While conventional packing wisdom suggests bringing basics and adding color in with accessories, for such a long trip I found it easier to stick to a basic color palette for each city (i.e. patriotic reds and blues in Austin, soft neutrals and pinks in Charleston, and bold desert hues for Scottsdale).  To coordinate with each city’s palette, I chose a complimentary clutch to wear for night’s out and then packed the jewelry I plan on wearing with those looks inside of each.  I’m hoping that this helps curb messy bag syndrome by day 4 and also keeps the time it takes me to get dressed each day to a minimum.  An upside of editing your entire wardrobe down into trunk-sized dimensions is that your true style quickly becomes very clear (see here: shoe buying tendencies in sandy suede, basic blacks, and mix-with-anything leopard).  The least stressful bag to pack has been the “car bag” including such essentials as bobby pins and lip stain to pull yourself together before checking in to the next hotel and a ‘Word a Day’ journal to sum it all up. Happy (last 36 hours living on the East Coast) Friday!

(all photos my own)