November 23, 2014

Maintaining a Business Wardrobe on the Road

On a business trip to Miami, a pair of sleek boots became a multitasking fashion tool. The boots were worn with jeans, dress pants, a knee-length dress and a long skirt, taking functional footwear to the next level. On that same trip, a faulty hotel iron and rumpled blouse — a clearance special — taught me that high-quality pieces are worth every penny. Dressing for every occasion can be a challenge. Find your packing mojo with these strategies.

Balance:

Natalie McNeal, author of the upcoming book The Frugalista Files, recommends thong sandals for travelers. “This footwear is easy to remove during airport security screenings, can be worn to the pool during lounging hours and takes up minimal space,” she said. Cardigan sweaters are easy to pack and add a touch of polish to any after-hours outfit, according to McNeal.  For accessories, she recommends jewelry that works with several outfits such as silver hoops or sparkling studs for earrings and mid-length neck chains.

Replacements:

Pamela Parisi, native of New York City and founder of The Elegant Tightwad researches high-end consignment shops ahead of time. This keeps her on budget if a wardrobe item is damaged, or she realizes what’s packed will result in over dressing for an event. Endless.com, an online retail program affiliated with Amazon, offers free overnight shipping on high-quality shoe styles for both men and women. Similarly, fashionphile.com will ship gently-used luxury bags directly to your location, saving the stress of replacing an expensive wardrobe item at full cost and letting you stay spiffy for the duration of your stay.

Fabric:

Certain fabric choices make for high-functioning travel clothing, providing greater value in the form of wrinkle and stain resistance, water resistance, drying time and more. The color of the fabric you choose for your business trip wardrobe can also make your journey more or less stressful. Choose colors that coordinate and hide dirt, and you’ll have a more stable wardrobe with a greater number of outfit choices.

Technique:

It’s inevitable that by trying to provide yourself with as many dressing options as possible, you’ll likely include too many items. Over packing causes unnecessary wrinkles meaning that you’ll have to take precious travel time in order to provide touchups with the iron. Limiting your clothing selections will reduce the odds of this complication.

Photo Credit: Victor 1558