Roaming and eating our way through Columbus and beyond.

Packing List for Savannah and Charleston

{by alexis} It’s almost May! That means it’s time to force all the people I love to celebrate my birthday for about two, deliciously long weeks! This year is a bit of a milestone — I’m turning thirty! — so I have an even better excuse to peer pressure Joe into all kinds of fun! For our first installment of celebration, we’re heading South! Next week, Joe and I are meeting my parents in Savannah, Georgia, for a few days, and then driving north to Charleston, South Carolina. You better believe I’ve been working on what I’m stuffing in my suitcase for MONTHS, so here’s a packing list for you — but with a twist!

When I was home in Michigan over Christmas, Joe and I spent some time flipping through old family photos. My grandmothers on both sides were beautiful, elegant, and confident women, and shared my love for travel. I was always struck by their polished outfits in photos, and started to imagine what their suitcases must have looked like. It also occurred to me that they would probably both agree that we travel like slobs these days! Do we REALLY need to wear pajamas on planes? Or tote pillows through the airport?

This time, I decided to pack with a little more pizazz, like my grandmothers did in their heyday. Before we get into all my picks, take a moment to appreciate the perfection from whom I descend.

doris galloway | wander & whine

Doris Galloway | Versailles | 1970

irene biasell | wander & whine

Irene Biasell | Gettysburg | 1960

I mean, really. Pencil skirts on a battlefield? Heeled loafers in the gardens of Versailles? I’m taking their advice. Here’s all the fun I’ve pulled together for our departure next week.

packing list | wander & whine

  1. First of all, you know to NEVER buy anything for full price at J. Crew, right? They are always doing sales, and a little patience really pays off, like in the case of this navy blue dotted midi skirt. I think the prim pleats and the classic length would win my grandmothers’ approval. The best part is that it’s machine washable! I haven’t put it through a cycle yet, so I’m not sure what will happen to the pleats, but I’m SURE IT WILL BE FINE. I will tell you the length on me requires ENORMOUS heels, but that’s just par the mid-length course.
  2. To make the skirt feel a little bit more casual, I grabbed these two tees. The pink makes for a fun and refreshing combination (I’ve always said if I had another wedding it would be pink and navy!), and the striped tee is a playful take on the two patterns. Plus, they look great under a blazer!
  3. You all know, I’m a sucker for a sleek looking one-piece bathing suit, and this deep V, tie number from J. Crew really does the trick. Somehow it looks modern and classic at the same time. The fabric on these is pleasing to the touch, and comfort is important when you’re half naked in public.
  4. I ordered these jeans in the dead of winter as a symbol of my belief that spring would come again! You can’t see it very well in this shot, but there is a cute slit at the ankle, which gives the denim a fun, weekend feel! The cut is straight, so they’re preppier than your skintight skinnies.
  5. You can bet I’ll be wearing a cashmere tee from Kit and Ace on the plane. I’ll be comfortable and look great, and the chic basic will be usable again with other outfits during the trip. A total no brainer.
  6. And won’t it be cute with these sassy little shorts from J. Crew factory! These are the only types of shorts I’ll ever buy; they’re just the most flattering for my shape. And who doesn’t love a little leopard print? Okay, Joe doesn’t, but EVERYONE ELSE.
  7. Okay, this dress. This dress is front and center in this image because it is possibly the most flattering dress I’ve ever purchased. Boden is killing it in the summer dress category. You know I’m a sucker for long sleeves, and the fit is body-skimming, but still tapered. The print is fresh and fun for summer. You can wear these casually, with flats or sandals as pictured, or put on a giant necklace and sky-high heels for dinner. The possibilities are delightfully endless! I haven’t stopped yapping about this dress since I bought it: it is THAT good.
  8. Oh look, another little stunner from Boden! I couldn’t pass up this ruched, off-the-shoulder number in black, and it is also ridiculously flattering. My grandmothers might think the exposed shoulders to be a bit risque, but the longer length keeps it from being too much. With a bright bag, and my comfy black wedges, I’m ready for a night out!
  9. You’ll have noticed I’m obsessed with the off-the-shoulder trend that is happening now. If I’m being really honest here, it’s because it lets me show off my shoulders and clavicle region without exposing my disappointing upper arms (is Michelle Obama’s trainer available?). This little tee will pair perfectly with the denim, for a casual, yet still pulled together look for touring during the day.
  10. I’m loving these Madewell slides: they hide my monstrous bunions and make me look like a relaxed, cool-girl all at the same time. At least that’s what their marketing copy said! Yes, even the part about the bunions!
  11. I’m still on the hunt for great sunnies, but Alicia snagged these cat-inspired shades and I’m all jealous and pouty over here. I’m aiming for an equally fun pair, but I’m not sure I’ll be able to compete.
  12. This colorful little coverup is part of Target’s Marimekko line. After their Lilly Pulitzer debacle, I had no hope for getting my paws on anything from the collaboration, but I popped into Target a week ago and confronted rack after rack of fun frocks! The print of this coverup is loud, but it’s meant for the pool. It’s comfortable and fun, just the ticket!
  13. My God, trolling through Nordstrom’s dress collection is like a full time job. I picked out this floral number from French Connection and was delighted that it fit! It has a tie in the back to make it a little more grown-up, but this dress is perfect for Southern daytime wanderings.
  14. I ordered the two following dresses from Madewell earlier this week and I am praying to the shipping gods that they will be delivered in time. You know black dresses are my jam, and I loved the eyelet of this dress, plus the fun cutouts at the waist. It will be perfect for day or night, but only if it arrives on time!
  15. Another casual dress for exploring a new city. My grandmothers seemed to have a new, complete look for every day, and the easiest way for me to do that is to go with a dress. I’ll look polished, but not fussy.

I can’t wait to wear this collection touring the historic districts of Savannah and Charleston! I’ll be taking lots of pictures as we go, so follow along on my Instagram! Ruminating on the fashion choices of my grandmothers made me take a travel style detour, and I think it’s going to come out well. Polish doesn’t have to sacrifice comfort right? We’ll see!

Have you been to Savannah or Charleston? What sights or restaurants can we absolutely not miss?



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  • Nick Long

    April 29th, 2016 11:59

    Mrs. Wilke's! You will have to wait in a looooong line, but it's worth it! They open at 11 am. Line forms at... well... whenever you are willing to start standing in line for 1-3 hours. If you enjoy honey, Savannah Bee Company is a good 10-minute stop. But maybe most importantly is this law, "In the Savannah Historic District of Downtown Savannah, Georgia, city law allows possession and consumption on the street of one alcoholic beverage in an open plastic container of not more than 16 ounces. Because Georgia has no state public open container law, the city law governs. Throughout the rest of Savannah, however, open containers remain prohibited.".

    • Alexis

      April 29th, 2016 12:02

      Both those places are on our list, for sure!

  • Caitlin

    April 30th, 2016 15:17

    Love the pics of your grandmothers, Alexis! They are so stylish in those photos. Everything you're packing for your trip is so cute! I hope you have an awesome time, and happy early birthday :)

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