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Clothing tips for winter travel to Rome & Venice--what I took with

Clothing tips for winter travel to Rome & Venice--what I took with

Jan 13th, 2008, 11:53 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2003
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Clothing tips for winter travel to Rome & Venice--what I took with

We are just back from 5 nights in Venice and 8 in Rome. I know clothing is always an issue for females, so thought I'd give some feedback on what I took and how it worked out. Temps in Venice ranged from freezing with snow in the air to about 50. Temps in Rome were mid 40s to upper 50s.

3 pairs of slacks--only wore 2.
1 lightweight cashmere turtleneck--wore almost every day in Venice.
1 lightweight shawl collared cashmere sweater--used quite a bit.
1 cashmere V necked sweater--never wore.
3 silk crewneck sweaters--used these nearly every day in Rome.
1 microfiber type reversible zip-up turtleneck height vest--great for layering in Rome.
1 wool velour type low sweater vest--could have lived without.
1 zip up fleece that looks dressier than most--used every day in Venice under my coat.
1 heavier weight sweater cardigan/jacket--too hot. Never wore.
1 wool scarf & several silk scarves-used these primarily for warmth rather than as an accessory.
1 puffy fiberfilled silk coat that I wear at home when it is 40-50. Used primarily in Venice.
1 shell full-length raincoat with a bottom that zips off so it becomes a jacket--wore this nearly every day in Rome, usually with the bottom zipped off and a layer under it.
1 lighter weight hat & 1 wool beret--used both in Venice.
Gloves--needed in Venice
Silk longjohns--only used one night (under my pjs) in Venice when I was cold inour apartment.
1 pair ankle high leather boots, thinly lined with Gore-tex--was glad to have & wore a lot.
1 pair of Naot shoes-good thick soles for Romes bumpy cobblestone streeets.

Hope this helps becaue I know people always wonder about what to pack. I guess i should mention we went casually and didn't do anything fancy or upscale.
julies is offline  
Jan 19th, 2008, 06:11 AM
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ttt for other winter packers
julies is offline  
Jan 19th, 2008, 06:42 AM
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Thanks for the list.
It's very similar to mine for cold weather trips! I've long been an advocate for cashmesre sweaters; they are so warm yet lightweight-perfect for packing. I've found that I can fit that amount in a 22" roll-aboard.

On my last cold weather trip (to Vienna, Prague and Budapest) I went with a knee length wool coat and left the vests at home. I find that my arms get too cold with vests and then I have to wear a coat anyway.
I usually end up with one more pair of pants too, including 1 pair of jeans. I never wore pair #4, dressy, lined black wool on my last trip but I did wear the jeans and the other two.

Care to share your specific shoe choices? I'm currently on the lookout for the perfect pair of brown ankle boots for walking.
Kristina is offline  
Jan 19th, 2008, 06:57 AM
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Just came back on the 11th, very good packing advice.
Nlingenfel is offline  
Jan 19th, 2008, 07:25 AM
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Hi julies

If I recall your trip planning, several of us recommended against bringing the turtleneck. Now aren't you glad you didn't listen to us? Sometimes you just never know what will work out best. In the cold weather, however, I can see how a nice soft cashmere turtleneck would be comfortable and certainly keep the neck warm!

Now, about this zip-off raincoat. Do you know of a website that has one? I'd be interested to know what it looks like, the length, etc. Sometimes it would be nice to have something longer than jacket length.

swisshiker is offline  
Jan 19th, 2008, 07:59 AM
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Shoes/boots--Mine are Stonefly. I really like the brand and have several pairs of their shoes, sandals and boots. They are Italian and have some sort of liquid in the soles for extra cushioning. I never pay full price for them and have frequently bought them at www.sierratradingppost.com.

Raincoat with zip off bottom--I bought mine a number of years ago from www.travelsmith.com. It has been a good coat. Frankly, though, quality of other things I have bought from them hasn't been the greatest. For example, my husband like trousers for travel with secure pockets--zippered or extra buttons. We found that their pants didn't hold up very well, and we won't be buying them again.
julies is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2008, 05:38 AM
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Thanks for this post, it's beautifully specific.
I'm going to Rome in March and am already fretting about what to bring. It sounds like your list would be good but fewer sweaters and a light jacket instead of the puffy coat for warm days would be useful.
nutjobz is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2008, 05:52 AM
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This was a brilliant post - and it is great that you are so bold in telling us what you took and didn't wear!

I am going on a transatlantic cruise in March and it is a big band dance cruise so I will have ball gowns taking up space, but I know i have to have a number of 'warmer' layering garments for exploring the cities and promenade walks. your list is very helpful.
wanderlust5 is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2008, 05:59 AM
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That's a good list -- I was wondering what kind of top is the zip-up fleece you said you wore almost every day in Venice? Is that a vest or more a sweater or jacket-type thing? It seems a lot if you wore that over a cashmere sweater and then a coat on top of that if the temps were in the 40s to 50s, but I guess not if it were freezing. Do you remember the brand?

I just wondered as I've been looking for a nice "fleece" vest for layering, but haven't found any that I thought looked very nice, the quality was always pretty casual or cheap for the material.
Christina is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2008, 06:31 AM
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Nice list, Julies, thanks for writing it up for us with your comments.

Trick about the pieces you did and did not wear is, could you have figured it out at home which ones were the winners & losers? I know that's always my problem.

Christina, I use a fleece vest (Columbia) when I travel. It is very sporty/casual, but when it's under your winter coat as an extra layer you only see the collar anyway. It squashes nicely into a ziplock bag so as not to take up much room in the luggage.

suze is offline  
Jan 23rd, 2008, 04:36 AM
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Christina--My fleece is a jacket type. I wear it unzipped indoors over a lightweight turtleneck at home in the winter, or if temps are around 60 outside I'll wear it as an outerwear layer over something else. It is an off brand. It looks dressier than most because of the way it is styled. It is a reddish/burgundy color with turned back black cuffs that are about 4". I'm not saying it is dressy by any means, but it is definitely a step or two above the typical zip up fleece as far as not looking too casual and outdoorsy. I picked it up at Marshalls or TJMaxx a year or two ago. Look around. I'm sure you'll find something that works.
julies is offline  
Jan 23rd, 2008, 11:32 AM
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thanks, to both on the fleece tips. I was looking for a vest, kind of. I did look at TJMaxx and they are really hit or miss where I live -- they didn't have much of anything in that category when I was there. I was hoping for something not quite as sporty as Columbia, etc, or with any logos. I have noticed there is a quality difference in some fleece as to materials, even though I guess it is all synthetic polyester or something. The expensive fleece vests definitely have a nicer feel to the touch than the cheap ones, and I think they wear better.
Christina is offline  

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