Packing Light: Oahu

29th May 2012

So this is (almost) everything I packed in my carry-on for the press trip I took to Oahu. There was also a photo of me in a bikini that I took with my cell phone the hotel bathroom mirror. As you might imagine, it was a little… much. So this is everything I packed for four days in Hawaii except the photo of me in a blue bikini with ruffles. If you’ve already seen me naked, I will totally send that to you. Otherwise, use your imagination.

For trips to warm places, I try to pack mostly one-pieces (dresses, rompers) because they pack smaller and you don’t have to waste any time worrying about whether you’re packing stuff that matches everything else.

I wore this dress to travel, with a yellow slip underneath so my skin doesn’t show through the perforations. It’s poly, so you can pretty much roll it into a ball and it doesn’t wrinkle, and it also unzips all the way down the front, so you can layer it over things in interesting ways.

Here’s a full shot of the dress, which I also wore on our tour of the Turtle Bay Resort where we were staying. I look so happy here because the dress cost six bucks. I’m genetically unable to shut up about that.

I wore this to the luau at the Polynesian Cultural Center, the dress is Urban Outfitters, and the sweater is thrifted. I’ve since shrunk the dress to half its original size, so look for it as a shirt in future posts.

This romper is by a San Francisco designer whose brand I forget, of course. (She’s in the Mission, tiny shop on one of the numbered side streets between Valencia and Dolores. Anyone?) Anyway, it’s an oddly functional piece of clothing. I can belt it, wear it with tights and a long sleeve shirt, add something with a collar to switch it up. It’s become a bit of a uniform, but ultimately it’s a romper. For romping.

There, that’s better.

This is me in a ruffly dress from H&M, wielding a machete. Machetes are apparently still a thing in Hawaii.

Here’s the full dress with one of the vintage cardigans I brought. I used that sweater constantly, by the way. It was warm, but the breeze at night was a little chilly and there was some rain while we were there.

To save space, I try to pack jammies that can double as clothes if I need them. This is an Old Navy tank, and a pair of workout shorts from American Apparel. Can you imagine how bad the aforementioned bikini shot has to be if I’m willing to post this? Exactly.

Beach coverup! I wore this Urban Outfitters romper over my swimsuit when we headed down for surf lessons at Turtle Bay.

I got the sunglasses at a flea market. They’re made for shooting, and they feel heavenly because of those little side shades. Our trip lead, Mike, said they make me look like a 70-year-old man. I told him to get off my lawn.

American Apparel high-waisted side zip shorts and a random transparent shirt I’ve had forever. This shirt is an awesome suit coverup, so I wore it kayaking because I knew it would fit under the life jacket.

Like so.

(Aside! Holy crap, have you ever seen a sea turtle? These sea kayaks had glass bottoms, so you could see them swimming around, and I didn’t expect to be so affected by them. One looked right up at me, and it was like I could feel my heart beating in my mouth. Please put “see a sea turtle” on your Life List.)

This is my American Apparel bikini top, which I bought for a trip to Jamaica. The bottom is super high-waisted, which is convenient if you have stretch marks from baby havin’.

You can also cover stretch marks with a lightweight scuba skin, which is excellent for snorkeling. And sexy times.

17 thoughts on “Packing Light: Oahu

  1. neo

    I got the idea of wearing jammies that can double as clothes from you. Thanks for all the great light packing ideas.

  2. Lora

    I agree with adding “see a sea turtle” to everyone’s life list. We go to Maui every year but this past April was the first time we’ve been able to swim with the turtles. The beach we snorkel off of was full of turtles – including a sad one that we think had half its front flipper cut off by a boat. They are just amazing and we spent many hours just floating in the water, watching them.

  3. Em

    Yes to sea turtles! I have been lucky enough to swim with them a few times in the Virgin Islands and it was one of the most amazing experiences ever. One swam right up and looked me in the face. I WAS ONE WITH NATURE. Awesome, in every sense of the word.

  4. r8chel

    I’ve never seen a sea turtle swimming, but I got to see one nesting in Trinidad. Late at night, she wandered up onto the beach, dug a deep hole in the sand, dropped in a whole bunch of eggs, and then returned to the water. It was AMAZING.

  5. EmilyM

    Ah, Maggie. Thank you. Since moving out to the west coast, it’s definitely a goal to visit the islands. You definitely make it look irresistible.
    Also, I just eat these posts up when you post what you pack. Am I a Voyeur? Or just a terrible packer? …both?

  6. Angeerah

    Oh thank you, Maggie! The “get off my lawn” comment had me in stitches! I very much needed that this morning.

    I don’t think I could get away with wearing a romper. I am very much long torsoed (is that a word?) and it would probaby give me an atomic wedgie.

  7. kate

    Love this! You’re my packing guru. I want to know more about that $6 dress. Must be vintage?

  8. Sarah

    Fun! It’s neat to see travel through someone’s fashion; it shows not only the cute pieces, but it also gives such a sense of the trip! One thing I noticed? Outside of the kayak photo, you are making a funny face or pose in every shot. I hope that was out of pure fun and not out of trying to hide sadness (I understand both all too well — wistfulness can be heartbreaking)… I hope it was the former as I think that I can speak for all of your readers when I say that you deserve to have a stack of grins as high as a mountain!

  9. Snithia

    I can not fathom WHY I love all your packing/travel posts so much. (I like all your posts but I eat these up!) They’re like little gems. It’s the whole package: good thrift, interesting stuff, shots with pizazz (spelling on pizazz? Too tired to look up!) Sporty activities with good lipstick and/or old-man sunglasses. And the carry-on club.

    Maggie, because of you, I’ve joined the Carry-On club. I did it! Three times: Europe, Florida, New Orleans. Thanks for “what you packed!” Love these posts!


  10. Kelsey

    The red ruffle dress is wonderful…if we were remotely the same size and best friends I would “borrow” it and wear it all over the place till you decide it was so me that I should keep it. :) Ps. I tried to find it on the H&M site but alas it no longer is there. Also the blue dress with the slip under it is divine! You have such a good eye for cool clothes!

  11. kate

    Hawaii – yea! That’ reminds me…gotta get to packing myself. Thanks for the low down on what to wear. As always, you look adorbs as the yunguns say.

  12. Auntie

    I went swimming with sea turtles in Barbados. It is the most awesome thing I have ever done!

  13. Ann

    Aloha, thought that pix of you in the red dress and sweater and camera reminded me on that new cartoon character in the upcoming movie “Brave”. Rock that red haired girl power!

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