It’s that time of year again. Summer vacations are rapidly approaching and the packing lists have come pouring into our inbox. Pinterest-worthy mood boards describing aspirational destinations and the perfect outfits to wear have us salivating with every click—but, let’s be real: our vacation budget does not include a pre-trip-suitcase-filling designer shopping spree. Rather, our packing list is comprised of affordable basics, comfortable classics, and the occasional splurge that flawlessly ties everything together. We want to re-introduce you to some brands that totally have this whole travel thing down and, if you’ve overlooked them in the past, can be your one-stop-shops come vacation-planning time.
If you’re jetting off to a particularly urban escape, there is one absolute must-have item you should really never leave home without. Any guesses? Of course, you know it: comfortable walking shoes. Before the age of the trainer that introduced feet-friendly rubber soles paired with couture, we were hard pressed to find a walking shoe that was comfortable and didn’t put a damper on our outfit of the day. Now, stylish sneaks have practically taken over street style and we couldn’t be more stoked that the comfy option is the trendy pick too. That brings us to Geox, an Italian apparel and shoe brand just shy of their 20-year anniversary. Not only is the design super up to date, but they’re also known for high tech fabrics that are breathable, so you can keep your cool this summer, flexible, and waterproof. We can’t think of anything more now.
Tip: Stick to the three-shoe rule: one sneaker, one sandal, and one dressy shoe. Then wear one and pack two!Contact in Pearl, $150; geox.com Nolina in Caramel/Black, $180; geox.com Dandelion in Beige/Optic White; $150 geox.com
On the other hand, maybe you’re headed for another kind of adventure; one that has you exploring the great outdoors whether it be hiking Machu Picchu or diving the cenotes of Yucatan. In that case, you’re going to need trendy active wear that lets you channel your inner explorer without forsaking your outer fashionista. And in that case, Madewell is the best. One of our favorite brands to date, and beloved by the likes of it-girl Alexa Chung, DJ Harley Viera-Newton, and Kelly Framel a.k.a. The Glamourai, you can literally find anything and everything you need for your scenic sojourn. Try the 100% cotton campstich fatigues to keep you cool yet protected on hikes. The leather rucksack is an ideal addition to any travel expedition. The wear and tear as you break in new leather will soon tell the stories of your unforgettable experiences. Another go-to is the ex-boyfriend shirt that you’ll grab every morning to combat the chill, tie around your waist for hands free storage, and reach for again at night to ward off bug bites. The Madewell treasure chest is chock full of priceless travel finds!
Tip: Stock your suitcase with a few large plastic baggies so if, no, when you need to separate items—like a wet bathing suit—you always have some on handMadewell Ex-Boyfriend Shirt in Indigo Weave, $79.50 Madewell The Transport Rucksack, $248, Madewell Campstich Fatigues in Light Olive, sale $74.50
It’s also totally possible that your dream vacation involved none of the above. You don’t want to walk, run, hike, or even move if it’s not from the pool to the bar and back. In that case, you’ve probably already booked yourself a sweet spa getaway that involves nothing but pampering all day, every day. Even on a relaxing retreat, the last thing you want is a suitcase full of disheveled ready-to-wear that is no longer as its name suggests. Because wrinkles do not complement your newfound glow from the inside out, Babette is your bounce back apparel solution. We only recently discovered made in the USA brand for ourselves and soon found out Babette owns the manufacturing for her signature pleated designs, meaning from concept to consumer Babette’s got her brand on lock. The fabrics are amazingly light and airy and she designs with unique textures and prints for literally effortless style. After your massage, slip on one of her dresses, or a pleated skirt with the perfect white tee, and keep on livin’ the dream.
Tip: Hang whatever you plan on wearing for the evening in the bathroom while you get ready—steam from a hot shower will relax wrinkles with ease!
V-Neck Sunburst Pleated Dress in Rose Dust, $395; shopbabette.com
photo credit: sheknows.com