The Process of Packing

As I type this up, I’m sitting on a plane to San Francisco enjoying the benefits of in-flight wi-fi.  Since I knew that my Spring Break itinerary includes 4 flights, my goal was to avoid checking any luggage during this trip.  Normally I bring at least one suitcase, which I can fill to my heart’s content, but this time around I knew that wasn’t going to be the case.  My challenge: could I fit all I needed for two weeks in three different locations (San Francisco, Las Vegas, and Bakersfield) into one carry-on and one “personal item”?  The answer is yes and I figured I would share with you guys my packing process!

Step 1:
On my bed, I lay out all of the clothes that I think I want to take on my trip- this part looks like a hot mess!
Not all of these will make the final cut!
Step 2:
Separate clothing into piles by category (such as dresses, cardigans, pants) and eliminate any redundancies.  For example, sometimes I’ll see that I’ve pulled out 4 pairs of jeans for a short trip, in which case I’ll eliminate a couple because I know I won’t wear all of them!  Also, at this point, I can see the sort of color scheme that I have and bring in more color/patterns if I want- I gravitate towards black and then I self-correct!
Here are the basics, including some camisoles, regular tees and tunics and pajamas.  I have basics in so many colors, but I only selected the ones that were complementary to the tops I brought.
I have some silky and sheer shirts that I can wear to go clubbing in Vegas as well as some more interesting tops that are still casual enough for daytime.
Shorts and skirts! In the back are the nighttime skirts (all black- see what I mean?) and towards the front are more daytime appropriate skirts- a few with prints and a few solids so that I can remix them.
I limited myself to three pairs of pants- a black pair of jeggings that can work for day
or night, and a light and darker pair of skinny jeans.
Dresses:  All of the ones I selected have spaghetti straps or are strapless, so I can wear them as is if it’s delightfully sunny or layer a cardigan over them if it’s a little chillier.  I didn’t want to bring any of my thick sweater dresses because I figured it would be too warm for those!
Step 3:

Gather the jewelry and shoes!  Looking at the outfits I made up, I grabbed matching earrings from my jewelry frame, as well as necklaces from my revolving stand.  Then I also grabbed the pairs of shoes that I thought would be most versatile- one pair of flats, one pair of wedges, one pair of boots (which I’m wearing on the plane because they’re the bulkiest), and what my friends have termed “the stripper shoes” for Vegas.  And of course, they’re all black! :D

like you saw yesterday, but filled up with most of my earrings!
Step 4:
Pack everything into the carry-on.  I put the shoes on bottom and wrapped them up in plastic bags so that they don’t get my clothes dirty.  Then the rest is like putting together a puzzle- I roll them up as small as I can and I fit them together in layers in my duffel.  This involves a lot of moving things around as I discover that something fits better elsewhere.
things that are too bulky when rolled go on top, layed out as flat as possible
Other things that I packed that aren’t picture here are outerwear (faux leather jacket and trench), toiletries, homework, makeup, and computer, all of which went into my other bag- my “personal item.”

And there you have it- that’s how I pack!  I’m definitely not saying that this is the best method out there, but I do I know that I am able to fit a great deal of things into a small amount of space and packing only carry-on items for a two-week trip is definitely an accomplishment for me (my roommates almost made a bet that I wouldn’t be able to do it because they know how I am)!

So tell me, what’s your packing process?  Do you use any of the techniques that I mentioned?