6 Sen­si­ble Pack­ing Tips

Porthole Cruise Magazine - - Cover -

YOU’VE SCOURED THE BROCHURES, CHO­SEN YOUR itin­er­ary, booked your tick­ets, and you’re ready for the va­ca­tion of a life­time. But be­fore the jour­ney be­gins, you’ve got to get those bags packed with cruise-wor­thy clothes that will make you look and feel great. Where to start?

If you’ve heard the term “cruise col­lec­tion” be­fore, you may have won­dered what they’re all about. The high fash­ion houses (think: Chanel, Gucci, Dior) re­lease an­nual cruise col­lec­tions, also known as re­sort and hol­i­day col­lec­tions or col­lec­tions croisière in French. While the more pop­u­lar col­lec­tions are Spring/ Sum­mer and Fall/ Win­ter, which are shown twice a year at the fash­ion shows in New York, Paris, Lon­don, and Mi­lan, cruise col­lec­tions are shown be­tween the two. In the United States, cruise col­lec­tion cloth­ing typ­i­cally makes its ap­pear­ance in stores in Novem­ber, af­ter the new Fall/ Win­ter ar­rivals and be­fore the Spring/ Sum­mer col­lec­tions are avail­able, mak­ing it an in­ter-sea­son col­lec­tion. But the ref­er­ence to cruises is ac­tu­ally a bit of a mis­nomer.

When this trend of haute cou­ture “cruise” fash­ion started decades ago, it was tar­geted to­ward the uber rich, the jet­set­ters who win­tered in won­der­ful places around the world, fol­low­ing the beck­on­ing call of golden sun, white sand, and turquoise wa­ters. While North Amer­i­cans were look­ing at Caribbean cruises to es­cape win­ter’s harsh cold, Euro­peans were more likely to be head­ing to the Mediter­ranean for respite. So, sum­mer cloth­ing was dis­played in the dead of win­ter for those who were plan­ning a win­ter es­cape.

But these days, “cruise col­lec­tion” is an out­dated term in the fash­ion in­dus­try as it no longer re­ally ap­plies. Be­sides the fact that the col­lec­tions have lit­tle, if any­thing, to do with cruis­ing, ev­ery­one, not just the wealthy, is trav­el­ing now and they’re do­ing it all year long. But just be­cause the name isn’t right, experts still think that cruise col­lec­tions hold an ap­peal to trav­el­ers.

“Cruise col­lec­tions aren’t just for cruis­ing as they are also con­sid­ered re­sort wear,” says Tif­fany Dowd, founder and pres­i­dent of Luxe So­cial Me­dia and Luxe Tif­fany. “These col­lec­tions can be worn just as easily on a lux­ury cruise or yacht as they would be at a lux­ury ho­tel on a warm- weather hol­i­day.”

Whether your cruise style is bold or sub­tle, cou­ture or casual, there are cer­tain things that make cloth­ing cruise- wor­thy that have noth­ing to do with looks or la­bels. Here are six tips to en­sure that you sail into your va­ca­tion sen­si­bly, but in style:

1. GO WRIN­KLE- FREE _ Light, breezy, sum­mer-friendly fab­rics tend to wrin­kle easily and since irons are a fire hazard, you won’t find one in your cabin. So, while linen is gor­geous and cool, it won’t serve you well on a cruise. In­stead, look for cloth­ing in fab­rics that won’t wrin­kle. Many stores, such as Chicos, fea­ture col­lec­tions of wrin­kle-free or no-iron clothes. When you’re pack­ing, layer your cloth­ing be­tween sheets of tis­sue paper to help the item re­tain its shape and min­i­mize wrin­kles. If your cloth­ing does get wrin­kled, hang them in the bath­room while you shower and let the steam smooth them out, or use wrin­kle-re­lease spray.

2. PACK MUL­TI­PUR­POSE CLOTH­ING _ Pack clothes that can per­form dou­ble duty, such as pieces that can easily go from day to night. “We’re con­tin­u­ing to see mul­ti­pur­pose cruise wear on board ships,” says Colleen McDaniel, se­nior ex­ec­u­tive edi­tor at Cruise Critic. “That means a pair of slim-fit black capris or trousers that can be dressed down dur­ing the day or paired with a blouse and fab­u­lous jew­elry at night, for ex­am­ple. Light lay­ers — in­clud­ing more sheer fab­rics — are com­fort­able in port, but also work as a dressier op­tion for din­ner. Men and women are re­ally pay­ing at­ten­tion to their ac­ces­sories as well.” For ex­am­ple, the sim­ple ad­di­tion of ac­ces­sories such as high heels can el­e­vate a casual dress to one suit­able for a dressy din­ner.

3. COM­BINE PRAC­TI­CAL AND COM­FORT­ABLE WITH STYLE _ “Al­though you don’t see a lot of cat­walk fash­ion on cruise ships, there are el­e­ments of those col­lec­tions re­flected in the choices peo­ple make when dress­ing for a cruise,” says McDaniel. “They want to be able to dress up, cover up, and re­lax while look­ing their best, in fun and of­ten summery styles.” Cruis­ing, even at the high­est-lux­ury level, should be both prac­ti­cal and com­fort­able she says. “By prac­ti­cal, cloth­ing should pack well, be ver­sa­tile enough to wear in lay­ers or on its own, and be easily dressed up or down. Com­fort also has to be built in for long walks, cooler tem­per­a­tures, and in­clement weather.” 4. PACK I TEMS THAT FOLD E ASILY _ Any­thing that can fold into a frac­tion of its full size is a cruiser’s friend! Shoes can take up so much room in a suit­case, but Tieks are fold­able, lux­u­ri­ous leather bal­let flats that are not only beau­ti­ful and come in a va­ri­ety of col­ors, but they’re in­cred­i­bly com­fort­able, too. Longchamp’s Le Pliage tote folds flat into the shape of an over­sized en­ve­lope so it’s easy to pack and is the per­fect bag to bring on shore ex­cur­sions. 5. MI X AND MATCH _ To sim­plify your cruise wardrobe, choose a color pal­ette and stick to it. A com­bi­na­tion of three col­ors (say, navy, white, and emer­ald green) makes it easy to mix and match all of your clothes, which will help stream­line your pack­ing and make sure there’s room in your suit­case for bring­ing home sou­venirs! 6 . PAIR F ORM WI T H F UNCT ION _ “The hat has be­come a fash­ion state­ment in ad­di­tion to be­ing a way to com­bat UV rays,” says McDaniel. “Women are think­ing about their swimsuit cover-ups as much as they’re think­ing about swimwear.” Dowd agrees: “Women are look­ing to make a state­ment while on hol­i­day with­out com­pro­mis­ing com­fort. It should be fash­ion with func­tion.”

Whether your cruise style is bold or sub­tle, cou­ture or casual, there are cer­tain things that make cloth­ing cruise-wor­thy that have noth­ing to do with looks or la­bels.

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