I can't wait to share our European Adventure!
In the meantime, I thought I would share a post about what I packed to bring with me as far as clothing and shoes.
Since we were going to four different countries in 11 days, I knew we would be doing a lot of traveling from place to place only staying two or three nights in a hotel at a time. This really encouraged me to try and pack lighter using more of a capsule wardrobe.
I ended up bringing one roller suitcase with four wheels that I checked for each flight and a backpack with essentials that I carried on the plane. Our flight to London was six hours and our flight home from Switzerland was nine and a half hours. So for those two long flights it was great to have my backpack stocked with essentials like a scarf that could double as a blanket, my little neck pillow, a snack, a book to read, an extra change of clothes and a small bag of toiletries to freshen up if necessary.
My first concern for the trip was finding comfortable shoes that were cute, too. Not always an easy trick, but I think I accomplished it. These were the three main pairs of shoes I wore on the trip...
I didn't wear these as much as I thought I would. Mostly just on the shorter travel days like the train ride from Brussels to Zurich. But I had another pair of Brooks running shoes in the past that were really comfortable, so I knew these would be a good choice.
Even though I knew it wouldn't be super warm in London and possibly Amsterdam, I still wanted a pair of sandals that I could wear to dress things up a bit. I researched online and these seemed like the best option. Thankfully, I found them at Nordstrom and was able to actually go try them on in person! I wore them one whole day in Amsterdam and they didn't hurt my feet one bit! They were super comfortable. I will admit the day I wore them in Brussels, I started to develop a little blister on the top of one toe. But I think that was because it was a little hillier there and the angle I was walking made my shoe start to rub on my foot a bit. Mike and I stopped in a pharmacy, and found some clear gel band aids that didn't show and did the trick. Never felt a thing after that.
These were my absolute favorite pair of shoes I wore over there. I was looking for something like an Espadrille slip on flat or some Toms. But I found these at DSW shoes and when I tried them on I decided to go for it! I'm glad I did, because I wore these the most including the day we walked 26000 steps in London. I also wore them to both of the U2 concerts! Definitely love these shoes!
In addition to those three pairs, I brought a pair of black ankle boots that I only wore once to dinner, a pair of flip flops that I didn't use at all and a pair of ballerina flats that I wore on the flight from the States to London.That makes six pairs of shoes total, but I don't think I wore the flip flops at all. Most of the "what to pack" capsule wardrobes I pinned on pinterest suggested only three pairs of shoes, and I actually probably could have done the same.
As for clothing, I really only shop for clothes once or twice a year and not always even that. But I've been trying to invest in a few good classic pieces that will last, as well as a some trendy, fun items for the season. Nordstrom was having their big semi annual sale right before our trip. So I called up to make an appointment with a personal stylist. I have used their personal stylists in the past to find dresses for weddings and school functions. It's a free service and I have always found their assistance and expertise extremely helpful even if just consulting about what looks good for your body type! So I figured why not get some help finding some things to wear on the trip, especially with the sale going on!
Before my appointment, I went on their website and started pinning items to Pinterest that matched what I was looking for.
Since the weather was running anywhere from the low 60's to mid 80's, I knew I wanted some versatile jackets to throw over short sleeve tops if necessary. In total, I brought three. First was my light black hooded windbreaker that I like to wear while traveling on planes, trains or automobiles. :)
And my stylist brought me this one on my shopping trip...
I can wear it with anything from summery dresses to shorts and tees to more fall type weather!
I also decided I wanted a Cargo type jacket but feminine looking. So I was happy my stylist found the one you see in these photos.
I don't have a link because I haven't been able to find it online, but I did buy it at Nordstrom.
I kept a daily journal while we were over there so I would remember the details of our days. And I actually wish I would have included a note about what I wore each day. But while writing this post, I had fun just going back through the photos and making a list of my daily outfits.
On the first day of travel I wore khaki capris, a three quarter sleeve coral sweater, my tan ballerina flats and had my black windbreaker in my backpack. I was pretty comfortable on the plane but didn't get much sleep.
We left St. Louis at 1:30pm on Wednesday and didn't arrive to London until 6:15am their time. So I was definitely ready to change clothes before going out to explore.
My outfit for that day was a long sleeve floral top with ankle length gray capris, my black slip on sneakers and the same windbreaker.
The second day of walking around London, I was wearing the outfit in the photos above - black t-shirt with a small ruffle at the neck from The Loft, my cargo jacket, jeans from the Gap, and my black slip ons. That was the day we walked 26,000 steps!
Later that night we went to see Evita in the West End and I changed into a dressier outfit. That was the one night I wore my high heel black booties because I didn't have to do as much walking.
While traveling to Amsterdam the next morning, I wore a mint green t-shirt with gray cardigan, blue jeans and my black slip on sneakers. That night for the U2 concert, I wore the same jeans, a U2 tour shirt, my cargo jacket and black slip ons.
The next day, all day long, I wore this shirt from The LOFT...
with white capri pants and my gold sandals.
I love this shirt, but I don't wear it so far off the shoulder. And sometimes I even pull it all the way up over my shoulders.
On our third day in Amsterdam, we went for a long bike ride in the countryside, so I threw on my second pair of jeans and my U2 concert shirt with my running shoes to be more comfortable.
On to Brussels! I cannot remember at all what I wore on the train to get from Amsterdam to Brussels. But I do know for the U2 show that night, I had on a red v-neck t-shirt, black capris and my denim jacket. I did buy a Noel Gallagher t-shirt (because I love him and he was the opening act) and threw it on over my other shirt.
The next day we did a lot of sightseeing, and I wore my coral three quarter length sleeve sweater again with some khaki shorts, the denim jacket and gold sandals. At this point, Mike was wanting to do some some laundry, so we found a laundromat and washed some of our clothes. While we waited, we went to a little restaurant down the road and had drinks and appetizers in between washing and drying.
So with some of my clothes clean, I was able to wear the black t-shirt and jeans I wore our second day in London, along with my running shoes and black windbreaker again because we were going to be flying to Switzerland.
Zurich was the warmest of all the cities we visited and the day we arrived it had actually reached 90 degrees F.
The next day was still pretty warm, so I wore an outfit inspired by this image I had pinned on Pinterest awhile back!
(which I had actually pinned in red. Nordstrom only had it in black when I was in, but I'm kind of glad they didn't have the red! I ended up liking black better.) I also wore a shorter pair of khaki shorts than the ones I wore in Brussels, my gold sandals, sunglasses and the diamond earrings Mike gave me for our anniversary two years back. I didn't wear a watch like in the photo, but I did wear my fitbit the entire trip. And for my birthday, I really wanted a new purse that would work better for the trip than the ones I already have. I like Fossil bags, but don't really buy new purses new often. It's usually Mike who has bought me a new one every few years on my birthday. And for this birthday, I picked out this one...
It seemed a little pricey at first, but like I said I don't buy purses very often. I have a cute fabric Fossil print one I usually use spring and summer, and a black leather one for fall and winter. But I noticed the print one is looking a little worn. Ok a lot worn, so I invested in this one and it was perfect. Not too big, lightweight, with lots of great pockets.
Unfortunately, the next day I got super sick and didn't get out of my pj's the entire day. But on the plane ride home the following day I wore black capris, my black slip on sneakers, my denim jacket, and this shirt...
Long post I know, but it gives you an idea of what worked for me.
In total, for 11 days I had:
3 jackets (which I wore at least one almost every day at some point)
6 short sleeve shirts (not including the one bought at concert)
5 long or 3/4 sleeve shirts
1 gray cardigan
2 pairs of blue jeans
1 pair black denim skinny stretch pants
5 pairs of capris (two worn on long flight travel days)
3 pairs of shorts (2 khaki and one white, but only wore two)
2 yoga capri pants (which roll up small and are great for lounging at the hotel and naps!)
1 work out outfit (that I did not use or need because we walked (12,000-26,000 steps daily)
1 tank top to wear under another shirt
1 sundress (that I didn't end up using but wish I had the last night in Brussels)
2 pairs of pajamas
5 pairs of shoes.
I would say 39 items for 11 days isn't too bad at all!
And I never felt like I didn't have enough to wear. :)