PACK IT UP, BABY | MY ESSENTIAL PACKING TIPS + TRICKS

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while i was in colorado a few weeks ago, one of my friends told me that i was the best packer she'd ever seen + that i should do a post on how i pack my suitcases! now, i will say that i am an OCD-level organizational freak [i couldn't find nicer terms to say that in, but i'm talking about myself so it's fine there's no hard feelings]. so, here we are --- i'm sharing my essential tips + tricks on how to easily, efficiently, + neatly pack your bags. 

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TIP #1 - INVEST IN A GOOD SUITCASE

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big + spacious, always! unless i'm going on an over-night trip, i use this thrifted suitcase every time! i'm an overpacker + i'm #notashamed, + it's so nice to have lots of room! also, having a suitcase that holds up to the pressures of travel is a given --- find one that works for you!

TIP #2 - PURPOSEFULLY FOLD YOUR CLOTHING

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whether it's rolling, double-folding [above], or another technique, fold your clothes with purpose! it's a time saver, space saver, + [my personal favorite] allows you to see each piece in your suitcase, a.k.a. no more searching for that one shirt you just HAVE to wear :)

TIP #3 - PACKING HATS? PLACE THEM UPSIDE DOWN

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hats are a BIG space-waster, + a simple fix is to pack them upside down! i always place pieces under the brim + inside of it, + it saves so much room! perfect for a severe over-packer like me. 

TIP #4 - GROUP SIMILAR CLOTHING PIECES TOGETHER

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this is a tip that kinda goes hand in hand with the folding one. when you organize your luggage by type, it's much easier to know where everything is + see it right when you open your suitcase!

TIP #5 - FIND UNIQUE ITEMS TO TRANSPORT JEWELRY IN [STRAWS, EYEGLASS CASES, ETC]

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most necklaces fit right into a plain old drinking straw, + it keeps them separate, contained, + most of all NOT tangled. i also place my earrings + rings into a spare glasses case! you can also wear as much jewelry as possible on the flight if these techniques don't end up working for you!

BONUS - FIND A STRONG + SPACIOUS CARRY-ON

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i've been using this backpack since the spring + LOVE it! it has so many pockets + organizers that you can use to rearrange the interior to fit your travel needs! also, it has spaces for your camera + computer, which come with me on almost every trip! love love love it. 

so, there you have it! i hope your suitcases thank you + that your future packing endeavors are stress-free from this day forth. i'm happy i could share a little bit of my OCD-ness with you guys! let me know if any of these tips helped you out, or if you have some tips of your own :) happy packing + happy traveling!

post + images by molly garvin

FAMILY FAVES ON FATHER'S DAY

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nothing beats johnnies in the summer [or fall or winter or spring]. my dad grew up on their italian beef sandwiches + lemonade italian ice, so we did too. this past father's day we drove up to this old family favorite + had our  f a v e  summer dinner, toured the streets of my dad's [+ mine, partially] childhood home, visited the neighborhood where my late grandfather was raised, + just enjoyed our time together. here's to nostalgic summer nights. + italian ice :)

DISCOS + DONUTS

i can officially die happy, or at least really really content. i'd been following @thefestivecollective + their sister stores @bashpartygoods, @luft.balloon, + @anneandkate on instagram for a while, due to their location in chicago + their general awesomeness, but had never actually been to the brick + mortar store. when i saw a post about the "funky disco donut bash" they were hosting, i cleared my schedule, texted a friend, + awaited the weekend. 

along with donuts + party goods, their were multiple vintage vendors + THE cutest custom embroidery station care of @daily_disco! we spent the morning browsing, making multiple purchases [yeah, that one was me], + trying not to die of a wonderment overload. 

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seriously, how freakin' gorgeous are these old fashioned vanilla donuts from bonvivant cakes? i can assure you, they definitely tasted as good as they looked ;) 

BANANA DOLPHIN BANANA DOLPHIN BANANA DOLPHIN BANANA DOLPHIN

be sure to check out the festive collective's instagram + site --- this isn't sponsored i've just got a biz crush + i want to share! here's to pretty donuts + banana dolphins + cool stationery + balloon displays + embroidered denim + happy things. 

A BACKYARD GRADUATION PARTY

backyard parties are my JAM. actually, any party is my jam, but especially the outdoor ones + the ones where you're the center of attention. [kidding. kind of ;) ] but seriously, gatherings that bring all the people that i love together are the best. a couple weekends ago, we hosted my high school graduation party + had the best time. press play on the film above or keep reading for a look + a recap! 

my sweet + talented aunt made all of the centerpieces the day of! we had the yellow roses on hand, and she basically foraged for the rest. ;)

^^ the same photo, four years later! YIKES

we might have had a karaoke machine playing music all night and it might have been the best thing ever.  

if you attended the party + are reading this, thank you SO much for coming! and if you didn't attend the party + are reading this, thanks for being interested enough to get to the end of this post! anyway, i'm off to california next fall for my next adventure - more on that soon! in the meantime, enjoy the video of the party [above if you haven't watched it already!] + also these portraits from the party, taken by my sister claire and images from our photobooth! 


film + images by molly + claire garvin