Sunday, January 4, 2015

Posting from "my office"...creating a workable wardrobe for 3 weeks in France using a carry on.

Our arts and crafts bungalow circa 1912, was designed before home offices were even on the radar, so I use our kitchen as my "office."


This is the view from our trestle table where my Mac sits waiting for me...
it's handy too as I spend many hours in our humble kitchen.
It's a pleasant space in which to write as there is a window beside the table and many birds are in the side yard.
I sip my tea, look outside
 and ponder...





It might not look like much right now as the beds are "resting up" for their displays in the spring and summer...
there are two dwarf fruit trees, roses and hydrangeas.


I am a messy cook and so I always wear an apron when I am cooking and when I am cleaning...
Here's the newest one handmade by my friend LA, a thoughtful Xmas gift.
Thanks L!


OOTD...

White long sleeved Tee ~ Ellen Tracy
apron
jeans ~ Talbots
cashmere socks
Timberland boots

While the laundry spins...
I am hard at work trying to figure out my travel wardrobe.
3 weeks travel in France...
2 weeks in Paris with just a small carry on...


I've been writing notes and lists
 then...
editing, editing editing...



Over the holidays I went out with my lovely daughter and we did a bit of a shop.
I found an inexpensive fun new top in a bright shade of coral...
in the same shade as my new Lands' End cashmere cardigan, which is also coming with me to Paris.
If the weather is sunny and warm I will wear this top when I venture south to visit our friends.


Love the lacy details...
now I am looking for some ethnic jewelry to pick up the same shade.

 I have the cardigan...


I have that Jones of NY dress with splashes of coral in the pattern.




I am trying to tie it all together so living out of a carry on for three weeks will be easy.



I am taking layers...
tanks and tees and two pairs of pants.
One is a pair of jeans and the other Eileen Fisher black knit pants.


The tweedy black Banana Republic dress is coming too...


I think I will take this vintage navy leather bag 


 inside this Longchamps expandable bag as my personal item.

I have to work on the accessories that I will bring...


 I have one scarf so far...

It's quitting time in "the office" I've done enough work for one day and I am closing up the laptop...
preparing dinner is next!

Mr. HB and I are ready for the season 5 premiere of Downton Abbey tonight.
Will you be watching?


43 comments:

  1. You are the most adorable person. :)

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  2. So glad to see that you are feeling better. What a nice way to spend the day...planning for your trip. Everything you are taking looks super.

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    1. I am the worst over packer so this exercise will be a test!

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  3. Been waiting for Downton Abbey all week! Poor Edith, Thomas shame on you once again, poor Molsley, oh Cora I was so proud of you and then you let me down, Tom she's no good for you lad, Mary oh la la, oh Isabel are you a commitment phobic...choose happiness, Daisy go for it! Cousin Violet you are the funniest woman...you make me LOL!

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  4. Definitely take the Longchamp.. It seems every lady in Paris carries one.
    Comfort is paramount for shoes. We did loads of walking.
    Take a few scarves - you can vary your outfits easily and without taking up much luggage space.

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  5. Love the apron - I think we need to revive the use of aprons! And your packing for Paris is taking shape really nicely; just remember that you can have laundry done in France - it makes packing so much easier!
    big hug,
    Janice

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    Replies
    1. I have three aprons...and they all get used!
      I ruined too many clothes with food mishaps ever to cook without one.
      I plan to do some hand washing in Paris...and I'd like to leave some room in the case for purchases!

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  6. You are on the right track with your wardrobe planning. I tend to pack neutrals and then miss "color" even on short jaunts. The coral will brighten any mood no matter the weather.

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  7. I think that your blue and coral dress will work very well for your trip. I have discovered that it is quite reasonable to have laundry done in Paris and saves the cost and inconvenience of extra baggage.The Longchamps bag is a staple in Paris. Today is back-to-school day for many of my friends and I shall feel pleased to tidy my own desk, work on my writing assignment and prepare for a visit from my "French student. You sound as though you are feeling better. So many people that I know are sick and they seem to have relapses. Fresh healthy food and walks hopefully will see us through January.

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    1. I am still taking it easy as I have also heard about the relapse...
      how is the book coming along?

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  8. I've always used my kitchen area as my "office space" as well. It feels like the centre of the home, and it seems to be where I can focus.

    Part of the fun of planning for a trip is figuring out what to pack. I don't go with just a carry on, but what I do travel with is a backpack, and it holds about the same amount as a carry on. I always pack an expandable bag that I can use as a carry on on the way home though, and that's what I put my purchases (usually yarn) in.

    Where do you buy your Josef Seibel shoes? I recently got my first ever pair at Costco when they had a temporary display of them. I really like them and would like to get another pair.

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    1. I found my Siebel's in a shoe shop on Oak Bay Avenue...Walk in Comfort also carry them as do several shops downtown in Victoria. You might google search retailers who stock them where you live. I didn't know they were available at Costco, they are wonderful shoes to wear.

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    2. Thanks! I'll have a look next time I'm over visiting my son's family. Costco had them in as one of their special events, so that meant they were only available for a couple weeks.

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  9. Very interested in your packing. I get to do a work/play trip to Nice France early February for 10 days. Glad to hear the Le Pliage bag is a given in France. I got on in Heathrow of all places and haven't christened it with a trip yet.

    On your Land's End cardigan, is it roomy through the body? I am looking for a quality cashmere sweater (elegant, light and thin to pack!) but so many are so tight in the body and arms. I'd love your review of the Land's End cashmere or any other brands you have found that work.

    Also, do you use packing cubes? I have heard of them for years and many swear by them. Wondering if they are worth trying? I am only taking a carry on sized suitcase so need to make the most out of the space.

    Happy Travels in 2015!

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    Replies
    1. I have owned several LE cashmeres cardigans...years ago they were thicker and warmer now they seem thin but still cozy. The latest cardigan fits fairly snugly in the arms but skims the body...I ordered a Petite 10-12 but if you were concerned about fit you could go up a size. Lord and Taylor have nice cashmere cardigans, not super expensive and the quality is not that of a Johnson's of Elgin or a Eric Bombard...you might want to try those on and see if you want to splurge.
      I plan to roll my clothes and use some large ziploc bags and / or packing cubes to keep things organized.

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    2. Thank you for your reply! Yesterday I rolled a few tops and sweaters and am testing how wrinkled they come out. I have learned that some hotels do not have irons!
      I am going to try the LE cashmere to see how it works for me. I did get a slouchy cashmere sweater from Everlane so I'll have to see how that works out.
      Bon Voyage!

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  10. Jenifer asked about packing in cubes. I love them! I find that they can hold all of my lingerie as well as any socks, tights, nightgowns, etc. I've been using them for years.

    I think it is fun to pack for a trip--especially if you enjoy the things you are packing. I've never packed for three weeks in a carryon, but did pack successfully for eight days in England in the depth of winter in a carryon. You will do great!

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  11. Oh you are going to have such a wonderful time, do you need to have someone help with your carry on, perhaps moi? Anyway love all the pretty colors, just a thought, maybe buying scarves etc. over there to save some space and room to bring back some goodies?

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  12. I have been reading your blog for a while and have to tell you it has become a favourite! Every post seems to speak to me, your observance and love of nature, your dear 'humble' home, cherished mother and daughter, just everything. I'm so happy when I see a new post, usually make a cup of tea and sit down to enjoy.

    Many thanks,

    Jill

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    Replies
    1. Welcome Jill...thank you for introducing yourself.
      I see that you love tea time too...
      there is something so soothing about sitting with a cup of tea and something to read, whether it is a magazine, novel or a blog!
      Hope you will comment anytime you feel the urge!

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  13. Lovely post. I live in Paris and the Spring can be really cold and rainy. It is rarely warm enough to wear a sleeveless dress or top until end of June, early July. Have fun, layers will be good. Don't forget a trench or another jacket, just in case.

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    1. I have a trench coat, a light water proof black jacket and a small umbrella which I will take. Layers are going to keep me warm...
      I am now following your blog!

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  14. Happy New Year, Leslie!! I'm excited to see and hear all about your upcoming trip to Paris, as it's on our "bucket list" too~ :) Is Mr. H.B. going with you? Can't wait to see your pictures!! You'll have to let us know how the carry-on only works??

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    1. Mr. HB will be staying here...I am going on a woman's tour!

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  15. 35 is the average temp in Paris in January and February-you must be messing with us.

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    Replies
    1. I am starting to think about packing for the trip VERY early...I am not leaving until Spring!

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  16. I agree with Sherry. Your pretty grey/white scarf does not seem to coordinate with the other things you have shown. Suggest you pack a simple 2-colour palette (such as grey/white, you have posted your clothes in that colourway- or navy and coral) with accent scarves or coloured beads. Three weeks away is not three weeks of outfits; you need only 3-4 days of clothes, b/c of access to hotel laundry service or friend's home. I will be in Paris for 2 weeks in mid-April and will pack matte jersey pants and skirt, with light cashmere tees on top and a leather jacket or trench jacket depending on forecast.

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    1. Fear not Duchesse...I have black, white and cream for all my other pieces...
      I just ran out of steam putting together this post and did not mention those pieces. I will
      be taking other scarves and accessories...

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  17. From Margie in Toronto - I am so looking forward to reading about your Paris trip - still haven't been there but it has moved higher up the list. I try to do one year in Europe and the following in Canada or the US for holidays (this year is to be Iceland so I'm looking at a bit more casual wardrobe). I only use a 20" case but will check it and add a tote bag when travelling to Europe (I tend to travel with friends who take large cases which must be checked so have to wait for them anyway). But I swear by packing cubes - have a few different sets in various sizes. I find they keep everything neat and organized and I seem to be able to pack so much more by using them.
    Glad that you are feeling better - happy New Year.

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    Replies
    1. Packing cubes are on my shopping list now...thank you!

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  18. Hostess, I love that apron with the pockets. Does your friend make them for sale?

    Kathleen

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  19. Replies
    1. I heard back from my friend and she is not considering selling these at this time.
      I hope that you can find an apron that you like...I have seen some really nice ones at Williams Sonoma, or you might find a pattern that you like and can have one made by a seamstress. Good Luck!

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    2. Thank you for trying, Hostess!

      Kathleen

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  20. Belated Happy New Year to you and yours, L!

    The trip preparation is so exciting to watch!

    SSG xxx

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  21. Hi Leslie, I love reading your post. I went to France many years ago and packed with lots of spring clothing. Well I lived in jeans and a sweater set with a rain coat because it was quite cold and rainy.

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    1. Thank you for this info...I have heard this from quite a few people. I will be adding in a few long sleeved tops to layer with tees and tanks. I am working on the rest of my Paris wardrobe and will post as soon as I get it done.

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  22. I think your choices are great (I have same sandals - will you really be able to wear them?) and I love those Seibel shoes - I am going to look for those!! I love that colour and I bet you look wonderful in that colour!

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  23. I hope that there will be some sunny warm days so I can show off my painted toes...I will be getting a pedicure just before I fly and am planning to have coral toes to go with the sweater and tunic top should the weather co-operate...I am now taking my short black leather Timberland booties as per a good friend's advice!
    Good luck on your hunt for those Seibels...they are so comfy they are like bedroom slippers.

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  24. I am glad to see I'm not the only one to wear an apron!
    Everything looks great, I'm going to check out that shoe brand, looks cute and comfy!

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