This summer, I participated in multiple study abroad programs, back to back. One was in Florence, Italy and the other was in Copenhagen, Denmark. When preparing for these programs, I had to pack clothing for both countries and climates. Italy in June is very warm and often sunny. Denmark in July can be warm some days, cold others, and it rains almost daily. These conflicting climates required me to be very intentional when picking out the clothes I needed and make the most of the little space I had in my suitcase.

The key is layers. When packing for Italy, I wanted to choose items that I could wear a jacket or sweatshirt over in Denmark if needed. I packed some neutral tank tops and T-shirts. In Italy, few people wear shorts. The locals typically wear light pants or a flowy shirt or dress. I only packed one dress, since I knew it wouldn’t be very useful in Denmark, opting for more versatile clothing instead. I also packed one pair of shorts and some lightweight pants. Lastly, I included a pair of comfy sandals and cute sneakers (extra emphasis on comfort, as I did A LOT of walking in Italy).

For Denmark, I added my layers. I packed some sweaters/cardigans and sweatshirts that can be worn over a lot of things. I also included a few more pairs of pants that were a little heavier than the ones for Italy, like jeans. While I was in Denmark, I worked in a lab setting, so I made sure to have clothing that met the safety requirements for the lab. A rainjacket is an absolute must for Denmark, as it will rain for at least 5 minutes every day. The sneakers that I packed for Italy would also be useful in Denmark, then I included some regular tennis shoes for the lab. The whole time I was packing, I was considering the weather where I was going and what I would be doing. I packed things I knew would need first, then added cute items I wanted to fill the rest of the space in my suitcase.