New York: what I really packed

Top: Free People (I have previously photographed this shirt within a paid project for the brand but this post is in no way sponsored). Jeans: Gap (3 years old, I have worked with Gap before). Suitcase: Away (press gift but they really are the best, and I’ve tested a lot over the years for work). Photographs: Christopher O’Donnell.

I actually love packing. It’s the organisational freak in me. I managed to really pack a capsule wardrobe this trip and wanted to share what I packed.

New York is often quite a tricky destination as it can be unpredictable, much like the UK. It showed rain on our weather app which is always a bit frustrating, as well as difficult to plan for! I have a few tips I follow when packing, which are as follows:

Always check the weather before you go. But pack an umbrella anyway.

Stick to a colour palette, that way everything matches. This time I went for denim, beige, black, white and tan.

Wear your bulkiest items on the plane (but only if they’re comfy!), take extra layers, be it a scarf or a hoodie as it can go from icy to sweaty in the space of a few minutes! I also like to wear elasticated waist joggers which are also chic enough to wear out (these from Wyse London are my favourites, I’ve worn to death over the last year).

Blazers are a great all-scenario jacket – they work with jeans and trousers but equally thrown over your shoulder for the evening.

Take an eco bag (mine is from Mutha.Hood) in your hand luggage: use it to carry your plane essentials for more legroom and for shopping when you get there.

Guess who used to work in Wallis for her Saturday job…! I saved these hangers from an untimely death.

Dress: Topshop (old). Bag: Charles & Keith (old). Sunglasses: £12.99, Mango. Trainers: Vans (sold out).

Try and take your own coffee cup and water bottle.

I am generally a folder, not a roller. I know rollers say it’s the best technique but frankly, I have done both and not found either to be significantly better. I do tend to roll items like pyjamas and underwear at the end and squeeze it into the empty gaps and pockets in the case.

If you can, pack shoes in dustbags, it makes for easier packing in general and means those dusty/slimy soles won’t ruin your new blouse.

Muji clear bags for liquids are a lifesaver, I never have to worry about the right sized bags for security (and no more single use plastic).

Invest in a washbag with a waterproof lining, you won’t regret it. I’ve had this Alphabet Bags one for years and love it.

Blazer: £150 (only available in navy), And Other Stories. Shirt: £12.99 in the sale, Gap. Jeans: H&M (old but buy similar from Topshop here). Bag: $165, Everlane (part of a sponsored shoot I did with them last month, but I still use and love the bag). Trainers: £33.99, Converse.

Leather jacket: £299, Jigsaw (mine is about 4 years old but it’s a style Jigsaw always do). Dress: £88, Free People (press gift). Bag: Fonott. Sandals: £19.99, Mango.

We’ve edited an IGTV talking through all my tips and clothes that I packed for the trip, and you can view it below or on my IGTV channel.

And lastly…always pack by a ‘master list’ in terms of remembering all of those extra little things: plug adapters, serum, hairbrush etc. I tend to have one on my phone, but also use a notepad. And in case anyone is interested, I created a downloadable list which I follow, which you can use as well! The great thing about this list is that I use it for both summer and winter breaks – it’s quite extensive so most of you won’t need to pack everything here (i.e braces!) but I always think it’s better to be thorough and you can skip some tags rather than miss anything!

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15 Comments

  1. thank you! going to san fran on friday for a week and this is handy! have you been? would love to hear your tips if so 🙂

  2. I went through security once with that MUJI bag and the guy was a complete a-hole about it. Has anyone else experienced this or was it just a one off? I’ve avoided using it ever since!

    1. So I have always used it and never had any issues but have wondered, especially in airports like Stansted where they like to make you pay for their own ‘special’ size plastic bags (which annoyingly, only come in sets of 3) x

  3. This is music to my ears! I’m a list maker when it comes to travelling, planning outfits, sticking to a colour palette, and my personal favourite bit – packing cubes, especially if you’re moving about a lot and only spending a night or two in one place before moving on. Using the packing cubes, I find rolling best, but only because it’s easier to grab the item you’re after. I use a similar zipped bag for my liquids, and never had any trouble even at Stansted.
    I’ve got two trips coming up next month, so list making has started!

  4. Oh yes have heard great things about packing cubes, but worry about another thing to add to ‘storage’ (which we have none of currently!) – my suitcases are already filled with my winter clothes so no room in those! xx

  5. Thanks for the list, it’s handy to see what other people do. I can’t see a reference to where the hat is from, do you remember?

    Cheers.

  6. Really helpful suggestions. I love travelling and yet to master complete success with packing but getting there slowly!

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