For our Packing List series, designers and more women we love open their suitcases to show us how they prepare (and what they bring) for their far-flung adventures.
There’s perhaps no one whose travel exploits we obsess over more than Brother Vellies designer Aurora James. It seems like she’s always coming or going, and her excursions often include trips to South Africa and Morocco, where her shoes are ethically manufactured in eco-friendly materials. She's also known to travel often to other far-flung locales for fun, relaxation, and of course, inspiration, as she did recently on a trip to Indonesia. Below, our favorite globetrotter shares the chic essentials she brought on her trip.
Are you an over-packer or under-packer?
Overpacker. A girl can never have too many shoes or too much moisturizer.
What's your best packing advice?
I’m luggage-obsessed and I have packing down to a science. Have you ever seen George Clooney in that airplane movie? That’s me. My best advice is to fold everything and really ask yourself if you’ll want to wear jeans in 103 degree heat. Also call ahead to the hotel and find out what they have for you. I know the W always has Bliss Spa soaps and moisturizers so I have that as a back up. They also have razors and steamers and all of that good stuff so I don’t have to worry about that either.
What did you bring?
A Mara Hoffman midi dress, AMO Jeans, vintage t-shirts from the Brother Vellies T-shirt project, Brother Vellies Mini Island Bag in Springbok, a Clyde Pinch Panama straw hat. As for shoes, the question is: which ones didn’t I bring?! PVC Dhara sandals and Whiskey Woven Slides were my go-tos, as well as Golden Strip Burkina sandals and Lamu sandals in lavender.
ANY OTHER DESTINATION ESSENTIALS?
I bought a hand-woven swimsuit there in the market because I forgot mine! Also moisturizer! SPF! I’m addicted to Origins A Perfect World with SPF 40. I also use the Sun Bum Spray on my body.
WHAT DO YOU PACK MULTIPLES OF?
Polaroid film and disposable cameras.
WHAT’S IN YOUR CARRYON?
I carry on my small Tumi Larkin bag, and it always has my Rachel Comey earrings, my Gucci sunglasses, and my contact lenses. Usually also hair tools—a curling iron and sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner. And the worst-case scenario stuff you probably can’t find in Indonesia.
Shop It: 1. Tumi Larkin Bag, $925; tumi.com. 2. Vintage T-Shirt from the Brother Vellies T-Shirt Project, $35; brothervellies.com. 3. PVC Dhara Sandals, $495; brothervellies.com. 4. Whiskey Woven Slides, $515; brothervellies.com. 5. Mini Island Bag In Springbok, $825; brothervellies.com. 6. Clyde Pinch Panama Straw Hat, $258; needsupply.com. 7. Rachel Comey Paso Earrings, $125; needsupply.com. 8. Gucci Sunglasses, $305; matchesfashion.com.
What’s in your beauty bag?
I’m using a Brother Vellies pouch for my beauty products while I wait for Sephora to come out with something more “me.” In it I have Origins GinZeng under eye cream, Kiehl’s Body Butter, Sephora Blush in Orange Pop, Desert Essence Tea Tree Oil, Le Labo Rose 31 fragrance, Glossier highlighter, and a never-ending supply of Q-Tips.
Shop It: 1. Brother Vellies Pouch, $475; brothervellies.com. 2. Origins GinZeng Under Eye Cream, $32; amazon.com. 3. Kiehls Body Butter, $48; kiehls.com. 4. Sephora Blush in Orange Pop, $14; sephora.com. 5. Desert Essence Tea Tree Oil, $17; amazon.com. 6. Le Labo Rose, $180-$265; nordstrom.com. 7. Q-Tips, $7; amazon.com. 8. Sun Bum Spray, $16; dermstore.com. 9. Origins A Perfect World with SPF 40, $44; sephora.com.
Ideal airplane outfit?
A Gypsy Sport hooded sweatshirt, Marques Almeida denim, and Brother Vellies Open Loafers with some Tabio thick socks in my bag to change into.