Let me start by saying SPACE BAGS ARE THE GREATEST INVESTMENT EVER. FOR REALS. We bought two boxes of three large bags for $13.00 each at Target. I have done quite a bit of traveling in my 22 years and I never thought to use Space Bags for traveling, but now I don't plan on packing without them.
With a little research and my own travel knowledge I have come up with a minimalist NY City packing guide that will save you money, space and time, and help you look less like a tourist:
+Choose a neutral colored wardrobe, consisting mostly of blacks and grays. Dark neutrals help you (and any food spills/street dirt) blend in, make an outfit look effortlessly put-together and are easy to pair.
+Choose pieces that all work together-- this way you can bring less clothes and mix and match.
+ Choose no more than two pairs of shoes-- one for the plane, one for your suitcase.
+ Choose no more than two jackets/coats.
+ Choose no more than three non-clothing items, excluding toiletries (e.g. book, journal, camera).
CHOOSE LAYERING PIECES & ACCESSORIES
+ Choose a mix of thin and thick material that can be layered or shed.
+ Choose knit sweaters-- they can be layered over shirts and dresses.
+ Choose scarves and hats-- they keep you warm and help an outfit look put-together.
CHOOSE COMFORT (& STILL LOOK CHIC)
+ Again, choosing mostly a black wardrobe will make this effortless.
+ Choose dresses and skirts. I don't mean dresses/skirts made out of tight or stiff material. Looser or stretchy dresses/skirts paired with tights are more freeing to walk miles in when you are sight-seeing all day.
+ Choose the jeans you feel the most comfortable and confident in. I chose my black stretchy skinny jeans and my loose high-waisted Calvin Klein's.
+ Choose to test out your shoes. If you aren't sure how comfortable they will be test them before your trip by wearing them on a day you will be doing a lot of walking/standing. I tested my tall gray boots by wearing them all day at work-- I work retail where I stand and walk all day.
CHOOSE NOT TO CHECK YOUR SUITCASE
Pack a suitcase or duffle-bag (with wheels) that is small enough to bring as your carry-on.
+ Choose to check your airlines carry-on measurement regulations. Most airlines allow small suitcases on the plane and if they can't fit in the over-head compartment the flight attendant will have it put in a compartment on the side of the plane.
+ You'll avoid a luggage check fee-- extra coffee & food money.
+ There's no chance your luggage can go missing.
+ Saves you time-- no need to wait for your luggage to arrive when you land.
CHOOSE SPACE BAGS
Space Bags!!! We all know how excited I am about these. Conserve suitcase space by packing with a large Space Bag. Here's how:
+ Divide your clothes into a top and bottom section inside the bag, leaving a space in the middle (see below).
+ Vacuum that sucker until it's packed tight.
+ Fold the bag in half, only made possible by leaving a space in the middle. You will not be able to fold a full Space Bag-- it's physically impossible.
+ Stick your vacuum packed clothes into your luggage and revel in the goodness. Oooo awww, so much extra space-- MAGIC. I put one boot on each side of the clothes and there was still plenty of extra space.
It may be quiet around here for a bit, but I promise I won't come back empty handed. I will return with wedding and New York photos, accompanied by plenty of words-- I'm sure. Just give me time, I have a feeling I'm going to be exhausted. But what is life without too much coffee and jetlag?