Last week, we shared a few favourite places in the city of lights & love, for those with dreams and plans to summer in the Jardin du Luxembourg and the tea rooms of Ladurée, and this week, in answer to all of the requests that have been pouring in over the past few months, thought it might be lovely to include a few tips and suggestions for what to take on such an adventure, and ideas for wonderful little additions to your wardrobe, such as a new scarf you might pick up in a charming shop in Montmartre or a cocktail ring from a vintage shop on a pretty side street, or perhaps your first scent from Hermès.
The memories of your trip will surely follow you home, when your scarf is trailing behind you, as you walk along the beach, reminding you of the most romantic evening along the Seine, or while you are enjoying an evening out with your love, the scent of your new favourite perfume bringing back memories of the most beautiful picnic that the two of you shared in the gardens of Versailles.
Your journey is meant to be fun and full of exploration, discovery and culture—and very much a part of the culture of Paris is the fashion and style of Parisians, with their clever mix of elegance, sexiness and ease. My Mother once taught me, the basics are wonderful and necessary, but you must give them your own twist—your personal touch, be it a chic belt, or a re-interpreted piece of jewellery given to you by your Grandmother.
And while planning for the trip, there are a number of things to consider, from simple comforts that make all of the difference while flying, to unforeseen things that may occur while you are out & about exploring this magical city. And so, today we explore these things, to help insure that you have a most pleasant and most memorable trip . . .
01 | For The Journey
Travel, particularly for longer periods of time, requires a little calculation and effort. Though extensive flights are not always pleasant, it is nice to include some comforts and things to do within your handbag and/or carryon for the journey. Be sure to tuck in a novel and/or a magazine or two, along with some beauty products, such as refreshing wipes, lip treatment and moisturizer, perhaps ear plugs and even a little sleeping mask. It is vital to keep hydrated throughout the flight, so bottled water, a little spritz of Evian and moisturizer is sure to do the trick. Additionally, be sure to have snacks at hand—whether you a packet of peanuts, trail mix, or plan to eat on-flight. According to doctors, orange juice is always a great idea, as it is quite nurturing.
As for your traveling outfit, remember that comfort is most important. Be certain to dress for the weather in Paris, so that when you arrive, you will not be too warm or cold. Often, separates are nice in this case, with light layers, and do consider wrinkling when selecting pieces. Lastly, a soft Pashmina [editor’s note : and an extra pair of cashmere socks] is wonderful—tie it around your shoulders while taking a nap—it will make all the difference, and is easy to stow away before exiting the plane.
02 | In the Hotel
Perhaps of all things, your documentation may just be your most important of all possessions. Such documentation includes passports, flight information, itineraries, contact list,packing list, and such. Consider these things your insurance; if the unfortunate case happens that your luggage goes missing, or flights are canceled, you will have everything at hand. Upon arriving to your accommodation, be sure to lock away all such items within for safe keeping.
Additionally, you may also wish to consider the electronics you intend to bring. When traveling to a foreign country, one must consider bringing an adapter and/or a transformer along. A transformer adapts the electric current from high voltage to low voltage suitable for your electronics. These adapters may warm while converting alternating current to direct current, but are safe to the environment and can withstand several months of continuous activity; [for additional information, click here] There are numerous devices available on the market, but before purchasing, be sure that your device is compatible.
With the restrictions on containers of liquids while traveling, it is important to purchase travel size containers for all of the essentials. However, Paris is sprinkled with highly visible pharmacies, [just look for the bright and cheerful neon green cross], beauty shops and others, that will offer beauty and other such care items, such as Monoprix. Therefore, anything that has gone amiss, or that you did not have room for within your suitcase, can often be purchased while you are there—be it soap, shampoo or nail polish.
03 | In Your Handbag
While traveling in Paris, one needn’t overly fret about thieves—though they are known to prowl the city, and will often target tourists, a few key actions can help you to stay out of harm’s way. Be sure that your handbag fully zips/has full closure so that you can be assured that hands cannot reach within and dash off with your wallet. For the day, you may wish to include a travel size of your favourite perfume, as well as a very compact umbrella for rainy days.
Additionally, if applicable, add some helpful apps to your mobile device that may assist you as you tour the city—some suggestions : Paris Traffic, taxi services and a map; this way, you needn’t have multiple maps and books to tote around. Furthermore, a phone is much more discreet, as maps greatly voice that you are a tourist.
You may also wish to tuck in some towelettes to have on hand, as well as your favourite eyewear [these are lovely], a lipstick, and hand cream. As aforementioned, there are wonderful pharmacies about, so if something is to go amiss, you will most likely find what you are looking for in one of those.
04 | Everyday Wear
One especially important note to remember while traveling : layer, layer, layer. This is imperative, particularly as you will be ducking into galleries & museums, shops, cafés and such, and especially in the cooler seasons of the year. Parisians are known to wear scarves very often [and sometimes more than one at one time] and layer brilliantly for comfort. For everyday wear while you are enjoying the city, neat casual is the best philosophy, opting for moderation and tailored cuts. Also, consider a clever mix of pieces that are appropriate for your visit, and true to your style and self, that can mix well with others to create a whole new look; [see the packing list for additional inspiration]. To best save room in your luggage, try to avoid pieces that you may only wear once, for these pieces will only take up space, with the except for, of course, a stunning dress that you may wish to wear to the opera.
[editor’s note : roséline’s essentials, a quick list — a few pretty dresses [especially in silk crepe, which never seems to wrinkle], a cashmere cardigan, a favourite pair of heels, ballet flats or comfortable wedges, large sunglasses and a classic trench]
Another incredibly important factor to consider is footwear. Be sure to select well-fitted footwear, that can be worn for hours at a time. Sometimes the little details can make such a difference, so if you plan to purchase new footwear for your journey, pay close attention and be sure to wear the shoes beforehand to break them in. Often a soft leather with give is the very best option. Additionally, if there is a strap involved, be sure to note the position, and how it feels and will effect your foot and/or ankle. One of the greatest pair of shoes I own have been designed with a well-concealed elastic under the buckle, offering comfort and movement as I walk.
As for the evening, often day wear and evening wear will overlap, depending on itinerary. If you plan is to dine out, perhaps add a little more elegance to the mix. A long and over-the-top evening gown may not be suitable for a restaurant, but do not be afraid to add a sequined blazer, shoes or clutch; often this added touch to a simple dress can take your look from day to night, and lovely to striking. If you decide to wear trousers and a top, a strand of pearls or a dash of red lipstick may be all you need. As Coco Chanel once said, “Look for the woman in the dress. If there is no woman, there is no dress.” In other words, wear confidence and a smile, no matter your age or size, and most of all, enjoy every moment!
And lastly, you certainly should not purchase an entirely new wardrobe just for this trip alone, but if you wish, pick up a few new and fresh pieces that you can look forward to wearing. Above all else, remember to savour the moments while you are planning—after all, you are bound for Paris!