With London Menswear Collections kicking off a month long of menswear shows including the prestigious Pitti Uomo, I once again happen upon the dilemma of “what should I pack”. Admittedly as much as I enjoy travelling, I have an immense dislike for packing. I find it extremely difficult to narrow my choices and when I do edit the pile, I still manage to over pack. Most trips I have everything laid out in neat piles hoping by some force of will they will magically and neatly pack themselves in the expectant suitcase.
Despite this love hate relationship it is always with excitement that I look forward to travelling around Europe for the various shows. Each season regardless of the changing weather and my changing wardrobe there are always a few staple items that repeatedly make the cut when packing for Pitti Uomo and the rest of the menswear shows.
Brogues (Prada) – Footwear for me is one of, if not the most important part of any outfit. These Prada brogues have been part of my wardrobe consistently. Not all brogues are crafted the same and it took me some time to find a pair that were the right shape and style. Not only are they extremely handsome but also boast comfort and durability, which is perfect when spending most of the day walking around capturing images.
A crisp white shirt (Charles Tyrwhitt) – This is always a must have on every trip due to the versatility and the ability to make most outfits look that much sharper. Having a fitted white shirt is always important and sometimes I end up taking four.
A necktie (Shaun Gordon) – This tie is my favourite at present. I love the simplicity and the quality of this gorgeous piece. I think I have spent as much time stroking it as I have wearing it due to it’s luxurious material and excellent craftsmanship. It is always imperative that I have a tie with me, as you never know when the occasion will call for it.
Cufflinks (Alexander McQueen) – There is nothing worse than arriving at a destination with a double cuff shirt and realising you have forgotten cufflinks. These black Alexander McQueen skull cufflinks have saved me many times and their extremely dapper appearance doesn’t hurt at all.
Money Clip (Gucci) – I am always against having a bulging wallet in my trousers or suit jacket. For me, this is the easier way to carry around your currency, as well as a bankcard without ruining the shape of your clothes or having to reach into your bag every time you need to pay for an item.
Bag (Ally Capellino) – Carrying around camera equipment, business cards, notebooks and whatever else I need when I leave the hotel has always been a chore especially while trying to remain capture shots and remain composed. Having this Ally Capellino bag solves all those problems. Big enough to contain all my equipment and smart enough to keep me looking good.
Sunglasses (Marc Jacobs) – I am more likely to leave the house without pants than without sunglasses, which means leaving the country without them is unheard of. The lens gradient, shape and size of these sunglasses ensure that they are included in the final cut.
Aftershave (Viktor & Rolf) – Ever since the sensual Spicebomb exploded on the scene, I have been addicted to it’s distinctive scent. Sometimes I may bring different options but Spicebomb has a permanent place in my suitcase.
Notebook and pen (BookMarc) – Just because you never know when you may have an idea that you need to write down or make notes.
Black shirt (Art Comes First) – Nothing done by the gents at ACF can be classified as boring and this lavish black shirt is no exception. The tailored finish and attention to detail on this shirt sets it apart from any regular black shirt. One of the things I like the most about it is the unique shape of the detachable collar, which allows for a variety of looks. The covered buttons and the beautiful cuffs make sure that this is not one to be left at home.
Belt (Marc Jacobs) – Simplicity is key here, no imposing logos or distracting enhancements.
Raincoat (Norwegian Rain) – Every season irrespective of the time of year I find that it rains for at least one day and trying to navigate a fashion crowd, whilst holding an umbrella and camera borders on impossibility. Thanks to Norwegian Rain I no longer have that problem. This expertly crafted, fully waterproof coat keeps me dry and looking sharp thanks to the streamlined design. The thing I love most about this coat is being able to wear it over a suit without it appearing bulk and cumbersome.
Now that I have the staples I just have to figure out what stays and what goes on this trip. What items do you always pack and what packing rituals do you follow?