After seeing the sea of suitcases carpeting Heathrow airport recently, many of us have resolved to never travel with hold luggage again, but can you really shine as your best holiday self with just a carry on?
The answer is a resounding YES, YES, YES!
The best vacation wardrobes are stress free, simple and fun. Dragging giant suitcases of luggage around whiffs of gauche early 2000s materialism and in 2022, travelling light is chic, more eco friendly and just… easier.
If the idea of navigating all of the holiday day-to-night transitions with just a few key items gives you the fear, below is a handy guide to point you in the right direction.
Image credit: Demonstrating wearable Shirt Company style and commitment to sustainability, the Salma is a summer 2022 winner
The perfect day to night dress has a relaxed silhouette which is easy to dress up with a little sparkle and accessories, or dress down by perching a sun hat on your head and making for the seaside.
Our non-crease Salma dress is easy-fit which means it will pop over your head as a beach cover up with minimal uncomfortable wriggling and still look phenomenal after a giant bowl of pasta. Holiday bliss!
Image Credit: This Sophia Marino denim jacket makes an often mass produced garment slow, sustainable and fun!
A lightweight jacket will ward off the breeze at a scenic view point or take the edge off an evening chill.
Personally, I like to keep things casual with a little denim number, but a blazer might be better if your vacation vibe is more silver service than street food.
Black Swimming Costume
A high quality swimming costume which you adore can double up as a sleek evening bodysuit and be layered over a fitted t-shirt or worn with a shirt over the top for more coverage.
We recommend going with a black one so you can pair it with a colourful sarong or scarf.
Soft White Shirt
Image credit: The Shirt Company's Carrie linen shirt goes with everything and will be a vacation staple for years to come.
If you’re reading this blog, we probably don’t need to extol the virtues of a soft white shirt to you.
Yes, yes, we know linen creases, but that’s kind of the point. Linen cries out holiday wear and it’s probably the only fabric which looks better with a slight crinkles. Give it a bit of a spritz with water and hang it on a hanger to dry in the sunshine on the balcony for an instant refresh.
Wide Leg Trousers
Pyjama trousers were the OG beachwear for women in the 1920s where a capsule wardrobe of separates was the height of revolutionary holiday fashion.
Fast forward a whole century and the wide leg trouser is still cool, breezy, sophisticated and comfortable. What more do you want!
Block Colour T-shirt
Image credit: The ultra-eco Pangaia offers crisp cuts which don't cost the earth and we love their bold colours and cap sleeves.
Picking a colour and running with it —or at least choosing whether to go with a warm or cool palette — is a good way to ensure all the elements of your holiday capsule wardrobe slot seamlessly together.
I love matching a bold block colour to my favourite print and using it as a foundation. Clashing colours and patterns also work well if you’re feeling brave!
A practical sandal is the foundation for any summer holiday wardrobe. I might be biassed because I lived in Berlin for many years, but you can’t go wrong with a Birkenstock.
Indestructible, perfect for the beach or a gentle hike and smart enough for a restaurant. I’m in love with these platform offerings with just enough height to elevate a look, but still sensible enough to explore a hilly seaside town.
Most of us only ever wear a sun hat on holiday and plopping one on our heads is basically a signal to relax. Plus, you won’t be squinting in all your holiday snaps.
Image credit: Bird sunglasses are eco-conscious and offer polarised lenses with 100% UVA/UVB protection
I’m not going to insult your intelligence and explain why sunglasses are a vacation staple, but they simply had to go on the list!
Image credit: Lucy and Yak's daisy print skirt is made of conscious fabrics and ensures supplier are paid fairly
A midi skirt is such a versatile holiday staple and we love the chilled out daisy print of this Lucy and Yak number which is both timeless in its appeal and very ‘now’ for summer 2022.
Big 'Goes with Everything' Bag
Image credit: This ultra light weight Busby & Fox bag is bright enough to go with everything while making a statement
When packing a holiday capsule wardrobe, you ideally want to use the same bag on the plane and the playa. A big patterned tote bag will transition with you through all stages of your holiday — from the stressful to the sublime — and look good doing it.
If you’re going to be doing lots of walking, you might want to pop some sneakers into your bag to supplement your sandals. Depending on your style, these can either give your outfit some urban edge or have a more classic preppy tennis shoe kind of feel.
Small, light and with the ability to transform your entire look — jewellery is a great way to feel fancy while on the hoof. If you have to pare it down to just one item, choose some gold or silver hoop earrings.
We all know a good pair of jeans is the cornerstone of every wardrobe. As they tend to pack a little bit bulky, I have added them as an optional extra, but if the climate is right, jean shorts are a more compact choice.
As mentioned above, if you want to sample some of the city's smarter venues, a blazer will offset those sandals and allow you to look suitably fancy, especially with some of your favourite dangly earrings.
A sarong is an eternal holiday capsule classic. If you release your inner scout, you can knot this garment into all manner of clever things and — if you don’t — it makes a great scarf.
A tiny bag to put your key card and phone in for the evening is a handy optional extra if you don't have enough pockets.