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Friday, June 26th 2009

City Holiday: Packing for the 4th of July in Chicago

With the heat that’s enveloped the middle states (and the rest of the country) my Fourth of July trip to Chicago will require a serious summer packing strategy. I inherited the immediate-discomfort-when-the-temp-tops-70 gene from my dad, so my suitcase will be all about no-nonsense, airy ease of dressing. What does that mean exactly? Body-con nothing and weightless everything.

Though most of us live the metropolitan life every day, it’s something else altogether when the city you’re visiting isn’t your own. What sort of restaurants will you frequent? How many wardrobe changes will each day demand? Will you have to bring the entire contents of your closet just to get by?

Ladies, make jersey your best friend. I contend that it’s the most versatile of fabrics, able and willing to play on a casual Saturday and as elegant as (but far more comfortable than) silk at night. As for me, I’ll throw three jersey dresses into my suitcase: a striped Rachel Pally mini that epitomizes the All-American fashion that’s so appropriate for this holiday, a barely there 291 tank dress, and an arty-cool, brunch-perfect Dolce Vita maxi. And for a night of dancing in Boystown, I’ll bring a sexy but airy cocktail dress.

Clothes are covered, so on to the accessories. In this arena, I’ll keep it super simple—no need to layer on belts and chunky necklaces that will only weigh me down in the summer heat. For baubles, the same signature earrings and necklace I always wear will get me through the weekend (I heart Gorjana jewelry), and in footwear, nary a high heel or platform will I see. I’m all about flat sandals in the summer, particularly a pair by Sergio Rossi from last spring. And since Chicago is on a big ol’ lake, I’ll throw in a Vix bikini, a Juicy terry skirt, and Havaianas flip-flops just in case we decide to hit the beach.

What’s on your Fourth of July must-have packing list? And, what are your getaway plans? (Jealousy points to anyone spending the weekend on a boat.)

--Amie
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