Wine Country Weekend

Napa Valley winery

View of Napa Valley from Mt. Veeder vineyards

Today, Josephine of Chic At Any Age and I are each sharing our version of a weekend getaway travel wardrobe. As I figure you’ve all had your fill of our recent weekend trip to Las Vegas 😉  for this post I decided to pretend we’re planning a trip to Wine Country, in this case California’s Napa Valley. (And we are actually hoping to return there soon, perhaps in the autumn.)

We’ll presume for the sake of this post, that our weekend is a long one; we arrive at our destination Friday afternoon, and start our journey home Monday morning. We’ll also presume that we’re visiting during late Spring, after the rainy season but before summer’s heat. Temperatures may be cool to chilly during early mornings and evenings, and pleasantly warm during the days. We’re not planning any excursions that require hiking, biking, canoeing or horseback riding gear. Mostly we’ll need casual wear, but have dinner reservations two of the evenings where “smart casual” attire would not be out-of-place.

What to bring:

wine country weekend wardrobe

Tops: blouse (similar) | sweater (similar) | silk top (similar) | tee
Bottoms: jeans (similar) | jeans (similar) | ankle pants
Shoes: slip-ons (similar) | sneakers | flats (similar)

wine country weekend accessories

Accessories: earrings | earrings (similar) | hat (similar)| sunglasses (similar) | bracelet (similar) | bracelet (similar) | scarf | necklace (similar) | bag

I’ve kept this travel wardrobe simple, and small enough to fit into a weekender bag. For travel days to and from our destination, I’d wear the boyfriend jeans, tee and slip-on shoes.

Friday: arrive, check into the hotel, enjoy a glass of wine on the patio. We’ll have an early and low-key dinner, because Saturday morning we have to be up before the sun….

hot air balloon ride Napa Valleyto be picked up for our scheduled hot air balloon ride over the valley. It will be chilly starting out, so I’d want to wear jeans, a sweater layered over the tee, a scarf and a jacket. By the time we reach the mid-way point of the ride,

hot air balloon ride Napa Valleyit’s warmed up and I’ve shed the scarf and jacket. It’s still pretty cool at this altitude, so I’m keeping the sweater on!

hot air balloon ride Napa Valley

we land mid-morning, and enjoy a lovely brunch next to a vineyard before being driven back to our hotel.

We’ve mapped out a few wineries to visit over the weekend, but we have a lovely dinner planned and are pacing ourselves, so probably will visit only one or two in the afternoon. I’ve left the jacket, scarf and sweater in the hotel, and changed from the long-sleeved tee to the lightweight blouse.

barrel tasting Napa ValleySometimes you’ll be offered a chance to do some barrel tasting. I’m not enough of an oenophile to get much sense of a wine’s potential from barrel tasting, but it’s still an interesting experience.

Back to the hotel to rest up and change for dinner. For Saturday night, I’d wear: black ankle pants, black silk top, ankle strap shoes, the pearl pendant necklace, gold bracelet. If it’s chilly enough I’ll add the utility jacket, but that comes off as soon as I’m inside.

Sunday morning: a late buffet brunch, then off to another two or three wineries. We might stop in Saint Helena for an afternoon coffee and to do a bit of shopping. For Sunday night dinner, I’d wear the same top and shoes as the previous evening, the dark skinny jeans and alternate some of the jewelry for variety.

A few wardrobe considerations: for wine tasting and winery tours, you’ll want to wear comfortable shoes. If it’s very hot, sandals are fine, but be aware that some tours may include walks through vineyards, or at least on dirt drives, so be prepared. Often tours and tastings involve time spent standing on concrete floors, and interiors can be chilly. In all but the warmest seasons, a lightweight sweater may be welcome.  A small cross-body bag is my preference; no need to lug a heavy large bag around. If the weather’s warm enough and your hotel has a pool, do bring a swim suit.

Monday morning we load up the car with our clothes and a few bottles of wine purchased from the wineries we visited, and hit the road back home.

If you’re traveling with wine, consider picking up a few of these re-useable wine protector bags, especially if you’re flying and will be checking bags.

What types of wardrobe items do you regularly travel with?  Please do go visit Chic At Any Age; I know she has a wonderful weekend travel recap to share!

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25 Comments

  1. Andy
    April 10, 2015 / 5:06 am

    As a person who handles luggage I highly recommend shipping any glass bottles with plenty of padding via ups or fed ex if you’re flying home. I’ve seen many ruined clothes & electronics due to a broken bottle.

  2. plutrell
    April 10, 2015 / 5:06 am

    Looks like a perfect weekend…and the wardrobe to go with it!

  3. April 10, 2015 / 5:25 am

    A hot air balloon ride! That’s so romantic and exciting. Wonderful capsule wardrobe for the weekend. xo

  4. April 10, 2015 / 5:42 am

    Great choices. It is years since I have been up in a hot air balloon. It was a magical experience. I remember a couple of trips I made to the Napa Valley maybe I will get back there for a revisit some day soon.

  5. April 10, 2015 / 7:05 am

    Now you’ve piqued my travel interests! I had nothing to say about Las Vegas, as it doesn’t interest me whatsoever. This is lovely. Yes, wine cellars are chilly by definition.

    You could certainly go country walking and cycling in the clothing you’ve shown – I know rugged hikes and mountain biking require different clothing, but the items you show are perfectly appropriate and comfortable for a country ramble à pied ou à bicyclette. And a pleasant picnic.

    Be careful you don’t shed the scarf and jacket over the side!

  6. Amelie
    April 10, 2015 / 7:19 am

    Great escape for the winter weary psyche!

    As for travelling staples, I find I’m even more conscious of comfortable footwear! If I’m ever dithering over which pair to pack, it always come down to comfort, not always the most stylish choice! In the past, I would at least bring a sleeker, more alluring choice for evening, but now when evening means traipsing over old town European cobblestones, uneven broken pavements etc in the unlit dark, I’ll take sure footed comfort anytime! And so much of our enjoyment of travelling in Europe is partaking of the evening paseo, wherever we are, just strolling around old town through sunset and into the night joining locals and other travelers looking in to bars, restaurants and the activity around the many squares and plazas!

    As to travelling with wine, we have tried many types of packing bags, many unsatisfactory. We do love Bottle Armour though, but haven’t been able to find them lately, after the demise of the travel store Magellans.

  7. sybes1
    April 10, 2015 / 7:24 am

    Hey, don’t forget Sonoma County for wine tasting, balloon riding, cycling, canoeing, horseback riding! After all, that’s where you’ll find the charming Healdsburg 😉

    • une femme
      April 10, 2015 / 7:29 am

      Gah, got confused there. Meant Saint Helena. I knew we’d visited Healdsburg before and that it was indeed charming. But that must have been another trip. 🙂

  8. nell
    April 10, 2015 / 7:35 am

    What an idyllic trip. Really like all the lighter tops you are including– you will look great. That sodalite bracelet is perfect and so versatile with the two tone thing going on, and the lovely blues picking up the blues in your denim and other pieces. Bon voyage!

  9. Tracy
    April 10, 2015 / 9:27 am

    Sounds lovely. I would love to hear how to handle a similar weekend that would include things like hiking. When my husband and I travel, we tend to do different types of outings in a single day with no chance to change clothes. For example, we were in Montreal a few years ago and he wanted to walk up Mt. Royal, which is paved and in the city, but still strenuous and requiring supportive footwear. After that we walked straight into town to go out for lunch and to museums without being able to stop to change clothes, so I ended up walking around fashionable Montreal wearing Keen sandals. Yikes! I like your tips for packing light, but I feel like I could never do that because of the different types of activities we do. Our trips always seem to include hiking, biking, kayaking, and town activities, often in the same day!

    • une femme
      April 10, 2015 / 10:37 am

      Hi Tracy, I’m going to turn this question over to other readers for suggestions. We rarely do anything more outdoorsy than a walk through the woods or gentle bike ride, so my experience here is limited. 🙂

      • Aniko
        April 11, 2015 / 7:12 pm

        Tracy, sounds like we have similar husbands–mine also loves the outdoors and lots of spontaneous activities, while I am sensitive to dressing stylishly and enjoy fine restaurants. When we start out in the morning, I never know where we will end up, so I have learned over the years to dress in a “sporty chic” style that can go nearly anywhere. I also take a daypack where I stow a dressy pair of flats and a little jewelry for evenings. It’s amazing what a nice pair of earring and a long pendant necklace will do to dress up a simple outfit! Add a bit of lipstick and I feel renewed.

        Another tip I figured out last year is that if I choose a grey or black androgenous daypack, he is more than willing to carry it. Not if it’s too colorful, though! Hope these tips help.

        • Tracy
          April 13, 2015 / 6:05 am

          Thanks, Aniko, good tips. I do have a couple of sporty dresses, but I hadn’t thought to bring along jewelry or ballet flats to dress up the look!

  10. Pam
    April 10, 2015 / 10:10 am

    In a previous post you mentioned that you will be using packing cubes for your upcoming trip. I was wondering if you’d made selections (brand and sizes) yet? I’ve got a trip coming up first of May and wanted to try them this time. Lots on Amazon that look good. Any advice thus far?

    • une femme
      April 10, 2015 / 10:43 am

      Hi Pam, I’ve had good luck with the ones from Eagle Creek http://bit.ly/19c4fBl over the years and recently purchased some additional sizes from ebags. I look for those that are soft-sided and have at least one mesh side to see contents.

  11. Caryn
    April 10, 2015 / 2:22 pm

    Greetings from Napa valley! It was fun to read this post poolside after doing some wine tasting. I think your choices are perfect! I would add a bathing suit, and gym clothes so you can work off some calories after all the indulging. Sonoma was a bit more low key and less touristy than Napa. In Napa, it is important to get off the main road, which is loaded with tour buses. This is a fun place for a few days vacation– Loads of great restaurants and beautiful scenery, and a good escape from real life.

  12. April 10, 2015 / 4:15 pm

    We have a wine tasting area in the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia which is not as developed as the Napa or Sonoma Valleys but is fun for a fall getaway. Since I bought my Eileen Fisher ankle pants last year, they have come everywhere with me. I think that I need a pair of grey slip-on canvas shoes for the summer. Your plans look like a lot of fun. Perhaps I can get Monsieur to drive down to Tucson via Napa this fall.

  13. Ann
    April 10, 2015 / 6:20 pm

    Forge about Napa! You should come to Sonoma! More laid back and real. A whole lot less uppity

    • Kristi
      April 11, 2015 / 10:28 am

      Yes, I agree. Sonoma is beautiful and so historic – we loved our stay there and rented a cottage through VRBO. Lots to do and see, and a sunny deck to read and relax when we felt like it!

  14. April 10, 2015 / 10:11 pm

    Goodmorning Une Femme…nice post…so beautiful and enjoyable weekend! I agree with Your outift choice…perfection…You have such talent in create stunning look-s…cheers!
    greetings

  15. Shybiker
    April 11, 2015 / 6:19 am

    What a nice trip. I also went up in a hot-air balloon. Fun!

  16. Lori Deming
    April 16, 2015 / 1:56 pm

    What would the temperatures be for this kind of trip? I know you said Spring. I am planning a trip to Italy and leaving in a week. I really like the staples you have here.

    • une femme
      April 16, 2015 / 6:19 pm

      Hi Lori, when I put this wardrobe together I was thinking temperatures from 55F (early morning balloon ride) to probably in the low 80’s F. We were in Italy in early May a few years ago and it was quite warm. I’d definitely pack light layers and some linen jersey tees or loose linen shirts that can layer over tees. One lightweight sweater or jacket for cool evenings. Have a wonderful trip!

      • Lori
        April 17, 2015 / 5:13 am

        Thank you for your reply. I will check out some linen tees for the trip. I just love your blog.

        Lori

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