Wondering how to pack without creasing your clothes? This handy Antler guide will keep your luggage free from wrinkles as you prep for your next getaway.
LESS IS MORE
Firstly, resist the temptation to stuff as much as possible into your luggage; your wardrobe will suffer if you do. To avoid overpacking, make a checklist of what you need before you leave and pack accordingly. Or, use our nifty online packing tool, which factors in your destination, the duration of your stay and your planned activities to generate a tailor-made packing list (and even predict the local weather). As our recent packing survey has shown, you can probably bring fewer T-shirts, socks and pants than you think – but don’t forget your toothbrush.
To maximise space, reach for Antler’s handy travel accessories, such as our smart packing cubes. Available as a set of four, these clever cubes have a mesh lid so you can see at a glance what’s inside, plus compression zips to fit more in. On arrival, there’s no need to unpack – simply lift the packing cubes out of your case and drop them into the hotel drawer. These cubes also make the perfect gift.
Linen is basically the wrinkled criminal of the fabric world. One-hundred percent cotton is another offender. Better materials to go for have a bit of elasticity and stretch: opt for synthetic materials such as lycra, nylon and polyester, which tend to travel better.
Smooth silks and satins are a luxurious option and then there’s knitwear, which can be folded without rumpled repercussions. If you prefer natural materials, opt for luscious bamboo items (we love Bam), cotton or wool. Denim with a bit of spandex is also a packing hero (go for at least 4 per cent Spandex to avoid creases). Cashmere also gets an honourable mention: although it will crease in transit, the creases will vanish if you hang cashmere pieces up, post-travel.
Antler’s high-tech patented fabric test…
To check the crease potential of any fabric, take a bit of the fabric in your hand, give it a good firm squeeze for at least 30 seconds and then release. If it’s creased, it’s a creaser; if it’s smooth, it’s a keeper.
ROCK ’N’ ROLL
Marie Kondo is right: rolling is the way forward, especially when it comes to wrinkle-free packing. Swap folding for rolling and benefit from smugness on arrival when you reveal crease-free clothes.
Roll lighter items around something else (an Antler wash bag or brolly or shoes, perhaps?) and place the less-likely-to-wrinkle items in the middle of the case, with the more wrinkly items on the outside. This gives them a larger surface area, meaning less rumple risk. Items that seem to resist rolling should be folded along the seams to minimise creases. This is known as the bundle method: see below…
THE BUNDLE METHOD
Roll your hardier items – jeans, jumpers, jackets – first, and then roll more delicate items (suit jackets, shirts, tailoring) around the outside.
HOW TO PACK: JEANS/TROUSERS
Get rolling. To roll trousers, place them on a flat surface. Fold them, placing one leg over the other through the middle, near the crotch, to fold them perfectly in half. Then, using your fingers, roll from the waist until you get to the cuffs. As you roll, keep smoothing out the fabric with your hands to achieve a crease-free result. If it’s jeans you’re rolling, fold one leg over the other and roll from the ankle to the waistline. N.B. Smarter, more tailored trousers are likely to benefit from folding.
HOW TO PACK: SHIRTS
To neatly pack a T-shirt, lie it flat on a smooth surface and run your hands along it to remove any sneaky wrinkles. Fold it vertically, so the two sleeves match. Next, fold the sleeves over so you have a long rectangle. Then roll it and put it in your suitcase. If you’re taking a smarter shirt, fold the sleeves over on the back, then fold the shirt in half to form a rectangle. Roll the rectangle from the bottom to the top. Bingo.
HOW TO PACK: DRESSY ITEMS
For your delicate fabrics, dresses, suit trousers, or skirts, layer and overlap. Place the bottom half of the garment flat into the suitcase, then layer other clothing on top, including your folded knits and rolled jeans. This way, those items act as a helpful cushion for the other half of the garment. Once everything is in, fold the top half of the precious item down.
JOIN THE FOLD
If you’re a dedicated folder, reach for some tissue paper. Slide pieces of tissue paper between your different items, reducing the friction that causes accursed wrinkles in the first place. You could also place beloved items in dry-cleaning bags.
IT’S A SHOE IN
Don’t let your shoes languish unused at the bottom of the case. Stuff socks and underwear in them to maximise storage space and place them in your case early on, so you can pack around them, rather than trying to violently wedge them in when your case is about to burst.
WRINKLES BE GONE!
Ok, so the worst has happened. You’ve arrived, unpacked and your luggage is looking somewhat… haggard. Reverse the effects of time/transit with these easy steps:
- Hang clothes ASAP!
- Reach for a travel steamer or iron.
- Hang clothes in the bathroom while you enjoy a long, hot, steamy shower (solo or otherwise).
- Dampen wrinkles with water, smooth the fabric flat, then hang the items up.
- If you’ve got access to a dryer, bung your items in for 10 or 15 minutes with a small, damp towel.