Let’s discuss packing a suitcase. There is an art to packing for all of the occasions, climates and activities of a trip using the least amount of luggage. This is mostly for long distance traveling where you will have to handle your own luggage frequently.
For starters, I always think of the quote by fashion icon Karl Lagerfeld “color is for the rich”. If I can’t afford to be dragging around multiple suitcases on a trip because it will kill me, I only pack color as accent pieces that will coordinate with everything else in my suitcase.
Pick out your theme and stick to it. Black is usually easy. So is any other neutral (beige and brown, summertime whites, grey) Lay out your outfits and make sure that you don’t have any one piece that can only be worn with one other piece of clothing, re: the top you pack can be worn with the other skirts or pants that you pack. Match up footwear that will accommodate your trip’s activities and will also be interchangeable with all the outfits you’ve laid out. Don’t pack a pair of shoes for only one outfit unless you are packing an outfit for a special occasion that will only be worn once, along with its matching shoes. Not having extra shoes cuts down on weight as well as saving space.
Rolling clothes instead of folding them like you are putting them away in your dresser at home minimizes creasing and saves space in your bag. If you have to use a duffle bag (hello safari) or an enormous suitcase, I’d recommend using clothing storage bags to create organization within your bag. It can get difficult to find an article of clothing when you are packing your clothes into something that is deep and without dividers. The storage bags (giant sandwich bags for clothes!) can be filled with categories of clothing and then after squeezing the air out, you will have created more space in your bag as well as an easy way to find things.
Now for an opinion : If you are not going to be playing sports on your trip, do not trod around in white socks and tennis shoes. Especially if you are in Europe. You will easily be identified as an American if you do, which may not seem like a bad thing….but its not a good thing. There are plenty of very comfortable walking shoes you can wear that will accomplish the same thing but not look as if you are going to the gym. There, I said it, do as you wish !