I'm leaving Southern Pines this week to head to Charleston for my sister-in-law's wedding! It will be my first time back in the lowcountry since I moved earlier this year, and I can't wait to be back. It feels funny to pack for a place I briefly called home... I have to keep reminding myself that I can't just run to my old house in Mt. Pleasant to grab an extra toothbrush or bottle of shampoo this weekend.
I'm excited not only for the wedding festivities and family time, but also to be able to experience Charleston in a new way! My stay will be divided up between downtown and Shem Creek, and it'll be fun to experience it without having to grab a $30 Uber back to the 'burbs at the end of all the celebrating!
I decided that this occasion provided the perfect opportunity for a blog with tips for wedding weekend travel!
The packing list & tips:
I am fortunate to be within driving distance of my destination and my only luggage limitations are those imposed on me by the trunk space of my Honda Civic... but I will make this list applicable for all means of travel.
- Start with the essentials for the main event: The wedding, the rehearsal dinner, the bridal luncheon.
Make sure you have ALL the clothing items, under garments *Hello, Spanx*, shoes, and accessories you will need for the wedding agenda.
Undergarments are a big part of this too- don't forget a slip for sheer dresses and strapless bra options if needed. Charleston can be thick with humidity, for this reason, I will be bringing a backup strapless bra in case my sticky bra ceases to stick! lol
Inserts for heels can be a great idea since you will be on your feet a lot and dancing. A small clutch is a must-pack item for the formal events and you'll want a tote or small duffel too for getting ready on the day of...you don't want to haul your whole suitcase with you.
Check out our YouTube video on how to safely pack and travel with your jewelry here:
PRO TIP- Do not fly with any irreplaceable things in your checked luggage! This includes your bridesmaids dress, fine jewelry, and medications. If your bag gets lost, you do not want to be without your epi pen or heirloom jewelry, and you certainly don't want to stress out the bride because you can't find a replacement dress in 24 hrs of her wedding!
- Pack clothes or a robe to get ready in.
A lot of times, the photographer is present as the bride and her bridesmaids get ready for the wedding... unless you want your old, oversized sweats immortalized in your friend's wedding album, I would suggest wearing something else. A robe, loose-fitting tank top, or botton up shirt would be idea. You also don't want anything that will mess up your hair and makeup when you pull it off.
- Pack an extra semi-formal outfit!
Say a next-day brunch is sprung on you or you find out about a last minute get-together before the wedding... you will want an extra option appropriate for any unforeseen gatherings! A lightweight dress is perfect- and only adds one extra item to your suitcase.
- Be an adult and check the weather. Then pack accordingly.
Fall is a difficult time of year to dress for. Some mornings you need a sweater, then by the afternoon you're covered in sweat. Not to mention Fall is hurricane season, and this year Mother Nature really decided to showcase what she's capable of. Look up the forecast for your destination and pack what you need. Maybe bring an umbrella or raincoat if it looks like rain- at the least, bring something other than your suede shoes to walk around in. Bring a light jacket if it looks like the mornings or evening may be cool. For Charleston, I plan on bringing a denim jacket that I could layer with every day outfits, and could certainly bring a dressier option like a wrap for any formal events.
- Dress for the location.
Look up where you're doing and see what activities people enjoy doing there.
If you're going somewhere like Colorado, you may want to pack some activewear in case you want to take a scenic hike one day. If your going somewhere coastal, bring a swimsuit and some beach-friendly shoes! If you're going to a city, bring comfortable walking shoes so you can explore. Pack sunglasses and a small tube of sunscreen for any destination that will allow for some time spent outdoors.
- Portable makeup & hygiene goods
My wedding staples are waterproof mascara, oil blotting sheets, stick concealer, a small perfume roller, tiny bottle of hairspray, mints or breath spray, small tissue pack. Ideally all these things can fit in a clutch so that you can take them to events and refresh as needed.
- Bring thoughtful extra's if you have the space.
For me, that is a compact steamer. Hubby and I decided to save some dough by staying in a local Airbnb instead of a hotel. That being said, our accommodations may not come equipped with a means of getting wrinkles out of our clothes. Bonus to bringing a steamer is that it may make you the MVP bridesmaid if you bring it to the location all the gals are getting ready in.
A reusable water bottle is always something I like to have around.
A portable cell phone charger is also a great idea- especially if you're in the wedding and have a full schedule for the day-of.
Other extras I would recommend are hangover cures. You're going to have a great time, catch up with friends and family, and chances are... there will be a bar. Everyone has their go-to methods for dealing with a morning after drinking. Maybe it's coconut water, gatorade, or pedialite? I personally swear by liquid kids benadryl and copious amounts of water before hitting the hay. I have no scientific data to back that up though. Whatever your method of choice... you may want to pack it. You're hungover future self will thank you.
*MVP Move*- You will be get major points and be a very popular bridesmaid if you can pack this item: an extension cord with multiple outlets. There are never enough plugs for everyone to have their cell phones charging and curling irons plugged in. You may save the day and help the ladies keep to schedule by packing one of these.