Ahhh, fall is in the air. It is routine in my schedule, like clockwork: the leaves begin to change, the air turns crisp, I head back to school, and my mind turns to the amazing horse show season to come. The fall circuit means two things: indoors and an absurd amount of traveling.
As I’m sure we all know, traveling and packing can be very overwhelming; I’m certainly aware because I used to overly stress myself out about packing. After a long day at prep school followed by endless hours of homework, even just the idea of packing can be incredibly overwhelming. With a system of prioritizing, I have almost mastered the art of packing for horse show travel. If you take packing step-by-step, traveling can be less stressful and even fun. So without further ado, here are the tips that Tate & Kir asked me to share with all you prepsters out there!
Step 1: Start planning to leave about 5-6 days prior to your actual departure
As all you horse show kids know, leaving school for several days requires some logistical planning. I always have to file a “leave of absence form” that must be signed by everyone under the sun, including my teachers and a head administrator. I usually try and get this done in the beginning of the week so my teachers know that I will be gone for those days because I’m showing. They typically give me the homework that I will be missing for those days too, so this is a good start.
Step 2: Write down your show schedule
This upcoming week I am going to the Zone 1 ASPCA Maclay Regionals in Connecticut and the MHC finals in Massachusetts and I will be gone for about 10 days. Going from 90 degree weather in south Florida to 60 degree weather in New England is sure to be a weather shock. Oh boy, someone help me, I am going to freeze!#IAmGoingToFreeze At least by writing this down, I know that I will need warmer clothes for at least 10 days.
Step 3: The Brainstorm
When packing outfits, I try hard to create many different outfits out of one item; I pick a black pair of jeans and pack 4 or 5 shirts that match those jeans. Then out of those shirts, I pack another pair of pants, shorts, or a skirt that matches those shirts. I might have only 10 items of clothing, but I have the potential for 20 different outfits. Although tempting, never overpack for a horse show… You can always shop there!
Step 3: Starting with the basics: Riding clothes
Packing riding clothes is pretty easy: 8 pairs of pants, 9 shirts, 9 sports bras (white, of course) and 9 pairs of underwear, all of the belts I own (who knows which belt will match my sweater that day), brown Sperrys, and a TON of black socks.
Step 4: Accessories add a preppy spin
To dress up a riding outfit, I add a cute sweater and maybe a scarf. I also pack a black down vest to help my inner-Floridian fight that crisp New England air. Scarves are a really great way to accessorize and add a little pop to a bland outfit. Having jewelry is always a plus, but too much jewelry can take away from your horse and yourself; wearing a simple watch and maybe a few other bracelets on one arm is more than acceptable. I never leave home without my favorite accessories from Personally Preppy because they are so easy to apply and effortless to wear.
Step 5: The ‘Real’ Clothes
Packing “normal” clothes can be a little trickier. I love fashion so anything I pack is going to be what is “in” right now, so, with that in mind, I strategically plan my outfits. Now remember, we aren’t overpacking and we have a few outfits in mind from our brainstorm. I always bring more shirts than pants because pants are easier to recycle than shirts. I also bring a dress or two and plenty of accessories to prep it all up. I never, ever leave without my Patten family necklace, a few Personally Preppy monogrammed goodies, and my sapphire earrings.
Step 6: Riding Gear
Most of you are probably wondering how in the world I get my riding equipment from show to show. I basically just stuff everything into my show bag, which is a bag made by Nobel Outfitters complete with a Personally Preppy backpack monogram, of course! #makeityours I put my Personally Preppy monogrammed helmet in my Samshield case and slip it into the helmet pocket of my backpack and then I just fold my Parlantis over and stick them in the main pocket of my backpack. Then it’s time to zip it up and hit the airport! If I’m not carrying my riding bag with me on the plane, it goes in my tack trunk on the trailer. My showcoats live in a purple paisley hanging bag; it fits all of my coats and keeps them nice and wrinkle-free.
Step 7: The Art of the Pack
Harder than testing in the equitation ring or finding a distance to that deceiving jump is the art of the pack and fitting it all in one suitcase neatly. I lay everything out on my bed before placing it in the bag. I usually split my suitcase into two sections: one side for riding clothes and one side for normal clothes. This makes it that much easier to find things when I get to my eventual destination. A great tip is to roll clothes to create the most room in your luggage and keep everything wrinkle-free; I don’t want any points deducted for poor turnout. I pack bottoms first, followed by shirts, then I put all the sweaters on top, and undies, sleepwear and socks in the top pocket. The last thing I always pack are my shoes bottoms-up so that the bottoms don’t dirty the clothes. Finally, I pack my cosmetics and toothbrush in the front pocket of my suitcase for easy access.
And that, fellow prepsters, sums up the art of packing for horse show travel, especially for indoors. I hope to see you all at the Medal Final and New England Finals and wish everyone the best of luck. Be sure to check out the many ways you can #makeityours with Personally Preppy.
Night Time Outfit:
-Don’t forget your carry on!-
Lilly Pulitzer planner, Macbook Air with Personally Preppy monograms and VitaCoco sticker, Personally Preppy monogrammed school folders, Personally Preppy mints, video camera, car keys with Personally Preppy keychain, and my current read.
To help you pack Personally Preppy style, enter coupon code: PACKLIKEAPRO for a surprise discount 🙂 Thanks for reading, stay tuned for more!