Diane Von Furstenberg could read the phone book out loud and make it seductive. Her accent immediately lends sophistication to whatever she’s talking about, and what makes the above video so great is that you’re expecting her sultry voice to suggest travel extravagances, yet her advice is anything but. She is, after all, the woman who revolutionized the wrap dress, the easy-to-wear, day-to-evening, jersey problem-solver that changed how women dressed in the 1970s. “Simplicity and sexiness, that’s what people want. At a price that’s not outrageous.” Diane Von Furstenberg is nothing if not practical.
I am not advocating that you run out and get a DVF dress for your next holiday—although they’re very comfortable, especially on the plane, they don’t wrinkle, and they’re versatile—but I do agree with her when she says that if you can figure out your suitcase, you can figure out your life. What do you really need anyway? Who are you, truly? Not just Vacation You, but the Real You? These are important questions to ask, not just when you’re deciding what to toss into your suitcase.
When I pack, I keep it very simple, very light and mostly monochromatic. For yoga, I bring one pair of yoga pants which double as pyjamas, a few shabby tops (thanks, Laurence!), and sometimes a yoga mat. For the rest, I make piles of my favorite clothes, and arrange them in different combinations to make sure everything works together. Moreover, I’m as particular about what I pack as how I pack it, and begin the process a few days before departure to ensure I won’t forget anything. I even make sure my travel outfit is natty because you never know when you might get selected for an upgrade!
In life, it’s the same. I stick to what makes me feel most like Me, and I don’t fall easily for passing fads or cool-for-one-second fashions. I’ve gotten to the point where I am One with my sartorial Dharma Code, and it doesn’t waver whether I’m at home or someplace else.
The other day after a yoga class, a student remarked that I was leaving the studio in regular clothes—not yoga clothes—and that I was, in a way, in disguise. I laughed and joked that I was a superhero, but then I thought, “Wait a minute. Which outfit is the disguise? The yoga clothes or the ones I put on after class?” If yoga is the process of becoming more and more ourselves—of being curious about who and what we are, and travelling inside to discover it—then the clothes we choose are yoga, too. And if we can figure out our costumes, we can figure out our lives ;)