Let's talk fabrics for business travel

We’ve all been there. You get out of the plane, check into the hotel and obviously the first thing you do is unpack to hang your clothes you’ll need for this very important meeting you have. You realise your shirts and dresses look more like they’ve never been ironed or steamed and you find out there is no iron and ironing board in your hotel room due to safety regulations (yes, this is a thing now in Europe). Obviously, you can get the hotel to iron your clothes. However, we made some bad experiences with that (timing is the problem number one!), no matter how luxurious the hotel is. Hence, we put together our guide to pick the right fabrics for you and show you the best hacks to get your outfits ready in time.

 

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Natural fabrics

Type

Risk of wrinkles

Best for

Silk

· Hot and humid conditions (sweat in   general de-wrinkles silk again)

· Find some tops and blouses to wear   underneath your blazer and jacket

 

Viscose


· Perfect for every weather, except cold

· Comfortable and often stretchy

 

Rayon


· Cooling effect, hence perfect for summer

· You’ll find lots of tops, dresses and   cardigans in rayon

 

Cotton


· In general, a heavier material than rayon .   or viscose

· Nice to wear very thin one (many organic   cotton fabrics are), but sweat stains are   highly visible

Linen

 



· It’s summer’s darling, but bear in mind it   wrinkles like crazy

· Choose when you don’t have to travel or   make sure you can get it ironed. Still,   sitting in a meeting for an hour won’t help,   just saying

· Cooling effect when worn loose. Might   consider it for Asian countries or the   Mediterranean in summer

Cashmere

· Basically, the perfect fabric for your work   travel. In cold weather, cashmere keeps   you perfectly warm and in warm weather,   it has a cooling effect. Yes, you can wear   cashmere in summer. Opt for some   lightweight tops

Wool

· Warm, elegant and almost wrinkle-free

· Comfortable to wear all day

· Go for monochrome colours. Colourful   wool often looks too casual

 

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Top hacks

  1. Put your shower to use

Turn on the water as hot as possible. Shut the bathroom door and window. Hang your piece of clothing on a hanger somewhere in the shower, but away from the splashing water. Close the shower cabin/curtain. Wait for 15min and then check back in. The hot water steam is the perfect natural steamer for your clothes.

  1. Wear colourful patterns in summer

Sounds funny? Well, you will find out that wrinkles are much more visible on monochrome colours. Planning to wear linen dresses in summer? Go for the colourful patterns and combine with a monochrome blazer/cardigan.

  1. Tweed is king

Pick an elegant tweed jacket instead of a blazer. Tweed does not wrinkle and you can pair it to trousers, skirts, dresses and jeans. A multi-functional masterpiece.

  1. Embrace knitwear in winter

Go for a two-piece and choose from those fantastic knitwear ensembles we are seeing everywhere this season. Classy, elegant and they keep you warm. Or how about a merino wool dress?

  1. Stretch is everything

Make sure your trousers have stretch added to whatever material you are going for. It will make sitting and travelling so much more comfortable. Don’t forget tight trousers or skirts are bad for blood circulation (thinking long-haul flights and long office days).

  1. Mix your fabrics

In love with cotton clothing because it simply is so comfortable? Make sure you’ll find a cotton-viscose mix. Often, these materials hardly wrinkle and make for a nice feel on your skin.

  1. Wool is not wool

As crazy as this one sounds, make sure what fabric mix your beautiful knitwear is made of. Often, knitwear is made of a wool-mix and some polyester or acrylic fabrics. Obviously, it’s all your choice to make, but bear in mind that you might be in for a static handshake.  

  1. Pack it right

In general, if you pack fabrics that are likely to wrinkle, try to avoid to fold them too often. What you can also do if space is no issue, is to wrap your silk clothes with a small towel (not the thin cotton beach towels!). The towel fabric is a natural puffer for the silk. Put the linen clothes on the bottom of your suitcase and try to lay them flat out as much as possible. Make sure your clothes are fixed and are not spinning around.

  1. So, you got an iron

Make sure to check the settings on the iron before you start. Do not use the sprinkler and/or steamer and do not press on silk, viscose or rayon. You can steam silk with an iron, but make sure it’s light steam (splashes can cause water stains on silk) and keep a distance to the fabric. Linen and cotton need the strongest setting.

  1. The funny smells

Natural materials often do not smell that bad even if you sat next to the kitchen. In case they do, put them on a hanger, open the window and hang them on the window handle over night. If you have a balcony, use that one, but make sure no animals can hop onto it and clip them to the chairs if the wind gets stronger (yes, business trips can take you to the funniest places on earth;)).

 

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