I grew up with a mom who packed for a trip over days, even weeks, depositing potential pieces on the guest room bed as she selected them. Once departure was imminent, the culling began. Traveling today is easier in many ways (long security lines notwithstanding), but the days of checking suitcases are gone (see Pack Light and Carry On), so I now implement a modified version of her process.
Once the itinerary is fixed and I know what type of activities are involved, then I begin with shoes — function (comfort) slightly over form. Luckily, there are great options these days and I really don’t have to sacrifice one for the other. Then I build the wardrobe with tops outnumbering bottoms about three to one.
Scarves, shawls, and jewelry: the final touches that make the outfits. These vary according to the type of trip and often are fun, inexpensive items found over the years in far flung places. Nothing that would break my heart if lost or stolen.
On to my backpack, repository of laptop, tablet and peripherals; camera and lenses; chargers and adaptors; books and notepads. I love my backpack for its interior and exterior zippered pockets of various sizes and I have a collection of small clear bags in a variety of colors that I use to organize by category.
Even as much as I travel, I still experience pre-trip jitters. Packing the day before gives me the opportunity to run out and pick up items I might have forgotten, run out of, or didn’t realize I needed. Once my bags are packed, I can relax and enjoy the anticipation of another adventure.