I’m full of excitement as I write to you this morning since, after months of anticipation, the day has finally come for me and Mr Marcel to fly off to Martinique ! Caribbean, here we come ! Meanwhile, there’ll still be lots to see on the blog as I have prepared a whole week of articles for Clones N Clowns.
This week we’ll be discussing something I have given a lot of thought over the past few months… Minimalism. But I’m afraid I’m not able to guide you to the perfect Scandinavian house nor the ten piece wardrobe. I’ve never actually been very good at minimalism and have far to many things I love and enjoy in life to allow in so much spare “space”. However, I do have a thing for uncluttering from time to time and have learnt how good it can feel to eliminate the unnecessary once in a while. Travelling is a very good place to start in fact because after two years of visiting Paris on a near to monthly basis, I can guarantee it is a vertu to master the art of travelling light. Here are the rules I follow when packing my suitcase….
Rule n° 1 : YOU SHALL TAKE 3 PAIRS OF SHOES
Let’s start with the most difficult rule of all… The shoe rule. 3 pairs it is, whatever the situation or length of stay. One comfortable pair (trainers, Converse, running shoes…), one pair of flats and one pair of heels. These three will get you everywhere, no need for more, you’re likely to panic if you have less.
Rule n° 2 : YOU SHALL MIX & MATCH
Mix-and-matching is the ideal way to make sure you have everything you need without overloading. Never pack anything that can’t be worn twice EXCEPT for an evening dress. You should always have one of those you never know what event you might get invited to. But the general rule is “if it’s not going to be worn twice, it doesn’t go in.” Here’s an idea of what I take away for 7 days :
4 tee-shirts, 1 blouse/shirt, 3 sweatshirts (if winter time, 1 if not), 1 pair of jeans, 1 pair of trousers, 2 skirts / pairs of shorts, 1 evening dress (pick one that travels well…!), 1 pair of pyjamas, 2 swimsuits (if beach holiday), underwear.
Rule n° 3 : YOU SHALL TAKE 3 ACCESSORIES
Considering my mobile wardrobe was getting pretty light according to the above rules, I used to allow myself to take as many accessories as I wanted. MIS-TAKE. Unfortunately, accessories can get pretty heavy and before you know it you’re back to the old overweighted suitcase. Try taking just three, for example : A belt, a pair of sunnies and a chunky necklace. And of course you can always cheat by stacking bracelets and rings before you leave home 😉
Rule n°4 : YOU SHALL PACK A (VERY) BASIC MAKE-UP BAG
Make-up palettes are ideal and particularly trendy these days, which is handy when it comes to packing light. As well as my Fade to Black by Smashbox I simply pack a tinted and hydrating CC cream, see-through powder to make sure my makeup lasts all day, blusher, mascara, a Chubby Stick by Clinique for hydrated yet colourful lips, night cream, day cream, all-over-your-face makeup remover and a sample of cleanser. Oh and a tooth brush unless I forget it and end up buying one where I’m staying. I swear I could open an international toothbrush museum. Samples are amazing for packing, they’re the perfect size for a couple of days away and of course are as light as a feather. Plus I know you keep loads in a box somewhere… Go on, get rid of that clutter !
I have noticed that even when you master these 4 rules, the miscellaneous category is the most difficult to tame. I don’t know about you, but I used to end up packing a home and half, “just in case”… But the potential scenarios I had imagined simply never occurred and I realised I was carrying a whole load of “emergency” items I never used. I have since learnt to leave the “maybes” behind and to deal with “emergencies” as and when (and wherever) they happen. As for leisure, I always take a book and an iPad and have tried to stop taking my computer everywhere I go. I have to have a notebook, that’s just me, no compromise possible I’m afraid. I also have a rule that goes CCPP : Credit card, charger, phone, passport. Some of you you might want to add an extra P too, for pill 😉 I sware you can survive anything with the CCPP(P) rule, try it !
So there you have it, my travelling bible… There’s only one thing left to say… Don’t forget your tickets !
I hope this post helps you next time your packing, pin it or keep it in your favourite folder for next time you need someone to say “nooooo you don’t need that” ! I’ll be here ! I
hope you enjoy the rest of my minimalist week too… See you tomorrow !
And off I go !