Yes, my friends, it is true. In two weeks time, I’m due to embark on my first proper holiday since I got routinely shit-faced and sunburnt in Alicante at 17. Whilst I’m hoping to be considerably less ‘Brits Abroad’ this time around, I’m still looking forward to the sun and the wine and embarrassing my brother but in a slightly more mature environment (what’s a holiday if not for a little sibling drink-off?).
Along with the excitement of spending more than three days outside of the UK, came the inevitable oh my god I’m going to have to remortgage the house I don’t own to come up with two weeks worth of outfits. Do I need heels? No, nobody needs heels on holiday. But what if I do? Okay I’ll just pack one pair of semi-heels. But then what about jackets? Does a holiday appropriate jacket exist? Will I need one? Am I overthinking this? Have I spent too long contemplating my holiday wardrobe and missed my outbound flight?
With that being said, I’ve surprised myself with how organised I’ve been when it comes to picking up new items. And check this: I even made a little spreadsheet for myself so I can visually pair multiple items together, creating what I believe Gok Wan would call ‘a capsule wardrobe’. Well, it’s less of a spreadsheet and more of a 4x4 graph on Word that I keep hopelessly resizing to try and fit on one page, but you know, it’s still something.
It might sound a little pedantic, but if you’re someone - like moi - who enjoys clothes and how confident certain outfits can make you feel, then I would definitely recommend doing the same. When you’re ordering clothes online it can be difficult to keep track of not only what you’ve bought, but also how those different pieces can work together for a number of different outfits. Being able to see the items makes it much easier to visualise what would work and for when, and also prevents you from overspending on another white Broderie blouse when you already have three packed away in your case. It’s efficiency for the overindulgent.
Anywho, back to the good stuff: what I’ve been buying thus far. We still have two weeks to go so there is ~ plenty ~ of time for my little collection to expand, but I’ve tried to pick up pieces fairly early so I can get the lengths shortened if I need to (spoiler: at 4’11, I always need to) and return any shorts which I think I’m going to fit into but inevitably do not. Considering my diet as of late has has consisted of bread, cheese, and then some pasta for good measure, I’m not sure what has made me be so ambitious with my sizing. Maybe the optimistic in me is finally breaking through (doubt it though).
WARNING: A few of these things are in need of a bloody good iron. Truth is, however, I pulled them straight out of my case and they went straight back in afterwards, and I'd rather spend 15 minutes browsing through the ASOS sale than pulling the board out of the cupboard. Apologies in advance.
First off, let’s start with the case. Given that my last foray into the great summer holiday happened all of 7 years ago, I was in dire need of a roomy case that could survive not only the flights in and out of Italy, but the train journeys we would be making around the various cities. American Tourister were kind enough to send me this blue beauty, which has plenty of compartments and storage space for my various items. I have a smaller American Tourister that I’ve been taking on city breaks for years, so I knew I was in good hands with this brand. The outside shell is quite tough and durable, there’s a lock built in, and, despite this being pretty commonplace these days, the four wheels make it so easy to move about. FYI, Keiran is boiling over with envy that I’ll be swishing this beast around and he’s borrowing from his Ma. Sorry *shrug emoji*.
Case: American Tourister*
What holiday is complete without an overpriced treat? To celebrate our voyage overseas, and - if I’m really being honest - to bag something which would look cute in all of my show-off holiday pics, I decided to treat myself to something a little more special than a last minute ASOS special. I’ve been considering a Chloé purchase for some time now but unfortunately I’ve also decided to be somewhat responsible and prop up my savings for my very distant future mortgage (bleugh), so I couldn’t go crazy on the bag front and pick up the Nile bag in a few different colours, you know, just because. Instead, I opted for something wholly impractical for a hot holiday - some super fluffy sliders. I’d say the ‘thing’ I’m easily weak for is anything with feathers or fluff, so as soon as I saw these babies for 50% off on the FarFetch website, I knew I had to have them. Sure, I’m going to get sweaty feet, and sure, I’m going to be so paranoid about them getting dirty that I’ll probably only wear them indoors, but who cares? I love.
Sliders pictured: Chloé
The hair accessory trend is here to stay, and I am INVESTED. I know, it's so unlike me to go OTT and order the same thing in every available colour, right? In my defense, however, these silky hair ties from Free People are the lazy dressers dream. Most of the time I knock about in blue jeans and a plain tee, but if I pop one of these on, I not only conceal my three-day-old greasy bun, but I also look like I've made some kind of meaningful effort to make myself look presentable. I've had the khaki and black colour for a couple of months now, but as bandanas and scarves and scrunchies have exploded in popularity, FP have added a few more colours to the site. Be quick though - they've been selling out at the speed of light, and one of the neutral shades has an expected delivery date of July.
Hair ties pictured: Free People
Trying to find the right kind of bag for a holiday is trés difficult. My instinct is to go for a tote bag (which I'll undoubtedly be taking with me, anyway), owing to the fact that they're pretty compact and portable and you can fit a shit load of stuff of inside if you need to. The fashionista inside me, however, doesn't always want to be quite so functional, and so for simple strolls or evening dinners, I've been on the hunt for something smaller, cuter, but with enough space for my purse and a camera lens. This Zara lovely seemed to fit the bill well, and, actually, if you can keep this between you and I, I'm kind of grateful that it's not some kind of straw or wicker basket. I love them, but I wanted something a little different.
Bag pictured: Zara
Any woman with chunky thighs knows that warm weather can be the absolute devil. Yes, we want a golden glow, and yes, the sunshine improves our mood, but do you know what it doesn’t do? Make for comfortable walking when both friction and heat come into play. Last year when we went to Rome I managed to bag a pair of denim mom shorts that were actually fairly comfortable, but this year I really wanted to stay away from stiffer fabrics and keep everything super loose and flowy. I spotted someone wearing Bermuda shorts a couple of months ago and instantly knew these were the winners for me. With a longer length, fitted waist and lighter fabric, they ticked every one of my boxes for cute but comfortable summer wear.
Shorts pictured: Weekday
Slip dresses are something I never thought I’d wear. Though the magpie in me is drawn to the silky fabrics and the inherent bougie-ness of wearing something so sexy, I’d only ever seen them worn on your typical tall size 8, so being 4’11 with a spare tyre to boot, I thought they’d cling in the most uncomfortable places. You know when you see a certain item, though, and you just have to have it? That’s how I felt about these dresses. There was something about them that felt so pretty yet so easy, so I bit the bullet and hit ‘order’, sending off a prayer to the sartorial gods that maybe this once, something will look as good as I’d hoped. I had to get the length taken up a little (no surprise there), but other than that I’m besotted with these little dresses. The cut simply slides over my curves and edges, and I can’t wait to pair these with simple mules for a wine-fuelled dinner or pop a linen shirt over the top for girl-in-the-city chic. Moral of the story: even if you think it won’t suit you, TRY ANYWAY. You never know (and you might find a gem).
Dress pictured: Sisterhood
For someone who goes on zero beach holidays a year, I have a surprising amount of swimwear. And I really wanted to buy some more. However, I am trying to be a bit more responsible with how many new items I churn in and out of my wardrobe, so I decided to invest in a more expensive bikini which I could hold on to for years and years to come. With a little help on Instagram Stories I finally decided on this Reformation two piece, and Keiran came through like my knight in shining armour to buy it for me as a little pre-holiday present. The fit and colour are absolutely spot on for what I was looking for, and I'm 10/10 excited to wear this on the famous Positano beach.
Bikini top pictured: Reformation
Bikini bottoms pictured: Reformation
The simple things don’t get enough love. Who wants to see a plain white tee, right? Well, me, as it so happens. 99% of what I wear day-to-day starts with a plain tee, and although the hoarder in me would have ~ loved ~ to have taken a new outfit for every day (plus some changes for the evening, obv), the fact that we're travelling around by train means that I need to keep my luggage as light as I possibly can. That means interchangeable items, and a lot of plain tees. Along with my usual white and black options, I've also been picking up lots of nudes and neutrals. I'm super into my greens and khakis at the moment so I've nabbed a couple of those shades from H&M, and Zara has proved to be a good source of simple tops like the ribbed number pictured here. Okay, the lighter colours won't be great for my inevitable sweat patches, but at least they'll make me look a little more bronze goddess than sunkissed lobster. Pray for me.
Tee pictured: Zara
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