Today I started preliminary packing for a 6-day trip to Minneapolis that begins on Tuesday. Typically I have no problem fitting everything in a carry-on, but I was worried about this trip because I'm bringing up a lot of extra stuff (gifts for my daughter and her family). Plus we're spending about 4 days up in Grand Marais so I won't have access to laundry and needed to bring more clothes than I usually do.
In short, I figured I'd have to bring (and check) an extra bag. I was bummed but just didn't see any way around it. So I figured I'd see how much I could fit in the Tri-Star, which would tell me what size I needed for the second bag.
I started with the packing cubes. It's my first time using cubes and within 5 minutes I was a convert. I love these cubes! In the small cube, I fit 6 pairs underwear, 8 prs. socks and 2 bras. In the medium cube, I fit 1 pair of shorts, 1 pr of knit pants and 5 knit/tee shirts. I put those in the front section. They fit perfectly on either side of the zipper that splits the section.
In the back section, I rolled up 4 pairs of shorts/pants and 2 knit shirts and laid them in lengthwise. On top I layered some gifts for my daughter (Smartwool tights, 8 cloth napkins I made for her and some handmade baby wipes).
The center section didn't have much space due to the front and back sections being full, but I was still able to fit in 8 baby board books, 2 paperbacks, a hardback book, and a few small gift boxes. Oh, and a pair of leather sandals. I decided to keep the Clear Quarter Packing Cube in my Medium Cafe Bag - in one side, I'm putting my liquid containers for easy viewing at the security gate, and the other will hold all my dry stuff, like makeup.
My Medium Cafe Bag will hold everything else - my Kindle, cell phone, digital camera, organizer pouches with chargers, iPod Touch, wallet, and anything else that pops up at the last minute.
I LOVE THESE BAGS!!!! I'll post pictures after I get everything repacked on Monday.