March 14th, 2024
On My Mind

Packing Procrastination

We head to Paris soon for a month and I cannot motivate myself to pack. I’ve decided to take items that rarely get worn, with a few go-tos thrown in. My reasoning is, if I don’t wear it in Paris, where will I? I ordered the Phoebe Philo ballet flats for the trip, but I received, erroneously, a leather hat and leather wrap skirt. Sadly, the flats were sent to someone else. On the bright side, they’re one less thing to pack! Only one pair of winter boots and a parka for a one-night trip to Tromsø, Norway to see the northern lights. Seeing the Aurora Borealis in Tromsø is my one and only bucket list item and I am on top of the world — I will be, literally! Tromsø is above the arctic circle and a prime viewing location. March 25 is a full moon, which is said to be ideal. Here’s to clear skies!

In the meantime, I’m going to ignore packing and go preview the Whitney Biennial and see the Klimt Landscapes exhibition at Neue Gallerie.

  • When shopping efforts go awry, I tell myself, ‘it wasn’t meant to be.’ Perhaps that’s the case with the flats. Maybe the thing to do is to take close note of what stylish women have on their feet during your trip, and then set out to get them. My family all loves Klimt anything. I can imagine the landscapes will be breathtaking! Anyone who hasn’t seen the movie of some years ago (‘A Woman in Gold?’), must watch it. I like your approach to pack clothing that doesn’t get worn often. For all the wrong reasons, our cities, large and small, are offering fewer opportunities to wear our special things. When visiting a truly grand city, it will feel wonderful to dress for it. These destinations are deserving of our best attire – like church, an historic, rich environment deserves our best effort.

    PaulaMarch 14th, 2024  12:40 PM

  • I looked for over a year for the perfect loafer, big stacked soles, lug sole, etc. Landed on the traditional Gucci. Didn’t love them, I needed something slightly chunkier to slim my leg and look modern but not Herman Munster like! This year purchased the Chloe Marci and LOVE them. The Guccis were staring at me each day reminding me of the $1,000 I spent. Took them to local resale shop, made a few dollars and moved on! I would highly reconsider packing items you don’t wear at home for a trip especially to Europe. You want to feel great everyday and use all your marvelous accessories you don’t always pull out at home. That’s my two cents!

    MarieMarch 14th, 2024  1:24 PM

  • Totally agree with packing our “special” pieces when traveling to a city like New York or Paris. I’m heading to London and Paris next month on an anniversary trip that is a repeat of our honeymoon 30 years ago, and I’ve been packing in my head for months now. I want to be comfortable yet stylish and look like I “belong” – sleek sneakers, a Sezane trench coat, my beautiful and largely unworn Hermes scarves, and sexy L’Agence jackets and slip dresses. I agree with Paula – traveling to grand cities, especially abroad, deserves our best effort! Good luck with your packing!

    CatMarch 14th, 2024  1:51 PM

  • And I thought I was bad! Thanks for this!

    TracyMarch 14th, 2024  4:00 PM

  • It’s only a handful of things. I love them but for some reason don’t reach for them, like the Chanel belt above. I live in New York and tend to wear the exact same outfits in Paris. Just trying to shake it up a bit.

    PrestonMarch 14th, 2024  4:01 PM

  • I know what Marie is saying and on a voyage last fall, as I think I shared, I took that approach and it was indeed perfect. But I think grand cities – cities with an ancient, rich, architectural and cultural heritage (i.e., Paris, Rome, Vienna, London, Madrid, Florence, Prague, Budapest, Berlin, Edinburgh, St. Petersburg, Athens, Seville) – are still glamorous destinations that invite us to ‘live the history,’ and are the perfect settings with ample opportunities to have fun getting dressed, be fashionable, be chic. It’s the ultimate courtesy as a tourist – dressing (and behaving) as the old guard would like us to while we are guests in their fine cities. If not now, when? If not in Paris, where? 🙂

    PaulaMarch 14th, 2024  4:09 PM

  • “Oops, honey, I forgot to pack for Paris! Guess I’ll have to go …. shopping!”
    Joking aside, it’s so hard to imagine what we’ll want to wear somewhere far from home. The Parisian women always keep it so chic–as do you! Xo

    Caroline ColemanMarch 14th, 2024  4:28 PM

  • Love your chain link belt in your photo. I’ve been admiring Sofia Coppola’s similar belt in press photos for her book – she wears them with wide leg dark denim and a navy tee , and then a white buttondown and jeans.

    GeorgieMarch 14th, 2024  4:39 PM

  • Caroline, too funny! I’m just a lazy loaf and all my clothes sort of work together (because I’m boring and predictable) so no matter what I put in that trunk, I’ll be fine. xp

    PrestonMarch 14th, 2024  6:28 PM

  • Loving this discussion. that’s all! x

    disneyrollergirlMarch 14th, 2024  6:37 PM

  • Preston – you’re anything but boring and predictable. You know your style, what suits and what gets worn and you stick with it. That’s called self analysis, self knowledge and self discipline. And as well as that you’re not afraid to try different things and own your “mistakes”. What a joy to spend a month in Paris! Love your site and all that you share with us- I am really looking forward to hearing and seeing your reports from Paris.

    KarenMarch 14th, 2024  9:24 PM

  • Preston, this sounds like a happy packing approach and a fantastic trip. How was the Klimt exhibit? The Times had a piece suggesting that the exhibit was smaller than expected, but still worthwhile.

    RMMarch 14th, 2024  11:08 PM

  • Love your idea of packing the things rarely worn., especially on trips.
    Or buying something new for it. . Flats are a definite must in Europe.
    I dread packing always seem to take to much.
    Klimt is one of my favorites had chance to see the Kiss. and others
    You will be amazed by the northern lights. Northern Norway sea mountains and snow is really stunning. Spent time there in summers.
    Enjoy the adventure, Preston.
    Ps look forward to fotos Paris/auroras

    VictoriaMarch 15th, 2024  4:23 AM

  • My mother spent two summers in Norway when she was a teenager and took me one summer when I was nine. Very excited to go this time of the year.

    PrestonMarch 15th, 2024  8:27 AM

  • I’m sure you will have a fabulous time…please post some photos when you can! We aren’t traveling, but I am enjoying “traveling” vicariously through friend’s photos. My college roommate recently went to Egypt…fascinating!

    SharonMarch 15th, 2024  9:12 AM

  • Tromso; where the Tirpitz met its doom. Back in ’44.

    M. Kirk OkayMarch 15th, 2024  6:28 PM

  • Preston, I am so jealous. What a wonderful time of year to go as well. Post lots of pictures, please!

    KareneMarch 15th, 2024  9:48 PM

  • Hi RM, Klimt Landscapes at the Neue Gallery is small, yet mighty.

    PrestonMarch 16th, 2024  2:45 PM

  • It’s lovely that you all commented what to pack to feel amazing and glamorous in Europe! (I live there) I encourage you to have that feeling every day also in your cities! It is so nice to see people well dressed and having fun with their clothes every day.
    Dear Preston, would be lovely to know if you have any packing technique 🙂 Best wishes,

    JulesMarch 17th, 2024  5:14 AM

  • Have always wanted to see the Aurora Borealis. Am so envious of you, Preston!
    Looks like you’re going to the best place on planet Earth to see it – hope it’s spectacular viewing while you’re there.
    Maybe you’ll post some photos on KIC for all of us to see?

    Am a big fan of Gustav Klimt – love his portraits of Adele Bloch-Bauer;
    agree with Paula – the movie “Woman in Gold” (2015) with Helen Mirren is a must see.

    Bon Voyage!


    JaniceMarch 20th, 2024  4:20 PM

  • Much appreciated, Preston. I’ve been wanting to visit the Neue Gallery.

    RMMarch 20th, 2024  9:09 PM

  • Or Galerie. 🙂

    RMMarch 20th, 2024  9:10 PM


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