How to pack with a capsule wardrobe

This post will show you how to pack using a capsule wardrobe. It’s easy, fun and efficient.

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Bonjour!!! (said at volume 20)

We need un-suit-a case-a.  Si vous plait.

You could hear the croissants dropping on the plate at the cafe next door in horror of this American girl trying (in French) to find a suitcase to take home all her French goodies. I think they wanted to confiscate them from me. Tell me I wasn’t  worthy of such beautiful things with an “accent” like that. 

This was me trying to purchase a new piece of luggage to take home all my French finds after my first trip to Paris. It did not go well. 


I now pack with a capsule wardrobe, here’s how you can too

I overpacked and definitely over shopped, so there was no other option. Someone did eventually help me with a bag and I did get all my French things home safe and sound.


I’ve since developed a better way to pack. You guessed it, I pack with a capsule wardrobe.


Spring Break is right around the corner, so you may need a refresher on how to pack. We are all a bit out of packing practice these past two years.


Even if you don’t dress from a capsule wardrobe, this is a great way to pack for vacation. It will give you more options with less clothing. And there will be room to bring home a thing or two that you pick up on your travels.


The basics

Similar to your 8 essentials in a capsule wardrobe, you need to identify some neutral basics that you will re-ware. For the purposes of this post, I’ll pack the following: 4 bottoms, 3 dresses, and 2 tops. The example below shows you what this would look like. From this set of clothes, you can create over 20 outfits. the number goes up once you change up accessories. You can also wear the dresses 2-3 times. A dinner, lunch or daytime outing, and as a pool coverup. This a great way to get one more use out of a dress either on a trip or at home. To shop any of these items, simply click the link below


Various dresses, shorts, pants, skirt and tops that all work together as part of packing with a capsule wardrobe method.
Top row: white blouse with floral design, floral puff sleeved dress, white blouse with deep V-shape, tangerine colored cashmere t-shirt. Middle row: striped sweater with puff sleeves, bright green dress, white linen shorts, black and white striped pants. Bottom row: white linen pants, blue and white caftan, yellow and orange floral skirt.

The accessories

Changing up shoes, jewelry, bags, adding belts are some easy ways to make the same clothes look different. These items typically take up very little room in your suitcase, but make a big impact in your outfits. Here are some ideas of what I would pack with the above set of clothes.

Various accessories (shoes, earrings, bags and belt) that you can use when packing with a capsule wardrobe to change up your look
Top row: Blue ice hoop earrings, straw purse with yellow gingham bow, pink and white hoop earrings, slide sandals with tortoise shell buckle, raffia pink and white slides. Bottom row: floral clutch, woven stretch belt, yellow suede sandals.

Same dress, 3 different ways

Here is an example of the same dress, but with three different looks. You can do this with all of the items that you packed using the capsule wardrobe method. So many outfits, from just a few pieces of clothing.

Same bright green dress with different shoes, earrings, purses and a belt to show how to pack with a capsule wardrobe

Additional items

Of course there are a few things that will be outside of the capsule such as your: bathing suits, cover-ups, pool shoes, undergarments, and workout wear including tennis shoes. These are more of the functional items needed to travel. But they won’t take up a bunch of space.

So that’s it. A successful packing job just takes some forethought. Plan out your neutrals, your color palette, and stick to it. It will be easier to get dressed when you’re there, you’ll have lots of options because you can mix and match things easily, without the exploding suitcase so you can just focus on relaxing and having fun.

I’m looking forward to hearing all about your Spring Break travels. Let me know in the comments where you’re headed and if you think you’ll give this method of packing a try.


Please share this with a friend who could use some style love.








I show women over 50 how to get noticed, stay relevant, and be connected through their wardrobe. Getting dressed is something you have to do each day, why not make it fun.



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