Below are just a few of my most helpful travel clothes, which do multiple tasks. I've also placed links below to the online retailers who sell eco, flexible, and easy-to-travel-in clothing (which do not need to look like travel clothes). I have more to add, so please check back. XO
I adore Chaco sandals because the right color/style (double straps!) can serve as my only pair of shoes for half the year, they tackle both sidewalks and hiking trails, all while looking cute with shorts, pants, skirts and dresses. I also love their foot and arch support and that I can wash them in a front loader. My foot is a size 9.5 and a size 9 in Chaco's gives me plenty of bumper toe protection (if I hit a rock head on, the shoe hits the rock; my toe doesn't). EXAMPLE: This photo shows me in a size 8 (an emergency purchase) and you can see that my big toes are so close to the edge that they could hit something (a rock, etc) and not be as protected.
When I saw these, it was like finding pink fuzzy house slippers and shower shoes in one. I needed to have them. When I walk through the door of an Airbnb, they easily slip on as my house shoes. Plus, they're wonderful as my shower shoes (they don't soak up water!). I have a size 9.5 foot and bought these in a 9. The length is perfect but they're a little snug around the strap, so I might size up next time I buy them (when they wear out). BONUS: Mine didn't have a rubber/chemical smell!
Finding a cute shoe that doubles as a dress shoe and a beach/water shoe (does not fall apart in the heat/humidity) is quite a feat, yet it's adorably possible. I'm a size 9.5 and the 9 fit perfectly. However, I wear tape on my ankles to prevent chafing where the top of the strap hits. BONUS: Mine didn't have a rubber/chemical smell!
I wear wool socks year-round. They keep my feet cool in summer, warm in winter, and they keep shoes stink-free year-round. So I keep a few wool socks at this weight, in my bag, for summer weather.
Compression Sleeves | Serving 3 Purposes
When I saw these compression sleeves, I knew they would be a better choice for me (than compression socks). These sleeves serve three purposes: worn under my clothing, when flying, for compression support (and I can wear any shoe or sock on my feet that I desire); worn under my clothing when I need extra warmth; and as a first aid tool/leg wrap, to reduce swelling and provide warmth and support, while healing an injury.
Comfort Bra | For those who dislike bras.
After a lifetime of searching, I finally found a comfy, easy on/off, attractive bra in fun colors. This Anemone Comfort Bra has been perfect. I have five, in different colors, and can't imagine living without them. BONUS: The straps also cross in back, to wear under racerback tops...and sleeping in these bras, on a plane, is the most comfort I've found yet.
Travel Dress | by Patagonia
Stopping by the Patagonia outlet store in Dillon, Montana, brought this dress into my life. A perfect travel dress, it covers the arms and is a beautiful fabric that could be worn into just about any building or event.
These North Face Women's Aphrodite 2.0 pants take me hiking in unbearable heat, plus around town, without looking so much like hiking pants. They stretch, breathe, quick-dry, yet feel like ultra-light cotton. And they've been tough: the first time I wore them hiking, I was trapped to my knees in a slimy green bog, was positive I'd just ruined them, but they magically washed up like new. The waist/ankle drawcords keep things loose or snug (perfect for keeping critters out).
UPDATE: I just saw these in the newest spring style, and noticed they're made with slightly thicker material. Still worth checking out!
Boyfriend Jeans | Lightweight, Stretchy, Low-Rise
I love having a pair of lightweight, stretchy, low-rise boyfriend jeans in my bag. But they stopped making my favorite pair. Thank goodness Levi's makes the Women's New Boyfriend Jean. Because lightweight and stretchy make jeans easier to pack, wear, and dry.
Stretchy Spring/Fall Skirt | to Dress Up or Down
I've been so happy with my Smartwool skirt (discussed below), that I knew I needed a slightly dressier indoor spring/fall version. So when I came upon this Krimson and Klover 100% merino wool skirt, in a mountain ski town, I was just tickled. It's been a perfect layering piece. And I love what this company stands for: Slow, intentional fashion.
The Smartwool Corbet 120 Skirt has been a lifesaver. Initially a splurge purchase (because it's such an attractive cut, which is hard to find, but spendy), it's turned into one of my wisest choices. It fits over base layers, tights, and outer layers. Some even wear it running. It's amazing how well it protects against the weather. I've had mine for several years, wear it near daily in the winter, and it still looks new. BONUS: It folds tiny and flat.
Packable Jacket | Stuffable
It's necessary to have a stuffable jacket that I can layer (during any season), then store in a tiny pouch. Yet it's often hard to find an attractive one. LOLE's Women's Kim Jacket in Wild Aster solved that challenge. This cut is so flattering at the waist (notice the horizontal lines become thinner at the waist) and the interior color is so bold and fun that people have made endless compliments on it. BONUS: I love the hand gaiters (thumb holes), stowable hood, plus the color allows it to be worn year-round, if needed.