We are headed to Austin this week for the holiday and I (Jen) am counting down the minutes! I am also already planning my day-of-travel outfit, which is pretty much my airport uniform at this point. While there are plenty of instances when getting dressed is purely a fun, creative expression of style, dressing for air travel is more about being practical. That being said, dressing practically doesn’t have to mean a free pass to Uggs and sweatpants down the jetway either — there are plenty of ways to look stylish and put together while still being comfortable and functional. After all, nobody wants to be the girl at security holding up the line while she unlaces her knee-high boots and removes 15 bangles from her arm! Here’s my guide to dressing for stress-free holiday air travel:
1. Layers: Begin building your look by starting with your favorite soft cotton tee or tank. This will ensure that the piece closest to your skin is soft and cozy. My favorite tanks right now are by a small, LA based company called Sloane & Tate. They’re amazing!
2. Comfortable pants: My go-to pants for traveling are a pair of stretchy J Brand corduroys that I’ve had forever. They’re just as comfortable as sweats, but much chicer. Other options are chinos or other tailored cotton pants that have a little give to them. While my silk patterned pants are really comfortable, I make it a point not to wear dry clean only while traveling. I want all of my clothes to go straight into a washing machine after being on a plane! Also, skip the belt if at all possible. It will be one less thing to take off and put back on at security.
3. Socks & Boots: First of all, socks are a MUST when traveling. You do not want to be walking barefoot through that x-ray machine where so many have traveled before you! My favorite shoes for traveling during the fall and winter are a pair of flat J.Crew ankle boots! They have one simple zipper on the inside of the leg and are super quick and easy to get in and out of– definitely something to think about!
4. Lightweight Jacket: I have a jacket that I actually call my airplane jacket. It’s an over-sized army green anorak that has a hood so large that I can pull it down over my face past my eyes. It does the job of one of those eye masks without looking quite so high maintenance. It also has enormous pockets which are just always practical. Planes tend to get really chilly so it’s nice to have this extra layer to cozy up in.
pictured: wool coat
5. Thin, cashmere sweater: Not every sweater can be cashmere, but everyone should have at least one thin cashmere sweater in a versatile, neutral color. Trust me. You will wear it more often than you can imagine. Layer this on top of your tee or tank and then continue to step three!
6. Scarf: Your next layer. Go for something extra-large and thin, as opposed to chunky. This way it doubles as a blanket when wrapped around your shoulders or as a pillow when rolled up under your head. If your ride to the airport isn’t going to be that chilly, then stow this away in your tote until you get through security so that you have one less thing to remove and put in the plastic bin. Otherwise save time by putting it in your bag while you wait in the security line.
pictured: pink scarf
7. Carry-on Tote: When traveling, I always stow away my purse and any non-airport essentials in my suitcase and pack my laptop, books, magazines, and essential items in a tote. It’s much lighter than a heavy leather bag and the rectangular shape of the tote is more conducive for all of those rectangular objects. I put my drivers license, debit card, cash, chapstick, and non-perfumed hand lotion in it’s own zipper pouch so that I can transfer it easily from my tote back to my purse when we arrive.