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Today’s travel fashion girl is Sarah Reichenbach, A 28 year old girl from Amsterdam, Holland, who traveled a lot growing up and packed most of her belongings into a storage-unit and left to explore the world after finishing art-school.
She’s been teaching snowboarding and English, tending bar, volunteering and traveling, together with her boyfriend, in 12 countries for the last two years and has big plans to keep going for quite a while longer.
Learn more about her travels in her blog called My Gipsy Soul and keep reading to learn more about her travel style!
Interview: Sarah Reichenbach
Q: How would you describe your travel style?
I work abroad so that means renting a house and having quite a normal life for a couple of months before moving again to a different place. Then I travel around with just a backpack for about 3 months a year, on a very tight budget.
Q: Do you prefer to travel carry-on or with a regular size suitcase or bag?
• A big backpack: The North Face Banchee 50, ideal bag with a lot of pockets for easy organising and a comfortable frame. Not too big, bright color, fits all of my stuff, its perfect!
• A carry-on bag with personal belongings like travel-documents, music, a book, etc. Depending on the trip this could be a small backpack (15L) or canvas tote.
• When I leave to the mountains for winter I have another huge board bag with all my equipment. It’s a Burton Wheelie Gig bag, with wheels, because otherwise I would never be able to drag it to my destination
Check out TFG’s recommendation on the ultimate backpack organizer.
Q: Are you an overpacker or do you underpack?
Normally, when I’m working and living in the same place for a while, I bring quite a lot of stuff, because dressing in only 5 outfits is nice when on the road but I don’t like it all year round. When I’m traveling I pack light but buy gifts and souvenirs so end up with my 50L filled to the brim.
Q: How do you stay stylish while traveling without access to an entire closet?
I think it’s about combining right. Normally I’m all about patterns and bright colors but they don’t always mix well and sometimes just end up looking like the circus, so I try to stay away from them, oh well.
Another trick is that I have some short dresses that can double as a longer skirt and skirts that have a different color lining so you can wear them the other way around.
Learn some tips on how to master the ten piece travel wardrobe!
Q: What are your three must have travel essentials?
• Not very fashionable in my eyes but I am totally in love with Nike Free shoes. I realize they’re popular, I just don’t like the look of them. However, they feel like you are walking on clouds, no matter if it’s for actual running, a city trip, light hike or casual night out.
• A big scarf or sarong. Bring some color and print into your wardrobe and use as a scarf, dress, blanket, towel, tablecloth, bag, etc.
• I think I’m quite practical, especially for a girl, so I don’t go anywhere without a first-aid kit, pocket-knife, head-light, little book for notes, etc.
Oh and since I’m only allowed three essentials, I will add flip-flops to this category, because every traveler needs a pair of those for hostel showers, walks to the beach or when you’re other shoes are too wet/dirty/heavy for the task. And a pair of leggings!
Take a look at the styles you voted as the best leggings for women that travel!
Q: What destination was the most fun to dress for?
That would definitely be Dia de los Muertos in Mexico. Everybody dresses up in their Sunday’s best but paints their faces to resemble skulls!
Q: What destination surprised you the most with the ways locals dressed or their type of clothing?
I loved it that in Vietnam a lot of people who work at food-stalls and other street-based jobs wear pyjamas. They don’t care about how it looks and I bet they’re comfy, but when the woman who makes your noodles wears bunny-slippers I can’t help but smile.
Q: What’s your preferred travel outfit on a plane?
Definitely leggings and a (thin) sweater. Same goes for buses, trains, cars and all other transport that takes longer than a couple of hours. It’s nice to be comfortable enough that you could sleep and not get cold from air-conditioning. Plus I’m short so I can fold myself in all kinds of weird positions in a normal chair and wearing something stretchy is a definite plus.
Check out some of our favorite airplane outfits.
Q: What are your favorite travel accessories?
Every traveler needs a scarf! I don’t bring any jewelry except for the couple of necklaces, bracelets and rings that I wear basically 24/7. The only exception to that is a nice pair of earrings for a possible night out and a watch, but more for practical reasons.
Q: What are your favorite travel beauty essentials?
I am not a very girly girl so my beauty essentials basically consist of an all-purpose soap [that I use for my body, hair and even clothes], deodorant stick, tiny bottle of perfume, some basic cream [that I use for my face, hands, as after-sun and occasional hair-mask], lip-balm, and toothpaste. I’m one of those lucky ones with easy skin and hair so don’t need a lot.
Check out some of our favorite travel beauty essentials.
Q: Do you have any specific hair or makeup products that work great for travel?
Sadly I don’t, but I will be reading up on the other interviews to see if there are any products or tips that I might be able to use. My biggest tip would be to use plenty of sunscreen and always was your hands and face before going to bed.
Q: How many pairs of shoes do you travel with and what styles?
I travel with three pairs of shoes, which I actually think is ridiculous but it turns out that I use all of them a lot, so it makes sense. I have a pair of Nike Free sneakers that I absolutely adore, then there’s a pair of canvas slip-ons (Toms or Sanuk) and some flip-flops. None of them are very bulky or heavy so it’s easy enough to take them along.
Check out TFG’s tips on choosing the best shoes for travel.
Q: Do you have any recommendation for cute or comfortable footwear?
Apart from the Nike’s I would recommend any traveler buying a pair of Tom’s. They come in such cute patterns and colors, have suede insole’s that allow you to wear them barefoot and are just pretty and comfy.
Find out some of TFG’s favorite travel-friendly Womens Casual Sneakers.
Q: What was your biggest travel fashion or packing mistake?
The first time I went on a big backpacking trip I didn’t think about patterns for a second and just packed all of my favorite stuff, ending up looking like a unicorn threw up on me half of the time. But I was 17 and on my first inter-railing trip backpacking Europe so in the end it was perfect anyway. To be honest, this still happens sometimes.
Q: Finally, any travel packing tips for new travelers?
DON’T PACK TOO MUCH! I think every new traveler way overpacks, and there is just no need to. Especially when you’re going to a warm climate it’s easy to do laundry while traveling. Dragging around a super heavy bag gets very old very soon. You can buy clothes everywhere, so bring essentials and remember that there’s no harm in being a smelly backpacker.
If you’d like to be interviewed on Travel Fashion Girl, please submit your details here.
For more traveler interviews, please read:
- Interview with Amanda Pastyrnak
- Interview With Emely Castaneda
- Interview with Solene Debies
- Interview with Anna Paparizou
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