My travel season is officially over and I am breathing a huge sigh of relief. I’ve been with my organization for over four years, but until last summer, travel wasn’t part of my job description. The last few months have been a crash course in packing for business trips – since the first one that I wrote about, I’ve been on no fewer than seven trips for my job (two local and five that required air travel). Am I getting better at packing for them? Sort of. But I still haven’t perfected the art, if I’m being honest.
Most recently I spent three days at a conference in San Diego. It was nice to be back in the beautiful city where my husband and I honeymooned once upon a time, but I was working non-stop and didn’t have much of a chance to enjoy it. I did enjoy getting dressed on this trip, at least, especially because of a very fun pair of sandals that arrived shortly before I left.
Those babies at the bottom of the photo are, in fact, the Everlane Block Heel Sandal in the new Moss Lizard color ($155). I fell in love with these when Everlane released the first few colors last spring, so when they came out with this perfect summery green shade a few weeks ago, I shamelessly asked the affiliate manager if I could have a pair. Two days later, they were on my doorstep, and two days after that, they were in my suitcase headed to California.
Here’s my quick and dirty review of the block heel sandal before I get on with the rest of my trip outfits:
- comfortable heel height
- fun color
- true to size (I am wearing my normal size 6)
- high-quality leather
- some discomfort in the toe area (I did get one blister on my right big toe after wearing these all day on the first day I had them, but I think this is a problem that will go away as they break in more fully)
- …that’s it.
Obviously there are some cons that are just always associated with leather – you can’t wear them in the rain, the leather can deform if you store them improperly, they are made with the body of an animal that was once living and breathing – that kind of thing. Overall, I really like these and I’m glad that I can replace my old suede orange block heels from Loft with these better quality shoes.
On the airplane over I wore my Loyale Studio Style No. 1 tee in stripe with Everlane jeans and white Keds. I needed this outfit to be appropriate for a six hour plane ride, setting up a tradeshow booth, and getting a late lunch out in the Gaslamp Quarter. It was great for everything, but I probably wouldn’t wear this shirt again for activities that involve a lot of bending over. I’m sure I flashed a few people while I was setting up!
On my first full day in San Diego, I wore my VETTA boyfriend shirt, an old black dress from Loft, and my Everlane sandals. I topped it with my French Connection long bomber jacket for the cool morning walk over to the convention center. I always carry my Longchamp Le Pliage Tote on business trips because it is roomy, easy to clean, packs up small, and zips closed. I know these aren’t exactly “in” anymore, but I’ve been using mine since I bought it with my first paycheck from my job rolling burritos in Warren, Rhode Island way back in 2010.
When show hours were over, I turned the VETTA top around so that the buttons were in the back, and swapped my dress for jeans and sandals for Keds. I wore this to do some work in my hotel room and grab a quick dinner out with a coworker.
It’s not pictured, but I use my Are Studio Disc bag as my evening bag when I’m out on business trips. It’s great because it lays completely flat in my suitcase and I can tie the strap such that I can wear it as a cross-body or a belt bag. It is really tiny and fits just the essentials – I actually got mine from a friend who decided not to keep it because her iPhone didn’t fit in the pocket.
On my second day, I wore my Kotn Mock Neck Dress (nearly sold out but still available in a few sizes for $42), with sandals for show hours and sneakers for break-down and the flight home. I wouldn’t have thought to pair this dress with sneakers (tbh I almost never wear sneakers so this whole category of styling is very new to me…), but I thought the end result was perfect. This is a look I plan to repeat.
I mentioned in the beginning of this post that I still haven’t perfected packing for business trips. This time around, my biggest mistake was packing a too-short dress for the first day of the conference. I was glad I had my little table to stand behind most of the time because I felt sort of exposed in with the short hemline. It’s not that I didn’t like the outfit, just that it wasn’t completely appropriate for the occasion.
I’m still on the hunt for the perfect business dress to replace that one for conferences and other more formal occasions – I really like this one from Brass and this one from Maven Women, which is actually local to me in DC.
That’s it for my trip outfits. I’m hoping that now that I don’t have to travel again for a few months I can settle back into my planned blog schedule, but if I’ve learned anything in the last year of blogging, it’s that I should never promise you guys anything because I am very, very bad at sticking to my timeline.
For all those of who you are up late tonight finishing your taxes and/or watching the Game of Thrones premier, I salute you, and I am with you.
This post contains affiliate links.