Vacation calls! Get ready with Beth Divine Style!

Elegant Explorer: Crafting Your Summer European Study Trip Capsule Wardrobe

Summer in Europe or other exotic locations around the world is a dream for many, especially when it involves a trip filled with rich cultural experiences and learning opportunities. For women over 45, this kind of travel isn’t just about seeing new places; it’s about embracing new ideas and inspirations. Creating a capsule wardrobe for such a trip means packing smart—selecting versatile, stylish, and comfortable pieces that let you wander cobbled streets, explore ancient ruins, and enjoy casual dinners al fresco. Here’s how you can create your perfect travel capsule wardrobe for a memorable European summer, from your Indiana Wardrobe Stylist.

Your Vacation Style Suggestions from your Indiana Wardrobe Stylist

  1. Start With the Basics
  • Tops: A selection of lightweight blouses and breathable tops in neutral colors like white, beige, and light blue can be mixed and matched easily. Also add a fun top that’s different, full or color/details and makes a statement.
  • Bottoms: Bring along a couple of pairs of comfortable trousers and one or two midi skirts. Opt for wrinkle-resistant fabrics that offer comfort and elegance. I, your Indiana Wardrobe Stylist, love linen (yes it wrinkles but hang it up); cotton, voile and gauze.
  • Dresses: Include one or two day-to-night dresses that are easy to layer with a cardigan or shawl for cooler evenings. Don’t forget your beautiful silk or cotton scarf that can be an accessory or even a jacket.
  1. Layering is Key

European weather can be unpredictable, even in summer. Pack a stylish lightweight jacket or trench coat, and consider a soft pashmina or scarf that can add warmth and a pop of color to any outfit. Indulge in cashmere if you like it — I often bring this number along on the plane if it’s cold.

  1. Footwear for Comfort and Style

Comfortable walking shoes are a must. A pair of supportive sneakers or cushioned flats are perfect for long days of exploring. Additionally, pack a pair of sandals for warmer days or a dressier evening shoe that won’t take up too much space. As an Indiana Wardrobe Stylist, I like a leather sneaker in a color. I swear by my Borne leather sneakers. I also use them for light workouts  in the gym I fit in along the way.

  1. Accessorize!

Accessories should be kept to a minimum but chosen to maximize impact. Think of a statement watch, a versatile handbag, a sun hat, and a pair of sunglasses—each piece should be functional and fashionable. I love to pack earrings with color and detail; if I want to bring fine jewelry I usually wear one piece the entire time such a diamond circle necklace. I love to pack bracelets and rings, etc. Also — shop for jewelry on your trip! I find these pieces pack well, don’t take up so much space and give me a fond memento of the special trip.

Personally, I leave home the big white athletic sneaker. It’s what Americans are known for, and I don’t want to be pegged immediately as American. Ladies, also please leave your capri pants at home.

  1. Prepare for Special Events

Include one semi-formal outfit for special events like a concert or a nice dinner. A simple yet elegant dress can be the perfect choice, paired with a sophisticated clutch and jewelry to elevate the look.

  1. Choose a Color Scheme

Stick to a cohesive color palette to ensure all your pieces work well together. This strategy not only cuts down on the number of items you need to pack but also simplifies dressing up each day. As a Indiana Wardrobe Stylist, I don’t wear black, I often chose navy and add in some red and even coral pieces to mix it up.

  1. Practicalities

Don’t forget to include a small laundry kit for emergency washes, an umbrella for sudden showers, and a compact sewing kit to handle minor repairs. Under this category I would also add straw hat(s), a couple pair of fun sunglasses, a water bottle and of course sun block you can pack in your purse. Consider the type if you are going to be out in hot temperatures and pack for the day.

  1. Packing Smart

Choose a lightweight, durable suitcase and consider using packing cubes to organize your outfits. This keeps your clothes neat and makes it easier to find what you need without disrupting your entire suitcase.

Get excited. This will be a trip you always remember. If you need help in rounding out your vacation wardrobe, reach out for my pricing! Helping you craft a capsule wardrobe for your trip is one of my favorite services because I can be practical and stylish all at once.

Don’t forget your camera and small travel journal and pen! I cannot wait to hear about your travels!

Bon voyage and keep it sassy, Indy.

Beth Divine, MA, AICI-CIC
Image Consultant and Indiana Wardrobe Stylist