For Smart Packing, Keep Taking the Capsules

Can your clothes save you time and bother when packing? Shannon Wilson thinks so. The co-founder and creative director of ‘capsule wardrobe’ specialists Kit and Ace is on a mission to help us pack better and travel smarter. A frequent traveller and working mother, she shares her tips on packing light for both business trips and family holidays.

What’s in a capsule wardrobe?
A capsule wardrobe is made up of timeless, essential pieces that you can easily layer and match with other items in your closet, so you’re not constantly replacing them as trends change. For me, a capsule wardrobe includes white T-shirts, beautifully tailored trousers and a dress that goes from day to night.

What are the benefits?
When you have a wardrobe where pieces are interchangeable, packing is easy. It saves you time when putting together outfits, and you’ll end up packing less.

What are your must-have items while travelling?
I love a good scarf that you can wrap around your shoulders, or use as a blanket when it gets cold on the plane. A crew neck t-shirt is something you’ll always find in my suitcase when I’m travelling – it’s a versatile item you can wear with a pair of jeans, or dress up with a skirt or trouser to go out to dinner.

What should travellers try to remember while they’re putting together their wardrobe?
Maximizing each piece adds flexibility to your travel wardrobe. Mix in a few pieces from your everyday wardrobe and you’re ready for any occasion.

How do you pack for a business trip and a family holiday?
Personally, my travel wardrobe doesn’t differ drastically. When you’re travelling for business, though, it’s good to pack tailored blazers and trousers. I have two young boys that keep me going, so a great pair of trainers that you can wear with a casual dress or jeans go a long way. Also, for a family holiday, you’ll never find me without a swimsuit – swimming is a passion of mine, and it’s also a great workout.

What happens if you’re flying from a cold climate to a hot one, and vice versa?
When you have multiple outfit options, you can layer for those unexpected temperature changes.

Are you a roller or a folder?
Folder. If you’re packing lightweight pieces, it can save you a lot of room.

Most important things to remember when packing light?
Pack comfortable, anti-wrinkle items that you can layer for warmth. It’ll save you a lot of time when you’re on the go and don’t have the luxury of changing before running to your first appointment.

Shannon Wilson is the co-founder and creative director of Kit and Ace, a Canada-based clothing label that was established in 2013. Inspired by the laidback yet active Australian lifestyle Wilson experienced while living in Bondi, Sydney with her family, the brand takes the best principles of technical athletic designs and applies them to essential wardrobe pieces.

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