Packing tips from style experts

People are usually shocked when I tell them that I always carry-on. I actually can’t even remember the last time I checked a bag; it basically never happens.

My Hartmann Stratum 22′ Expandable Mobile Traveler Suitcase

Being a great packer starts with having a great suitcase. I travel with a navy blue and black Hartmann Stratum 22″ Expandable Mobile Traveler and I contend that my ability to pack a different dress for every day, night and then some is because of the suitcase’s genius design. The top flap opens up into a garment bag, which then folds back into a very spacious, 2″ compartment; I hang up all my dresses and several t-shirts in the expandable garment bag and pack the rest in the bottom part of the suitcase. Not only do I never wear the same thing twice and always have different clothing options, I also have room to buy fun and pretty things while abroad. ;) The 2″ compartment really comes in handy, too – I usually pack gifts and other trinkets in there.

In this month’s issue of Harper’s Bazaar, three stylish travelers share their ‘travel techniques’ along with what to pack and where to go. The best tip? No crazy, last-minute “I may need this” additions! Click each image to expand.

I also love this Givenchy aviation-inspired watch from this month’s issue of Vogue. The weirdest thing about it is that 17 – the name of the model and the designer’s lucky number – is my lucky number, too. Green and 17!? So cool. It’s a great watch to travel with because while it may be expensive, it’s not at all flashy.

Introducing Mexico’s stylish & bohemian enclave, Merida

Ah, Mexico – one of my all-time favorite travel destinations.  

Mexico is a huge country with incredibly colorful and distinct regions, each offering its own unique culture.  I hear people say they’re afraid to travel to Mexico because of “border” issues – in reality, the country is so large, you can travel from one coast to the other and be hours away from any political problems whatsoever.

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Every chance I get to see more of Mexico, I pack my bags and go.  Riviera Maya is always a choice vacation spot and I’m dying to see Oaxaca, Mexico’s chocolate and coffee capital.  I recently read an amazing article on Merida (featured below), one of Mexico’s most fashionable destinations.  The New York Times Style publication, T Magazine, is a gem – their travel spreads and style recommendations are the epitome of cool.

Click here to read Merida’s best of the best, via T Magazine.

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The featured properties:

Coqui Coqui

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Rosas y Xocolate

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Here’s a little luxury style to goclick here to see smart clothes and accessories for warm-weather travel.

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The Art of Packing, via net-a-porter.com

‘Tis the season to travel, party and look good while you’re doing it

NET-A-PORTER.com is feeling the holiday spirit.  The high-fashion site was kind enough to share their favorite “party-season hotels” from all around the world in this week’s digital magazine.  From Paris to St. Petersburg, here’s where to party for the holiday season…and what to wear.

Click here to read the rest of the stylish picks.

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And, my recommendation for holiday partying while in NYC:

The Gramercy Park Hotel…find it at 2 Lex.  My favorite hotel in the city. Period.

Play a little pool and chill at the hotel’s Jade Bar, and order a seasonal cocktail…(or try my choice drink, Diamonds & Pearls)

Jade Bar: Photo courtesy of gramercyparkhotel.com

Chill out at the hotel’s many restful, woody and warm spots by the fireplace.

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A lobby spot: Photo courtesy of gramercyparkhotel.com

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Classic style: Photo courtesy of gramercyparkhotel.com

Kick it at the always happening Rose Bar…

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Rose Bar: Photo courtesy of gramercyparkhotel.com

Dine at Maialino for some mind-blowing Italian cuisine before your crazy night out in the city…you can’t go wrong.  The best!

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Maialino: Photo courtesy of gramercyparkhotel.com

And end the evening with some slumber in the hotel’s sexy, tasteful and simple bedrooms.

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Bedroom: Photo courtesy of gramercyparkhotel.com

Live it up and enjoy the holidays…have a happy one!

A requisite accessory for an artist and a traveler

Montreal artist Claire Desjardins created a contemporary and lively painting titled “Urban Blue” that was graphically transferred onto the most sumptuous leather handbag imaginable, available for your viewing pleasure at Anthropologie.com.

This oversized “weekender” is really a gorgeous find – modern, unique and perfectly constructed for travel. The outside compartment is ideal for storing tech and there are three interior pockets for other in-flight accessories (I’m thinking a sleep mask, travel socks and my always essential JETPAX vitamins;) ). Pricey? Yes – but the leather is sturdy and mostly black, so you won’t have to worry about bringing it through the airport or on your flight unscathed.

The Watercolor Weekender by Claire Desjardins at Anthropologie.com

“Urban Blue”, the painting that inspired the handbag’s unique aesthetic.

“Urban Blue” by Claire Desjardins

Anthropologie has a “featured artists” section on their site where you can browse by artist name to see the newest collaborations. Click here to see the site’s fall travel accessories.

Burberry is streaming live from London

Luddites, beware.  Streaming live from London, the experimental British brand is debuting its Burberry Prorsum Spring/Summer 2013 collection hi-tech style…online.

You can watch the entire runway show live.  How cool!

And…Cara Delevingne.

A nice emerald green trench;)

And, the finale.  So…metallics this spring?  I love it!

Oh, the change is gonna do me good

I have never been one to transition well. Change used to terrify me and the thought of “starting over” with new friendships, relationships and experiences was menacing. Of late I’ve realized how positive and extraordinary change can be, and I’ve been enjoying the benefits of a new outlook on life.

In my humble opinion, the greatest challenge in life is overcoming loss. Loss of love, a friend, a lifestyle, your family, your health…however loss manifests itself in your life. What we learn from loss is what’s most important – and the greatest lesson I’ve learned this year is that ultimately, everything will always be okay.

This editorial spread appeared in the February 2009 issue of Harper’s Bazaar. I held onto it and have looked at it from time to time because I thoroughly enjoy the message: life throws its punches, and overcoming “setbacks” can be an amazingly rewarding experience. Sometimes all you need to do is be the greatest version of “you” you can possibly be.

Enjoy.

Cool social engagement at NET-A-PORTER.com

NET-A-PORTER’S “fashion tweeps” featured in their aesthetically pleasing and judicious weekly digital magazine is a brilliant way to bring fashion lovers from all over the world into the social realm.

Twitter handles, a brief bio & “what to expect” for fashion stars like Cara Delevingne and Lulu Kennedy is touted on the site…click here to check out this week’s amazing edit.

Thank you @teretbantine, for designing pragmatic travel fashion

Meet Italian fashion pundit TER ET BANTINE.

Ter et Bantine designs practical pieces for fashionable travelers: simple, packable and suitable for a number of unpredictable atmospheric conditions.;)

Ter et Bantine was born in 1992. A pragmatic dreamer, designer Manuela Arcari looks at the world around her and condenses her observations in a sign retaining a quality not usually associated with fashion design: dignity. She designs for a woman who is real, not fictional, living real-life, concrete situations.”

The frame around this picture is from arguably the best photography app out there, Genius.  Add frames to your pics or change the color, texture and size, directly from the palm of your hand.

Click here to download.

Burberry’s “Art of the Trench”: timeless style from around the world

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Burberry’s collections of late have been a dreamy mix of enduring British elegance and killer high street style…and their smokin’ hot ad campaigns and runway shows don’t hurt either (cheers, Cara Delevingne)…

The innovators at Burberry set out to create a website dedicated exclusively to their timeless trench coat.  Burberry trench wearers from around the world can upload a picture of their trench either directly on the site or via Instagram.

“Together we are creating a body of images reflecting personal style from across the globe…”

Burberry’s interactive platform at ARTOFTHETRENCH.COM

Art of the Trench is a living document of the trench coat and the people who wear it.  The project is a collaboration between Burberry and some of the world’s leading image makers, including a series of specially commissioned trench coat portraits by Scott Schuman and The Sartorialist and iconic Magnum photographers.”