#MakeupMonday: Travel Achievement Unlocked

I worked harder than I ever have in my life to assemble a functional, packable, non-wrinkling, professionally appropriate, and above all cute, travel wardrobe for our just-finished 5-week speaking tour in Europe.

And, I did it! I loved almost every single outfit, and wore every element multiple times, and even had some not-yet-worn hot-weather options left over to wear in sweltering Washington DC, where I spent a few jet-lagged, bronchitis-y days getting my daughter set up for her internship on Capital Hill (with our wonderful Congressman Peter DeFazio).

Today I share the lewks.

Oh and btw, every single place we went, at least one person came up to whisper, conspiratorially, “I JUST LOVE #MAKEUPMONDAY!!!”


A one-piece Pact dress with belt, linen jacket (the only item i brought that needed an occasional touchup with the iron, but only rarely), tights and my new go-to work footwear, black suede booties by La Canadienne. This is a current version but I didn’t pay anything close to this price; I got a previous year version for about $200. You can get the identical style but without the winterproofing by Margaux, and other brands I’m sure.

The Pact dress again, with a different soft, deconstructed, non-wrinkling jersey jacket.

My favorite outfit: black stretch-knit Premise zip-back pencil skirt, with sleeveless polyester non-wrinkling shell and soft jacket. I can’t say enough about this jacket – a deconstructed asymetrical zip knit moto jacket. This one is BNCI, but an identical style is available from Loft, and there are TONS of the BNCI right now on Poshmark secondhand for about $20 a pop. Also, shoutout to the necklace: an ultra-lightweight magnetic front-clasp wire geometrical glory that I wore virtually every day (purchased at a small popup shop at the SeaTac airport – can’t remember name or artist, dammit. OK, I went and searched and found the necklace. Maker is Origin, but the Origin website doesn’t seem to show it anymore (although it has LOADS of cute lightweight, geometric, magnetic jewelry like this and this). Next time: I take this necklace and my Kristina Collection (each about half an ounce) and skip all my heavy chains.

Boldly mixing prints! Polka dot Max Studio self-tie shell under the deconstructed tweed-y jacket. (Bold lipcolors like below were a total FAIL in Europe. Women my age just don’t wear them and they just somehow looked garish and tacky. I ended up relying on my CoverGirl Outlast in #621 (a nice neutral) for the entire 5 weeks.

I had to look cute for travel days too! Linen jacket again with an H by Bourdeaux low-pro short sleeved knit mock turtle. And the Michael Kors Stretch Twill Leggings (or ponte). You can find these cheap at TJ Maxx etc.; I didn’t pay full price for my first pair, but did for my second in black. They were PERFECT for packing and long train and plane rides. Deep back pockets for phone, stretch waist for comfort, kept their shape, neither tight not loose, never-wrinkling. Plus my new Suavs – one of those new packable sneakers. Unfortunately they didn’t work for me. Totally cute and totally collapsible to about an inch wide for the pair, but not quite enough support for actual walking.

MY PERSONAL VICTORY: Last day of a grueling 5-week trip and I am STILL LOOKING CUTE! New scarf picked up for 10 Euro at a street market in Amsterdam. Labeled “pashmina” lol…. not. But still cute.

Kel and I doing us.

In Amsterdam I stumble upon a pop-up sidewalk discount shoe sale!! I get four pairs of super-cute European shoes at a steal! Bernie Mev, Arche and Cabot.

Of course we stop at the Museum of Purses and Bags in Amsterdam!

And just a fond tribute to my (previously introduced) travel makeup kit. It was a smashing success.

Truly, after 4 years of working on travel gear, this is the year I can say Travel Achievement Unlocked.

Share your travel fashion and makeup hacks as comments the FB page and I’ll do another random drawing for unused/barely used makeup and skincare samples! I have a ton of new ones to share!

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About Karen Kelsky

I am a former tenured professor at two institutions--University of Oregon and University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign. I have trained numerous Ph.D. students, now gainfully employed in academia, and handled a number of successful tenure cases as Department Head. I've created this business, The Professor Is In, to guide graduate students and junior faculty through grad school, the job search, and tenure. I am the advisor they should already have, but probably don't.


#MakeupMonday: Travel Achievement Unlocked — 5 Comments

  1. Was it show pony at Sea Tac? Also, tell us more about these booties and leggings! It’s a conservative-yet-chic style. MK is my favorite designer πŸ™‚

  2. I’m trying to build a regular work wardrobe in a similar vein (comfortable, non-wrinkle, professional, and ideally quite durable). Do you have particular brands that you gravitate towards for clothing?

    • Ann–put this comment on FB and I’ll respond there, and everyone can see and you’ll be entered in the drawing for makeup/skincare samples (if you want to). If not, just respond here.

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