Everyone has that one friend that looks absolutely perfect in every single one of their travel photos from their perfect makeup and hair to their adorable outfit, but achieving that effortlessly cute look requires a lot more planning than I imagined. Now, as a self-described basic white girl, I enjoy the finer things in life such as starbucks, pinterest, and having the perfect photos to show my friends after a trip. For the various trips I have taken over the past 2 years, I decided to make a concerted effort to look cute everyday and achieve those envy-inducing instagram photos. So without further ado, these are my tips and tricks for always looking cute while traveling, especially if you are working with a limited wardrobe!
Plan your outfits before traveling…
I cannot stress how important outfit planning is. When it comes to traveling, one obstacle you face in terms of looking your best is that you are working with a limited wardrobe. Outfit planning allows you to style your outfits for the trip ahead of time so you know exactly how a pair of jeans looks with that new top of yours. I also like to pack pieces that can be switched around to create new outfits just in case I get to my destination and change my mind about a particular outfit. If you use a particular color scheme, your pieces should be interchangeable and allow you to change things as you please if needed. My favorite resource for outfit planning ideas is Pinterest because there are about a million different helpful pins on there. Check out my favorites here
and the example below.
Don’t Pack things you haven’t worn before…
Unless you are sure they will fit the way you want them to. We all fall victim to the desire to buy new clothes for a trip so that our photos will feature new looks rather than the same old same old. The risk here is that you don’t know how these new pieces will hold up throughout the day or if they will be comfortable enough for your longer days. Now if you wish to buy a new pair of your favorite jeans, that is a little different because you already know generally how they will fit. If you cannot resist the desire to buy new pieces before your trip, I recommend buying them a bit in advance to give you time to try the new pieces out before your trip. This is ESPECIALLY important with shoes because they need to be broken in.
Invest in key pieces that will work for any trip
We all have those go-to pieces that we pack for almost every trip(dependent on weather of course. This is my must-haves with a few photos and links if I could find them.
1. A good pair of dark jeans- I personally prefer black to dark denim only because I think black jeans are easier to dress up at times. My go-to pair are from Gap because they fit so well and last forever and I really love the style of these Gap jeans
2. The perfect wool coat- This red wool coat
from ModCloth is everything I wanted and more. It is stylish, comfortable and most importantly WARM.
3. Stylish and comfortable boots- As you can see in the above photos, I LOVE my Frye Melissa back zip boots
and I highly recommend them to anyone looking to invest in quality boots.
4. A go-to outfit for nights out- I love a good romper or a mini-skirt and crop top like those pictured below.
5. A maxi-dress that can be dressed up or down as needed, such as this gorgeous Lilly Pulitzer dress that I have worn to a wedding and just out to lunch with friends.
6. A few great sweaters- I like to go with some neutrals and some bolder colors. My sweater collection is well cultivated by this point but these are some of the sweaters I am currently coveting to add to it: this chunky turtleneck, this open front cardigan, and this grey cardigan.
7. A scarf that can go with anything- Scarves are amazing and highly versatile, especially blanket scarves like the one featured in some of my above photos and below. This scarf can also double as a blanket to sit on in a park and even a head covering if you are visited a church of mosque that requires this. Similar one available here.
You can dress up any outfit with the right accessories so I highly reocmmend investing in some fun pieces to add to your outfits. Earrings are the easiest thing for me since they are easy to transport and I have a bad history of tangling up necklaces. My favorite place to buy accessories is Francesca’s because there wide selection. Some of my current favorites are these gold and pearl studs
, these pink stong dangling ones
, and these cute arrow ones.
Find a Photographer!
Best way to guarantee a quality instagram photo? Invest in a quality travel partner who will indulge your basic side and have a full-on photo shoot in the gardens of Versailles, Parc Guell, or Downtown Savannah(see the results of those photoshoots below–featuring the same skirt in three different cities). Having great friends willing to travel with you and take photos with and for you is crucial to ensuring you have cute photos to remember your trip by and its one of the reasons I prefer to travel with friends rather than solo(more on that soon).
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