Even though I fit all my belongings for 7 months into a single backpack, I really can’t say I’m going ultra light. (We are 2 weeks into our trip, and I have barely repeated any outfits.) It was important to me to feel prepared for a variety of situations from a week on the trail in Bulgaria to a nice dinner out in Hong Kong, but I also tried to avoid schlepping a heavy pack, and stick to what I knew I’d be happy wearing over and over. My values when packing were as follows:
- Love how I look and feel in everything I bring–If I hemmed and hawed at all about wearing the item again and again, it didn’t make the cut.
- Pack things I can sweat in–It will be summer almost everywhere we go, and I hate feeling sticky! I already gravitate towards athleisure in my normal wardrobe, so leaning into more polyester/nylon blends from stores like Athleta was easy. Also, I am a workout addict, and I prioritized having enough athletic clothes so that I only have to do laundry once a week.
- Include mostly neutral colors, but with pops of color, pattern, and personality–The one-pack limit requires most items to mix and match, but I knew if I spent the whole year in black, white, and gray I wouldn’t feel like myself.
- Know that the contents of my pack will remain flexible throughout the journey–I brought several items I have owned for 10 years, so I feel comfortable donating/trashing them and acquiring new items if needed.
Below is the list of what I packed!
Tops (This is mostly where I went overboard…)–3 long sleeve, 5 t-shirts, 6 tanks, 2 turtle neck tanks
- navy Athleta organic daily long sleeve
- white Banana Republic cotton long sleeve (*ditched this after Japan–unnecessary in SE Asia*)
- turquoise Athleta jersey long sleeve (*ditched this after Japan–unnecessary in SE Asia*)
- “dark rust and white” (aka burnt orangey brown w/ stripes) Paige t-shirt
- dark gray Banana Republic scoop back t-shirt
- “rustic clay” (aka burnt orangey brown) Lulu Lemon Love Crew t-shirt
- white Generation Love t-shirt with lacey shoulders
- black Joie t-shirt with structured cap sleeves
- navy Only Hearts stretchy tank
- light gray Banana Republic racer-back tank
- black James Perse tank top
- white James Perse tank top
- black Theory turtle neck tank
- white Athleta ribbed mock turtle neck tank
- red stretchy tank from a vintage store
- blue and white funky patterned cotton tank from a vintage store
Bottoms–4 pants, 2 shorts
- hunter green AG tailored capris
- light wash, cropped AG blue jeans
- black Thai-patterend cotton harem pants
- beige AG cropped pants (*ditched these after Japan–unnecessary in SE Asia*)
- blue Joes jean shorts
- white Madewell high-waisted denim shorts (*replaced these with new ones in Laos*)
- black and floral Alice and Olivia kimono
- grey-green Prana cotton/poly blend dress
- red and white paisley pattern cotton skirt–(*didn’t end up using this, so I left it in Laos*)
- 8 pairs of underwear
- 6 pairs of socks
- 5 sports bras
- 5 regular bras
- 2 strapless/bandeau bras
- blue denim Madewell jacket
- magenta Eddie Bauer rain jacket
- tan cashmere/polyester blend zip-up Polo sweater
- **I didn’t bring a light, compressible down jacket, but I think I will need to pick one up for the Bulgarian and Japanese mountains in the late summer/early fall, and even maybe summer peaks in New Zealand.** (*Bought this in Bulgaria*)
Exercise and Camping Clothes–5 shorts, 2 pants, 5 tops,
- 4 Nike running shorts (orange, bluex2, and black)–I workout almost every day, so I packed a lot of these!
- tan nylon/spandex blend EMS hiking shorts with pockets
- black Prana full-length spandex pants–Definitely also wear these on flights and around town.
- black North Face Aphrodite draw string capri–These double for regular clothes, as well.
- 3 Lulu Lemon workout tops (black tank, purple tank, teal t-shirt)
- 2 Baltimore Ravens Nike dri-fit workout tops
- navy polyester long sleeve layer I got from a running race
- magenta fleecy EMS long sleeve
- black Athleta nylon/spandex vest–This doubles for a stylish around town layer!
- lavender Smartwool PHD ultralite hoodie/shell–I got this layer from my father-in-law for Christmas, and it is PERFECT for the summit of a mountain on a hot day or a light layer when the forecast says it might rain in the tropics!
- 2 pairs of hiking socks
- black Smartwool Merino 150 gloves
- burgundy Smartwool Marino 250 headband–Not sure if I’m going to need a warmer had in the mountains
- funky-patterned Bramble instant-dry towel—Couldn’t recommend this awesome brand more!
- orange Big Agnes Kings Canyon UL quilt
- yellow Therm-a-rest sleeping pad
- purple bandana–ALWAYS useful
- Steripen UV water purifier
- Sea to Summit collapsible cup
- hiking boots
- black New Balance running shoes
- beige classic Toms
- tan Toms leather sandals
- flip flops
- black leather across the body–big enough to fit my phone, small zipper wallet, & more!
- chocolate brown leather clutch with wrist ring–same as above (useful size is crucial!)
- purple Osprey Talon 22 day pack–can fit a whole weekend’s clothes
- blue Zomake day pack—This little pack is a GOD-SEND; it packs down to a tiny size and is incredibly light, but is comfortable on your back and holds a ton of stuff!
- baseball hat with multicolor sunset design
- brown Brown University bucket hat–thanks, Grandma!
- bathing suit
- brown and white paisley patterned scarf
- AG grey racer-back maxi dress–I call this my “house dress.” It instantly makes me feel at home in any Airbnb or hotel. I wasn’t sure if I should bring it, and I’m so glad I did!
- 2 sleep t-shirts
- Brown University sleep boxers
- Jewelry: gold-colored studs, hoops, blue dangly earrings, 2 beaded necklaces (green and yellow)
- Sleep accessories: inflatable neck pillow, ear plugs, eye mask