travel

How to NOT Overpack- Lessons Learned From My Two Week European Vacation

how-to-not-overpack-on-vacation.jpg

How to NOT Overpack-

What I brought that I didn't wear and the things that I went back to again and again

Packing for trips is 50% fun, 50% daunting for me. The anticipation of a vacation is half the fun, so putting together looks and imagining myself on vacation gets me all hyped up and energized!  The other 50% is daunting and I end up putting off the packing process because I know I will inevitably overpack. The thing is, I hate lugging around heavy bags, but I hate being without things I "need" even more. (I tend to forget somewhow that the places that I am going are not third world countries in the middle of nowhere so if I did need a sweater, I could always buy one!) So, I end up packing too much, even after a ton of editing down, and wear about half of my wardrobe time and time again.

When packing for my most recent Italian Holiday, I was torn on what to bring because the forecast showed rain showers daily, but also 80-degree weather. Would I be too hot and sweat through my clothes as I went sightseeing or would I get drenched and dirty? I figured I would need two looks a day due to the weather and then some fancy looks "in case" we went to some insane Michelin Star restaurants that required a more upscale outfit. NOPE. I mean, even when I go to dinners that are fancy in LA, I don't dress overly fancy. Yet somehow I think I need heels and a dress for my nice dinners in Europe? That was my first mistake... Which brings me to my first tip on how not to overpack:

 
how-not-to-overpack-on-vacation-1.jpg
 

1. Heels aren't necessary- I love a pair of heels with jeans, a tee, and a blazer back at home, but they do take up space and have to be treated gingerly in suitcases so as not to smash them. I brought two pairs of heels and neither were worn once. They just took up valuable space in my suitcase. 

What to Bring instead:  For this reason, a pair of cool gladiator sandals, upscale flats, or trendy slides would suffice just fine! Even at super nice restaurants in the South of France, locals wear sundresses and sandals. Keep is simple and comfortable.

2. Fashion Sneakers are Your Best Friend- I have two pairs of sneakers in my closet that are dedicated to walking around and running errands in comfort while still looking fashionable. My nike tennis sneakers are a staple as well as the shoes I ended up bringing to Italy, which were my KOIO leather sneakers. They are sooooo comfortable and I wore them all day everyday. I only needed one pair and they looked cute with dresses, shorts, and skirts as well as any active outfits! 

 
6C74EC60-7222-4808-AE63-3AB76D53B360.jpg
 

3. No Fuss Sundress is a MUST-  Having sundresses that are breathable, comfortable, require little to no fuss, and are thin and easy to pack are a must. I wore allll the sundresses I packed multiple times because they always felt comfy and airy and looked feminine and fashionable at the same time. I was still on trend in my gingham but also comfy and ready for a day of sightseeing,

What to ditch- Take out any pieces that are delicate, dry clean only, or easily wrinkled. I found that I didn't wear a single top that required an iron or that I loved a little too much for fear that I would stain it and wouldn't be able to dry clean it for two weeks! I brought some amazing chiffon and silk tops, but c'mon...soooo not realistic for travel. You will gravitate towards the easy, breathable, and wrinkle free items anyway!

 
how-to-not-overpack-on-vacation-4.jpg
 

4. Athleisure WORKSSS on vacay- I am a little obsessed with track pants at the moment and love the way they look fashiony and functional at the same time. I wore my Scotch and Soda track pants to coffee dates in the a.m., walks around town, and while traveling, and loved how cute I felt in them and how comfy they were. 

5. Blousy/ Boho Tops WORK- I love a good billowy top that covers my arms and shoulders but still feels cool and comfy on. When walking around foreign countries, no matter how safe or progressive they are, I don't like to attract too much attention to myself with my fashion (I always wear what I want, I'm just more picky with the items I choose!). I love a good crop top or sexy date night top, but I tend to stay away from them when I am somewhere unfamiliar, at least for the most part. I gravitated towards tops that were comfortable, fashion forward, and low maintenance. If I had to put work into getting out wrinkles of stains, they stayed in my suitcase.

What to ditch: You probably won't wear your edgy bralettes or crop tops in Europe while sight seeing unless you want lots of icky attention. It's also hard to get into many churches and holy places with clothing that doesn't cover your shouders or legs, so that is also something to be aware of. As much as I love a trendy piece like "lingerie" and cut out tops in the right place, it just doesnt work that well while traveling. 

 
how-to-not-overpack-on-vacation-2.jpg
 

6. Buy A Hat When You Get There: If you insist on bringing your cute Janessa Leone hat on vacation, you will probably be disappointed when it gets smashed at one point during the trip. Because this has happened numerous times to me, I decided to skip the hat and find some sort of sun protection when I got to Italy. I got an awesome visor (I love a visor! See this post on my faves!) that was easy to pack away when I wasn't wearing it and protected my face from unwanted sun. 

 
how-not-to-overpack-on-vacation-7.jpg
 

7. High Waisted Everything- So I basically only wore my high waisted bottoms during the trip. I find them to be so comfortable and flattering, so wearing a mid-rise or low rise item just made me feel funny. I always wore my highwasited skinnies that were stretchy and soft, or my straight leg high-waisted jeans that were a bit thicker for colder days. Those two pieces of denim were all I needed in the jean family. 

What to ditch: I packed about 6 pairs of shorts and 4 skirts when I really only needed about 3 pairs of shorts and 2 skirts. Soooo thats half. I should have ditched half the bottoms I packed in my luggage and should have created looks in advance so that I know how they would be worn vs. having cool pieces that didn't really match the tops I packed.

 
how-to-not-overpack-6.jpg
 

Now that you know the major mistakes I made in packing, I hope these tips can steer you in the right direction when you are packing for your next long vacation. Of course, style plays into it, but the general idea is that I really only needed half of what I packed, and the items I wore were the most flattering and comfortable pieces that I packed  (that were all low maintenance). I could have saved myself some difficult train rides by leaving the high maintenence, bulky, or fancy pieces at home. I should have known but I definitely learned my lesson. 

Let me know if you have any packing tips and tricks as well! I love learning ways to consolidate. 

xoxo. Kim

SHOP THE POST

London Roundup- 5 Gorgeous + Hip "BOUTIQUE" Hotels (that are so instagrammable)

5.png
Chiltern Firehouse

Chiltern Firehouse

Marylebone- Brick townhomes and apartments that used to be mansions. I mean, how amazing would it be to live in one of these gorgeous homes?

Marylebone- Brick townhomes and apartments that used to be mansions. I mean, how amazing would it be to live in one of these gorgeous homes?

A little about Marylebone 

Okay, so we were in London a couple weeks ago and happened to get really  lucky when booking our hotel! Its hard to know which hotels to stay in because sometimes places look different in person, and the vibe is always hard to tell until you're there. We loved staying  in the calm but very hip Marylebone area (near Mayfair) where the restaurant and shopping scenes are very quaint and charming but still super cool with curated shops anyone would love. We felt tucked away, yet were still blocks from the craze of Oxford St. with mass market shops and tourists.  It feels like what you would imagine a cozy London town to feel like with the Holiday decor up on every street post, twinkly bistro lights in every restaurant window, and EVERY SINGLE doorway and "apartment" (or townhouse mansion?) building bordered in ornate moldings and brick. It's GORGEOUS! 

I rounded up hotels that I would want to stay at the next time I'm in town based on the most important criteria, at least to me...aesthetics. I am in love with interiors, as most of you know if you follow me on insta, so of course kept my eyes and ears peeled for some gorgeous and hip hotels you would definitly want to visit.

5 Gorgeous (and Hip Hotels) in london -

Here are 5 Hotels that are SO GORGEOUS with great vibes and an awesomely hip and beautiful interior (and of course great for the gram).

1. Chiltern Firehouse (Marylebone)- We will for sure stay here next time we come! This hotel is equal parts cool, vibey, aesthetically pleasing from floor to ceiling, and with a great bar and restaurant! We came for dinner one night and LOVED everything. The interiors are full of cool textiles, furniture, gorgeous marble and very hip people, just sayin'. This hotel is the first outpost for hip Hotelier Jose Balazs ( of Chateau Marmont among others). GO.

2. The Marylebone (Marylebone)- This hotel is great for a boutique hotel, tucked away down a quiet but quaint and beautiful side street. The interior from the bar area, lobby (with tons of seating to do work in a beautiful and chic setting), hotel restaurant (108 Brasserie), and Gym and Spa area are amazing. There is marble, crown molding, wood paneling, and gorgeous overstuffed velvet furniture throughout the hotel making it super aesthetically pleasing! One note to mention would be to request a new room as it is newly remodeled, but only half the rooms got the update. The location of this hotel is ideal, smack in the middle of high street, a great shopping area. 

3. Ham Yard Hotel (Soho)- The location of this hip and gorgeously designed hotel is in the middle of Soho, putting you close to everything that you would want to see in London. Everything in central London is convenient to the rest of the city, but this puts you even closer to attractions. The hotels design by Kit Kemp is AHHHMAZING. Everything she touches turns to cool + this hotel has a bowling alley and gorgeous bar. Very fun.

4. Zetter Townhouse- The location of this gorgeous boutique hotel is in Marlyebone, the area we just stayed in and LOVED! The hotel is warm and charming with a fun eclectic feel and a really great interior. I love the bar area, called "Seymours Parlour" at the Marlyebone location (there are two!). So even if youre not staying here, have a drink with a friend to check it out for yourself!

 

5. London Edition- This hotel is just COOL. Super modern, chic, and polished, I loved how the hotel has such character but yet feels modernized. It feels different from just an old school London hotel. It is just beautiful and has a Michelin starred chef in their restaurant as well, so foodies would love this place! You can't go wrong here as its centrally located in Fitzrovia on the edge of Soho. Definiltely worth a visit regardless. 

IMG_1707.JPG

I'd love to know which hotels or attractions you love while in London for my next trip. If you have suggestions or questions, feel free to leave them in the comments below!

xo, Kim

London Look- Plaid x Plaid and the pieces I wore to DEATH in London

plaid-coat-jacket-4.jpg
plaid-coat-jacket-10.jpg
plaid-coat-jacket-12.jpg
plaid-coat-jacket-13.jpg
plaid-coat-jacket2.jpg
plaid-coat-jacket-15.jpg

When in London, dress as the Londoners do, right?

 I'm not saying that every Londoner dresses like this, but I did notice when I was there the last couple times that people are just more buttoned up and chic. I LOVE IT! LA vibes are more relaxed and casual which is great for getting outta the house,  but its nice to change it up and put a bit more effort in my daily look.

I love plaids for winter and feel they just add a bit more style to an outfit. This plaid hat is super affordable and soooo chic, I am obsessed. I could have 20 of these fisherman style hats. This Zara blazer is my ABSOLUTE favorite. Its long, tailored, warm as a layering piece, but cool enough to wear with a tee. I paired them with these Dolce Vita slate grey suede booties that I wore allll around London and they were so comfy. Such a score! 

These items are all favorites right now and I wear them to death, in LA or London. Do you guys love plaid as much as I do for winter? Let me know in the comments below! 

XO, Kim

Shop the Look

ZARA Plaid Cap

ZARA Plaid Blazer

DOLCE VITA Booties

APC Bag

London in My Stuart Weitzman Tieland Boots + Pink coat

DSC00645-13.jpg
DSC00612-4.jpg

Chay (my husband, for those of you new to KR!) and I are loving our time in London town! We are finally getting to spend some uninterrupted quality time together and it has been amazing. London is one of those special places to me that feels so romantic and charming yet still so fast paced and current making it an ideal destination for those wanting a city vibe that feels so different from home in the states.

I love that everything here has so much character. The buildings are gorgeous and ornate, the grass is lush and the parks are serene. I truly could live here! 

DSC00610-3.jpg
DSC00614-6.jpg
DSC00634-11.jpg
DSC00649-14.jpg

It was much colder than I realized it would be, which was a welcomed change from LA's 75 degree winters. I knew I'd be able to wear cute knit sweaters and my new Stuart Wietzman "Tielands", but wasn't really aware of just how cold it would feel... Luckily I brought a coat that was pretty warm (albeit mostly for "show" at home, definitely not cold enough to wear regularly but hey, that's fashion right?) and my boots that are AMAZING on and warm. 

These boots were a gift from Chay and I had put them on my wishlist a couple years ago, knowing these were totally a splurge item I would never buy "willy nilly" for myself. I was so excited to get them and have them for this trip, especially because they are comfortable and very warm over  skinnies.

I got the "Tielands" vs. the "Thighlands"," Highlands", "Lowlands", etc. because I wanted a little lift and to feel more sexy than how I'd feel in flat boots (although the lowlands are also on my list!). It took a while to find the right fit and style, because with Stuart Weitzman, it's a bit hard to tell the difference online between the different types of over the knee boots if you are new to the search. 

I am such a fan of these as an investment piece, but if these are just out of the question at the moment (which they were for me too for years!), I compiled a couple options here and here that are chic, with a great shape, and great price.

Do you guys love Stuart Weitzmans too? Let me know in the comments below! 

xo,

Kim

 

SHOP THE POST

Gingham Coverup in The French Riviera

Happy Monday all!

Check out the cover up I lived in during my time in the South of France. Having a cute and light weight cover up to wear over my suit was a must during my vacay. I initially bought it to be worn as a normal dress but quickly realized when I went to throw it on that it was way too short. Thus, the cutest cover up of all time with bell sleeves and gingham no less! I paired it with my favorite espadrilles that I got from a cobbler in Barcelona and off I went! (I sound super well traveled when I mention cobblers in other countries huh?)

gingham1.jpg

I love the details from the high neck to the bell sleeves. Its so feminine and airy, I loved wearing it with a great pair of sandals of espadrilles to look extra chic when I arrived to the pool and beach club.

Outfit Details

DRESS, Zara (HUGE SALE!!)

SHOES, Similar here

Do you guys love this gingham pattern like I do, or is it a bit much for you to wear poolside? I'd love to know in the comments below! 

xo, Kim

Shop the Post

Miami Swim Week Roundup

Hi ladies and Happy Thursday!

What a week its been! Last week I was in Nashville for a modeling job and was looking forward to getting lots of blog content shot and do some really fun outfit posts. Well, as luck would have it, I got a nasty 6 day flu and was down for the count. As I've been in bed, I of course have been keeping track of Miami Swim week and was so inspired by the fun and trendy swimwear out there right now. So today's post is in honor of Miami swim week! I rounded up suits I am so loving right now and would definitely purchase and wear.

 

1.png

 I definitely need a fun summer suit and have yet to find one I love, until I scoured for this post. I am in love with all of these suits because they are stylish and have enough coverage for what I prefer. Which ones do you guys see yourself wearing if any? And if none, why not? Comment below!

xo, Kim

Swimwear Details

1. MARYSIA

2.ARAKS (SOLD OUT ) SIMILAR HERE

3. SOLID AND STRIPED

4.KIINI

5. MARA HOFFMAN

6. MARA HOFFMAN

7. SEEA

8. MILLY

9. SKYE & STAGHORN

10. TULAROSA X REVOLVE

11. VITAMIN A

12. PROENZA SCHOULER

13. ZIMMERMANN

vacay go to: Sundress and Sneakers

Happy Saturday Ladies!

 

Right now I'm sitting in my living room in Palm Springs trying to cool down from the 110 degree heat! Chay and I came here without the dogs to relax and connect before I leave for Nashville Tuesday for a job all week! I'm so excited!

Here is my last post from my trip to France and Ireland and I wanted to share one of my go to looks while on vacayyyyy!!

During our last day at Ashford Castle, we walked around the grounds and checked out the nearby town, Cong. (You can see more of what I recommend at Ashford here.)It is about a 12 minute walk, so I wanted to be comfortable but of course still look cute and pulled together. When I go on vacation, I love to wear clean white sneakers, like these Nike ones, with a feminine sundress to balance out the look. This For Love and Lemons dress, similar style here, has enough detail and style to be the focal point of the outfit. The sneakers are so comfortable and are totally neutral in shape and style, so they're easy to wear with anything. When wondering what to wear on vacation, a good staple is always a pretty dress balanced out with cool sneaks!

How cute is this cottage in Cong?

I loved the bright white smooth stucco walls and vibrant red colors on this cute bar and arts and crafts store.

sundressandsneakers17.jpg

Back in Ashford, wandering around and exploring the grounds. I love the view of the castle from this angle. The color of the water and the stone on the bridge and castle add so much depth and beauty to the view! 

The prettiest gazebo I ever did see:) out front of The Lodge at Ashford Castle where we stayed.

Everything here is pristine as you can see with so much care and detail taken to make sure the property is preserved with authenticity. I loved exploring and even being able to stop and sit with a coffee to observe passerby's. We explored all day and I felt so comfortable in my outfit, which is why I always pack so many dresses for style, but also sneakers for comfort.  

I can't recommend Ashford Castle enough for a family vacay or a romantic getaway. It's dog friendly and very kid friendly with huge open spaces, lush grounds and lots of activities. Comment with any questions or recommendations on places you love in Ireland! Thanks ladies!

xo, Kim

Ashford Castle

Happy Monday ladies!

Check out my recap of our time at Ashford castle and some recommendations we would suggest to anyone venturing to this gorgeous place!

The first thing we did as soon as we got to the Castle was high tea inside the most gorgeous and ornate room overlooking the lake. The castle has been meticulously preserved and is more beautiful in person than any picture depicts. Some things to note:

-If you stay at the castle, its much more expensive. There is The Lodge at Ashford Castle, which is where we stayed. It's a third of the price and is gorgeous and has a great interior!

-In order to see the castle interior, you need to be a guest staying at the castle or have a reservation for one of the restaurants or for tea. If you plan on walking in for tea without a reservation, know that it most likely won't work out as its very popular! Book in advance!

One of my favorite activities was bike riding around the lush grounds that span over 365 acres. It was so fun to ride around and discover little bridges and creeks and horse stables. There was so much nature all around us and it was so impressive. I really felt like I was in another world. The bikes are complimentary at The Lodge too!

Other things I would have liked to know before we planned our schedules:

-The Castle and The Lodge provide a huge list of activities you can book from and we heard from numerous people that Falconry, clay shooting, the boat ride on the lake, and horse riding were activities we need to book. We did do the boat ride and it was absolutely gorgeous and so enjoyable. When we come back, I will definitely clay shoot, that is something I have always wanted to do! 

- Take morning walks around the grounds to see things more up close and grab a coffee from the cafe near the castle bridge.

- Take a walk into Cong, the village a few minutes by foot from the Castle. Its small and quaint and so cute! I'll be posting a little about Kong and other areas at Ashford in an outfit post later this week. 

Lets talk more about The Lodge:

-Totally different from the castle with a fun color palette and a more modern look. If you stay at The Lodge, you have the same access to the property and grounds. The perks are the same as long as you book reservations at any of the restaurants inside Ashford Castle. I am a sucker for ornate and historical detailing and the castle is a feast for the eyes! I also have a thing for pretty bathrooms and the woman's room on the main level is breathtaking. PURPLE MARBLE PEOPLE. PURPLE! It's so fun!

- From The Lodge, you can walk down to the boathouse to get picked up for the boat ride that happens twice a day for around 25 euros. 

-There are a couple awesome eateries at The Lodge and they are great for casual eats and bar bites.  The rooms are funky and clean and trendy which I love! They are the opposite of the ornate, historical, and traditional vibe of the Castle. If you are wanting the experience of staying on the grounds but don't want to pay so much, The Lodge is the perfect alternative for you. 

Outfit Details

SHOES Robert Clergerie

JEANS Madewell

TOP similar here Madewell

Have a great Tuesday ladies and don't forget to check out my instagram to enter my giveaway with Matiko Shoes! The contest ends July 18th and I will announce the winner on my blog next week! See you in a few days!

xo,Kim