Mini-capsule wardrobe packing for a short trip

When we planned a trip to Tennessee for six days, I was very excited to test out my capsule wardrobe on a smaller scale.  So, I did a little planning session on a post-it note.  These are some of the notes that I wrote:

  • 1 dressy outfit for dinner
  • 1 outfit for hiking
  • Coat!  Finally!
  • Layers
  • Comfy driving clothes


Here’s my packing list for 6 days:

  1. long grey dress
  2. 2 t-shirts
  3. striped long sleeve shirt
  4. white button down shirt
  5. pull-over sweater
  6. sweatshirt
  7. long cardigan
  8. jean jacket
  9. 3 pairs of shoes
  10. 1 scarf, 2 pairs of earrings, 1 belt, tights, and a necklace

I started with a long grey jersey dress that I could layer as a skirt one day and wear as a dress another. (2 outfits)  For the first outfit with the dress, I packed a white button down to layer on top of the dress, and a soft, wool cardigan over that.  My accessories were a scarf, earrings, and booties.

The other look for the dress was to put on tights with it, loafers and a scarf.  When we went outside by the bon fire, I put on a jean jacket.

2 outfits with one long dress

Next, I knew that I had to have jeans that would work double duty.  So, my black jeans tha the knees and bum don’t stretch out were perfect for wearing multiple days. (2 outfits)

The white button down shirt could be worn again, this time as the first layer, under a grey sweatshirt.  The loafers worked for this outfit.  The second outfit was a long sleeve striped shirt, and a boxy sweater thrown over it with comfy booties.  Both of these outfits had a long necklace.

2 outfits with black jeans that hold their shape

For driving days, my black joggers were perfect.  I also needed layers because we were going from hot to cold, and cold to hot.  The black trainers that I packed for driving days also were perfect to slip on when we went hiking one day.  Two t-shirts were packed for our driving days.  I love my No Rest for the Rad t-shirt, and with a long drive ahead, I thought it was perfect!

2 comfortable outfits with joggers 

The difference between packing this way and how I used to pack is that I used to throw in a bunch of clothes that I liked.  Often, I only planned to wear something once.  I  would never wear all of the clothes that I packed, and it would take me way too long to get dressed while on vacation, when you are supposed to be relaxing!

This time, all of my clothing fit into a small duffle bag.  It took me 30 minutes to pick out my clothes for the entire trip.  (disclaimer: I photographed everything the next day and that took another 30 minutes.) Every day I knew what my choices were thanks to the images on my phone, and I was free to enjoy the company of family while feeling confident that I was dressed appropriately for the day’s activities.

Having a capsule wardrobe made creating a mini-capsule so much easier!



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