Friday, 15 March 2013

Travel Capsule in Action part 1 of 2

Regular outfits will return following these two features on my recent travels to Texas. 

I hesitated about these posts because I'm not consistently looking or feeling my best in what I had on, and they are mirror-portrait-heavy, but such is actual life. Plus you get to meet my parents! Contrary to my usual approach, I packed in a hurry the night before I left, though with my secret weapon of previous years' packing lists it worked out fine. Whew! 

Travel outfit: 
striped scarf that goes with everything: Lupita's, Harlingen, worn here
long open-front cardigan: Shana K, Becky's, South Padre Island, worn here
grey pleather jacket: Coffee Shop, Haute Look, worn here
leather cross-body bag: Kenneth Cole Reaction, shown here
striped maxi skirt: Kiora, Winners, worn here
green suitcase: Traveler's Choice Sienna, Beyond the Rack
sneakers: Nike Free

The customer reviews on Amazon tipped the balance in favour of this suitcase when it came up at a good price, here is my favourite: "... I was able to fit my suite [sic] and two button up shirts in the luggage along with the Mrs. Brides Maids dress. (She had one of those poofy God awful ones too)." I felt like I knew that person - and that dress. 

Thanks to, despite preparing for any weather from ice storm to +30s C / 80s F, I'm getting better at travelling with just a carry-on. However, I clearly need more practise at leaving room if I'm going to be shopping - I had to use the bag's expansion feature and check it on the way home. Again. 

Speaking of people I know, and my FAVOURITE-favourites, here are my parents: 

Practical, ultra-casual looks are so NOT my favourite:
button-front shirt: Reitman's, worn here
green scarf:
Lupita's, Harlingen, a gift from my mother
striped tank: Joe Fresh, worn here

jointed leaf necklace: 
Tradewinds (local shop), worn here

This ensemble got a lot more milage: 
faux red coral necklace: Lupita's, Harlingen, a gift from my mother
maxi dress: Damoa, Beyond the Rack, worn here
red leather obi belt: Elizabeth Kelly London, etsy, worn here
flip flops: Joe Fresh

While flip flops use little suitcase space, I'm still on the hunt for walk-able, non-orthopedic-looking actual sandals. How can it possibly be that I have a gap in my shoe collection? 

I have a hard time with fit in summer shoes, so can't order online and must shop in person where the shoe selection in my size (10-11) is crud. Further, shoes that are gorgeous in small sizes suffer terribly from the vagaries of pattern translation, which equals serious fug by the time they hit size 10. I'm envious of countries that have free-shipping-free-returns! I'd rather not pay just to try something on. 

On a spectacularly brighter note, check out a couple of outfits 
by my beautiful and glamorous mom:  

mom's floral solid-sequinned jacket: Quelle Boutique, Harlingen

I love the intentional shot of green in her ring

Some travel photos and, even better, things I didn't buy, are tucked below the jump. Part 2 of 2 in the Travel Capsule in Action series coming up, stay tuned!

No, I really didn't buy these Old Gringo Boots (please join in admiring my restraint), but wish I'd snapped a pic of them on. 

Island landscaping, architecture, and sand-castle-scaping

My annual visit to the wee blue duckie. If she waits another year, she may yet have to come home with me. 

Taking photos is an integral part of my mom and I corralling our mad fits of passion and being able to love-and-leave things. A very effective strategy - except when it results in ongoing pining. Case in point, fish necklace! 


  1. Wow, those boots! So very Amber!

    I totally get what you mean when you say "Practical, ultra-casual looks are so NOT my favourite". I hate it when I'm flying somewhere and everyone is wearing yoga pants and uggs. Totally not necessary people!!

  2. Hello, Amber parents! *waves* You have a lovely daughter (I see where she gets her loveliness from).

    I love all these outfits, but the maxi dress with the obi is my fave!

  3. You look chic and comfortable, and what a gorgeous family you are!! I still frequently check a bag on the way home from travels, usually because we've shopped for wines, which must be checked.

  4. Amber, I love seeing you on your Texas travels, and it's great to meet your parents. Your mum is truly glamorous and obviously loves her clothes and accessories (so the apple didn't fall far from the tree then!) but I see your dad's kind smile in yours.
    Ooh, maxi dress! I like! And goodness, what superhuman restraint to leave those studded boots behind! And the blue glass duckie and the fish necklace. So if these were the didn't-make-the-cut items - what DID?! xxxxx

  5. I enjoy seeing the travel outfit, you look beautiful. Great patterned dress and like the wide legged pants. Both look good and also comfortable for traveling. Your parents look happy to see you!

  6. love your outfits, I also refuse to wear an ultra-casual outfit when travel, and love that you share your mom's style with us, she's fabulous!
    And that boots are just a dream!!

  7. Well hello Mum and Dad!
    Know what you mean about not liking practical ultra casual looks - I feel the same way and am often trapped into living in them. I'll share one soon!
    I think you were very restrained not to get those amazing boots - they are very you!

  8. Omgomgomgomg! I totally met a lady wearing those exact boots at an art crawl! I snapped a picture in this post:

    As for your outfits, I think you're marvelously well dressed for travel. I never pack well for traveling. Even going to my brother's a couple hours away, I manage to forget most of my medication, sleep clothes, and any kind of toiletries.

    As for easy pack sandals, you should look into a pair of Cydwoqs. If you're worried about ladysizing not fitting (which their sizing is usually pretty generous imo), the men's sandals are not only mega-cute, but very gender neutral. They're pricey, but there's always ebay. I managed to score a pair of Cydwoq sandals for like $30 on there. They're a lot more supportive than flip flops, and will last longer to boot.

    1. I remembered the boots from that post of yours! They are absolute beauties in person and feel fabulous on, but were too tall for my legs and too much to wear to work, for all that I push that boundary. And oh, trust me, I've had Cydwoq as a saved ebay search sending me daily emails for ages but no luck yet!

      For the past year and a half or so, I seem to be even thinking in wardrobe capsules all the time - even my send-away and donation-bag garments all go together - but it cracks me up that I sometimes catch myself thinking that certain shoes would go with my other shoes.

  9. I am so enjoying this post, and "meeting" your parents - gorgeous, both of them! (well, three of you!) The boots you left behind are amazing. And Cydwoqs for $30?? Shopper of the week award coming your way : >

  10. It's such a treat to see you with your parents! They must be so happy when you come to visit. I know I'm always impressed with the beautiful things your mother has given you. I'll bet they look at your blog, too. My dad, who's 89, pulls it up for my mom, who's 90. Occasionally he'll send me an email if he particularly likes one of my posts.

    Carry ons are a necessary evil, aren't they?! I always think about the trunks upon trunks that the upper crust used to travel with. All I'm asking for is a regular suitcase!! I like options. Plus going through security puts a whole 'nother damper on the fun of dressing when you fly. I could even go so far as to say dehumanizing.

    Despite all those limitations, you look marvelous in your other "clime". Because your hair is so totally cool, even "practical, ultra casual" outfits look cool on you as opposed to boring or pedestrian. I do know, so very very well, what you mean, however. I will add that those boots are jaw-droppingly amazing. That must have required incredible will power. Hopefully they won't join the file entitled "The One That Got Away".

    Love you!!!! Have a fabulous weekend.

  11. I just left a long comment but I think google swallowed it up! Argh. I also tried to leave one earlier from my phone with equally dismal results. Third time is the charm? Let's see! In a nutshell, you look radiant with your loving parents! I think all your followers totally empathize with your distaste for casual, practical ensembles sometimes necessitated by flying with that stupid tiny little carry on!! Your overall gorgeousness and fabulous hair make any outfit look cool, however. Plus your version of casual-practical still has the funk factor, for sure. Your maxi and obi look beautiful, your mom is gorgeous, your dad handsome, and the boots are downright criminal in their fabulosity. Now, let's see if this comment goes through. Cross your fingers...XXOO

  12. How fun seeing your travels, your family, and a different side of your life! Since you have so many pieces of jewelry that are gifts from your mother, it's lovely to meet her - what a stylish family you are!

  13. And hair belongs in the hall of fame. Thanks for posting the photos and feel free to drop by me too when you have time.

  14. I like to see pictures from your travel!

  15. Your mam and pops are beautiful! How luminous and joyful you all look- I love your travelling ensembles- they are functional but still quirky. And lovely.

  16. Thank you for sharing your photos of your parents - your Mom looks great in the bold prints and she has obviously inspired you in your own style. I would be pining over the fish necklace too....

    I didn't realize you wore size 10-11 shoes (did I know that?). I may have some boots for you....we need to talk!

    I always look so dressed up when I travel in comparison to the rest of the women in their lululemon hoodies and yoga pants, but I'm never any less comfortable.

  17. Oh my, can't believe those boots didn't come home with you. Lovely to see your Mom and Dad, Amber. And what you deem as casual wear. You look just as gorgeous as always, it's the mix that does it.

  18. Your mom has great style, just like you. I would have had to have a shot of my own feet in those Gringo boots for sure :)

  19. It's so lovely that you have both your parents! They look just wonderful!
    Where they live is fantastic, just gorgeous!!!
    Can't believe you didn't bring home those boots!


Thank you for your comments!
- Amber