Packing Light: Ski Resort Travel Wardrobe

Travel Wardrobe: Ski Vacation

what to wear on plane winter

So this will probably be the most minimalist and boring travel wardrobe I’ve shown to date. 🙂 I’m not including my ski gear/wear here, which takes up the lion’s share of what I packed. Because our timeshare has a washer/dryer, there’s no need to bring a lot of extra clothing. And as I’ve mentioned before, anything we’ll be doing off the slopes calls for “smart casual” wear at best.

My travel wardrobe strategy is to wear my heaviest/bulkiest pieces on the plane. Shown above:

scarf (c/o l’affaire cashmere, similar color/style) | sweater | tee (similar) |
jeans (similar) | faux fur jacket | boots (several years old, similar style)

I’d ordered the faux fur jacket above a few weeks ago because I didn’t have a warm winter coat other than my ski parka and figured it would be a fun option for evenings and non-ski days that I could sometimes wear here in LA. Shortly after I received this one I stumbled across the Madewell jacket on deep discount (when I purchased they were offering an additional 30% off the sale price). I almost sent this one back, but after wearing the Madewell jacket out to walk the dogs on a few chilly mornings, I realized it probably wouldn’t be warm enough for aprés-ski evenings in the mountains. The Fabulous Furs jacket is much heavier and warmer and I think it will be a better choice for this trip. (Yes, it’s cold in Colorado, but relatively dry. Not as damp and bone-chilling as the Northeast.)

travel wardrobe winter

Aaaand, this is the rest of it. (Except pajamas, underwear, a pair of Havianas, and my linen tunic shirt which I threw in at the last minute to wear over my swimsuit to and from the jacuzzi.)

Two more pairs of jeans and one pair of ponte knit pants for lounging. A navy v-neck cashmere sweater, and two tees, one long-sleeved and one short. A lighter cashmere/silk scarf that also adds some color and pattern.

scarf (similar) | sweater (similar options) | long-sleeve layering tee | short-sleeve layering tee |
swimsuit (similar style) top and bottom |
 pants | jeans (blue) | jeans (black)

I should mention that because we are bringing ski gear (skis, poles, boots and helmets) and clothing, we are checking bags this trip. I did keep myself to one medium-sized rolling bag (far less than I used to pack for this ski week) and as I noted above, the ski gear/wear takes up most of it.

If you’re planning a winter vacation that doesn’t revolve around skiing or other sports that require special equipment or clothing, you could probably still add a few lightweight sweaters or tops and extra shoes/boots and fit it all into a carry-on.

I’ve packed a couple of necklaces and bracelets just to liven things up a bit, as well as a couple of hats and pairs of gloves.

Addendum 1: I prepped this post before we left and as always, made one quick change on the way out the door, leaving the grey denim behind. They are a bit long and fought with the boots. I’ve been meaning to have them shortened and wish I’d made the time to do so. Wore the blue jeans for travel instead.

Addendum 2: after a couple of days here, I’m glad I didn’t bother with anything dressy or fancy. Casual is indeed the order of the day (and evening).

Addendum 3: probably could have used a 3rd sweater just for variety, but didn’t have anything else in my wardrobe that seemed warm enough.

Do you take ski or winter vacations? Any particular pieces you always bring along?

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  1. susanburpee
    February 1, 2016 / 7:03 am

    We take at a short ski vacation every year. Sometimes just a couple of nights, sometimes a full week. But since we always drive, it’s so much easier to pack. Plus I think that packing for downhill skiing is a bit different than packing for cross-country skiing. My downhill gear is much bulkier, boots bigger, jackets and pants heavier. Dressing for cross-country skiing is all about light layers….so much easier to pack. Like you I wear a heavy jacket, jeans, turtleneck, and boots for travel. This then is the jacket I wear for dinners out or a shopping foray into some of the small towns near our condo. I bring one extra pair of jeans with a nice sweater for a dinner out; the rest of the time we cook for ourselves. I always bring an extra pair of “base layer”…as the sports stores call them… ski long underwear bottom and turtleneck… for lounging with a sweat shirt on top. I do this for all of our trips. Ski underwear bottoms have doubled as sweatpants for lounging in hotel rooms and B&B’s from Australia to Ireland, in winter and summer….. then they can be worn under jeans on rainy, cold days when you can’t just stay indoors by the fire. Gad… such a long comment. Hope you are having fun on the slopes, Sue.

  2. Rita
    February 1, 2016 / 8:30 am

    Beautiful coat!

  3. February 1, 2016 / 8:46 am

    Well…I just returned from sub Arctic Canada on the Hudson Bay where it was minus 47 and the Aurora borealis were gorgeous. Fortunately, most of my wardrobe was Icebreaker merino wool base layers and fleece lines pants because the tour company provided the Arctic gear. Not a fashion show. However, and hoping I don’t offend anyone, having spent some years living in the Boston area, I learned the value of fur. It is warmer than any synthetic and looks lovely dressed up or down. I buy vintage furs and own both a black mink long jacket as well as a blond mink jacket. It means tossing in a couple of silk and/or merino and/or cashmere tops, merino long johns, a cute hat, gloves and accessories and you are done. Have fun in Beaver Creek…love it there!

    • Jill Ann
      February 1, 2016 / 3:58 pm

      I live in TX, so no need for a fur coat here (ever). However, I had a friend who moved from here to Boston, and she got a beaver coat, which she said was indispensable for keeping her warm when walking the dog on those bitterly cold days. If I lived somewhere super cold, I would probably consider a fur as well.

  4. stylecrone
    February 1, 2016 / 10:39 am

    Welcome to beautiful Colorado and hope you have a fabulous time!

    • une femme
      February 1, 2016 / 1:51 pm

      Judith, thanks and if the weather were better I’d suggest trying to meet up somewhere in between here and Denver. I keep hoping that we’ll be able to meet soon.

  5. February 1, 2016 / 1:00 pm

    Well, first of all I always bring cotton turtlenecks. Then I also always wear a Patagonia long sleeve undershrit. Now mind you I skied in Sun Valley Idaho. It get’s bitterly cold there. So it’s turtlenecks and wicking undershirts.

  6. Pam
    February 1, 2016 / 1:08 pm

    Yes, please!! I’ll take that entire grouping of “on the plane” items!!!!!! Glamour, comfort and warmth – love it.

  7. February 1, 2016 / 1:56 pm

    I just got back from a week skiing in Bozeman, Montana. I based everything on black, white, blue, and orange, and it worked great – same basics you used. Jeans, warm boots, and of course the all-important base layers. I did not travel so light, however, and am impressed that you were able to with all that equipment.

  8. February 1, 2016 / 7:19 pm

    Gorgeous coat but for 99.9% of my skiing trips this would be too much. I will be travelling to Canada soon for a skiing trip, taking boots, helmet and ski gear as well (hiring the skis) and it is great to see your wardrobe as this is about as much as I will be able to fit in as well.

  9. Melissa
    February 2, 2016 / 2:15 am

    Oh my what a nice travel outfit, sooooo pretty!

  10. Carol
    February 14, 2016 / 9:21 am

    I’m curious in what size you purchased the faux fur coat since you’re petite?

    • une femme
      February 14, 2016 / 9:42 am

      Hi Carol, I purchased the XS and it’s a good fit: roomy enough for sweater underneath but not too voluminous.

      • Carol
        February 14, 2016 / 9:57 am

        Thank you so much! I love the coat and will be ordering it right away.

        • une femme
          February 14, 2016 / 11:22 am


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