Packing for Italy: Parker Dusseau Travel and Style Review
San Francisco cycling fixture, sneaker addict and fashion maven Byron Anson (@byron505) went to Italy. Unprompted, he wrote a story about what and how he packed. Unedited and unscripted.
Quality, versatility, and style are the criteria that I use when searching for new goods - whether is clothing, bike parts, electronics, etc.. If any one of these take a hit, I move on knowing that I can find something in its place worth spending time and money on.
Here is what I chose to bring on a 10 day honeymoon to Florence and Paris that involved everything from 50-85 degree weather in both wet and dry, morning runs, to day time on-foot exploration, and Michelin rated dining in the Palais-Royal: 2 running outfits (shorts/shirts), 3 tees (white/gray/black), 1 pair of khakis, 1 pair of PD all round charcoal shorts, and 1 PD linen/cotton work shirt.
In a world of price dictating quality, and an online market where we make our buying choices, we are losing out on that initial tactile touch impression. You know that feeling of when you pick something up and you think, "Wow. This feels like quality"? Yeah, that one of immediate impressiveness. Clothes are, first and foremost, made of material and that cornerstone is where Vaughn and team have made sure to only source the best. The Japanese organic linen cotton feels light to the touch and remains flexible through a range that I found comfortable on this trip from 50-80 degrees. In a quiver of Parker Dusseau shirts, I would rank this as the lightest, followed by five day wool being a solid medium weight, and the oxford work shirt feeling the heaviest, or most robust.
Quality also comes in another facet: fit. The shirts are tailored to a good form fit that hits a happy medium between looking like a 'movement restricting extreme slim cut' and 'boxy-one-size-fits-all'. The shirt just fits comfortable and contours a bit. The pattern on the back shows thoughtful taking in of the material around the body and the action back venting stays hidden like a secret weapon ready to be deployed when you need to hunch your arms forward (riding a bike, reaching high/low, crawling through catacombs, etc...) destroying any tugging that a standard button up would. The easiest way to describe this feature is that it remains tucked away and when I lunge my arms forward causing the back to stretch - I simply don't even notice the shirt. No more tightening of material across your upper back and shoulders.
Versatility. When deciding to pack for a 10 day trip using one backpack, I had to go with clothes that could be worn in multiple different ways. God forbid I decide to revisit honeymoon pictures and it looks like I've worn the same outfit. The organic linen/cotton shirt looks great dressed casually unbuttoned and buttoned up paired with the shorts/sneakers and also performs comfortably at home dressed up a little more with some pants/shoes.