This month I’ve teamed up with two great fashion Mom bloggers to get their advice on how to look stylish when traveling with kids. Because I rarely do. I am the first to go for convenience over style. But they provide very useful and comfortable solutions that will help me avoid looking like a »tourist« everywhere I go. In their opinion fashion and traveling Moms don’t clash. So, how do you pull it off? Here are their tips on everything; from sightseeing in a big city, to roaming the country, bags or backpacks, sneakers or shoes,…
1. What should Moms wear when sightseeing in a big city?
TW: I love a great sun dress and Superga sneakers or clean skinny jeans, button down and a metallic Birkenstock or black flat.
SD: Cities can be tough – they require a lot of walking, it’s hot and crowded – comfortable shoes are key. But if you go the route of just comfort (think large running shoes, or the attempts at “fashion shoes” that many of the hiking brands trot out)…you’ll look like a tourist. A much better approach is to find chic shoes that also happen to be comfortable. I swear by Tieks ballet flats when traveling. UGG Australia just came out with a line of sandals that are amazing (these have a cushy foot-bed and soft leather straps, these work for both night or day), Espadrilles are amazing for summer travel, but even Birkenstocks would work. Birks are having a serious moment right now – the traditional pair is really trendy, or try the Gizeh style for less of an ‘aging hippie’ vibe. Slip-on sneaks are a great twist on sneakers – seriously chic, but you’ll never go wrong with a pair of classic Converse or Superga sneakers.
Once you have cool shoes that can be worn all day, find a great bag. I like some of the seriously chic backpacks that are hot right now – in either canvas (MoopShop) or leather (I like Rebecca Minkoff’s), or try an over sized cross-body in a buttery-soft leather.
Add glam sunglasses, and you’ll have a complete set of accessories that can be worn with virtually anything and you’ll blend right in. That said, for maximum packing power, I swear by dresses. I especially love dresses that can be worn with both sneakers or heels. Most comfy, drapey dresses can even serve as a swim cover-up.
Me: Yaay, I own a pair of Birks. And I swear these are the best sandals ever. I am so grateful someone made them fashionable too :).
2. I love sneakers. What colors should they be?
TW: I always opt for black with maybe a splash of color because they stay looking the nicest on long trips.
SD: Any! Especially if you tend to wear neutral colors, a bright or patterned sneaker is really fun. Red sneaks look especially cute with red lipstick (wear this combo with anything – shorts, dresses, jeans, whatever)…or I have a pair of bright blue Superga sneakers that I often wear with bright sunglasses. It helps to offset my wardrobe of black, white and gray.
That said, there’s some seriously chic neutral sneakers and espadrilles on the market right now, and I once wore a pair of parchment-colored Converse all around Paris – they were perfect.
Me: I have mine in pink and I adore them.
TW: I would go for a great canvas Longchamp or Goyard tote. I also like small cross-body bags from Prada, Balenciaga and Gucci if you want to add style when in bigger cities.
SD: A large, chic, bag. Cross-body or backpack is the most practical, but I would avoid, in general, “traveling bags”. Instead, go for something large and chic. You can carry just as much stuff, but won’t look like such a tourist.
Me: Oh, I fail miserably here. I have a huge backpack. But wait I have just found myself a great bag. (in pink to go with my sneakers). You can click on the photo to find more about it.
TW: Keep it simple and then add a bright lip for night.
SD: Oh, Man – I am a makeup-wearer. Even when hiking or at the beach. That said, I try to keep it toned down. For activities (hiking, beach, etc.) I mix a little foundation into my SPF and add blush and a little bronzer. I always fill-in my eyebrows with Anastasia’s brow wiz, use Urban Decay’s anti-aging primer on my lids (it just makes you look more refreshed) and waterproof mascara. Some sort of SPF on my lips. I look pretty, but not overly made-up.
Me: I need to start using make-up on trips too, not just for work.
5. Finally, though with traveling Moms (aka me) it’s usually all about comfort, what shouldn’t we avoid?
TW: I would steer away from anything that says “tourist” like khaki shorts and schlumpy T’s. It is important to dress clean and sleek with well cut basics and a quality bag and shoes.
SD: Personally, I wouldn’t wear anything that screams comfort or travel – at least not in a big city. You can find pieces that work just as well, but with a much cooler vibe.
You want your wardrobe to look effortless, like ‘yeah man, I dress like this everyday’ instead of ‘I’m so excited to be on this trip that I went out and bought these SERIOUS TRAVEL SHOES and THIS MAJOR TRAVELING BAG just to make it clear that I AM A TRAVELER’.
Me: Oh, that right above, that is me. I have work to do.