I’ll be flying to the Netherlands over the weekend to see my darling Papa who turns 85 later this year. I’ll be on my own while Greg and Sam hold the fort back at the Cox Castle in Seattle. Including travel it’s an eight-day trip, and this is what I’ve packed.
A few things upfront before I delve into the details:
- I’ll be visiting family and friends, and hanging out with Papa in Velp and Arnhem for the week. I’ve been visiting these quaint Dutch towns all my life, and thoroughly enjoy it. I can keep my outfits casual, although I’ll have a few smart casual engagements too.
- The weather will hover around freezing. Rain, snow, sleet and frost is common at this time of year. I do a lot of walking when I visit my Dad, which means wrapping up to brave the elements, and wearing the right footwear.
- I’ll be popping a larger suitcase in the hold as I like to have more dressing options than a carry-on can accommodate. I’ll also be bringing presents for family and friends, which requires extra space.
- I will NOT be doing laundry on the trip.
- The capsule includes the outfit that I will wear on both ten-hour flights. It’s the same outfit, and I’ve included it at the end of this post.
I’ve kept my dressing formula the same for each day: cropped flared jeans + pullover + booties + accessories + outerwear.
The palette combines neutrals and brights: ink blue, cream, chartreuse, citron, Dutch orange, and a smattering of black. Most of the darks are ink blue, although they look black in the photos. For me, the LIGHT neutral accents are essential because they brighten a dark outfit and complement my pale complexion. A bright bag adds life to a dark puffer and jeans, and screams ‘cheerful outfit’, when I pair it with the chartreuse coat. The variety of colour, texture, footwear silhouette, pattern and accessories across the capsule keeps the formula interesting. The current silhouettes of the jeans, pullovers and footwear keep the outfits on trend.
Here’s more detail on each part of the capsule. Note that basics like undies, camisoles, thermals. sleepwear, loungewear and socks are not represented here. For the rest, these are the exact wardrobe items that I packed and will be wearing en route. I can combine any of the tops with any pair of jeans and either pair of shoes. The coats, bag, hats, scarves and gloves work with all outfits.
I build a travel capsule around my shoes because it’s extremely important to have happy feet when you’re walking around a city and using public transport. Once I knew which shoes I was taking, I planned the rest of the outfits to work with them.
Two pairs of shoes are sufficient for the eight-day trip. I’ll wear my casual fleece-lined Converse sneakers most of the time because they’re great in cold, wet and frosty weather. I’ll wear my dressier cream boots for the smart casual engagements. Both pairs are very comfortable, tried and tested, and go the distance.
I’ll be wearing dark wash flared cropped and straight jeans each day. I’ll wear them with Heattech socks and high-shaft footwear for comfort and insulation. Paired with the footwear, my outfits feel sufficiently fashionable.
I’ve packed five pullovers, although I’ll only be wearing the solid black pullover for the flights, so it’s essentially four tops. I’ll wear some of them twice.
I chose pullovers because I’ll be too cold in blouses and shirts. I chose turtlenecks for extra warmth, which means no pearl necklaces on this trip. I’ll also be sporting my pullovers untucked, which means no belts either. I selected five turtlenecks that differ in colour and texture so that I don’t get bored with my look. Ink blue, black, orange and citron across cables, dot stitches, and colour blocking for the win.
It would have been easier to bring one coat for the trip, but that wasn’t wise because I’ll need my ink puffer for very cold days, and the lighter wool coat for less cold days. I’ll also need a dressier coat from time to time when the puffer won’t do. Plus, my Papa loves a dressier, ladylike look, which means that I had to bring my new chartreuse coat!
I’ve kept accessories minimally maximal this time round. I’ll wear my green specs, gold watch, pearl bracelet, pearl ring and an orange bag each day. Then I’ll choose between two woolly scarves and two cream hats for insulation when I’m out and about, and add my gloves when I need them. I chose patterned scarves for outfit interest, and black and chartreuse options so that I can create low and high colour contrasts with either coat.
I will also be travelling with an umbrella and a cashmere wrap. I’ve left the wrap out of the capsule because it will not be styled into these outfits. It’s loungewear and a cosy blanket for plane travel only. I’ll keep the umbrella in my bag just like I do in Seattle.
This is the exact outfit that I will wear on the flight out to Amsterdam on Sunday, and the flight back to Seattle next week. A turtleneck and cosy socks are insulating on long flights. The coat is in case I get really cold on the plane, and for when I travel to my Dad from the airport with arranged transport.
You can visit this collection page to see my travel capsule in its entirety. The picture below shows the items just before I started packing. I’m ready to go now that my little in-house fashion stylist gave his pose of approval.