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8 Packing tips for your summer getaway

Robert Ballew is a wardrobe stylist best known for his ability to create, develop and reliably execute national and international print and runway projects. Robert's love for architecture plays a critical role in his approach to wardrob...

Travel chic

Not sure what to pack... so you pack everything, right? But with airline luggage fees, who can afford to pack like that these days?! Here's how to pack everything you need in one tidy and efficient travel package.

Planning your travel wardrobe

With summer upon us, the season of weekend getaways and summer vacations is officially here! For even the most well organized of souls, relaxing holidays are often precluded by a stressful evening of late night packing, suitcase wars and last minute wardrobe additions that make for a heavy payload. Avoid these and other packing no no's by adopting a few tried and true guidelines for travel wardrobe success and learn how to be "travel chic."

A simple game of Tic Tac Toe

Tick Tack Toe

With the exception of workout wear, most of today's clothing items can look great at least two times between washes. Use this to your advantage when packing for a trip and build multiple looks with fewer pieces.

To begin, start with a packing "staging area" such as your bed. Select eight clothing items, preferably in a neutral color palate -- blacks, whites, browns and grays -- that can be work together, including:

  • 1 blazer or jacket
  • 1 cardigan, 1 T-shirt, 1 cotton shirt
  • 1 cami or tank top
  • 1 pair of denim jeans or khakis, 1 pair of shorts, 1 skirt

Now, get ready to have some fun! Lineup each of the items above in three-by-three grid, just as you would when playing tic tac toe. Move the pieces around so that each "three in a row" combo equals a great outfit comprised of a top, bottom or optional third layer, such as a blazer or cardigan. Then, mentally note which combos will be best for day or evening, depending on weather and planned activities.

Get colorful with accessories!

Once you've determined which outfit combos you like best, make your vacation wardrobe pop by adding in color. Summer color trends and combinations are vast, so it's important to limit your accessories -- shoes, belts, bags, scarves and sunglasses -- to colors that work well together. Color hues reminiscent of the 70's that appear soft and comfortable, with intense sunset colors, such as yellow, violet, red and sky blue can be mixed and matched, and are be easily found at department stores and boutiques alike.

Summer Mod Colors

For packing ease, select three colors from the group and accessorize accordingly. Remember to rework your accessories into multiple outfits to avoid bringing too many.

Luggage packing tips

How to pack with the efficiency of a frequent flier

Contrary to popular belief, rolling your clothing does not conserve space -- this tactic is intended to reduce creasing and wrinkling. Since the true goal of any chic traveler should be to avoid checking luggage, efficiency is a must!

1 Fold shirts into squares and stack them (you'll be able to get five to six shirts in the same space required for three to four that are rolled)
2 Stuff socks into your shoes to conserve space and use felt shoe bags to prevent soiling garments with debris from shoe soles
3 Place fragile items in the center of your case to reduce the likelihood of damage
4 Always package perfume, toiletries and other liquids in a sealed plastic bag to prevent spills and leaks. If flying, remember to follow airport guidelines for traveling with carry-on liquids and keep them easily accessible as you make your way through security
5 Put dress shirts on top so that you may remove them promptly for hanging or ironing.

Outfit for travel

Comfort is critical for any travel outfit. Yoga pants with a shirt layered with a light button-down shirt or billowy summer scarf work well when paired with shoes that can easily slip off for airport security checks or long car rides. Add a hobo-style bag with lots of space to carry travel items, such an iPad, medications and smaller purse with your money and identification.

Related video: Packing for air travel

How to pack everything for your vacation into a carry on

Want to travel light? With a little research and a lot of editing you can lose your luggage dependency one overstuffed bag at a time.

More summer travel advice

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