… and indeed, nothing that you wouldn’t be taking on holiday with you, that you wouldn’t take on a UK Staycation!


A second post in just one week: I know! I am spoiling you, huh?

And although this isn’t one of my traditional “Sunday 7’s”… it is a Sunday blogpost, right?!

Anyhow, what am I looking at this week?

Well, you can’t move for holiday packing vids on Instagram and blogposts at the moment.

This isn’t one of those blogposts.

There won’t be quota’s prescribed for how much insect repellent or sun-cream* you need.

{*note: this is dependent on how much white swimwear you take, apparently… I don’t think I’ve ever owned a single stich of white swimwear!}

I’m not taking the proverbial p!ss out of those ‘tropical or hot-hot-Greek holiday’ posts by the way, but… it’s just that more often that not, we seem to holiday in France.

One day, when the budget allows us to take our children on that one-mega holiday of their lifetimes, and my husband and I finally get to re-visit Thailand or the Maldives after a great many of years of having not visited those countries… I will no doubt be scouring blogs for helpful packing tips for those very destinations!

Anyway: back to France.

A land-locked campsite near a lake, quite close to the Belgium border, to be precise!

{*ah… border! that thing that the EU nationals won’t have to worry about and all too soon will be a drama for us Brits, eh?!}

Unsurprisingly, the weather in Northern France isn’t *that* dissimilar to here in the UK.

They did recently experience crazy 40 degree temperatures at the campsite, in line with the ‘heatwave’ here.

Which of course, is just climate change, not the usual, not the norm.

So what would you pack for a week away in say… the Lake District?

Or perhaps a week away at good old Centre Parcs?

Except, take travelling by car out of the equation,  you’re travelling my train and you are only allowed to take one, small case.

The equivalent of one aeroplane carry-on case, per person.

I’ve felt quite stressed about this prospect but rather unusually for me, I haven’t written a long, long list.

I’m writing the blogpost instead, in the hope that it helps me focus.

For me, packing for this type of holiday without the comfort of a ‘just check it in the car – just in case!’ is the absolute worst!!

I feel like I have to have a little of everything with me, just in case… for every, and any… basically *all* weather eventualities.

Here are my 7 essentials:

7. Jacket / Waterproof

deinm jacket

I have a Gap Denim Jacket, similar to the one pictured: it’s around 25 years old and has had well over a 100 wears let alone 30.

I usually take it as a ‘must have on holiday’ item because I feel the chill in the evenings when I’m in the Mediterranean, let alone northern Europe!

My jacket was a fast fashion buy, but it’s stood the test of time and for me, I won’t be cheating on it with a little new style ‘puff’ sleeve jacket or a cropped or an oversized one.

I love my jacket too much!

However this holiday I am going to cheat on my denim jacket with this Zara Men’s silver cotton jacket:

I bought this jacket for an oversized look in early June this year, it arrived on June 10th: it was before I’d committed to ‘No New Clothes’ for #slowfashionseason, running from 21st June to 21st September.

I’m determined to get the number of wears up for this  jacket, to ensure that it’s not some ‘disposable’ fast-fashion purchase: so far, I’ve worn in 4 weekends on the trot to parties / evenings out.

As most of my holiday wardrobe is black or khaki or white: I think the silver will go with everything.

And of course, a waterproof is needed: I’ll be taking my trusty, summer Protected Species parka.

They fold up small and come in bloody handy when it comes to unpredictable weather!

6. Khaki Trousers


My two year old Topshop Khaki’s have again, had over 30 wears.

Yes, bought from the high street, but I happen to believe if you wear your clothing as much as I wear mine… your high street purchases can become slow fast-fashion pieces, if that makes sense?

{The ones pictured aren’t the same style of mine, but they are cargo pants from Topshop.}

Khaki’s are generally made from a lighter weight of cotton and provide full leg coverage for cooler evening temperatures, without being as heavy or oppressive as denim.

I’m currently weighing up whether there is a need to take some trusty jeans or not.

I have to pack light.

Repeat, I have to pack light.

5. Shorts

I will probably take just one pair of denim-cut offs.


These are my shorts… they’re from H&M and only about 18 months old.

I’d say they’ve had around 20 wears so far, so they need some more wear this year.

I have some blue jean cut-offs, made from a pair of my own jeans which fell apart at both knees, as well as (rather randomly!) a hole developing in the ankle/calf of one leg… which were then made into cut-offs rather than being relegated for dog walking or decorating… mainly because I loved the fit across my waist and how comfortable they are.

However, these blue-jean cut-offs have had A LOT more than 30 wears, so… taking the grey ones instead.

I can only imagine that I will probably wear them twice across the holiday?

Maybe 3 times?!

4. Bias cut Slip Dress

I have taken my Ghost Bias Cut Slip dresses on holiday with me for the past (almost) 20 years (19 years to be exact!) because they are very handy for throwing over a cossie, or just day wear, not to mention in the evenings.


This current Ghost Slip Dress is made of viscose… mine are made from crepe (I seem to remember) and mine are black and another is red.

I probably won’t need to take both, but back at the turn of century (!!!) when these dresses were new, I wore them every day/ every 3rd day for a full couple of years – summer, winter… just all the time.

So they are very well worn dresses, much loved and although I don’t wear them much anymore, they are *always* the first dress I think of packing.

They look great worn alone, with tee’s under, tee’s worn over and knotted… a knotted shirt over the top, chunky jumper over the top.

A perfect, versatile, and for me… timeless style.

That ‘bias-cut’ is all the rage again at the mo, is neither here, nor there for me.

3. A Selection of T-shirts & Singlets

These will go with my shorts, khaki’s and dresses.

arket tee

I recently bought this Arket Tee in white on a 3 for 2 offer… they’re organic cotton and wash really well.

At the moment, both white Tee’s have been worn around 10 times each, but the pink one has been worn just twice.

White tee’s on holiday are an essential for me!

I’ve also got a few white/black sleeveless tee’s (kind of racer back) from H&M: these have had around 20 -30 wears, but again, are super useful, so I’ll be packing a couple.

2. Denim Shirt / Sweatshirt

When you’re summer holidaying in Northern Europe – layering is key!


I’m taking my pale-blue, monogrammed Hari and the Gang denim shirt.

The paler colour will work well with Black, Khaki and White… as well as the silver jacket.

It’s an oversized shirt on me so can be worn open over shorts, as a poolside coverup as well as knotted over my dresses.

I might also take my Hari and the Gang Dreamer sweatshirt:


1. Swimming Costume

No matter the weather… when holidaying with children… there is *always* a waterpark situation which rears it’s head.


I have a similar cossie to this Boden one; mI’ve is 7 years old now, and still going strong.

Originally bought by my sister, she realised soon after wearing it that she should have gone up a size, given the cossie’s structure and boning… so I bought it off her for a bargain price!

And in all honesty, no matter what other costume / bikini I might buy or take on holiday: it’s this one which gets the most wear, simply because of the fit; it stays up; it looks good… and the ruched front bit is super flattering.

How many wears has it had?

Well… not much! If I tot up all my holidays over the past 7 years… hmmm… it’s probably around 30 wears.

Only just though!

I don’t like getting cold and wet, so unless the pool (or sea!) is as warm as tropical seas (aka kinda like bathwater!) I don’t tend to get wet.

So my cossie hasn’t been chlorine or saltwater damaged.

And those are my 7 essentials…

I haven’t touched on footwear: I’ll be taking my black & white canvas Veja sneaks and Black Vagabond chunky Erin’s sandals.

I’m currently weighing up whether to take Birkenstocks or Adidas slides.

And yes, yes, there are smaller items like sunnies, smalls and the like.

But really, I just wanted to talk about the core pieces that will no doubt fill my tiny little case to brimming full (especially as there’s a tripod to pack as well!)

My children went out to France two week’s ago with their giant-winnebago-style, motorhome-owning grandparents.

And I have missed, missed, missed them more than I can put into words.

Syvlie’s also been pining after them.

It’s been both lovely to have some adult time with my husband where we walked Sylvie together, popped out for a meal here and there…

But mainly, the deathly silence in the house… has been too awful to bear!

So… even if the weather is really sh!t… rather like Andie McDowell’s character, at the end of Four Weddings and a Funeral: I won’t notice the rain: I’m gonna be reunited with my babies!!

Hope you’ve enjoyed this little post…

Just remember: when you’re holiday packing: it’s 95% likely that you already have all that you need… just repeat the mantra #stylingnotshopping and think about how to mix and match instead of thinking #moremoremore new things!

Have a great week.

B x

NB: I haven’t linked much in this post, just… because I’m guessing most of us have equivalent items in our wardrobes already! AND… I will of course be packing a couple of other bits and bobs too!