We're glad you are here. This is the place to ask for bag advice, help other people out, post reviews, and share photos and videos.

TOM BIHN Forums Statistics


Topics: 15,074   Posts: 195,083   Members: 6,992   Active Members: 205
Welcome to our newest member, journey41.


No announcement yet.

How Many Clothing Items Do You Need?

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    I realized I unconsciously work from a formula calculated based on the number of days I'll be away. I might need to just pack outfit by outfit if I have a specific event in mind, but I try to build an event outfit out of stuff from the basic list.

    underwear: days + 1, maximum of 7

    socks = days/2 +1, maximum of 5

    undershirts/tanks AKA base layer = days/2, maximum of 4

    shirts = days/3, maximum of 3

    completers (sweaters, blazers) = days/3, maximum of 2

    pants/skirts = days/3, maximum 3

    dresses = 1 and only if absolutely necessary

    pajamas = 1

    shoes = 3 (1 shower shoes, 1 sneakers, 1 nicer)


      I found this article on Carryology: https://www.carryology.com/travel/ho...sule-wardrobe/

      While I am not quite ready to pack only an extra shirt and pair of underwear, I've been trying to see how minimalist (and light) I can go. Right now it's 3-4 tees, an extra pair of jeans, 3-4 pairs of underwear, an extra bra, an old tee and pair of boxers for sleeping in, and an extra pair of shoes like sandals, in addition to my travel outfit - jeans, tee, sweater, sneakers/doc martens. Most of my travel of late has been vacation travel to warmer climates.


        I've spent the afternoon playing around with my packing list for an upcoming 10-day trip to Peru, where I'll be attending an academic conference then doing touristy stuff. This is what I've settled on:
        3 dresses
        2 pairs of pants
        2 tank tops
        1 long sleeve tee
        1 cashmere cardigan
        1 silk cardigan
        1 pair of leggings (mostly for sleeping, but can also double as tights under dresses for chilly mountain nights)
        = 10 items of clothing
        For the rest I have:
        3 pairs of shoes: birkenstock sandals, oxfords and heeled clogs (I need of mix of comfy for lots of walking/ waterproof/ dressy)
        1 tee for sleeping only
        1 windbreaker
        1 pair of wool socks for the plane
        4 pairs of underwear: 2 cotton and 2 ex-officio super fast drying mesh. I could probably get by with just the ex-officio ones, but I like having back up in case I don't feel like washing them every night.
        Edited to add: these will all fit in my WF with room for toiletries in my CQPC


          I pack as if I'm trying to go a week without doing laundry; if I'm ever anywhere > one week-ish I plan on doing laundry.

          What I've found is this saves me on how much I need to pack, which saves weight and space. It also means I never have a pile of dirty clothes with me (unless it's the final day of the trip). Anyway, it's an inevitable thing that when you travel for a longer period of time there is going to come a day where you just want to veg out. This day is perfect to do some laundry!!


            ^ That is also how I went for so long, unless I have to travel for more than a week.
            The computation is actually a neat idea. Typically I would have gone searching for packing lists like this one and then pick out the things I would personally use/have, cut down to the number I'm comfortable with. I saw the suggestion for a two-week vacation and I like that there is room for adjustment. My tolerance for repeating clothes might be more just because I assume people would be understanding of a traveler/wouldn't care/wouldn't notice.


              I guess if being in lockdown for the last 9+ weeks has taught me anything, it's that I will happily wear the same two wool tops for several weeks without blinking an eye. My packing list for future trips is probably going to be whatever I need for weather/activities, an extra shirt, and underwear.


                You can spend hours researching packing lists for gender, climate, season, local customs, and other criteria but not number of days. That’s often three days of clothing, four days of underwear, and some outerwear. That’s all.


                  I pack in one of two ways depending on the trip: doing laundry, and not doing laundry.

                  If I'm planning on doing laundry, I pack exactly the same every time: two shirts, three underwear, one pants/shorts, one socks, one windbreaker (the Patagonia Houdini).

                  If it's warm, I will also add sandals or flips as well. If it's cold, I bring a lightweight down jacket appropriate to the climate. If I expect rain I include a lightweight rain jacket or umbrella.

                  On the other hand, if I'm not doing laundry, I pack one bottom per three days and one top per day. One underwear, obviously, per day.