When we decided to take this trip I spent a lot of time thinking about how I’d ideally pack. I wanted to bring a small number of versatile pieces that I could mix and match into multiple outfits. I wanted to pack mostly for summer but also be able to transition into fall, especially since it would be raining and cold when we first arrived in Scandinavia. I knew that I could always buy things I needed in Europe, but I also had to be willing to part with the clothes I brought with me in order to make room for new purchases. In the end, here’s what I brought with me (with links to the items if I could find them):
- 3 pairs of shoes: running shoes (to double as hiking shoes), walking shoes, and sandals
- 2 pairs of jeans (blue and black)
- 1 pair of navy shorts
- 1 black skirt
- 1 lightweight black dress
- 6 short-sleeved shirts
- 1 button-down shirt
- 1 pullover sweater
- 1 cardigan
- 2 tank tops with built-in bra
- 1 set of running clothes
- Uniqlo ultra light down jacket
- Rain jacket
- 1 pair of leggings for lounging and sleeping
- socks and underwear
- 1 scarf
- 1 beanie
Now that we’re a month into the trip, I have some reflections:
– Overall I did pretty well. I missed the mark in a few places but I was mostly correct about what to bring. I did well on bringing versatile pieces that I could match a lot of different ways. Right now during the heat wave it’s hard to remember why I have jeans, a scarf, and a hat (and a rain jacket !?!) with me, but I know I’ll see them again soon. Also, I wore all of these things during our first rainy week in Sweden.
– The Uniqlo jacket was an amazing purchase. It is so lightweight and I can carry it in my shoulder bag on planes and trains in case it gets cold. It is cute enough to wear out without feeling shlubby.
– I brought about 2 shirts too many. I almost exclusively wear this one from H&M when it’s clean as it’s lightweight and goes with everything. I will probably toss some soon.
– I brought too much underwear. My underwear packs up so small that I thought it wouldn’t hurt to bring extra, but because Ian brought less than I did we need to do laundry more often anyway. I could have gotten away with less.
– My backpack is at capacity. I am really happy with the pack that I got but I need to keep working on downsizing so I have more room in it. I think toiletries are the major culprit. Such is the way of traveling: we always wish we had less but it is hard to part with what we brought when it is so little already.