Packing for a Weekend Conference

I obsessed over what to pack for the NESCBWI conference for a couple of weeks. Normally when I travel, I pack everything into my High Sierra Swerve backpack, and for conferences I add my Emma Fox bag because it zips shut and my portfolio fits in it beautifully. I like having everything with me, and there’s something comforting about my backpack. I can’t explain it. When I don’t have a conference, I try to fit everything in JUST that backpack, and it’s so easy to travel that way.

But for this conference, I ran out of room. My bags were so stuffed and heavy, and I had 3 hour layovers to lug all that stuff around. I sighed, and decided to check a bag.

What I packed

  • 3 tops. One for Friday and Saturday and one just in case. I stuck with a black and white theme for clothes except for one colorful blouse that I LOVE.
  • Black slacks
  • Nice yoga pants (these could be used for slacks if needed)
  • black cardigan.
  • Pajamas
  • Underwear (one for each day and a spare)
  • Compression socks, a pair for each day. I wear compression socks when I travel on the plane, but I also like wearing them for the conference because it’s a lot of sitting and standing and not a lot of moving.
  • extra b-r-a
  • ballet flats (I never wore these!)
  • flip-flops for the hotel room and shower
  • extra comfy black sketchers go walks. I wore these all the time!
  • Curling iron
  • Hair creme
  • contacts, eye drops
  • Face lotion
  • vitamins and airborne
  • Painkillers
  • Zantac
  • My portfolio
  • Business cards
  • Promo post cards
  • stickers
  • pens and pencils
  • sketchbooks ( I bought moleskin cashier sketchbooks, they’re small but handy!)
  • peppermints
  • my favorite tea
  • Kindle
  • Phone
  • Chargers and wires
  • Headphones
  • Earplugs
  • Sudoku puzzle book
  • iPod
  • wallet-cards cash ID
  • travel documents, receipts, boarding passes, confirmation printouts

What I wore on the plane:

  • yoga pants
  • comfy black blouse
  • black and white cardigan
  • raincoat
  • tennis shoes
  • book bag

I fit almost everything in my portfolio bag. I rolled my clothes and stuck then in packing cubes, and then put the packing cubes in my emma fox bag and put that in my suitcase. In my book bag went a pair of socks and underwear, my professional stuff like portfolio and cards, and my entertainment. In my 311 bag I packed the eye drops and contacts, and I had loads of room for my raincoat once I was inside. I also carried with me painkillers and zantac, and the peppermints. I get motion sickness when we hit turbulence, so Zantac and peppermint saves the day.

Though I didn’t use everything (ballet flats, extra yoga pants and shirt) I was glad I had it. Things I wish I had packed were more Zantac, a sewing kit, and a scarf to use as a pillow on the plane.

And I admit that checking a bag was really nice. I didn’t have to gate check my bag because I only had my backpack, and it was nice to walk around with a light load instead of lugging everything around. And I got to jazz up my bag with green duct tape so I could tell it apart from all the black bags. I highly recommend it. But not lime green okay? That’s MY bag. (just kidding)





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