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Hand-Luggage Fashion

Amelie Rothwell takes you down the runway in her hand luggage

Photo Credit: Amelie Rothwell

The best way to procrastinate is to go travelling. You may have tidied your room (or shut the door on the mess) and left a pile of (organised) work on your desk as you go home for the holidays with a plan of action for the next few weeks, but we all know you just want a month off for Christmas. You book a last minute flight just to glide away from all your problems. But as you know the biggest difficulty for the spontaneous ‘backpacker’ like yourself is the luggage allowance. As a poor student, you don’t want to pay up to £32 for 15Kg of luggage when you are only going away for a long weekend.

Often your holiday starts the moment you set foot on the terminal and while comfort is key, looking sleek is necessary to get those all-important boarding photos, snapping your city break winter outfit before you have even reached your destination.

Social media has increased the number of photos shared of holidays with #hotdoglegs, #roomswithaview and #beachbums as the #adventures seem to last all year around. The content is endless and the #style posts cause the most envy. There are now snapshots of cute dinner outfits before boarding the plane, a classic wing picture featuring sunglasses and a coffee whilst flying and a snap of your friends walking into their hotels in a dreamy holiday coat. As a result, the airport has become the greatest “runway” for showcasing holiday style.

Photo Credit: Amelie Rothwell

As trends change and student budget’s stay the same (with the never decreasing overdraft), the best way to transport your outfit into ‘holiday mode’ is through a staple item that can be worn all weekend. A coat, a scarf or even a pair of staple trousers that can be dressed up or down over the getaway. Currently, corduroy EVERYTHING, slip skirts, animal prints and puffer jackets are a go to, and buying one staple item can update your whole look. A simple Primark jumper or Topshop skirt can transport your outfit into these seasons looks.

The greatest benefit of a staple item is its power to reduce hand luggage space. As most students want to take a small hand luggage bag away with them and still look gorgeous they have a big problem on their hands. The solution is very simple: ONE OR TWO STAPLE ITEMS. Bringing a pair of trousers and a skirt and packing two tops that can be worn with either the skirt or the trousers give you a day and/or an evening outfit. Earrings and necklaces can dress up an outfit immediately preventing you from bringing another pair of heels for the evening. I do not tend to dress up my outfits, opting for bold colours and often texture clashes to transform an item of clothing which is also a go to if you are a jewellery hoarder.

As you pack, the best option is to stick to light materials and smaller shoes that enable you to easily fit your wash bag and straighteners into your handbag/hand luggage. Always remember the impossible can be achieved. I have ‘procrastinated’ a few times this holiday and have been able to carry my hand luggage bag around with me as a handbag once I have emptied my outfits into my wardrobe at the destination.

Photo Credit: Amelie Rothwell

Once you have packed, the only other outfit you have to worry about is the outfit that jets you off in aeroplane style. Wearing your coat relieves you with extra hand luggage space, along with your staple scarf and hat, but isn’t very practical. Nevertheless, if you wear a pair of tailored warm trousers with your largest jumper you can stay warm in the air and at your destination. By wearing your heaviest clothes, you reduce the amount of hand luggage you have to haul onto the plane, additionally, your coat and scarf can be carried on the side or used as a blanket which allows you to be prepared for the weather at your destination whilst still reducing hand luggage space.

Therefore, the best advice I can give is to pack light and think ahead, roll your clothes to prevent creases (an oldie but a goodie) and do not overpack shoes (trust me you don’t need a pair for every day). Once you have conquered the impossible and minimised your wardrobe into a few outfits, you will be ready to jet off in style and get papped like Bella Hadid or Rosie Huntington-Whiteley as you walk down the runway.

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