A Travel Capsule for Cornwall

A Packing List For Cornwall

At the end of June, I took a trip to Cornwall with my partner and two friends. We travelled there by car and stayed for six days. The weather forecast predicted comfortable sunshine with highs of 22° and lows of 14° so I felt safe enough to commit to a capsule wardrobe focused on warm weather, and thankfully it paid off.

We'd planned a visit to the Eden Project and The Lost Gardens of Heligan, art galleries and museums, and time spent wandering St. Ives and the local area. Nothing demanding but a few keys points weren't to be overlooked: a pair of trainers were a must for long days on our feet, and comfortable fuss-free clothing for moving about with ease in the sunshine.

I love planning travel capsule wardrobes. It's a fun balancing act trying to pack just enough clothes to cover each day and activity without over packing or limiting options. I’m never happy when I have strict outfits for each day; I can’t predict how I’ll feel or what I’ll want to wear so having versatile pieces that can be styled different ways is very important. To plan a travel capsule, I take into consideration the weather, activities, and style.

My capsule is made up of a jumpsuit, a pair of trousers, a skirt, three tops, two pairs of shoes, and a couple of accessories including jewellery and a hat. From these pieces I could create at least 10 outfits, which meant I could decide what I wanted to wear on the day and switch things up in the evening without having to pack anything extra. I also took an anorak (for the unreliable UK weather, which I needed on the very first day!), my comfiest pair of leggings and a top for lounging in at our AirBnB.

Just because you have the space doesn't mean you should pack more than you need and if you're clever with your picks, a few items can make more than enough outfits for the week. I stuck with a single travel backpack, and shared with my partner. Even though this is a pretty compact travel capsule, I could have packed even lighter but I like having options. This is what I packed:

A Packing List For Cornwall

Jumpsuit by Avec Clyde (gifted). Comfortable and easy to wear yet looks put together; this jumpsuit has become a workhorse in my wardrobe, and I've only had it a few weeks. I knew it would be a good choice for this travel capsule as it can be worn in so many different ways, and looks effortlessly put together.

Linen Trousers by Uniqlo (second-hand). A practical choice for when the temperature drops. The cotton-linen blend make these light and cool to wear in the sun and comfortable on chilly evenings. These linen trousers are similar.

Linen Skirt by Tricotage. Lovely and light with enough coverage that makes it practical as well as summery. It hits me just below the knee and has deep pockets with a paper-bag waistband that cinches you in. notPERFECTLINEN has a similar linen skirt and a shorter version too, both available in lots of colours.

Linen Top by Hobbs (second-hand). A great little top made from thick linen that gives it a nice weight with a loose, cropped fit. This top looks great french tucked into trousers or fully tucked into a skirt. It's an unusual style, which is partly why I like it so much. There aren't many alternatives I can link to; you can often find one on eBay though.

Linen Shirt by Zara (second-hand). A white linen shirt is a classic summer piece; I picked mine up in a charity shop for a couple of pounds. It has a slot collar with a plunging neckline and pretty opalescent buttons. Everlane has nice linen shirts if you're looking for one, as does Bliss Linen.

Cotton Top by Muji. The crisp cotton of this top has a lovely structured design that makes it smart yet easy to wear whether it's tucked or untucked. It gives me that loose, layered silhouette I love and feels great to wear in summer.

Cardigan by Dorsu (gifted). This is the perfect cardigan for cool summer evenings. It's made from recovered medium-weight cotton jersey giving it a lovely drape when worn open. I prefer to wear the cardigan wrapped and tied at the front as it gives a structured appearance to outfits. The removable waist tie saves me from packing an extra belt too.

Anorak by Everlane. Just in case the weather turns nasty, I packed my anorak. It's lightweight enough for balmy days with a hood that protects against showers. I hoped not to need it but it's one of those items I always pack for holidays in the UK as the weather is so fickle. I hate getting caught in the rain.

Sandals by Birkenstock. Essential for summer, particularly when you've got things you want to do. They're as comfortable as they are durable, and can see you through long days of walking without discomfort. A worthwhile investment although a slightly cheaper alternative can be found at Vegetarian Shoes.

Trainers by Nike (second-hand). If it rained and I knew I was going to be walking a lot, I wanted a pair of shoes that could see me through comfortably. Sore feet can ruin adventures so these were one of the first things to be included on my packing list. If I was buying new, I’d opt for a pair from Veja’s vegan-friendly range.

Backpack by Fjällräven. This comes everywhere with me. It might be tiny but it can pack everything I need including a packed lunch, water bottle, camera, and ereader plus other daily essentials. Kankens are great little backpacks; they’re hardwearing and kind to your back. I recommend purchasing shoulder straps if you’re going to carry a full backpack around all day.

Summer Hat (second-hand). A last minute find before I headed to Cornwall; this summer hat was discovered in a charity shop for 99p! It’s super simple in design with a lovely wide brim with just enough flex that’s it’s neither too floppy nor too ridged.

Jewellery by Oh My Clumsy Heart. The Crescent Necklace and Horizontal Bar Necklace works well for this capsule. I also packed some hoop earrings because on really hot days they’re the ideal accessory; a low key wardrobe staple and a timeless classic.

High Waist Bikini by YouSwim (gifted). My holiday motto is 'always pack a swimsuit' and although I had zero plans to get in the sea, I didn't want to miss the opportunity if it came up. This is the first bikini I've ever owned and I'm smitten. It folds up real small and takes up barely any room, so I figured why not pack it? On me the bikini provides full coverage (which I prefer), it's super comfortable to wear, and it's in a style that makes me feel confident. Look out for a dedicated post on sustainable swimwear, coming soon!