Excess expat baggage!

Friday, February 05, 2016

Hey Squaddies!

As an expat who has lived in Kuwait for two years and arrived with only 7 pairs of shoes and 3 luggage bags, how is it that now, two years on and relocating to another country I am faced with having 11 suitcases and no idea how much I had accumulated until it was time to leave the country! (A lot of my ex-colleagues who have worked in fashion and retail can definitely relate to this!) 

It was shortly after I asked a few of my friends, including Tina how many shoes they owned that I acknowledged the fact that I have managed to accumulate just over 50 pairs (similar to Tina’s number too haha..) during my time in Kuwait, not mentioning my old stash back home! The realisation then hit me that I was going to have to relocate all of them with me, that is when I figured I had a shoe problem!

Where to start?

After speaking to several friends, they all advised me that I should start having a seasonal clear-out every 6 months. The last time I had attempted something like that was 2 years ago! Part of the reason I have so many clothes and shoes is because I am a vintage lover and I NEVER throw out any of my old clothes. Being an 80’s child, I am always waiting for old trends to come back in style, sometimes this theory pays off and it is worth the wait! Seeing as it’s my second time being an expat (I lived in NY in 2005) there are certain habits (like, erm…shopping) I never considered that would come back to haunt me! And it didn’t help that I worked in a luxury fashion office (check my blog here). It was simple; in Kuwait I could wear lightweight clothing all the time and open toe shoes (unlike back home in cold and rainy London city) so I lived in the moment! Let’s not even talk about how many beauty products I have accumulated! Below are some of my essentials…


I had two big bags, which were full of a mixed array of clothes that I hadn’t worn in such a long time. Though it pained me to say goodbye I just had to! Luckily one of my good friends offered to ‘look after’ the unwanted clothes for me so I was glad that they went to a good home! I also got rid of any shoes that had hurt any part of my foot ever, revenge is sweet!


How will I relocate and manage to keep a sustained wardrobe?! Well we all know that I still have the 11 suitcase issue after the clearout phase (insert oops face here). My friend had also suggested to try out only sticking to certain colours such as grey, black and white and remove two of the same style. The inner hippy in me would never allow that! So I decided that instead of this I would have a one-in-one out policy as you all may have seen on our Instagram I had a recent Topshop sale haul which forced me to have a wardrobe playoff against my owned styles! Let’s just say this was so not me but now that it is something I have started, I now have some hope for a more streamlined expat wardrobe future!


Every cloud has a silver lining! As some of you would have read Tina’s blog (linked here) you would have realized that she is somewhat of a packing whizz. I have gotten rid of a few more suitcases worth so that’s a plus point. Tina suggested to roll my luggage instead of fold it. Thanks to her advice I was left with a reduced amount of 7 suitcases and a bright new future awaiting me in elsewhere the Middle East. Stay tuned to find out where I am relocating to in my next blog! Goodbye Kuwait, farewell my old treasured wardrobe!

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