Holiday Essentials

What to pack and what to leave behind? The perennial problem when going away anywhere for a few days or more. I have long had a tendency to keep adding things to my case ‘just in case’ there’s some random occasion that I haven’t foreseen.

However, experience teaches that’s entirely the wrong approach and, over the years I have become better and better at editing down my holiday wardrobe to include the bare essentials to cover all eventualities.

This year I have chosen to spend 18 days in Italy. The first 7 days on a painting holiday in Sicily, followed by one night in a nice hotel in Pisa, so that I could meet a friend’s plane the next day and we could then travel together to Lerici to spend 10 days in a beautiful villa overlooking the harbour. Italy in June tends to be warm or very warm so the paramount need when packing is for clothes that are cool, comfortable and hopefully still look chic.

I’ll let the photos show you some of the looks my ‘mix-and-match wardrobe allows me to create in Italy. It’s a combination of four pairs of trousers in white, pink, navy blue and lilac, some smarter and some casual tops and this year, for the first time ever, I am also taking 2 dresses - which are both loose and very cool and can, joyfully, be worn with trainers. For my feet, I have said trainers, a pair of loafers from Gabor and two pairs of Sole Bliss shoes - sandals and some pink suede pumps.

Click on the images to zoom in...

Purple top Kettlewell, Trousers: Paul Smith (part of a trouser suit) Necklace: Sahara, Shoes: Sole Bliss suede pink pumps Earrings: Toolally, Sunglasses: Rayban.

White top: Cos, Long multi-coloured top: NRBY, Trousers: Zara, Shoes: Gabor loafers, Handbag: Sarah Haran, Earrings: Sahara, Hat - bought locally aeons ago, Sunglasses: Rayban.

 Dress: NRBY, Silver Handbag: Zara and Grey suede and silver trainers: Caprice, Hat - bought locally aeons ago, Sunglasses: Rayban.

Shirt: Aspiga, Trousers: Zara, Shoes: Gabor loafers, Handbag: Sole Bliss, Earrings: Oliver Bonas, Sunglasses: Rayban.

Pale blue linen dress: White Company, Shoes: Sole Bliss sandals, Trousers: Zara, Earrings: Sahara.

As always, I’ve packed  about 10 pairs of my favourite earrings, a scarf or two and all my LFF makeup edited down to Light Look Beauty Balm, Bronzer and Blusher with two trios palettes (Soft Purple and Cool Blues). And in my handbag I’ll take 3 of my favourite zingier lippies - Fuchsia, Tulip Pink and Cherry Red. And finally I have decanted everything else - shampoo, conditioner, root boost spray, cleansers, day and night cream and body lotion (and even toothpaste) into small plastic travel jars and bottles which I bought from Superdrug.

I am writing this in Lerici and am happy to report that my choices have proved to be spot-on. Whether travelling, sightseeing, socialising or painting with my group, I have had the appropriate clothes for the temperature and the occasion. My feet have been happy, my hair has behaved itself and my LFF makeup has stayed put from early morning to late at night. And yes, thankyou for asking, I am having the most fantastic time! The painting course was the best fun with a brilliant (and hilarious) teacher and a great Super Trooper-type group of fabulous women (and one lone man).

Pale pink blouse and pink and white 'infinity scarf: Kettlewell,, Trousers: Zara, Shoes: Gabor, Earrings: Sahara

Very comfortable sandals: Sole Bliss.

Now I am finally able to fully relax with my best friend, both of us lying on sunbeds by the pool and lazily watching the boats sail in and out of the harbour. Utter bliss!

Tricia x

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