What to Pack for Multiple Climates

What to Pack for a mixed climate packing light #packinglight #travellight #traveltips #travel

Silk Tank • Everlane | T-shirt • J.Crew | Coloured Top • H&M | Long Sleeve • Boden |
Blouse • Madewell | Pullover • Madewell | Cardigan • Madewell | Jacket • Topshop |
Skirt • Mango | Dress • H&M | Boyfriend Jeans • American Eagle | Dark Denim • Mango |
Black Pants • Mango | Bathing Suit • J.Crew | Hat • Nordstrom | Scarf • Ketzali |
Sunglasses • SSENSE | Sandals • Madewell | Sneakers • Adidas |
Ankle Boots • Sole Society | Tote • Sole Society | Crossbody • Dirty Ballerina

If I could put together a ready-to-go suitcase filled with whatever I would need for up to a week in an unknown climate this is potentially what I would do. This was a question that was asked via email from a woman who recently became a flight attendant (I so wanted to be one in my early 20’s and still kick myself over not pursuing it). She said that she is on reserve which means that at any time she can fly off to any destination for up to 6 days. It could be hot, cold, in-between, or all three at one time, so what would I bring if this was up to me?

I wanted to stay around the 10-15 items of clothing number (excluding undergarments and pyjamas) plus shoes. First I would stick to a really neutral palette. A mixture of dark and light tops, with a colour thrown in. One silk  camisole or tank, one t-shirt, one long sleeve, one white blouse, and one colourful dressier top.

For bottoms I would bring one pair of black pants, a dressy denim, a boyfriend style so they can be worn cuffed and are airy if it is hotter out, and a skirt. One pullover, and a cardigan for layers or light coverage and a jacket. I would bring a swimsuit, a scarf that is big enough to be also used as a swimsuit cover, a hat, and a light dress.

I would also include leggings or knit tights (not shown above) to be able to layer under the skirt and dress to transition through different weather. Three pairs of shoes (a boot of some kind, sneakers, and sandals or flats), two pairs of pyjamas, and undergarments (also not shown).

If you stick to a basic list like:

  • camisole or tank
  • t-shirt
  • long sleeve
  • blouse
  • colourful dressy top
  • 2 jeans (one casual one darker denim or trade one in for shorts or lightweight pants)
  • black pants or dress pants (black is always easy to dress up in a pinch though plus it hides stains well)
  • pullover
  • cardigan
  • a skirt in your preferred length (could also swap for shorts or another dress but a skirt gives more options)
  • dress
  • swimsuit (or not, but it would be nice to have just in case)
  • jacket (the type of jacket would depend on how unaccustomed you are to colder temps and style preference. I tend to wear my leather jacket with layers until it is -10°C when I switch to my winter coat.)

You can see that it is very generic so it is really easy to reach in your closet and grab each of these pieces in a hurry as long as you pay attention to the colours you are putting together. Every closet has at least one option of the above, but probably more so you can change it up for variety.

If you really wanted to be prepared by keeping a suitcase pre-packed and ready to go by the door you could lay out each piece into outfits beforehand and take a picture so that you can refer back to it if you can’t figure out what to wear. I do this when I put together the outfits that can be made with each packing list. It is to show you how many options you can get without bringing your whole closet and avoids the “I have nothing to wear” problem. Quick, easy and to the point.

Outfit options for this list will be in the next post.

Do you have a go-to packing list that would cover multiple climates?

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Sara is the founder and creative behind livelovesara. A George Brown College Fashion Styling Graduate, she provides advice on finding your personal style regardless of age and budget. She is always on the hunt for the perfect wardrobe piece and is a vintage and thrifting enthusiast who can't wait to share her newest finds. She is also trying to learn French.


  1. That hat is kinda like the over sized fedora I’m looking for. Any info on it? Thanks so much for all you do. Your blog & stuff rocks!

    • Thanks! The hat looks great online I’m not sure how it plays out in real life though. It’s faux suede, comes in brown and black at Nordstrom. It’s called Amici Accessories Floppy Faux Suede fedora and it’s on sale for $14 which is a steal and a half.

  2. I’m the new flight attendant that wrote to you! Thanks so much for creating this post. I get so indecisive when I pack. I can imagine lots of outfits from this list, but I can’t wait to see what you come up with.

    • I am working on it tonight and should have it up tomorrow. Thanks for the idea! I like getting inspiration from different sources, and I hope you find at least some of it helpful 🙂 Good luck on your new career!

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