How to Pack for Two Weeks In Europe.

Packing for a long trip is always overwhelming, but if there is anything I’ve learned (especially after this trip, where my bags were lost for two days!!) it’s that you have to be a bit fluid and you can’t stress over your stuff too much. If you end up forgetting something, there is a 99% chance you’ll be able to find it overseas. For this trip, I packed a bunch of comfy basics. I also brought a few girlier things (dresses + pretty tops) for dinners in London and Paris but the majority of my trip was spent sight-seeing and/or playing with three boys, so there wasn’t much a need for those things. Comfy sweaters (my fav!!), leggings, jeans, boots, and sneakers… no fussing allowed (+ all easy to wash at my friends’ home in Ireland).

With that, here are two big lessons that I learned this trip. They’re pretty obvious, but still… wanted to share them. I never ever check a bag so I am just going to blame my rookie moves on that.

  1. Always pack the important things (toothbrush, deodorant, maybe an extra outfit) in your carry-on. That way, if your luggage does go missing, you will be okay for the first 24 hours.
  2. And keep your valuables in your carry-on! As a general rule I don’t travel with my nice things, but I did bring my nice watch. It was in a pouch with my Monica Vinader watch, and I accidentally put it into my main luggage and not my carry-on. Not a big deal usually but when my luggage got lost, I panicked a bit!

Anyway, these are the best leggings ever. They’re usually for the gym but they are SO comfy that they’re just perfect for the red eye. Can’t say enough good things… they’re brushed and just so, so soft. I also packed a travel sized version of my Everyday Oil as it is the best and so great as a multi-tasker. I use it on both my face and my body and it also doubles as a makeup remover! And even though it takes up a bit of space I always travel with my Beachwaver. It’s the absolute best – I air dry my hair when I travel but then I’ll just go over my (frizzy) waves with this for a little more polish.

Top: Elemis Pro Collagen Trio // ‘All The Missing Girls’ by Megan Miranda // Beyond Yoga Spacedye High Waist Long Leggings // Nike Free Sneakers // Everyday Oil // Halogen Sweater

Middle: Stuart Weitzman 5050 Boots // The Five Minute Journal // Free People Cream Sweater // The Beachwaver Pro // Schmidt’s Natural Deodorant // Monica Vinander Signature Gold Cuff // Jo Malone Perfume

Bottom: Spanx Leggings // Dagne Dover Blush Pouch  // Dana Rebecca Diamond Disc Necklace // ‘The Book Thief’ by Markus Zusak // BP ‘Trolley’ Booties

 

PS – If anyone has recommendations for a European-sized carry-on (that still holds a lot!) I am all ears. I am thinking it’s time to upgrade as my usual carry-on is no longer TSA approved for Europe, and then I just have a tiny one which only holds enough for a long weekend..

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Comments

  1. Hitha says 2.17.17

    The AWAY carry-on (smallest size) meets most European airlines’ carry-on limits. I flew with it on EasyJet, Vueling and had no issues!

    • graceatwood says 2.18.17

      Okay so good to know! Everyone is recommending it!! xx

  2. I went to Europe for three weeks in summer and basics were the key! Lots of mixing and matching versatile pieces!!

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
    http://charmainenyw.com

    • graceatwood says 2.18.17

      Three weeks! Wow that must have been amazing!!! Good for you. x

  3. Marta says 2.17.17

    I’ve never travelled on a plane but your tips were still useful because who knows, I might do it one day.

    • graceatwood says 2.18.17

      I hope you do!!!

  4. Ellen says 2.17.17

    I have the Halogen tunic sweater and LOVE it. Have my eyes on that cream sweater. Would love to visit Europe some day!

    Ellen | A Pop of Pink

    • graceatwood says 2.18.17

      Isn’t it just the best!? So cozy, does not pill, etc. etc. The Free People sweater is amazing too – you should get it! xx

  5. Jess says 2.17.17

    Grace, everyone has been absolutely raving about this carry-on: https://www.awaytravel.com/luggage/carry-on/blue?gclid=Cj0KEQiA25rFBRC8rfyX1vjeg7YBEiQAFIb3b52QR85okR7G6lLTr8Jj3A-a15BN0BVER6JDC04hdcgaAhEM8P8HAQ

    Unfortunately by the time I head about Away carry-on I had JUST purchased a new Samsonite for a 2 week trip (and taken off the tags), so will keep that one for now, but am day-dreaming about the Away carry-on. It looks so practical!

    • graceatwood says 2.18.17

      Thank you Jess! I have heard really good things about this one too! And it’s funny as SO many other readers recommended it. I think they have (or maybe had) a pop-up in New York – I want to see it in person! x

  6. Sam says 2.17.17

    Love this Tumi bag! But some of these roller suitcase options are nice as well: http://www.travelandleisure.com/slideshows/carry-on-bags-that-fit-new-guidelines

    • graceatwood says 2.18.17

      Thank you for the tips Sam! xx

  7. Emma says 2.17.17

    I have an Away carry on and love it – it is super light and has a larger capacity than many other carry on because of its construction. The built in battery is great too! I routinely take long trips to Europe using only my Away and an expandable Longchamp tote (tip: focus on black and neutral clothing you can mix and have low heeled boots for day to night.)
    $20 off Away bags through this link: http://fbuy.me/eH6fl

    • graceatwood says 2.18.17

      Thank you so much Emma! I have heard really really good things about AWAY and am going to have to check them out. 🙂 xx

  8. Christin says 2.17.17

    i would assume the AWAY bag would be okay. i am OBSESSED with mine!

    • graceatwood says 2.18.17

      I have heard such good things!!!

  9. Taylor says 2.17.17

    The beachwaver has been life changing for me – especially on vacations like this! Air dry and it does magic! Thanks for list I have an Italy trip coming up in a few months and I think I need those leggings for my 10 hour flight!
    — Taylor
    The Sarcastic Blonde

    • graceatwood says 2.18.17

      Thanks Taylor! Just a quick thing – I FRIED my beachwaver today with the voltage. Oops. So maybe don’t bring yours to Italy. 🙂 The leggings are amazing – a definite must! xo

  10. Beth says 2.17.17

    Hi Grace! I love packing posts! The beyond yoga leggings look amazing–I live near Bandier so will see if I can try them on before purchasing. I’d be curious if you packed anything you ended up not wearing or if there’s something you wished you had packed. Over the years I’ve gotten better at predicting what I want to wear, but there’s always a couple things that just take up room in my suitcase or cases where I’d wish I’d packed more sweaters or more dresses, etc.

    • graceatwood says 2.18.17

      Oh my gosh they are so so cozy!!!!

      Well in this case I packed too many dresses. I mostly stuck to the things I put in this post, but I packed dresses, etc. thinking I’d want to be fancy – but we ran around so much that I was just in sneakers and leggings for the bulk of the trip!

  11. Merritt Beck says 2.17.17

    Such a great post! Packing is one of my least favorite things to do, so I’m going to keep all of this in mind the next time I have to.

    xx
    Merritt
    The Style Scribe

    • graceatwood says 2.18.17

      Haha same – love to travel, hate to pack. 🙂 Thanks, Merritt! xo

  12. Brooke says 2.17.17

    Question for you, how do you get your beachwaver to work overseas!? Is the voltage European? I have basically given up on finding a voltage converter and it makes me so sad!

    • graceatwood says 2.18.17

      OH MY GOD I am so sad because I broke it today. I ended up not curling my hair because I was lazy, but today I shot with a photographer and went to plug it in and totally fried both the iron and the converter. So so sad especially as I’ve been lugging it around and it takes up a lot of space. I’m just an idiot.

      • Brooke says 2.21.17

        Ugh I’m sorry. I was about to run out to buy a beachwaver for my trip to Spain thinking this must be the answer! Sorry that happened to you but thanks so much for getting back to me 🙂

        • graceatwood says 2.23.17

          The worst. Have a new one on the way. I feel like such an idiot!!!! If you would like, I can ask Briony what kind of a curling iron she had. It’s GHD and has dual voltage….

  13. Naila Hanak says 2.17.17

    I love packing posts! Especially as I’m about to pack a weeks worth of things for a week in Europe today!

    My carry-on (EU sized) of choice is the Eagle Creek No Matter What Flatbed 20″. It’s a no-frills design with a lifetime warranty, water resistant exterior And most importantly, has the built-in wheels that give you another few inches of space! The swivel wheels usually eat up 2 inches of valuable space!

    • graceatwood says 2.18.17

      Aw good!!! And thank you for the recommendation – really appreciate it 🙂 x

  14. Rachel says 2.17.17

    Such a great post!

    http://chicglamstyle.com

    • graceatwood says 2.18.17

      Thank you so much Rachel! xx

  15. Kimber says 2.18.17

    This is great! I will say that the 50/50 boots are better packed than worn on the plane, which makes sense given the relatively small amount of space the shaft occupies. I learned this the hard way on a trip to Copenhagen. I took off the boots during the flight, but struggled to put them back on due to swelling and limited leg space. Whoops! 🙂

    • graceatwood says 2.20.17

      Haha yes – agreed!! My feet swell SO BADLY when I fly – even my sneakers were really tight on the way home!

  16. Emily says 2.18.17

    I was in Copenhagen this week and Germany the week before that, and I managed to do the whole trip (including clothes for work meetings, dinners out, and leisure) in my Briggs and Riley carry-on. I bought the one with built in wheels so I could have the extra inch or two of internal space so I do miss the telescoping wheels a bit, but the extra space is worth it. Love the case and is Euro-travel approved. Those leggings look so cozy, have to get a pair for my next trip!

    • graceatwood says 2.20.17

      I am so impressed!! I need to do a better job packing for my next trip – so much schlepping this time around!