In both of my July trips back to Minnesota this summer I changed up my suitcase packing routine. Usually I group like items together and pack them using Eagle Creek packing envelopes. I mean, really, for years that’s what I’ve preached. Pants go in one envelope, tops in another, sports clothes in another–you get the idea. In fact, if you’ve been reading Tips & Teasers for the last few years, you could probably recite all the reasons why I think that’s such a good idea.
But now I’m trying something new. On my visit to be with my best friend from high school who lives in Duluth, Minnesota, I planned my outfits like I usually do using my Travel Wardrobe Workout Chart but this time when it came to packing the suitcase I lined it with my bottoms (2 pairs of jeans, a slim knit pant) and rolled all the top pieces and layered them over the pants.
As I was packing, I knew Patricia had an iron if I needed to press anything so I didn’t fuss over the fabrics. I rolled all the fabrics the same–silk, cotton, linen, and wool. But the secret of not having to iron anything once I got there was probably in what you can’t see in this photo.
What you can’t see: Most of the prints and solids you see rolled in this suitcase have partners to them. For instance, the oatmeal colored cashmere sweater that is at the bottom of the picture has a sleeveless T-shirt and a linen scarf that I planned to wear with the sweater. So I laid the sweater on my bed, put the t-shirt down the center of it, then layered the scarf, folded the ends in and rolled all three pieces together before putting them in the suitcase.
The black and white spotted silk top (upper right) has a lightweight black cardigan that is rolled with it because I wanted to wear those two pieces together. The black and white silk plaid tunic is pretty sheer and it requires a specific under piece. It’s rolled inside the tunic.
The day I wore the plaid tunic I just pulled out the roll, had everything I needed, and got dressed in less than 30 seconds. That was true of every single one of these rolled/paired garments. I think the extra cushion of rolling the pieces together with their mates made them less likely to wrinkle.
Patricia had warned me about their 45 degree temperatures which were hopefully going to rise during the week I was there. They did so I ended up wearing the cashmere sweater as well as the short sleeved yellow and white striped tee (which, by the way has a wide neck so I layer a specific white cotton tee underneath it).
This packing method felt so efficient when I got to my friend’s house. Had I used the Eagle Creek envelopes I’d have been pulling a top from one, a tee shirt from another, and a pant from another. With this method, I just slipped into my pants for the day, looked at my rolled choices, pulled one out and got dressed in a flash. I may start suggesting this method to my clients.
Will I go back to my old method? Maybe, but for now, this one is just too fun to abandon! Looking into the suitcase like that and pulling out what I wanted to wear is like looking through the glass case at an ice cream store and saying, “I’ll have that one, please.”