-off Levi’s, black lace lined shorts and printed palazzo pants. They all go with flats (I’m not bringing any heels) and depending on the top and make-up could be party- or beach-proof.

Dresses and jumpsuits
This is where most women tend to overpack. It all comes down to selecting comfortable basics that will go with your shoes and accessories (you might bring a hat or some statement earrings), because you won’t be wearing much else with them.  To Bali, I’m bringing a printed maxi dress that could be worn a bit dressier, two basic t-shirt dresses in black and army green, an emerald green lace jumpsuit, a floral off-the-shoulder dress and a slouchy black tank dress.

I opt for comfort and take only flat shoes with me since heels can be quite heavy to carry around and do not always come in handy in case of spontaneous river crossings or other exotic adventures. I’ll bring espadrilles, slip-ons and one pair of fancier flats.

Simple: pick one small crossbody bag and one tote. Bring a small one for when you’re on the go and want your hands free. I’ll bring it when I’m walking around, when I go to dinner and when I’m getting active. The tote comes in when I’ll be shopping for gifts, when I’m in transit or when I want to bring a camera or a cover-up for later. I’d suggest going with basic shades like nude or black leather, but if that’s too boring for you, I’d pick a smaller bag in a brighter colour or print.

They won’t take much space, but this doesn’t mean grabbing it all! I only pack accessories I’ll wear on a daily base. Next to the one I’m wearing, I collect a few dainty necklaces, one pair of big earrings, two pairs of sunglasses – a basic black one and one tortoise printed.

Remember: less than less is more! Could you stick with these principles to create a capsule wardrobe? And do you have any special packing tips that limit the amount of stuff you bring? I’d love to share tips in the comments. 

While I’m on holiday, Chapter Friday is under the great care of the rest of the team. You’ll still find daily updates and I’ll be posting live from Bali on Instagram if you’re interested in staying updated. Talk soon! Love, Yara

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    I always pack too much- which is really strange if you know me because most my outfits are so simple! It’s nice to have a fool proof plan for packing. I always over guess how many pants I need when I’m actually living in jeans 99% of the time.

    Haha, I can relate! I usually pack a dark blue skinny and my tailored black 501. Easy does it!

    Zo herkenbaar dat je vaak teveel meeneemt en dan maar twee of drie dingen hiervan de hele vakantie door draagt. Fijn ook om te lezen hoe jij je kleding hebt uitgekozen! Veel plezier op het mooie Bali!

    Dankjewel Fleur, dat gaat zeker lukken! :)

    Oh I wish you the best time at Bali! Hope you will really enjoy it and try to leave work behind :)

    Can you pack me in your suitcase as well?

    In 3, 2, 1….

    Heel veel luchtige fladderige dingetjes haha! Bali is zo mooi :)

    gorgeous pictures!

    I really want to go to Bali, I have recently come across great things about it!! Packing is never fun, thanks for the great tips :) Sofie xx

    I’m so jealous! Have the most amazing time x

    Very useful post! And I agree with packing specific things that bring you joy while on holiday! I’m going on a short city-trip in October, so this is very helpful

    Good to hear Lara. Enjoy your city trip! :)

    Thanks, I certainly will

    Wat een mooie kledingstukken en fijne tips!

    Thank you for sharing! Your photographs are beautiful

    I love this article + accompanying photographs. Definitely helpful. Thank you :)

    Thank you Marjolein! Do you have a vacation coming up soon?

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