We’re just back from a 4 day visit to Seattle last weekend where we visited our newly engaged son and his fiancé. They moved from LA to Seattle eight months ago and have become entirely smitten with Seattle and the Pacific Northwest. It was time for a trek up north to experience a little bit of their new life.
Rather than featuring a specific outfit in this post, I’m sharing a peek at our weekend visit to Seattle, some of the places we visited that aren’t on every tourist’s must-see list, and the several easy to wear pieces that worked for the casual activities and not entirely predictable temperatures. And … how I actually managed to pack in a carry-on suitcase for this trip (OMG!).
Seattle – Out and About
Our kids, Jordan and Nicolle, had a full itinerary planned for our visit. They’ve been discovering a lot of what Seattle has to offer as residents, and they were excited to share their favorite places with us. That was just perfect. Seattle is a popular tourist destination (way more touristy than I imagined), and the downtown area and famous landmarks were packed with people. Discovering some of its not-so-touristy gems was great.
What we did:
- Toured some of the iconic residential neighborhoods: West Seattle (where they live), Capitol Hill, Ballard, Queen Ann.
- Visited two beautiful, natural parks: Lincoln Park on the Puget Sound in West Seattle and Discovery Park (the location of the wedding proposal!).
- Enjoyed fun restaurants and delicious food and beverages: Cactus at Alki Beach, Old Stove Brewing at Pike Place, Terra Plata downtown (rooftop dining, fun vibe, and amazing food – a splurge restaurant), Sabine Cafe (casual Greek café in the Ballard neighborhood), Frankie & Jo’s Plant Based Ice Cream Shop (delicious), and Bakery Nouveau in West Seattle, pretty much down the street from their home – a fun and yummy pastry send-off. I’d recommend each of these eateries without hesitation.
- Pike Place Market – This was on my “to visit list.” I’d been to Pike Place before on my only previous visit to Seattle. It was a February winter visit, and, understandably, the tourist population was substantially less than during our July visit this time. We spent about five minutes at Pike Place Market, and that was enough. It was packed – kind of like San Francisco’s Fisherman’s Wharf at the height of summer tourist season. It’s a fun place to walk around when the human density isn’t so high, with artisan shops, food, farmers market, local souvenirs, etc. But not in July!
The best part of our Seattle visit was being able to hang out and spend a lot of time together. We stayed with them, giving us plenty of down time for leisurely visits.
Fitting It All in a Carry-on Bag
I’m not a minimalist when it comes to travel – if you’ve followed Dez & Dot for a while, you probably know that. It’s important to me to have outfit choices – how do I know what I’ll feel like wearing way in advance? It’s true, that I always bring more than I need in the clothing department, but I’m usually okay with that. This trip seemed to offer the perfect circumstances for trying to go carry-on since we were staying in a home where there was a washing machine (should one be needed), a hair dryer to borrow, and other home conveniences that I didn’t need to transport.
I have a beautiful weekender size bag from Tumi (bought it during a mega sale at their outlet store during the pre-Christmas sales a few years ago). Tumi is not a budget brand, but the sale put my purchase into the realm of doable. Plus, the lifetime warranty makes the expense a little easier to rationalize. The bag has amazing gliding wheels! That translates to: it can be a little on the heavy side and still be pretty easy to maneuver. Also, the carry-on tote I use is one of my favorite bags by Logan & Lenora (see my post about this bag) that’s roomy AND has a trolley sleeve (that’s a sleeve that slides over the suitcase’s long handle) so it securely sits on top of the suitcase while wheeling it through the airport. My recent method for a carrying on bags is to slide my purse into the Logan & Lenora tote so I have less things to carry. The tote also has a multitude of use options at the destination, including being a phenomenal beach or pool bag.
Here’s what I was able to fit in the suitcase and tote:
- 3 pairs of jeans
- 1 pair of shorts
- 1 summer dress
- 6 tops (that’s where I went a little crazy and didn’t use all of them)
- Exercise clothes – leggings, top, very lightweight jacket
- 2 camisoles – 1 nude and 1 black (I pretty much always were a cami under my top)
- 1 jeans jacket
- 1 polar fleece jacket to layer on (the mornings and evenings can be cool)
- Shoes: 2 pairs of slip on sneakers (1 black and 1 pink), 1 pair athletic shoes, 1 pair platform sandals, 2 pairs flat sandals (tan and black), 1 pair flip flops
- Cosmetics and makeup
- Camera (thought I’d use it for blog photos but ended up using the iPhone for convenience)
- Electronics: laptop, iPad, Kindle e-reader, iPhone
I’m not sure if that sounds like a lot to carry on (it does to me), but I made it work! I wore everything except some of the tops, and, sadly, I didn’t use my exercise wear (I’m giving myself a pass since it was vacation!)
Major thank you goes to Nicolle Rappe for being my on location photographer in Seattle!
Shop Sam Edelman Gala Sandals
I LOVE this two-strap slide sandal! I bought a pair (well, actually 3 pairs) just before our Seattle trip and was pleasantly surprised at how comfortable they are. Plus, they camouflage the slight bunion I have on my left foot (hate that). They are currently on sale – very affordable – too! (Click the sandal image to see details.) They come in several colors – I have them in black suede, black leather, and saddle. Also available in white and leopard print. A great summer sandal to add to your summer footwear wardrobe. (See photo below showing the sandals styled with a summer dress – also, wearing one of my favorite summer dress styles from Gorman Australia. The style isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but I love the fun tulip shape. I was introduced to this Australian brand by my daughter during our visit to Melbourne a year and a half ago.