Minimalist Packing

I went to a wedding last weekend and I used it as an opportunity to practicing minimalism in packing. Historically, I’m the person who goes on a 9-day trip and brings 20 shirts. Once I learned that rolling your clothes lets you fit so much more into your bag, I filled every nook and cranny of my suitcase with wardrobe options – just in case.

For this trip, I decided to try to only bring what I thought I actually needed for the 3 days I was gone. Here’s what I brought with me: 1 pair jeans, 1 pair yoga pants, 2 tank tops, 2 t-shirts, 1 long-sleeved shirt, 1 zip-up sweatshirt (aka a “zippy”), 1 windbreaker, 1 dress, 1 cardigan, dress shoes, sneakers, 1 set workout gear, 1 bra, 2 pairs of socks, 3 pairs of underwear, pajamas.

Here’s what I actually wore:

Friday’s Activities:
Fly out: Jeans, t-shirt #1, zippy, socks #1, sneakers.
Meet friend for lunch: Add windbreaker (it was raining).
Dinner with coaches: Remove windbreaker; exchange t-shirt for long-sleeved shirt & bra (it was cold).
Sleep: Pajamas.

At Lindsey's wedding with my Teammates - Photo by Erika Brown
At Lindsey’s wedding with my Teammates – Photo by Erika Brown

Saturday’s Activities:
Lounge around friend’s house: Yoga pants, tank top #1, zippy, socks #2.
Lunch with other friend: Exchange yoga pants for jeans (I rarely go out in yoga pants); add sneakers. (Note: I was going to wear t-shirt #2 to go out but it was warmer than I expected. I also realized I forgot my glasses case so I used t-shirt #2 to wrap my glasses instead so it was still used.)
Wedding: Dress, dress shoes, cardigan.
Sleep: Pajamas.

Sunday’s Activities:
Workout: Workout gear (shorts, shirt, sports bra, running socks, sneakers).
Brunch and fly home: Jeans, tank top #2, zippy, socks #2, sneakers. (I thought I’d wear my running socks all day but they were way too sweaty so I wore socks #2 instead.)

Post-Brunch Handstand - Photo by Erika Brown
Post-Brunch Handstand – Photo by Erika Brown

Since every garment I packed on this trip was used, it made unpacking fast. Everything was tossed in the laundry basket except my cardigan and the shirt that protected my glasses. It was easy to unpack my toiletries because I only brought things I knew I’d use.

The only things I packed that didn’t get used were my laptop and my Kindle. I brought my laptop so I could write and my Kindle was to read if I finished reading Everything That Remains by The Minimalists. So I still bring tech gear with me just in case and I suspect that’s not going to change – and I’m OK with that.

This post was inspired by the The Minimalists who recently released a video about how they packed for their 100-city book tour.

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