Camp clothes aren’t really a separate category in my personal wardrobe. Mostly because I don’t spend the majority of my time at camp. When it’s time to head to the woods, I pull a little bit from everywhere. An everyday t-shirt or two makes its way into the bag. A few things that might be otherwise described as activewear come along too. A few cozy essentials that might best fall under the category of loungewear. A super simple dress or two in case we decide to reenter civilization.
If ever there was a time to embrace the concept of a minimalist wardrobe, a week or so in the woods is probably it. Even when you’re car camping, and have a little bit of extra room in the trunk, it’s nice to have a super simple wardrobe that means your bag won’t get too unruly after a week or two on the road. Since we’ll have a rental car with us, we’re packing two duffle bags that we can unzip easily and rifle through without too much mess-making.
Mostly, I try to keep the things in my camp bag limited to what’s comfortable, cozy, and convenient. Arguably good rules of thumb for everyday. For a week or two in the woods, especially, its nice to have clothes that pull their weight and do a little bit of extra work for you. I took advantage of Patagonia’s summer sale to snag two hard-working tank tops that I’ve had my eye one. When you’re only packing two tank tops, making them ones that come with built-in bras and moisture-wicking fabrics helps keep the number low. If they get stinky or sweaty, I can give them a quick wash with camp soap and hang them to dry over night. Likewise, I’ve decided to bring along just one pair of quick-drying shorts that I can wash in the evening and hang to dry overnight if need be. For cool Maine mornings and evenings, I’ve got leggings and warm pairs of woolly socks ready to go. My trustiest fleece sweaters made the cut, too. I’ve had both of them for years and years and they’re honestly as good as new and as warm and versatile as ever.
We won’t be going on any truly intense hikes during this trip, but we definitely plan to be out and about and generally getting a little dirty. The perfect excuse to rely on the old-school comfort of a new pair of sandals that can get wet, take for a hike up dusty trail without too much trouble, and that look dy-no-mite paired with socks. #camplife. My last pair of camp sandals finally bit the dust years ago, and James lost the sole on his last pair during a hike along the Oregon coast, so we both decided this trip merited replacement pairs. Don’t worry: I got silver and he got black, so we’re not exactly matching.
For the curious, here’s what’s going into my bag (specifics where possible!):
+ 2 pairs of shorts (these + cutoffs).
+ 2 breathable tank tops w/ built-in bras (this + this).
+ 3 t-shirts (these).
+ 1 pair of leggings (similar).
+ 2 fleece sweaters (this + this plus a few years).
+ 1 button-up (this)
+ 1 pair of jeans (similar)
+ 2 simple dresses (this + this).
+ 15 pairs of underwear (of all (solids and) stripes).
+ 2 bras (this + one sports bra).
+ 2 pairs of camp socks (similar).
+ 1 pair of sandals (these).
+ 1 bandana (this).
+ 1 beanie (older than the hills).
+ 1 pair of jams (this + this).
+ 1 bathing suit.
Otherwise, winging it! What are your camping wardobe must-haves?
For more minimalist wardrobe posts, head HERE.