Friday 5: Jewelry Cases for Travel

I'm just sitting down Friday evening to write this post. I don't normally leave it so late, but the week has flown by, which seems strangely normal now. My first dress fitting went extremely well on Tuesday and I got up early this morning to drive down to Niagara for my hair and makeup trial. I'll be here for the rest of the weekend, and I'm looking forward to visiting with friends and family during my shower. I'm not used to all of this glamour and excitement! I will admit that I'm very tired, but also very happy and very thankful. 

So following this week's theme of glamour, today's Friday 5 is a quick post of five beautiful jewelry cases for travel. They're pretty, functional, and will help keep your baubles from becoming a tangled rats nest. Not that it's ever happened to me. 

If it was a beauty contest, the Lasco case by Ted Baker would be the winner for me. The interior is simple and open, but it includes a drawstring lining. It may lack the more robust organizer capabilities of the others, but I'm not sure I'd let that stop me.  

Clos-ette Too touts their Signature Travel Jewelry Case as the "Birkin" of jewelry organizers. I don't know about that, but I do know that it looks extremely functional. The exterior is waterproof. The interior features snap-in pages that allow you to mix and match each page to fit your needs. They even sell extra inserts for jewelry and earrings.  If I traveled with a lot of jewelry, this would probably be the case I would buy.

The Kendra Scott Large Jet Set case features a hanger and four removable velcro compartments for your various baubles. The iridescent exterior gives it an extra luxe feel to its functionality. 

This Julianna Jewelry Case by Stephanie Johnson would be my personal pic. I don't travel with a lot of jewelry, but I'm on the hunt for something that will keep my necklaces from tangling and my earrings from rolling around in a jumble. I love that this case is compact, but it has just enough pockets and features, including a section for earrings, to meet my needs. Plus, I don't think I would ever get sick of the classic pattern.  

Pottery Barn's small and simple leather McKenna Jewelry Roll looks more like a clutch than something you would toss in your luggage. The clasp can be personalized with an initial, which is a nice touch for the monogram lovers out there. I only wish the small roll came with a bar to separate earrings instead of zippered pouches. 

That's all for this week! I hope you have a lovely weekend. I'm off to have a lazy snooze on the couch before heading to bed!

Friday 5: Things to Leave at Home

I opened our mailbox on Monday and the first thing I saw was the bright red cover of this week’s Macleans magazine with the title: “The Evil Genius of Airlines.” The article went into detail about how airlines are doing everything they can to make more of a profit and not passing any of the savings from lower fuel costs onto passengers.

‘Our plan is not to pass any of it on,’ WestJet’s CEO Gregg Saretsky said during a recent conference call to discuss the airline’s record fourth-quarter profit, in 2014, of $90 million.

I bet you are just completely shocked about that. I don't have a problem with companies making profits, but I do have a problem with airlines making travel less affordable and more miserable for a lot of us. 

When S and I booked our honeymoon plane tickets, we ran into some of these issues. We had to pay to reserve seats. After weeks of watching fares and trying to find a flight with a Goldilocks layover (not too long and not too short), there was nothing we could do but pony up. I’m still not happy about it. 

I’m usually pretty optimistic about air travel. I love airports. I love the excitement of flying. But paying for the “privilege” of choosing a seat next to S when we’re, you know, already buying a ticket for the flight really angered me. Add that to the baggage fees, the terrible food, and the tiny seats; it’s getting harder and harder to enjoy or look forward to flights, even if you can’t wait to go on a trip. 

As travelers we have to do what we can to make it the best of it for ourselves and each other. One way to do that is to pack well. Not just to save space, but also to make your trips a little bit easier (and sometimes more fun). Today’s Friday 5 is a short list of stuff I leave home and why. 

Expensive Jewelry

The last thing I want to do is to worry about an expensive or beloved piece of jewelry getting lost or stolen. I generally wear anything remotely expensive on me everyday and travel with cheap, trendy pieces that I wouldn’t be upset about losing. 

Gadgets and tools

I’m not big on travel gadgets but I used to bring hair tools with me. Not anymore. Most apartments and hotels have hairdryers. Usually I just wash and go and pretend I have “cool French girl” hair. Evaluate your gadgets and tools carefully. Is it worth the hassle? Do you need extra converters and adapters to use it? What would you do if you accidentally fried it? If you don’t absolutely need it, then leave it at home. 

Certain Toiletries

Shampoo, conditioner, and body wash are all things I love to purchase abroad. I don’t have to worry about giant bottles of liquid things oozing onto stuff in my luggage and I get to test out stuff we don’t get in Canada. There’s a little bit of adventure in trying new things. 


This tip isn’t so much about saving space as it is stocking up on great items, especially when going to Europe. I love French sunscreen (like La Roche Posay, Avène, and Vichy), but it is quite expensive here. I’ll splurge for my face, but I can’t afford the full body versions. I generally travel with one of our drugstore brands just in case I can’t get to a store right away. But as soon as I can find a store that sells the sunscreen brands I love, I’m all over it. Time to stock up! 

Laundry Detergent

Aside from my beloved Soak for delicates, I never travel with laundry detergent if we are staying in a rental. It might be different if you have extremely sensitive skin, but it’s a lot easier to go out and buy a detergent that is proven to work well in the machines you will be using. 

What I think it all boils down to is being smart about how you pack and what you bring with you. There are a lot of things you can get on the road and fewer things that are truly necessities. Striking the right balance to make your trip enjoyable will be individual, but hopefully this list will give you a starting point to reevaluate your needs and wants. 

Happy weekend! Happy travels!

Friday 5: Spring Jackets

I always find it a bit hard to figure out what jackets to travel with during a shoulder season like spring. For summer travel I just bring a rain jacket and pack some layers cool nights. But spring is little different. I often need to keep a jacket with me at all times since the weather can be a little tricky--cold in the morning, warm in the afternoon, and chilly rain anytime. I tend to like jackets that are classic, stylish, and functional that I can wear year after year and trip after trip. Today's Friday 5 are my picks. 

The Rain Jacket

A great rain jacket, in my book, is:

  • All-season (well, 3 season in Canada if we're being reasonable)
  • Lightweight
  • Waterproof
  • Breathable and has underarm vents
  • Packable and fits into a small pouch or its own pocket 
  • Functional with well-placed pockets and an adjustable hood

The North Face's Venture jacket ticks all of these boxes and comes in an array of fun colors (and some more subdued basics). 

The Denim Jacket

Do denim jackets ever really go out of style? They're such easy, casual layering pieces. I love the darker, distressed wash on this one from Zara

The Trench

Perfect for trips you need to go day-to-night on. The trench goes with just about anything and looks as good with a pretty dress and heels as it does with jeans and a tee. I especially love the back storm flap and button on this version from J.Crew.

The Parka

I bought an olive-coloured waxed parka a couple of years ago from J.Crew and it's become my favourite everyday jacket for spring and fall. It's water resistant, wind resistant, doesn't show dirt, and feels a little bit rough and tumble. J.Crew doesn't sell mine anymore, but I really like the look of Penfield's Vassan Parka (also available directly from Penfield). Those pockets! If I had unlimited funds, I'd look into a Barbour, too. 

Bianca Lamb Leather Biker | Danier ($199.99)

Bianca Lamb Leather Biker | Danier ($199.99)

The Moto Jacket

I probably don't need to explain the appeal of a (leather) moto jacket, right? Sleek, sexy and a little bit badass. With the right quality leather, it will only get better with age, too. I like the simplicity and femininity of this one by Danier and the price is great (although it looks to be sold out currently). Another option is the Ayers from AllSaints ($650 CAD) or something like the Gray Cotton Moto Jacket from Banana Republic ($215) for those who don't wear leather. 

That's it for this week. I hope the sun in shining wherever you are! Have a great weekend.