Monday, January 22, 2018

What Accessories Should One Pack for an Italian Vacation?

On Friday, I pulled together a wardrobe for one of you who has a fun trip planned with adult children:

4 by 4 Summer Travel Wardrobe in navy and beige with aqua and pink accents
cardigan - J.Crew; tank top – L.L.Bean; skirt – L.L.Bean; pants – L.L.Bean; striped top – Rag & Bone; cardigan – Halogen; shorts – L.L.Bean; cropped pants – L.L.Bean; aqua striped top – L.L.Bean; navy tee - Uniqlo; aqua tee – Lands’ End; pink tee – Lands’ End; sleeveless linen top - Uniqlo; cardigan – Uniqlo; dress –Christopher Esber; dress – Eileen Fisher

This was the color scheme with which I was working:

color palette for a summer wardrobe in navy and beige with cognac, pink and aqua

There are already some accessories in her wardrobe...

Accessory wardrobe for travel in gold, navy and cognac
Earrings – Sarah & Sebastian; earrings – Lily Flo Jewellery; clutch – Nina; bracelet - Vitae Ascendere; watch – Fossil; brown bag – Frye; tote – Longchamp; scarf – Rebecca Minkoff; loafers – Taryn Rose; sandals – Kork-Ease; gold sandals - Söfft; navy sandals - Bionica

So let's start with my new template for accessories, and plug in the pieces that we already have:

Stage 1 for a 6 by 4 Accessory Wardrobe

For me, earrings are VERY important - I'm choosing an accent pair in aqua, and then a really simple pair of gold studs that can be worn for days without thought... Similarly, both an accent striped bracelet and some classic gold bangles are being added to her accessory wardrobe...

adding earrings and bracelets to a 6 by 4 Accessory Wardrobe
Aqua enamel earrings – Raphaele Canot; gold stud earrings – Kendra Scott; striped bracelet – Talbots; gold bracelets – Kenneth Cole New York

I ALWAYS believe in a good brooch! And necklaces don't take up much space, but can really change the feeling of an outfit.

adding a brooch and necklaces to a 6 by 4 Accessory Wardrobe
Leaf brooch – Oscar de la Renta; rainbow necklace – Dina Mackney; aqua necklace – Nadri; multi-strand necklace – Treasure & Bond

After these additions, we can clearly see the last 4 pieces that might be helpful...

Stage 2 of a 6 by 4 Accessory Wardrobe

Since our heroine is going to be in Italy in the summer, I thought that a packable hat could be both fun and useful! One big scarf and one pocket-square give some fun options, and a belt that matches her sandals and her brown bag could be a nice touch.

Adding a hat, scarves and a belt to a 6 by 4 Accessory Wardrobe
Hat – Eric Javits; beige striped scarf – Sole Society; cotton pocket square – Bar III; belt – Halogen

Here's the finished wardrobe:

a completely 6 by 4 Accessory Wardrobe in gold, navy and cognac

Here's where it gets fun - returning to Friday's outfits, and adding some accessories!

2 ways to wear a marled navy cardigan from a 4 by 4 Wardrobe

2 ways to wear a beige cardigan from a 4 by 4 Travel Wardrobe

2 ways to wear a navy skirt from a 4 by 4 Travel Wardrobe

2 ways to wear beige shorts from a 4 by 4 Travel Wardrobe

2 ways to wear navy pants from a 4 by 4 Travel Wardrobe

2 ways to wear beige capris from a 4 by 4 Travel Wardrobe

2 ways to wear a beige dress from a 4 by 4 Travel Wardrobe

I've always felt that accessories make a tremendous amount of difference; do you find that to be true for you?


What Accessories Should One Pack for an Italian Vacation?
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  1. Definitely a hat. Maybe even a second one? I like a cloche that keeps the sun off my face without a huge brim that is going to make it fly away at the slightest breeze.
    Also sunglasses. Maybe even two pairs.
    OTOH, the shorts might not get much wear. Even on the Amalfi Coast, I think she will not see many adults in shorts. Certainly not in Florence.

  2. I live in shorts during the summer so I appreciate knowing that. Thanks for the heads up - I'd love any additional advice. Looking at accessories in a 4 x 4 makes a tremendous amount of sense - I've never thought of doing that. And yes to sunglasses and hats. I have an Eric Javits hat that is at least 25 years old. It's worn beautifully but it is time for an update - this could be a perfect choice.

  3. Oooooohhhhhh, an accessory template! LOVE.

  4. I noticed that accessories definitely make a difference. A simple shirt and skirt could look frumpy, but add some sparkly earrings and voila! Glamorous.
    I’m in my forties with a toddler and often feel uncertain about how I look to others. I’m pulled toward a bit more sophisticated style than the younger mothers, but I don’t want to look “old.” I also have a teenage daughter who sometimes offers “suggestions” to which my reply is that I don’t feel the need to try to look like I’m in my twenties.

  5. Of course, sunglasses. I think a couple of pairs of sunglasses--since they are a way of dramatically changing the look of an outfit while taking up next to no real estate space in a suitcase. These accessories you've chosen work magic. I never wore bracelets in the past because I felt they were so annoying when typing at a computer--but you've converted me to thinking about how they, therefore, can become a vacation signifier. And the right bracelet looks great with even quite casual clothes.

  6. The accessories make all the difference with this wardrobe. I agree about the shorts, a stone skirt might be a good alternative.

  7. Beautiful wardrobe for Italy or Kentucky (in warmer weather) Love how the accessories give the outfits a purpose..they seem complete!

  8. I love this idea, makes the difference between looking nice and looking stylish!

  9. I LOVE the new template. Can't wait to have an excuse to try it. Thank you so much.

  10. It's interesting how when the accessories are introduced to the clothes, the purpose behind each outfit is then instantly defined. A great exercise in demonstrating how accessories bring the clothes themselves truly alive. Thank you, Janice, that's a valuable lesson. Hugs, Mary, x.

  11. The hat is a great idea. I found myself on the Cinque Terre on a bright sunny day and absolutely needed a hat. To my dismay the only ones available in the shops were very ugly. I bought one because I needed the sun protection, but I won't forget a hat again! If I were packing this wardrobe for Europe I'd replace the shorts with a pair of cropped white jeans - or stone or blue denim full length ones. - nancyo