Holiday Mini-Capsule Wardrobe

Holiday travel differs from vacation travel. Usually you’re going to visit friends or family and packing requirements change with this type of trip. As always check the temperature of your destination and as long as you have an idea of your trip activities packing doesn’t have to be difficult.

In my experience these trips are short 2-4 day trips. The most important thing to consider when packing is what activities you’ll be doing. Will you be a homebody visiting with family or will you be out and about visiting friends? Will you be doing shopping or sightseeing? I tried to come up with a general guideline for holiday packing to get you started on your packing list. Suit it to your needs and the climate of your destination.


1. Outerwear
Most places are cold this time of year so a good coat will be a necessity.

2. One Sweater Dress
I love the variety of Sweater Dresses available from Old Navy right now. Sweater dresses are versatile enough to wear for a Holiday meal with family without feeling overdressed yet you could also wear it out for drinks and dinner. I tried to highlight dresses that would work for several body types. Some sweater dresses can be bulky so be mindful of how much room you have available in your suitcase. I don’t mind packing these for a shorter trip because overall you are bringing fewer clothes. Dress 1, Dress 2, Dress 3, Dress 4.

3. One Sweater
A sweater is a another necessary layer during colder weather. I chose a longer length sweater so that it could also be paired with leggings. Try and stay away from overly bulky knits and let your coat do most of the work. There’s a great variety of sweaters out there, I found this sweater on the H&M website for only $24.95. H&M now offers online shopping which is great news!

4. One Long Sleeve Base Layer
Layering is key during travel in the colder months. The long sleeve tee I’ve shown is also an H&M find and is long enough to be paired with leggings as well.

5. One Button Down Shirt
I hate to jump on the flannel trend but they are quite practical for staying warm. Plus I associate them with coziness and the holidays. Once again I go with an H&M find for it’s longer length and traditional red plaid pattern. These flannel shirts though can be found at just about any major retailer right now due to their popularity.

6. One Blouse
I have to include a blouse for giving you an extra casually dressy option when paired with jeans. A simple black blouse, jeans, and flats is a classic look.

7. Jeans
Simple skinny jeans are the workhorse of any travel wardrobe. If you are wearing tall boots then you’ll need to wear skinny jeans.

8. Leggings
I chose leggings for this capsule wardrobe to conserve space but you could also substitute this option with black ponte pants like these from the Gap or another pair of jeans.

9. Winter Accessories
Pack whatever winter accessories are necessary for the climate you’re visiting. I showed a chunky scarf, but if you need more winter warmth don’t forget a hat and gloves.

10. Weekender Bag
A small weekender bag should hold all your clothes for a small trip and make you look like a packing pro.

11. One pair of flats
This fun pair of flats should add a little bit of holiday sparkle to your travel outfits. However, if your travel plans include lots of walking you might want to substitute a more walking friendly shoe.

12. Booties
Booties can be comfortable and stylish. These booties can work with the sweater dress, jeans, or leggings. You can find these at a variety of price points depending on your budget.

13. Tall Boots
Tall Boots aren’t going away any time soon. They are comfortable and classic and can help you look pulled together.

14. Optional – Lounging Outfit
If part of your travel activities include staying warm indoors by curling up with your favorite book or if you just want to look cute for Christmas morning pictures you’ll want a cute lounging outfit. These sweater knit leggings and hoodie are from H&M but Target and Old Navy have similar outfits.

15. Optional – Slippers
If you’ve packed a lounging outfit you may as well pack some comfy slippers to go along with it.


Happy Packing and Happy Holidays!

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