I am my mother’s daughter. I have a quick temper. I buy strange new foods at the grocery store just to try them. And, I own gobs of jewelry. Gobs. It is my kryptonite. I am like a moth to a costume jewelry flame. Accessories…jewelry, purses, hats, shoes…all of it…make the outfit. In fact, when I get up in the morning I’m not thinking of the clothes, I’m thinking of the accessory. So, when I travel, jewelry is an essential part of my suitcase. First up, it is the rare buying trip abroad that has me check luggage. By religion, I am a carry on only gal. And to my credit I have gone 11 days for business and pleasure in 3 distinct climates and got it all into one roller and a duffel. This is where you applaud my obvious packing skills because that sh*t ain’t easy. Needless to say it took years of rolling/not folding methodology, packing compartments, travel underwear and a few other tricks to perfect the art. But, the jewelry, because it adds to the weight of your suitcase, it always goes in my carry on roller bag. If you don’t possess my super hero packing skills and are checking, it should go in your carry on, along with any other valuables in case your checked luggage ends up in Omaha when you arrive in Miami. Next up, all gold and precious stones need to be separated into little pouches so they don’t scratch one another. I swear by my Cathay Pacific travel pouch (which I happily stole on my last flight from Hong Kong…along with the pjs they give you in premiere class) and a pink Kate Spade travel jewelry case to hold everything. The reason? It has a certain structure that allows your jewelry to be tucked inside without worry of it being smushed under the weight. I’ve dealt with one too many bent earring posts to contend with the roll jewelry cases. They work for a one-day trip, but when this is your usual haul (see photo) you gotta take care. As a general rule of packing, I pack according to color.  Sometimes it’s blue and black, black and beige, floral and black….you see the trend, black is always a foundation. It rarely shows stains and matches everything. I once read that Anna Wintour hates when people dress in head to toe black. It upset me for a moment, but then I realized that she probably hasn’t eaten a sandwich in a decade so I don’t think head to toe black is the only thing we would disagree on…which I say with the deep reverence…love you Anna. From there, I count on jewelry to not just finish the look, but to MAKE it. I have a belief that people will forget faces, names, dates and times, but never a good accessory. I wear one to EVERY important meeting. First time I met Oprah, her stylist commented on my necklace. A decade later in the green room she turned to me and said, “I’ll never forget that red coral bibb necklace you wore to that meeting. A stunner for a Tuesday in cold Chicago.”  I chose that necklace with great care for that very reason. It isn’t called a “statement piece” by accident, people. All of it, even a dainty gold chain, can get noticed when worn right. For me it’s like a shield of protection. I feel smarter, sharper, chicer when I’m properly accessorized. That attitude carries over into the business at hand. I mean, what was Wonder Woman without her cuffs, crown and lasso? Without that she was just another everyday woman flying around in an invisible plane. Point is, you’re still fabulous even if you don’t bring all this stuff, but are you unforgettable? Only your necklace will tell.

Leave a Reply