I am a newbie here and have searched for an answer but can't find one. I am planning on an 8 week trip next June and July starting in Rome and working our way North to Ireland. I am worried that while lighter weight clothes , capris, short sleeve shirts and sandals will be perfect for the South, it will be too cool in Ireland. How do I pack light and still pack appropriately for these diverse conditions ? any tips would be appreciated.
First, it's a good plan to start south and head north in June and July. I like to plan on layering, to some extent, because weather is unpredictable. This June in Italy it was cool all day with scattered rain nearly everywhere I went. Look at RS' packing list for a start. You don't say if you are male or female.
A good pair of walking shoes and a second pair, maybe sandals. Something for rain. A wrap and/or sweater. The usual underthings. Your big decision will be what fabrics to choose. I take the lightest-weight pants possible, some t-shirts, a couple of shirts or blouses that can be worn over a t-shirt if needed. You may do well to pack a lightweight jacket.
Hi MC, if you google "capsule travel wardrobe for changing climates", or something similar, you will find all kinds of posts with helpful lists. I follow travel fashion girl, and she has lots of packing lists for those kinds of trips! Basically, she advocates taking layering pieces, based on the percentages of time in each climate. So if your trip will be 40% warm and 60% cold, take 40% lightweight pieces with 60% warmer pieces that you can layer with the lightweight pieces. Hope this helps!
We are in progress right now,London,Dublin,marjorrca and Paris.
Ineeded my windbreaker/daon jacket in Ireland and London, I needed my swimsuit and very lightweight sundresses in Spain and Paris.
Honestly, since we pack light it was a challenge.
Wear the same clothes a lot( do laundry) and take a mix.
I probably hit Ireland at an unusual time this June but it was quite warm! I agree with layering and also suggest a waterproof jacket as a top layer. I would go with 2 pr capris, 2 pr long pants, shoes as someone suggested above, one pr shoes, 1 pr sandals plus 4 SS shirts and 1 long sleeve that can go over the short sleeves plus one cardie and the waterproof jacket that is light enough to roll up and put in your purse. Mine's a Marmot Precip that's a couple of years old, but I noticed at REI recently they had lots of very light waterproof layers.
I also enjoy the Viviennefiles blog for wardrobe capsules. She does have a couple of travel capsules where she covers 2 different climates altho the ones I can remember right off hand were when she was traveling for business. However, her wardrobes are pretty easy to translate to a more casual style.
I have done long trips of that type with the exact same wardrobe I always pack: 5 tops (mix of T-shirts and Oxford-type shirts, in colors that can be layered), 2 pairs of pants (one suitable for either everyday or evenings out), a very lightweight zip-up fleece top, a waterproof hooded rain shell, silk long underwear for extra warmth when needed, a non-wrinkling scarf or two, black waterproof walking shoes, and flip-flops for hotel/shower/etc. The preceding list includes both what I wear on the plane and what I pack. I buy a shawl or two at a street-side stand, which I use when I need to look a little dressier. And although my black walking shoes don't make me the most elegant person at a restaurant/theater, they're acceptable when the rest my clothes are appropriate. If I'm going out a lot, I will sometimes add a lightweight black cardigan sweater.
Just make sure you get waterproof, not water resistant.
A light waterproof/windproof jacket makes the other light layers workable, but I would include a long-sleeved shirt, a cotton cardigan, and a pair of closed-toe shoes on the list, as already mentioned. A scarf can be a light evening wrap in the south and a neck/head warmer if it's cool or windy. You can see current summer conditions at www.weather.com, etc.
My pack list is almost always the same. It's adjusts slightly for colder to warmer weather, more or less waterproof depending on where and when I'm traveling. Every travel item I own is non-cotton (but chosen because it's comfortable) for fast drying if caught in the rain and easy laundering. Everything I pack mixes/matches with everything else - generally neutral tones - so that I have lots of possible combinations rather than items that can only be used with one specific outfit.
Essentially, five tops (some combination of tee, polo and/or button up shirts), three bottoms (e.g. dress/casual pants, combo shorts/swim suit, warm up bottoms), one or two warm layers (e.g. lightweight/not bulky sweater, full-zip lightweight fleece), three pairs socks (always non-cotton for easy hand washing. I pack identical socks; if I lose some, I still have pairs), three underwear (I love underarmour 9" inseam boxer jocks), two pairs of shoes (both good for walking - one more dressy, one more casual), one waterproof rain shell (ideally one with a hood, long enough to cover your bottom, adjustable cuffs, zippered pockets, zippered vents, as well as cinches to keep out the wind).
When it gets cold, I'll wear a tee shirt, layered under a polo or button-up shirt, layered under a light merino wool sweater, layered under a 200 weight full-zip fleece (lightweight and full-zip is a hard, but not impossible, combination to find), under my rain shell. That combination gets me comfortably into the the mid 40's or so. If it's really cold, 30's, I'll add a ski cap, gloves and scarf that I purchase there rather than pack. If I expect really cold, I do add a pair of silk long underwear bottoms to my pack list (they can be expensive to buy when traveling).
I wash a pair of socks and underwear daily in my room, sometimes I'll add a tee-shirt. About every other week, I'll stop at a laundromat and wash everything.
I don't have any trouble keeping this (plus odds and ends) under the 18 lb. limit of the strictest carrier's carry-on limits. I generally only need about 2/3 of my carry-on bag; which is good because the load always expands while you're on the road.