Recently I had a chat with my pal Martha about parking for a 2 week trip to Europe. By chatting I mean reading this article and by my friend I mean Martha Stewart. She has been making frequent appearances into my life lately when it comes to cooking, making marmalade, cleaning, and now packing!
Here's an exact except from the link about what Martha told me to pack:
How to Pack a Suitcase for a Five-Day TripIn this suitcase, there is plenty of room for nearly a week's worth of clothing. The key is to keep everything in separate and neat bundles, while making use of the built-in compartments.
1. Sweaters: To maintain the shape of my knitted tops and chunkier sweaters, I line the back of each garment with a few sheets of acid-free tissue paper before folding. These items should never be stored on hangers, either at hotels or at home; doing so can cause the fibers near the shoulders to stretch.
2. Footwear: Shoes are usually the heaviest cargo in a travel bag. To prevent them from crushing delicate clothing, I tuck them around the perimeter of the suitcase. Each pair is kept in an individual drawstring-topped shoe bag. I stuff the toes of my pumps and other dress shoes with acid-free tissue paper; socks go inside sneakers and slides.
3. Assembled Outfits: To streamline both packing and dressing on trips, I plan my outfits ahead of time, complete with shoes and accessories. I put each outfit on a single hanger (unless the top is a sweater) and wrap it in plastic.
4. Accessories: In addition to packing my shoes in pouches, I also place belts in one bag, undergarments in another, and tights and leggings in yet another. This ensures that the suitcase stays organized, even in the rare event it is searched at the airport.
Tangle-Free Chargers: These days, traveling means toting around a lot of electronics. I pack each charger separately in a labeled resealable plastic bag so everything is visible and at my fingertips.
Computer Protection: Laptops have to be taken out of their cases at airport security checkpoints, so I keep mine in a jumbo resealable bag to minimize handling. The power cord goes into a smaller bag.
Light, Easy Reading: I carry my Kindle, which lets me scan an array of books and newspapers, and my cashmere scarf with me on every trip. I also bring my toiletries (in containers that hold less than 3 ounces), a change of clothes, and my contact lens container and solution, just in case I am separated from my luggage.
Uncluttered Carryall: A messenger bag is roomy, can double as a pocketbook, and holds everything I need. I rely on a few coordinating accessories, including a large, sleek walletlike clutch by Perrin, to hold miscellaneous items.
Instant Identifier: One trip to the baggage carousel is proof enough that nearly all suitcases look alike. A bright-green ribbon tied to the handle distinguishes each of my bags from everyone else's.
Security Measure: Many luggage locks are forbidden under security regulations. So I tie the zipper pull tags on my suitcase together with a piece of waxed twine. That way, I can tell if it has been opened.
To Relax or Exercise: Comfortable, breathable clothes are always good to have on a trip. I'll wear them on the plane during a long flight or save them for an impromptu hike or workout.
How to Pack an Ensemble for Traveling: My trips are always extremely busy, so I plan what I'll wear to each event to ensure that I don't take extra clothes. With this one-outfit-per-hanger system, wrinkles are minimized, and I can hang up items as soon as I arrive.
Step 1: Hang the bottom. First, you need a good dual-purpose hanger with metal clips and a secure grip. Attach a pair of jeans or pants or a skirt at the waist.
Step 2: Add the shirt. Slip the top onto the hanger, covering the bottom piece. If possible, keep all the buttons closed so that the shirt and collar will lie flat.
Step 3: Fold and wrap. Place the outfit facedown on a bed or a table. Tuck the pant legs under, creasing at the knees or in thirds. Then fold in the shirt's sleeves, and make a final fold at the bottom to fit inside the suitcase. Slip a clear plastic garment bag (you can use one from a dry cleaner) over the entire bundle, tucking in any excess plastic.
What! I do not think I own that many plastic bags. I mean, I know I am organized but this takes it to a whole new level. I find it kind of inspiring. Is that weird? Come back tomorrow, I will tell you how I am fitting 14 days worth of clothing into one suitcase with only one carry-on planned!
In the meantime, here are some great blog posts I have found on packing: