The Ultimate Packing Guide for Women – Fall Weather

Posted By Heather

Ultimate Packing Guide

Packing for a trip can be the worst part of planning – and wondering if you are packing too little, too much, or even the right items for the climate can be a daunting task.

I have taken enough trips to have packing down to a science.

And although that doesn’t mean I look forward to it, I have narrowed down my packing necessities.

The following list is exactly what women need to pack for a cold weather trip.


Fav Chambray


1 White Button Down – My favorite look is an oversized white blouse that looks equally good with jeans as it does with leggings. Try these options from H&M and J.Crew

1 Chambray – One of the most versatile tops  you can own. The classic one from J.Crew is worth the splurge, but just in case – here is a cheaper option from Old Navy.

2-3 T-shirts – Definitely bring one or two white v-neck tees and add a comfortable black and gray for good measure! Here are a few of my favorites from Nordstrom, J.Crew, Amazon and H&M.

1-2 Dressy Blouse – I love this one from J.Crew and this from Zara.

2-3 Sweaters – A wrap sweater or an over size cardigan are the two best things to pack for added coziness. I recently bought this sweater from Forever 21 and wore it all over Cape Town.

cozy sweater


2 Pair of jeans – A pair of semi dark skinny jeans are perfect because they can be dressed up or down depending on the occasion. I bought this pair from J.Crew in June and have taken them on the past four trips – they definitely pulled their weight! Plus, they don’t stretch out so you can wear them multiple times before washing.

I almost always pack a pair of white denim. If that is not your jam, then consider a boyfriend jean or black or gray skinnies.

1-2 Pair of leggings – cheap pair from Target always come in handy for travel days or even for pajamas. I always make sure to have a pair with me.

An upgraded pair is also a necessity. I wouldn’t wear the Target leggings out to dinner but I would wear these (and often have)! I also have this pair (similar pair) and wear them quite frequently at home and abroad – the space they take up rolled in my suitcase is negligible.

Slouchy pants – By far some of the most comfortable pants out there. The fact that these pajama-like pants are considered fashionable is great news for travelers – now we don’t have to worry about what to wear on the plane!

Pair these with a t-shirt and sweater with a pair of flats and you’re ready to go. My favorites include these from H&M and these from Old Navy.


1 Wool Jacket – This is a great option from Amazon.

1 Packable Puffer – This piece is perfect for layering or on those days you are doing more active activities. This Patagonia puffer is actually warm and can easily fit under a more structured jacket on those especially cold or damp days on the road.

1 Blazer (optional) – A black blazer is perfect for elevating any look to something extra special. It easily fits folded at the top of your suitcase and pairing it with a scarf and skinny jeans makes for a seriously chic evening look. A good blazer is worth the investment and I turn to J.Crew for the best versions.


1-2 Pair of running leggings

1-2 Sports bra

1-2 Active tops


ankle boots

1 Pair of Flats – Buy the most comfortable pair you can find – remember, you want to be able to walk around all day without blisters. My favorites are usually from Madewell and J.Crew.  This pair will elevate any look and can be worn while sight seeing and then out to dinner. I also have a classic pair (similar to these but older) and they have held up well for the past three years.

1 Pair of Sneakers – My favorite pair of sneakers for travel are my Nike Internationalist – and not just because of the name! They are the most comfortable waking shoe and can even be worn for a run if I don’t have running shoes with me. If you want a running shoe, the most fashionable pair are neutral colored (I love black and white) Nike Frees.

Both of these sneakers look equally good with jeans or leggings – check out my Pinterest board for more inspiration.

1 Pair of Boots – I typically pack a pair of ankle boots or riding boots for those trips with cooler weather. I find ankle boots to be more versatile in fluctuating temperatures because you can wear them with long pants or with shorts and dresses if the weather is warmer. My favorite pair are Sam Edelman (pictured above but are sold out). Here is a similar pair – Sam Edelman Petty Boot.

1 Pair or Heels (If the occasion calls for it – otherwise don’t bother.)

Bonus – A simple pair of flip flops is a good idea to bring on every trip. This way you are prepared for a jaunt to the pool or spa.



2 Pair of Dainty Earrings – a simple pair of studs works with every outfit any time.

1 Pair of Statement Earrings – swapping out a pair of studs for statement earrings is an easy way to transition from day to night activities.

2-3 Dainty Necklaces – My favorite necklaces are from Layered and Long. I wear these constantly whether we are at home or traveling. (You can use the code EPOP10 for a discount).

1 Statement Necklace – Another easy way to take your look from day to night. The best necklace (and one I am currently coveting) is this versatile piece from Stella and Dot. You can wear the Plume Necklace in several different ways which makes it the perfect piece for travel!

1 Watch – My current favorite is this Michael Kors piece, which I wear practically everywhere.




 Travel Accessories

  • Eye Mask – Save (This one has a place to keep your ear plugs) or Splurge
  • Ear Plugs
  • Cozy Socks
  • Sleep Aid
  • Headphones
  • Blanket Scarf – Save or Splurge
  • Pen


Suitcase – Trav prefers to travel with a backpack but I love having a suitcase because I really hate schlepping a backpack over my shoulder all the time! I have had a very sturdy canvas Samsonite for the past three years. This is a great suitcase but I would love to upgrade to a sleeker option such as this Delsey hard shell luggage.

Tote Bag – I take my Cuyana tote with me on every trip. It is very resilient and looks great as well. If you prefer a day pack I also have my trusty Osprey (similar version) which I will take on occasional trips.

Final Word(s)

The above list is intended to take the guesswork out of packing and help you minimize your travel stress and your suitcase.

Make sure to follow along on Instagram and Pinterest for more travel packing inspiration.

What are some of the things you can’t live without when you’re traveling?  Let us know in the comments below!


  1. Jean says:

    Helpful list! For cold weather that includes rain and snow, add a windproof rain jacket that fits over puffer parka, waterproof breathable Hiking boots Columbia Omni Grip that I got at REI. For remedies that help you maintain health and get over viruses quickly I bring a small kit that includes Argentyn 23 and Chinese WO oil, as well as homeopathic remedies in very small bottles. Electronics – highly recommend mobile powerbank for charging up 2 devices at same time.

    1. Trav says:

      @Jean- Yeah, great suggestions. We definitely are still looking for a good, lightweight power bank. Where can you find the Argentyn 23 and Chinese WO oil?

    2. John says:

      Hello Jean, I thought I was the only one carrying homeopathic remedies all over the world – glad to see there are others!

  2. Katy says:

    I’ve just started listening to your podcast while I’m driving and love all of your guys’ advice. This list is super helpful, especially with the included links for purchasing the items. It’s hard to find a list like this that puts fashion as a priority so that was extra appreciated. Can’t wait for more podcasts! :)

    1. Trav says:

      @Katy- Glad you loved it, and Heather has a new project in the works that will be all about fashion and traveling…can’t wait to release it to the masses!

  3. Samantha says:

    Great list, Heather! The clothing sections could even be a good basic wardrobe guide! I would love to see more pictures of you (or anyone) actually wearing the different pieces, and how you make some of them (wet look leggings!) work in versatile outfits.

    1. Heather says:

      Thanks Samantha! You can check out more outfit inspiration over on my blog – http://www.sartorialstripes.com and/or follow me on instagram @heathersherry. Happy travels!

  4. Alanna says:

    Excellent list! Looks like I’ll have to update my travel wardrobe…

    1. Trav says:

      @Alanna- Awesome, what specific pieces are you looking to get?

  5. I just listened to the recent podcast about packing lists for women. You gave me permission to not feel bad about taking 5 dresses and four pair of shoes.

    AND! I have to say that women just have more stuff than men. All the beauty supplies and health supplies and makeup add a lot. I travel for work and am an artist so there’s the art supplies, too, which even at a minimum add a lot.

    It sounded to me like Trav was giving you a lot of grief, Heather, a lot of subtle shaming for having so much stuff. But if men’s looks were held to the same standard as women’s, men would have to carry a lot of ‘product’ too.

    I think men have NO IDEA how much time, money and effort women put into looking good wherever they are. It’s ENORMOUS. But we’re never allowed to ‘let ourselves go’ and just be ourselves. Especially now, when we are taking photos of ourselves everywhere, there’s pressure to look great all the time.

    In any case, you look great and have sound advice for packing, so thank you. More power to you!

    I travel to Paris every year and love buying my beauty products there. They last most of the year, are a reminder of my time in Europe, and make me feel fancy all year ’round.

    Now, I am going to listen to the gear packing podcast because that, too, is an issue.

    Thanks for a great podcast!

    1. Trav says:

      @Cynthia Morris – You are 100% right – women do it have it WAY harder when it comes to packing and bringing stuff. I certainly didn’t mean to “shame” Heth, but was just picking on her a bit. Trust me, I know how much harder females have it – and I’m glad I don’t have to deal with it myself, that’s for sure.

      I love that you travel to Paris every year to get your beauty products – definitely a reason to take a trip!

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