Thursday, August 4, 2011

Europe, Pantyliners and Pashminas

Justin and I had a nice long vacation in Europe several months ago. Never having been on a three week vacation before, I did a lot of research on how and what to pack. I looked on travel websites for tips. I decided that since we were staying in an apartment with access to washer that I would only take one weeks worth of clothes. I picked neutral colors for most of my outfits. I brought a skirt, several pairs of slacks, one pair of shorts all either black, white or khaki in color. The shirts I brought were mostly neutral but some that were colorful. I then did something I consider quite ingenious: I bought 6 different cashmere-like pashminas (long, wide scarfs) in different colors to add some color to my neutral outfits. Having those pashminas came in handy. Not only did they add color to my outfits but I was able to achieve different looks throughout our three week vacation, so I looked like I had 3 weeks of outfits in all of my pictures. The pashiminas area great because they are big enough to wear as a long scarf, bundle around your neck when it gets cold at night and wrap around you like a shall. I will always pack that way for long trips.

I needed to also figure out my shoe situation for our trip. I wanted something comfortable yet stylish and I did not want to pack 6 pairs of shoes. With the airline restrictions on luggage weight, I needed to bring as few things as possible so I figured I would bring two pairs of shoes. The first pair would be a pair of open toed sandals with a little heel so I could dress those up. I never wore them. Not once. It was a waste of space. Let me show you what I did wear the whole time:

These are Aetrex Helen Stretch Mary Janes. I bought them from a locally owned store in Reno called If The Shoe Fits. The owner calls this shoe "The Euro Walker." It was the PERFECT shoe. I it was dressy enough to wear with the skirt I bought and comfortable enough to wear everyday. My only compliant was about the velcro straps. I wore the these shoes with nylons at times and  the Velcro caught on the the nylon and snagged them. Not too shabby.

About a week before we left on our trip, I was wearing the shoe to break them in (not that they needed it). Since I never owned a pair of Mary Janes before, I was confused if I should wear them with socks or not. I decided to take my question to the people, the people I am friends with on my Facebook page. The consensus was to wear them with no socks or with nylons. One of my friends suggested that if I wear them sans socks I should put pantyliners inside the shoes to help wick away any moisture. Uhhh, can you say BRILLIANT?

I had already found a couple of other uses for pantyliners throughout the years. But using them in shoes was awesome...and it works. Really works. The other uses that I have for pantyliners are (1) Spray a bit of perfume on them and put them in drawers or other hidden places around the house for an easy way to keep those areas smelling nice. You can keep the back of them on or peel it off and stick it to shelf. (Caution, be careful what you stick it to as it may peel off paint. And try explaining that one to your spouse. "Uh, honey...we need to repaint this shelf because I stuck a pantyliner to it.") (2) Use them as if they were cotton. For example, I have cut them into thirds and used them to remove nail polish or put astringent as party of my morning routine.

The alternate uses for pantyliners started me thinking about what other people use in their house in a pinch, or just other tips they have figured out. Because of that, I am now on a mission to get tips from other people on what secretes they know that I do not.

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