notes for july: travel special

  • The drawback to packing as little items of clothing as possible while travelling in summer is how much hand-washing you have to do on the go. 
  • I have a whole new appreciation for the pretty/practical top for travelling. The lace tank my mum bought me is comfortable enough for a day of sweaty sightseeing, but pretty enough for nice dinners and drinks. It's easy to wash, dries quickly, doesn't wrinkle, and looks fresh no matter what. 
  • Cobblestone pavements = need for Chucks. How do people walk around in anything else?
  • Uniform: loose shirt + shorts/jeans + chucks/flat sandals. Pretty much same as back home. Travelling distills the essence of how I like to a dress to its bare minimum. Was I bored? No. But I missed my stuff.  
  • Shopping on holiday is greatly affected by a sense of sentimentality about the place. I didn't need a new pair of sneakers, but I bought a pair in Berlin because it reminds me of my student days and I miss parts of that person. 
  • To minimise shopping mistakes on holiday, wear something you love to go shopping. The "but I can't buy this at home" factor nearly got me a few times, but the sight of one of my favourite tops on the changing room hook reminded me that I definitely don't love it as much as I love that top.
  • This is not to say I didn't buy things. I was on holiday; the will is weakened by the sense that holiday = hall pass on thrift. Things happen. Like a navy Filippa K shirt-dress, a COS chunky knit layered tank and the aforementioned pair of sneakers (below). More on them another time.


The Waves said…
I love the idea of wearing your most-loved clothes when shopping. I've done that a few times just by accident, and it's an awesome feeling when in the fitting room you change back to your favourite clothes and realize that you love them so much better than anything you just tried on. I love your new sneakers, btw.
Ammu said…
I love your holiday outfits. So practical and so you at the same time.
The point about wearing something you love to go shopping is so smart. I don't consciously do it, but these days so much of my closet is filled with things I love that it sort of happens naturally. And it definitely stops me from impulse shopping. The only things I tend to buy when I am travelling are either food items (am a sucker for interesting candy), books, or a great piece of jewelry. And sometimes I buy nothing.
Jade said…
i admire your restraint--with packing, shopping, and dressing (even while not on holiday)! i think you have a cool, pared down aesthetic that seems to permeate other aspects of your life besides your wardrobe. maybe a philosophy on filling needs first and wants only sometimes? balance. nice kicks too!
lapindelune said…
Ah, yes. The handwashing. This has become a weekly bind for me now, and I am still not quite getting the hang of it.

I love how you wear the apc leaf blouse. Mine so rarely seems to work for me, unless paired with a mini or shorts (we haven't had much chance to wear either here since the British 'monsoon' began in early June), and for some reason the hem sits weirdly for me if I pair it with jeans or trousers. A shame really, because it is so light and airy, so quietly pretty.

I really ought to make more of an effort to occasionally leave the UK!
the shoes are cute. vacation purchases don't really count ;P
Anonymous said…
I like the new sneakers. I've been on the 6 items challenge and have been forced to discover the pleasures of hand-washing myself.
petrichore said…
Cute sneakers! Totally worth it!
Aïssa said…
I love how your travelling outfits don't scream "tourist ahead!". Your looks are comfortable but don't sacrifice your own style for the sake of being away from home.

I've actually started about a year to hand wash lots of my clothes. It's a kind of a routine now on week-ends, choosing a "good" soap and just take care of my favorite clothes. Of course, when I don't feel like it, there's always the washing machine! Haha!
lin said…
The Waves: I discovered it by accident too, and it was actually a relief because I made up my mind so easily after that.

Happily, I've already scuffed them sneakers slightly - I felt so conscious by how new and shiny they look, haha.

Ammu: Thanks!

I was very keen on books during my trip, but got lazy at the thought of lugging them back. A small pang of regret now.

Jade: Thanks. I think all my needs are definitely fulfilled except for the occasional formal occasions or serious corporate events that throw me for a loop. Controlling wants is a whole different animal but I think of it as a work in progress and try not to be obsessive about it.

lapindelune: I really dislike handwashing and I suspect I waste quite a lot of water in the process. Still very relieved to come home to a trusty machine that cleans my clothes without ruining them.

I love that blouse! It travels really well too - doesn't rumple too much and looks fine after hanging it out for a day. I've worn it on my last 3 holidays, with jeans and shorts alike...maybe you can shorten the hem somewhat? It's one of my best buys ever.

The UK itself has so much to explore - I'm always ashamed that I've only ever been to London.

Pret a Porter P: That's the spirit :)

Terri: I guess I had a little taste of how that feels on this trip!

Petrichore: Thanks! They're much more comfortable than my one other pair of high tops.

Aissa: I used to wear things on holidays I wouldn't wear back home. But one good 6-week trip years ago cured me of that when I realised how lame I looked.

I've given up on handwashing and dry cleaning when I'm at home, and pretty happy with my machine and how it's taken good care of my clothes, even the delicate silk stuff. The only thing I still regularly handwash is an old merino wool cardigan from APC. And I hate washing it - weighs a tonne when wet and a pain to dry!
Kiki said…
I've just discovered your blog and I love it. Packing light is a quality I'm always jealous of, I keep packing 15 t-shirts for 6 weeks trip. I have a question about shirts. Where do you usually buy them? I can't see any simple minimalistic shirts in regular shops and they don't have separate ones for women's shirt as they do for men's.
lapetitelavande said…
I agree with your sentiments. I found that I only bring my favorite items when I travel, which definitely curbs the the itch to shop. :) I'm glad that you enjoyed your trip and still found some great items to take home with you!
lin said…
kiki: thanks! i'm obsessed with packing light and it has backfired sometimes because i do run out of things to wear if i don't get my washing done quickly enough.

i don't buy my shirts from any one place - when you have a limited budget like mine you kind of just have to look everywhere and be open to checking out the best option at the best price. the one i am wearing above is from Uniqlo - it's amazing because it's like a scaled down version of a men's shirt without the annoying darts and seams - i don't like shirts that have a 'waist'. the quality and workmanship is also great for the price. But it's linen so i don't know if that suits your needs. Sometimes their's women's shirts are cut too small for me, but their men's shirts also fit me fine if i take a small size. So that's my fave budget option for a basic shirt.

another place is massimo dutti - they make a great variety every season in a number of cuts and fabrics and there's usually one that suits me needs, and i find the price and quality acceptable. i like their attention to detail - a contrast striped lining there, a polka dot trim there, french seams.

i have a couple of men's shirts from APC that i bought during their sales - i i fit their small perfectly. in fact their men's shirts fit me better than the women's shirts because they're cleaner in design and they have the boyish fit that i like. it's not hard to find them on sales so i take full advantage of that.

i'd say i've had the most luck with these three places.
lin said…
lapetitelavande: i'm just glad that i still love the things a week later, and i'm not filled with buyer's guilt.
Eileen said…
Lin, you travel in style! Love the outfits you wore and it looks comfortable and so you. The second outfit is my fav although we don't have much opportunity to wear something like this in Singapore.
I can easily relate to your wardrobe and sense of style. I'd like to think I'm a minimalist only because I detest clutter even more. I love your pragmatic approach to everything that you do.
Anonymous said…
i love what you wrote about meeting new people. i had a similar experience on my last trip, where people featured prominently in the "good memories" column, unexpectedly.
yes, satisfaction with super light-weight packing/luggage definitely gets paid for with a lot of sink time.
lin said…
Eileen: Thanks! Yes I wish I got to wear that jacket more - this is why I aim to plan my holidays around spring or fall because we get to switch it up a bit when it comes to how we dress.

chocolate, cookies & candies: I'm the same, I'm only a minimalist in attitude, not so much in the Calvin Klein sense.

editor: The people I meet can really make or break certain things; I was willing to overlook a rather grim hotel because the receptionist was incredibly helpful and lovely to talk to.
miss sophie said…
echoing everyone else's comments here - love your holiday looks! though i think i did alright by the capsule wardrobe this past year in SH, it's inevitable that i realized that i wasn't minimalist enough at all. :P
lin said…
miss sophie: would love to hear more about your thoughts on what that was like - do share in a post!
lin said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said…
LIke everyone else I love your holiday looks! I'm also really intrigued by the thought of wearing your favorite clothes when out shopping- I'd never thought of it, but it seems like a great idea. In order to maintain some restraint while traveling, I usually restrict myself to only buying scarves and jewelry. Not only to save space, but also because they're two areas in which I'm unfalteringly picky so I know I won't be tempted to buy everything in sight.
lin said…
humannracing: Thanks! I usually shop more recklessly on holiday, haha. I'm just too tempted by things I know I can't get back home.

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