How To Pack Light

We suss out what you need and don't need when jetting off. Adios rage inducing excess baggage charges...

It happens every summer. You spend weeks casually mentioning to co-workers you're foreign bound and then the night before embarking for a supposed oasis you're shouting at a bunch of inanimate objects. Packing is the tenth circle of hell.

In all those Nancy Drew novels the intrepid detective would just throw all her belongings in a trunk and take a steamer to South America, but we're not fictional characters with bottomless suitcases and a boyfriend implausibly named Ned Nickerson to help us shove our life's work into a hastily purchased carry-on with the life expectancy of novelty Eiffel Tour keyring. Nope. However being sensible doesn't mean forgoing being stylish. One just has to be smart about what they stowaway to sunnier climes.

When it comes to a weekend abroad you just need the essentials. Be ruthless and never pack a pink tutu. You will never need to travel with a pink tutu unless you are the member of a ballet corps in a movie. Stick with neutrals and add a dash of colour for nights out. This way you can mix and match outfits. Much as we love the LWD however, we think?a blue dress is the perfect cover-up. Easier to hide sunscreen and gelato stains. Loose-fitting clothes are a must in the heat so if you're committed to denim, go for?masculine tailoring. We're already coupling?these graphic shorts with a host of plain tank tops.

A floaty scarf is your new best friend. We're huge fans of?Ted Baker's prints at the moment and with these online discounts there's plenty of opportunity to nab one or two pieces that'll perk up your outfits. Summer hats are not the just the preserve of race meetings. With medical studies finding that an unprotected scalp is as exposed to harmful UV rays as skin, we're all about sporting a Panama under the sun. These brightly woven?Sensi Studio hats are all the way from Ecuador. We're staking a claim on some pink ribbons.

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While it may be satisfying to lie out on the beach with a bunch of novels to race through - hello, Jilly Cooper - it can weigh a gal down. Everyone's new favourite novel, Donna Tartt's classy coming-of-age thriller?The Goldfinch, will almost certainly help you while away beach hours but when a book clocks in at the same weight as a bag of sugar you need to invest in a?Kindle.

For bags how about a bright?Zatchel? Or a?Maison Fracaise clutch to keep your cards close to hand? Let the check-in lady or gentleman know you are Zooey Deschanel incarnate with a?cute passport cover.

Did you hear the good news? The Lord is risen and the EU have gone after the companies who have been ruining your holidays with roaming charges. Since late spring, costs have been equalised across member states so the reliable Blockia is no longer a travel necessity. Dress up your iPhone with some?inimitable Kate Spade covers.

Bikinis are by nature itsy-bitsy so feel free to squirrel away as many pairs as you like. We selected?some of our favourites earlier this month.

You don't need more than two, three pairs of shoes. And if you know your itinerary - lots of walking, perhaps just a line-up of nights out - you can just pack what you need. For anything in between, there are always?espadrilles.

And finally, when returning home skip the novelty gifts. No one needs shot glasses with saints on them. Unless they really need them. More room for you means more reasons you can indulge in holiday shopping?

Jeanne Sutton?@jeannedesutun

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