I've always been an overpacker. But all I ever did before was visit friends/family. So it was never really an issue that I had a 26" suitcase plus a carry-on. Luggage went from the airport, to the trunk of a car, to the inside of the house. My first "real" vacation-"backpacking thru Europe"- I had to really cut back-- One 20" rolling backpack. (Coming home, I still didn't need to check luggage. I had my backpack and a large tote was my "personal item".) I managed this by doing alot of handwashing & making sure all my clothes would coordinate. Plus it was cold, so I only had to be prepared for that- layered shirts, jeans/slacks, boots, hoodie, jacket(s), hat, scarves. But for this recent trip, I didn't go as severely stark. As I wasn't lugging my luggage all over Europe. Plus I wanted to be prepared for different weather.
So, for reference, this is what I brought for 8 days:
3 tank tops (plus 1 camisole tank)
2 short sleeves shirts
1 long sleeved shirt (to layer under the short sleeves in case it was chilly, turns out i didn't need it)
1 pair of jeans
1 pair black slacks (for dressier look)
2 colorful knee length tiered skirts (which i didn't wear as i bought capri's while there--easier to walk for miles in! but i did breakdown and buy one long tiered skirt in paris)
denim jacket (for chillier nights)
fitted, black, cropped cardigan
black tie shrug (to add a li'l, stylish layer over the tanks, but didn't wear as i bought something else over there)
thin, black rain jacket (debated about taking-- and i should've left it at home)
Shoes- (bought all of these shoes specifically for my trip)
Clarks "Chow" clogs (to wear casually w/ jeans) Aerosoles "Aerology" heeled slides (dressier w/ jeans/slacks) Hush Puppy silver thongs
Birkenstock black thongs (ok, didn't really need to bring BOTH but they didn't take up much room. The Hush Puppies were the clear winner, wore everyday. Birks gave me blisters on the balls of my feet!?)
Undergarments & Accessories-
2 bras, 6 underpants
satin camisole nightgown (didn't take up any room at all & kept me cool at night)
2 belts & 2 scarves (to wear as hip sashes or around the neck)
1 hat (cowboy) -(sun was never out long enough to wear this, plus it just took up too much space in my carry-on backpack)
travel alarm clock
personal handheld fan (i get hot very easily)
sarong (very handy when lounging in the grass at hyde park)
collapsible black tote bag that zips up into its pocket
digital camera & charged up batteries (also brought 'regular' camera, but didn't use)
international mobile phone & charger
travel guides: london mapguide, AAA london guide, london pocketguide, paris pocketguide
a couple of pre-packaged utensils from 'fast food' restaurants I've collected (for picnics or such) & ziploc bags
Besides the obvious toothbrush/paste, deodorant- I did have to bring specific shampoo/conditioners for my long, easily knotted hair. Febreeze, downey wrinkle releaser, laundry detergent & travel clothesline. Band-aids, lotion, hand sanitizer, pumice stone (for the heels of the feet) and few other necessities. Dove face clothes, Dove body wipes (on hot, long days) Eye cream/moisturizer, & minimal make-up. (everything was travel size, or small quantities were put in baggies)
I used packing cubes. 1 cube was intended for shirts, I instead put all my bottoms in this. The other smaller cube was intended for socks, but I managed to put my tops in it.
I will admit that heading home it was a feat to stuff everything back into my suitcase & backpack as I did ALOT of shopping in London. I definitely used that 'expandable zipper' on my luggage. whewww.
Ok, as far as my trip reports, I probably only have one left-- The final 2 1/2 days. Taking me long enough, eh?