Are you looking for the ULTIMATE Spring travel capsule wardrobe? In this guide we tell you exactly what to pack for Spring travel in Europe and around the globe.
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But before we get onto the specific items we put in our favorite spring travel capsule wardrobe, we first thought it would be a good idea to tell what is a travel capsule wardrobe is, why you should pack one and where it can be used.
What is a Travel Capsule Wardrobe?
To know what a Spring travel capsule wardrobe is, it is worth outlining what a travel capsule wardrobe actually is!
A travel capsule wardrobe uses a few key pieces of clothing to make up several mix and match outfits. Basically meaning that every piece of your wardrobe, can be used in multiple outfits to create completely different outfits.
Now depending on the length of your travels or vacation, the time of year you are traveling and the destination will depend on how many items should be included in your capsule wardrobe. However in my opinion the less the better. But be sure to pack enough so you don’t have to do laundry or buy new items at your destination.
Some ways we create out capsule wardrobes are using the following packing methods:
Spring Travel Capsule Wardrobe
So now you know what a travel capsule wardrobe is we will look at capsule wardrobe for Spring in particular.
Our Spring packing list and capsule wardrobe is designed to be used in the traditional Spring months of March, April and May in places associated with typical Spring weather. This means Europe, Asia in places like Japan to see the cherry blossoms and of course the USA and Canada.
Note: if you are traveling to the Southern hemisphere Spring is catagorized as September, October and November.
And if you are traveling at another time of year of for a specific type of vacation be sure to check out our other capsule wardrobe packing lists for more specific guidance:
- Beach Vacation Capsule Wardrobe
- Cruise Capsule Wardrobe
- River Cruise Capsule Wardrobe
- Safari Capsule Wardrobe.
So now you know what a Spring travel capsule wardrobe is how do you begin to put one together?
How to put together a Spring Travel Capsule Wardrobe
Whenever I am putting together a capsule wardrobe I always start making my wardrobe in the same way using a couple of considerations these are:
Having a clear color palette is essential for creating any successful capsule wardrobe. Without a clear color palette your items will not mix and match correctly and therefore will not create multiple cohesive outfits.
Now obviously monochrome is the easiest capsule wardrobe to make as you are so limited in colors. However I find this makes my vacation photos look a bit boring, especially in Spring.
When I put together my own Spring capsule wardrobe I always gravitate towards pastels and florals. This is especially true when I am traveling to see flower such as Kyoto in Spring for cherry blossom season or to see the tulips in Keukenhof Gardens in Amsterdam in April.
My favorite color palettes for a Spring capsule wardrobe are:
- lilacs and
- baby blues.
But this is very much a personal choice and you should pick a color palette that you feel comfortable in.
Plan out your outfits in advance
Whenever I am packing my travel capsule wardrobe, I always lay my clothes out and plan my outfit combinations in advance.
This way you know that everything you have goes in your outfits and can be used multiple times. This is why I like the sudoku method as it is the easiest method of laying out outfits.
Check weather and itinerary before travel
Obviously this is a generic Spring capsule wardrobe designed for use during traditional Spring weather. As such we do make considerations for wet weather. However a word of caution is to always check the weather at your destination 7 days before travel and keep an eye on it up until departure.
That is because you can always get heat waves and cold snaps even in Spring. If this happens to you be sure to check our other seasonal capsule wardrobes such as our Summer Travel Capsule Wardrobe and our Winter Travel Capsule Wardrobe .
Also it is worth mentioning that we have seasonal travel lists for specific destinations. To check your destination and time of travel head to the search function on the top of this page and type your destination and month of travel (i.e. Venice May or Italy April). This will give you packing tips for local dress codes and weather in more specific detail
Spring Travel Capsule Wardrobe Essential Items
So now you know the principles of how to put together a Spring travel capsule wardrobe we will look at some of our favorite pieces to include no matter the destination:
Best Pants for your spring Travel Capsule Wardrobes
Usually when I start putting together my capsule wardrobes I start with the pants / trousers first. I generally speaking own more tops than bottoms, therefore I like to pick our the pants first as I have more tops to play with.
Athleta Brooklyn Travel Pant
My absolute favorite travel pant of the moment has to be the Athleta Brooklyn Pant. These pants have a stylish but comfortable elastic waistband which for me make them my go to airplane outfit.
But not only that the fact that they do not wrinkle, along with the ability to machine wash and dry make them perfect for traveling.
I like to wear these as part of my airplane outfit which again saves room in your suitcase and means you can try and pack carry on only. They also work well for nights out where you want smarter trousers.
Although we don’t normally have pairs of jeans as part of our summer capsule wardrobe they are absolutely an essential for any Spring packing list. We recommend picking a lighter weight pair if you are traveling in May though as the weather warms up.
But in regards to color I tend to move away from the black jeans I wear in Winter and pick a lighter wash pair. However it is worth noting if you are traveling to Europe in Spring, that you will still want a more tailored pair to fit more in with local style.
Dress / Skirt
As you transition into Spring from your Winter attire, you will want to change the skirts and dresses you wear. I usually move away from sweater dresses to wrap dresses. But I still wear them with tights in March.
A dress that can be used for sightseeing in the day but that can also be dressed up at night is a great addition to the capsule wardrobe. Especially if you can add splashes of color with accessories such as jewelry and pashminas.
Best Tops for Spring Travel Capsule Wardrobes
So now you know our favorite bottoms for your Spring travel capsule wardrobe we will turn our attention to tops.
And our first pick has to be:
A basic t shirt is a great staple and an essential of any packing list at any time of year. Now depending on the color scheme you are going for will depend on what color you should have. But in my opinion you can never go wrong with a plain white tee.
For Spring I tend to pack more short sleeve t shirts as opposed to long sleeve ones.
Note: For Europe in Spring I would avoid a graphic t-shirt or slogan tee for several reasons. Firstly they are less versatile so aren’t as easy to combine in your Spring outfit combos. But also they aren’t in keeping with many local European styles.
For Spring travel I always have a printed blouse with a 3/4 length sleeve with me. These are great for places with dress codes such as Churches in Italy, the Vatican and Sagrada Familia to name a few.
And as an added bonus can look casual with some jeans or be dressed or with accessories for a more smart casual look.
I like to have a patterned blouse as the pants I pack are plain, a patterned top is a great way of adding some texture, color and detail.
As well as a blouse, I also like to have a button down shirt with me. Now depending on when in Spring I am traveling, the weather and activities I am doing will depend on the shirt I pack.
However for the most versatile shirt to pack, you really can’t go wrong with an over sized white button-up shirt or with a linen blouse.
Best Layers for your Spring Capsule Wardrobe
Layers are important no matter the time of year you travel however these are especially important in Spring when there is changeable weather. I normally try and take 3 top layers and 3 base layers with me when I travel which in Spring usually consists of:
A cardigan is essential for this time of year as it can be layered on top of blouses, tops, t shirts and dresses.
You can choose the color based on the palette you have in your wardrobe.
A sweater is another great day to night transition piece. I particularly like sweaters made of merino wool as they are light and easy to pack, but also look very stylish.
Although a casual item, my capsule wardrobe is never complete without a hoodie and is often worn as part of airplane outfit.
I tend to wear this for more day time sightseeing as opposed to nightwear.
Best Jackets for Spring Travel
I personally prefer a leather jacket over a denim jacket. That is just because I hate denim on denim and there are always jeans in my capsule wardrobe. However this is just my style.
Spring in the northern hemisphere has notoriously changeable weather which includes showers! As such having a lightweight waterproof jacket is a good idea for Spring travel. My favorite type is a waterproof trench.
Shoes for Spring Capsule Wardrobes
I often find that shoes are the easiest item to overpack. However for Spring I recommend packing just two pairs of shoes. They are:
I never travel without a pair of sneakers. Some of my favorite travel sneaker brands are Hoka and All Birds. BUt ecco are a good brand if you want a sneaker with some waterproofing. However my favorite sneakers of the moment are the Addidas Cloud Foam. These are white sneakers which are very versatile as part of a capsule wardrobe but also are very comfortable for walking long distances.
On top of sneakers I also recommend packing:
Ankle Boots for March
Ankle boots or chelsea boots are great for travel in March. They look smarter for dinners than sneakers and can also cope with cold and even rainy weather if you pick the right pair.
However for April and May I would pack a sandal in stead dependent on the forecast and specific location of course.
I usually opt for a sandal over a boot for travel in Late April or May. I only ever pick sandals with good arch support that can cope with long sightseeing days though.
Best Accessories for your Spring Capsule Wardrobe for Travel
The items that are included in this section are definitely nice to haves rather than Spring travel wardrobe essentials. However, packing at least one of the below items can really help transform your outfit and make it pop.
Some of our favorite Spring travel accessories include:
Pashminas are my number one travel essential for women as they are so versatile as a great layering piece and are always part of my perfect Spring capsule wardrobe. They can be used as an extra layer in the cooler weather or even as a scarf, and can also make outfits more modest at religious sites. And of course they are a great day to style an outfit differently for a day to night transition.
Traveling with jewelry can feel a bit like a minefield especially if you are worried about traveling with expensive or precious jewelry.
The type of jewelry you travel with is really a personal choice about what you feel comfortable with. However we think even traveling with some costume jewelry is a good idea to help you make your capsule wardrobe outfits look a bit different.
A crossbody bag anti theft type is actually always on my packing lists especially for traveling in European cities such as Rome and Barcelona which do have pickpocket problems.
I find these types of bags give me a bit more peace of mind when traveling as they make it harder for pickpockets to get into. When selecting a crossbody bag I would pick something in a neutral color such as brown, black or navy depending on the palette of your capsule wardrobe and think about one that can be sued throughout your seasonal capsule wardrobes.
Shop crossbody bags here.
Note: a tote bag is also handy for souvenir shopping too.
Again, a hat is by no means an essential but they can transform an outfit and can make for some great instagram worthy photo. Let’s face it who hasn’t posed at a famous landmark with a hand on their hat?
We like the floppy wide brimmed hats in a color that complements rather than matches your capsule wardrobe colors is what I would suggest
What else to Pack for Spring Travel
Well depending on where you are traveling to and the activities you are doing you may also want to include:
- a bathing suit – only required for beach destinations or if you are staying somewhere with a pool or plan to head to a spa, onset or a geothermal pool like the Blue Lagoon.
- a compact travel umbrella – needed if you are going to a rainy destination.
- universal travel adaptor – I always travel with one.
We hope this has helped you put together your own Spring Capsule travel wardrobe! And we would love to hear about what you pack for Spring in the comments belows