Photo credit 360 magazine

After reading my “Five Day No Denim Challenge,” my son, Chris, presented me with another challenge…“One Weekend/One Carry-On”.  If I could sum up this challenge with one word, it would be….YIKES!!!

True Confession:  I’m an over-packer, especially when I travel to New York.  And since I stay with Chris in his “small-ish” apartment, he has hinted that it would be nice if I just brought one small carry-on bag.  So, my first challenge was to find the right carry-on….good quality, a spinner, light weight, and easy to pack. In the end, I went with a 22 inch hard-side Hartman carry-on spinner….love it!

Here’s what I packed:  One pair of faux leather pants, one white blouse, one sweater, a black blazer, and a mini bag.  I also brought pajamas and undergarments.  A space saver was packing socks instead of my UGG house shoes (too bulky).  And of course I packed a few small bags for makeup and hair supplies. Be sure to look at the The Best Amazon Travel Essentials on our Pinterest board.


For the first time, I tried the “KonMari” vertical packing method from the hit show, Tidying Up.  Be sure to watch her video on our Pinterest board. And a little trick I’ve used for years is wrapping my clothes in plastic cleaner bags to keep them from wrinkling.  Though I did place my blazer in the hanging bag that came with my carryon…very convenient. The good news….everything was wrinkle free when I unpacked!

Getting there was the easy part (except for delays).  My secret weapon was layering! On the plane, I wore black jeans over tights, socks, knee-high boots, a camel turtleneck sweater, a blazer, plaid scarf, and a puffer coat.   I also carried a large tote on the plane. Thank goodness for totes…mine included a travel pillow, my credit card holder, plus a few magazines.

At the last minute, I packed a white blouse to dress up my style a bit for a record release party to which we were invited.  Some of our excursions included MoMA, a church service, dining out, the record release party, and vintage shopping in Williamsburg.  To complete a fabulous weekend we had drinks at Westlight at the William Vale Hotel in Williamsburg. The view of Manhattan was breathtaking…the best I’ve ever seen!  

Chris and Holley at Record Release Party

Vintage Shopping

View from Westlight at the William Vale Hotel

So, what did I learn from this experience?  In the past, I took way more than I needed and did not wear half of the stuff I packed. Sound familiar? Another perk, no baggage fee, and I didn’t have to wait for my luggage. Within minutes, I was in my Lyft ride on my way to Mid-town!  Did I mention happy hour couldn’t come fast enough?

So now I’m challenging you….“One Weekend/One Carry-On”!  Do you think you are up for the challenge?

Holley Williams is a personal stylist specializing in closet inventory, seasonal shopping, closet organization and wardrobe consultation.  Contact Holley at [email protected].  Be sure to check out Holley’s updated Pinterest board here.