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What to Pack For a Last Minute Weekend Getaway

By Gee Marling

We show you how to pack the perfect carry-on bag for an impromptu weekend away

It's 11pm on a Thursday night before a 7.30am flight the following day. As the clock ticks forward apace, the anxiety mounts as you face off between an intimidating heap of clothes on one side of the bed and a tiny carry-on bag on the other. If this sounds familiar and the idea of packing for a weekend brings you out in a cold sweat, we have good news: deciding what you're going to take can and should be fun. To prove it, we've assembled some tips to help you to take the stress out of last minute packing no matter the destination.

Packing for a weekend away should be a fun experience

Be prepared: Never leave packing until the last minute. The journey is rife with potentially stress-inducing factors–sneaky hidden airline charges, long car-rental queues, crying babies in the seat next to you– so do yourself a favour and set aside some time to plan. Try to give yourself at least one hour a couple of days before you go to figure out what you'll be doing and what you'll need to wear to do it in style. A good cabin bag is one of life's most worthwhile investments and should help you to organise things neatly, as can garment cases from Muji.

L-R: A jumpsuit replaces separates © Lucy Williams | Ilona Bodysuit

Think like a minimalist: Pack little and well. Whatever you choose to take, it must have a purpose. If there's a chance you might not wear it, or you're just taking it because it looks pretty in amongst your pile of 'maybes'(guilty), get rid of it. City breaks present an opportunity to pick up some unique pieces from local independent boutiques, in which case you'll thank yourself for having been stringent on space-saving. One versatile coat can be used instead of multiple cumbersome jumpers, likewise a great jumpsuit can take the place of various top and bottom separates.

L-R: Head to toe ivory for Alicia Vikander © Splash | Alexa Tank Top and Mara Leggings

Colour is everything: It sounds ridiculous but picking a colour theme for your packing can really help to narrow the choices down and ensure various elements work well together. If you have a new burgundy leather handbag that you want to flaunt, cherry-pick items from your wardrobe that will complement it: AW18 seasonal hues such as berry, mustard and tan. Mix and match different components around a staple favourite pair of jeans, or a statement coat. The colour can appear in the smallest element, such as a scarf print, and successfully bring an entire outfit together.

L-R: Karlie Kloss in white sneakers | Corset Leggings for the gym and sightseeing 

Comfort above all: Where once luxury travel evoked scenes of monogrammed suitcases and Brigitte Bardot looking impossibly glamorous sashaying through the arrivals lounge, today - mercifully - greater value is placed on comfort whilst jet-setting. Packing a clean pair of sneakers, plain white or sporty, is a no-brainer to ensure any sightseeing is pain-free. They can be effortlessly dressed up with a smart tailored jacket for the evening. If you’re keen to keep up your fitness regime whilst away, make sure you pack an elegant pair of workout trousers, such as Ernest Leoty’s Corset Leggings, that can be doubled up for daytime casual wear.

Travel essentials L-R: Statement sunglasses | a  great tote bag | an oversized scarf | the Adele bralette

Essentials vs. non-essentials: There are some things that should, without question, go in your suitcase or handbag.

Sunglasses - even if your destination has unpredictable weather, sunglasses are invaluable to shield tired eyes on the plane.

A versatile cover up - either a jumper (tissue cashmere is best for this: warm, but not too bulky) to keep you cosy, or an oversized scarf that can double as a blanket to snuggle up in.

A medium sized handbag - consider this an overspill for your carry on, roomy enough to stuff in any gifts you pick up during your trip, but small enough that it won’t burden you on a day’s sightseeing.

A stylish crop top – swap an underwired bra for something lightweight yet supportive such as our Adele Bralette to ensure maximum comfort during your journey.

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