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Annette Nov 14th, 2000 09:00 AM

Your experience w/wrinkle-free travel clothes or Travelsmith catalog?
Fodors forum has lead me buy the most comfortable shoes I remember walking in: a pair of simple black lace-up Clarke's (picked up on extreme discount at an outlet store for $20.00, tax included - had to get that in) Also, Elaine's great Venice travel notes pointed me to the streetwise map series. This is one of the best maps I've come across, and I'll be using one in three weeks in Amsterdam when my 11 year old daughter and I leave on our winter adventure break. <BR> <BR>Now, I'm wondering about wrinkle-free clothes, specifically a simple blouse and pants or perhaps a jacket and pants set. Penney's sells what looks like the same twill pants as Travelsmith for $30.00 less. Any thoughts? Again, the upscale caltalogs sell wrinkle free blouses which can be had for less than $20.00 from Penney's. My husband sang "nerd alert" when I showed him the Penney's page - me, I'm not so sure. <BR> <BR>Forgive me if this sounds inane, perhaps it is. I know we have had flame-fests over clothes before: that is certainly not my intent. Just wondering if any girls have some smart tips on fabrics, brands and good value sources for Winter European City daytime travel clothes. Also wondering if anyone has ordered from Travelsmith. <BR> <BR>

*** Nov 14th, 2000 09:44 AM

I have placed three orders with TravelSmith and three times I have returned 100% of the order. Too cheap/cheesey looking. Poor workmanship. Screams "TOURIST." <BR> <BR>I ended up packing crewneck cotton sweaters from Macy's (solid color, on sale plus 15% off coupon!), stretch cotton slacks and shirts from Gap. Thus, I looked like myself while I was travelling and I can wear the clothes at home, too. <BR> <BR>Advise: Buy from a street vendor the fake version of whatever the "hippest" fashion statement is. In Paris, everyone was wearing Pashminas (shawls). I bought a fake one from a street vendor for $15 the first day. For the rest of my trip, I felt like a true Parisian!

Judy Nov 14th, 2000 09:47 AM

Hello Annette, Yes indeed, I have ordered from Travelsmith,(my husband wishes I wouldn't); quite a few things actually. Their cropped knit pants are the most comfortable I own, and look great too! In fact, I will be ordering their moleskin jeans for my next trip to London..I don't know about Penney's, but I like Talbot's stuff big time, and they are well made too...not as inexpensive, but good value. For London in Feb. I will bring just one color pants-black:5 pair(various kinds: jeans, knit, cords...2 good wool blazers(wool doesn't wrinkle as easily) lots of funnel neck sweaters a long rain coat with zip-out lining and black Areosole shoes-classic black chunky shoes,,,and one lovely silk blose to wear to the theater....FYI, Judy

herself Nov 14th, 2000 09:54 AM

There are some things I have purchased at Travelsmith that I love. Kidney shaped black microfibre bag with a million inside pockets. (You need to be organized to use it, I'm not, therefore I can never find anything in the darn bag, but I still love it), a reversable short raincoat and, a pair of trousers for my husband that has an inside belt pocket for passport or other valuables. <BR>I purchased my wrinkle free poly/? travel clothes at Lord & Taylor during a sale. Long black skirt, black pants, beige pants and 5 tops. I do get sick of wearing them after a week. Polyester is just not as comfortable as cotton. But, it packs well, wears well, can be rinsed at night a dry and wrinkle free in the morning. Trick is to get 8 days wear in a carryon. <BR>Have fun.

Heather Nov 14th, 2000 10:08 AM

I ordered a plain black skirt and a silk cardigan from TravelSmith last year. Both arrived 2 days after we got back from the holiday to India for which I had ordered them - a total of 5 weeks from placing my order (albeit in the UK). Both articles were poorly made, with loose threads hanging off the cardigan, and very creased. They also looked terrible on. Needless to say, I returned them and have not ordered from the catalogue since. <BR> <BR>The Rohan range of travel clothes is well made and, according to reviews I have read, crease resistant. Also, our local outlet will finish trousers to measure, though that's not much use to you in the States. Prices are on a par with TravelSmith. <BR> <BR>Anyway, from my own limited experience, I would steer clear of TravelSmith and go for the cheaper option.

Mary Nov 14th, 2000 10:14 AM

Annette: <BR>I like Penney's clothes. They are fashionable and relatively cheap. Especially when they have a sale. I think TravelSmith is very overpriced. I bought twill slacks from them, returned them and went shopping in the local JC Penney. I also like clothes from Lerner or Dress Barn for styles and prices comparable to JCP. Have fun!

Judy Nov 14th, 2000 10:54 AM

Annette, I quickly posted(as I was heading out to Talbot's) and did not mention my favorite mail-order: Land's End,,,,hands down, best service, good sales and well made clothes. Today, in fact, I just ordered their stretch cords,knit pants and 3/4 sleeve cotton turtleneck sweater. My daughter had a problem with 2 articles wearing poorly after 2 years, she sent them back and they gave her a full refund as a gift certificate. Needless to say, she is a Lands End fan, big time! FYI, Judy

Liz Nov 14th, 2000 11:21 AM

Another vote for Lands End. They have a line called necessary knits (I think that's it), a cotton/rayon/lycra blend that is great for travel and feels good to this cotton person.

Janice Nov 14th, 2000 11:40 AM

I'm a real catalog hog - I do virtually all my clothes shopping online - and I have to echo the praise of Lands' End. I'd like to also suggest L.L.Bean - they have a small selection of clothing specifically for travel, and they have just about the best guarantee going - I've returned things to them for repair and they just plain replace things - no hesitation and no questions. Eddie Bauer also has some good things for travel. With all of these other options available, I can't warmly recommend Travelsmith - too expensive and not good quality. Best thing to do is make sure you order far in advance so you have a chance to receive your items and "test drive" them - never travel with brand new clothes (or heaven forbid shoes!)

x Nov 14th, 2000 11:47 AM

Do any of your favorite travel clothes come in plus sizes?

wonderingabout trousers Nov 14th, 2000 04:33 PM

Wondering whether anyone can tell me what type of trousers women are wearing in European cities. Would they be straight legged or slightly flared?

nickie Nov 14th, 2000 10:04 PM

The microfiber shoulder bag that herself mentioned above is fabulous - great for stuffing things into it for the plane ride, and also handy for souveneirs, maps, etc - the medium sized one (I guess they call it large) is just right (their large is more like a backpack). However, I prefer to get travel clothes from Coldwater Creek, which has some really pretty, travel clothes. Pricey, but they last forever, because they're good quality. For me, a little black dress was a must, because the European women do tend to dress up for dinner in the nice restaurants, the opera, etc.

Barb Nov 14th, 2000 10:32 PM

Another vote for Land's End! And to answer someone's question, yes they have an extensive selection of plus size clothing (petites, too). I went to the Travelsmith outlet in Berkeley, all set to get one of those nice black travel dresses they always advertise. They were ugly, sack-like, ill fitting and the material felt weird. Although I did buy a lightweight hooded jacket (which I like a lot)with a matching shoulder bag, I was disappointed in the clothing and would not order from their catalog. In France I used a rayon blend black skirt and matching cardigan type jacket from Lands End (hand washable) and was very happy with the quality and versatility. Also took along a couple of Lands End t-shirts. All top quality and reasonably priced. Fast service, too. I generally receive orders within 5 days.By the way, I used the Fodors site as a resource for walking shoes and am extremely happy with my black lace up Eccos. I could walk all day and night in those shoes!

elvira Nov 15th, 2000 08:55 AM

Thank you Thank you Thank you. <BR> <BR>I get the TravelSmith catalogs, look at the clothes - then the prices - and decide against buying anything...then I feel stupid for being such a cheapskate and berate myself "why are you quibbling over $50 if it works?". Now I can ipskay the atalogcay with no guilt. Will check out JCP for travel stuff, and will take another look at the Coldwater Creek catalog. <BR> <BR>Has anyone bought clothing (or anything, for that matter) from Magellan's Travel Supply?

AC Nov 15th, 2000 09:07 AM

Hi: <BR>I like Magellan. They have some unigue items and their prices are not outrageous. Good Quality and a liberal return policy.

Shanna Nov 15th, 2000 09:20 AM

My vote for Magellan's. I've ordered several items and found their prices reasonable and delivery quick. The best with Magellan's are their customer service personnel - knowledgeable, helpful, and personable travellers. Makes ya just want to chat. <BR> <BR>BTW - one year a friend and I took a trip to Italy in January. We heard that Venice was particularly wet so at the last minute we ordered from Vermont Country Store catalog black rubber slipovers for our shoes. We got them overnight mail in time for the trip, never looked at them until we arrived in Italy. Whether my mistake or theirs - They sent the men's size - we looked like a couple of bozos, literally, so we gave them to two fellas travelling with our group. We did have a good laugh, and appreciated the Vermont Country Store's effort. Has anyone ever tried their cotton/wool tights? They seem expensive but might be worth it, especially for winter travel. Good thread, I'm taking notes!

elaine Nov 15th, 2000 09:24 AM

I have bought lots of items from Magellans, I think they are wonderful, but I haven't bought clothes. The one <BR>wrinkle-free microfiber or polyester or nylon item that I think everyone needs is a raincoat/rain jacket. <BR>Price range at various catalogs is <BR>$50-$100 approx. The primary feature is that they run large so that you can layer underneath, but they don't have linings. They weigh ounces each. You can roll them into a ball and stuff them in a corner of a totebag or suitcase, some even come with their own pouches. <BR>Yet when you unroll them, because they are made of crinkly fabric, they don't show wrinkles. I use mine in every season except winter when I need more warmth. <BR>I've just ordered one as a gift from <BR>, haven't actually seen it yet. <BR>

Anna Nov 16th, 2000 05:05 AM

I like my black travel dress from Travelsmith, I would highly recommend the dress. I have returned other things I ordered from them, they just didn't look good on. But that is the chance you take ordering from a catalog.

Adele Nov 16th, 2000 06:47 AM

Message: Travel Dress <BR> <BR>I was considering the travel dress from the Travelsmith catalog as well, when I noticed that LLBean offers the same type of dress in a few styles (mock turtleneck, short sleeves, longsleeves, long and short). I decided to order it from LLBean so I could use their card and save on postage. It's a great three-season dress, never wrinkles and looks great on its own or with a sweater or scarf. In the warm weather it looks good with sandals and when it's coller out I wear it with tights and funky shoes. <BR> <BR>Very versatile. I think of it as a workhorse version of the little black dress. <BR> <BR>

judy Nov 16th, 2000 08:00 AM

Adele, which style did you get from LL bean?

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