It feels like half of the world is travelling during the summer and Europe is one of the top most popular destinations. Personally, I think summer is not the most ideal time to travel, but I’m a teacher…so I have little options! While summer means everywhere will be super busy and pricier, it is a great time to enjoy the sun, the heat, and feed off the buzz! Because let’s face it, Europe can be surprisingly cold up until mid-May! When summer hits, you can finally ditch the three extra layers and work on your tan!
What makes picking and packing outfits for Europe so nice is that no matter how many countries you are visiting, in general the whole continent has similar weather and temperature averages, but double check the forecast just in case. Here are some ideas and key things to keep in mind as you pack up for a trip in the Summer.
1. Day to Night Outfits
There is so much to do in Europe! Whether it’s going to museums, walk through a park, going to the beach or endless sight-seeing. There is also something chic about Europe and this fashion culture that has an outfit for every occasion. Now, you can’t pack for all occasions, but there are some easy ways to transform your day outfit to an evening outfit to look chic and oh la la!
- Bring clothing items that are mostly of a solid color or simple pattern, with only two or three statement pieces. Less is more.
- Accessorize! A scarf, a statement necklace, or hat can totally change the look!
- Style your hair. Nothing like a nice ballerina bun to look polished with little effort!
- Change Shoes: Go from TOMS to lace-up ballet flats and your outfit looks ready for a lovely dinner.
Above you can see that I only change 3 things from my day outfit to my night outfit. I ditched the jean jacket, traded the sun hat for a head scarf and added a long necklace. Oh, and I untucked the dusty-rose top! Voila, just different enough to pull off!
2. Comfy Shoes
I know what you’re thinking. It’s summer! I can wear all my fun shoes! Before you pack all your heels and sandals, take some time to discern which ones will do you well and which ones will kill your feet! Bring at least one go-to walking shoes you know you can go for miles without dying in. Then (if you are a shoe-aholic like yours truly) one or two pair of sandals (because they hardly take up space or weight!) and your most comfortable and versatile high heels or wedges.
3. Neutral with Pops of Color
It’s summer, you will be tempted to wear ALL the colours! Unless you are one of those women who strictly wear black and similar shades at all times. But if you’re like me, you usually are obsessed with color (specifically white, mint, blues, and blush). To make packing simple and as minimal as possible without compromising fashion goals, I usually follow an 80/20 rule.
80% of my clothing items are whites, grays, blacks, or beige tones, while 20% can be fun colors like mint, peacock blue, and green. Another way to add a pop of summer colour to your outfit is accessories like scarves and statement necklaces. If you want to play it REAL safe and cannot be bothered with pulling together a creative outfit, make-up is your last resort. A bright red or coral pink lipstick will not only make you look like you put some effort, but add that summer touch to your look. I also recommend bright eye-liner, like the one I mentioned in my Faves. I think this SCREAMS summer and draws attention to your eyes in a subtle way, so you can still wear lipstick and not feel like a clown!
Here you can see that I mostly did black and white, with a gorgeous BRIGHT blue scarf I bought locally, and I was able to pull of my brown Oxfords which, though you can’t tell in this picture, tied in with my head band. The next outfit only had pink (with some green) from the flower print on my top. I love this outfit, because it’s comfy, and looks pretty chic (with maybe the exception of my worn-out TOMS!). Almost all the clothing items in these two pictures were bought at H&M by the way! Gotta love that place…
4. Bring Sun Protection!
We often forget that it can get really hot and sunny in Europe during the summer! Don’t be caught getting a sunburn on your first day in Rome! Whether it’s sun lotion, shades or a hat, make sure you are getting enough protection for your skin. By the way, if you are in Italy, you can purchase a gorgeous lace parasol as both a great souvenir and a way to stay out of the harmful rays of the sun in a classy, vintage way!
5. A Good Hand Bag
Nothing like a good travel personal bag to compliment your outfit. Just make sure it is one that cannot be opened easily by a stranger or pickpocket! I ALWAYS use a bag that has some kind of clip and it’s usually a shoulder bag with a flap to keep my contents secret, and safe.
6. The Staple Bottoms
There are some outfit pieces that are simply a must, not only for comfort and style, but versatility. Be sure to pack these items and to bring tops to match:
- A good pair of jeans – don’t bring super tight ones, but don’t bring your grubby ones. Bring that one good pair that you can pull off both casual and semi-formal with the right combination.
- A solid-coloured skirt – not only are skirts comfy and make you feel oh so girly, they are ideal for summer!
- A pair of black leggings – seriously, these things save lives! You can wear just about any top or shoes with a pair of leggings and you’re good to go, looking classy and feeling comfy.
- A pair of solid-coloured shorts – do I really need to explain this choice? What could be more synonymous with summer than shorts??
These are honestly the only bottoms you would need for your holiday, whether it’s one week or one month (if you wear each piece 3-4 times and bring a summer dress or two, that can last you 20 days easy!)
I hope these tips will motivate and inspire you as you prepare for your summer euro trip! I plan to make a more detailed clothing item checklist suggestion for what to specifically pack, this most is to inspire you with ideas for your own style and some very basic tips, but I know some girls struggle with visualizing, making decisions and whatnot, so that will be coming soon! Until then, you can check out my Pinterest board completely dedicated to summer and spring outfits. Have fun packing!
Who is planning a trip this summer? We are going to Portugal and Italy this August!! Let me know if you have any fashion tips when it comes to travel in the comments below!