From security checkpoint convenience to in-air comfort and climate adaptability, style when traveling tends to take a backseat to more practical matters. While most of my travel time is spent in uniform, I have a keen eye for the fashions that I see in the airport and in the air. With New York Fashion Week in full swing, I find myself reflecting on the state of style and its implications on travel. Fliers often opt for comfort and function over couture and fashion. Inspired by the most chic week of the season, I’d like to share my fashion dos and don’ts, when the tarmac is your runway.
A lot of planning can and should go into your ensemble before you leave for the airport. Not only do you want to be comfortable for the travel ahead, you need to take into account your destination and what you’ll be doing when you need to hit the ground running. My two major don’ts when getting dressed for travel are white and linen. White clothing isn’t easy to clean should you spill or rub up against something, and linen will wrinkle and leave you looking disheveled. Stick to lightweight materials in neutral-to-dark solids or patterns. For women, nothing is wrong with a little black dress that is comfortable, durable and a perfect base for layering and accessorizing.
When accessorizing, do so responsibly. I encourage spicing up your ensemble basics with jewelry, scarves, hats and eyewear but keep security checkpoints in mind. To that end, always pack a small pouch in your carry-on for easy storage should items need to be removed and placed on the X-ray belt. And that reminds me — a belt with a pop of color or bold pattern can brighten your outfit in a cinch.
When traveling south, for example, you may start your day in boots and end it in flip-flops. So how do you travel between climates in one outfit? My answer is simple: layers. For women and men, a casual sweater or blazer over a T-shirt or tank-top makes for a stylish trip from start to finish. Don’t be afraid to get fun and adventurous with the base layer. Your carry-on should serve as a functional extension of your outfit and my favorite kind is a backpack — they’re not just for kids anymore. Perfect for packing up a change of shoes, clothes and even swim trunks, backpacks can be easily stowed in an overhead cabin during the flight and carried to your destination without occupying your free arms.
Once you have the basics down, incorporating on-trend styles and colors via accessories and layers is the best way to ensure your look lasts through your travels. Speaking of trends and colors, the new JetBlue uniforms, which were unveiled in June, speak to this by incorporating an orange colorway into our standard style. Have you seen it yet? Orange really is the new black.
Do you have any travel style dos and don’ts to share? Let me know in the comments below or on Twitter (@Wingwoman_Tracy).