Dressing chic while travelling, with celebrity stylist Ilaria Urbinati

Laura Dern, Bradley Cooper, Margot Robbie, Shailene Woodley, Ryan Reynolds… these are just some of Hollywood’s A-list actors who have worked with stylist to the stars, Ilaria Urbinati.

Here the LA-based fashion expert reveals her greatest insider tips to looking chic while on the road.

How would you describe your style?

Ragamuffin chic? [Laughs]

I’m sort of a tomboy in many respects, and I’m so busy dressing other people that I often can’t be bothered to over fuss on myself most of the time.

But I’m pretty 90s-style obsessed so it sort of works for me I think.

What’s your favourite outfit when flying?

Vince black leather leggings (the elastic waist band makes them more tolerable than jeans for a flight) with a cosy oversized sweater and some cute black sneakers.

I stay away from jackets because I don’t want to have to undress at security. Plus, wearing my bulkiest sweater saves room in the suitcase.

What are three must-have items every well-dressed woman should pack in her suitcase?

A good blazer can make any outfit work – it can even make a beach dress dinner appropriate.

A chic pair of flats. When you travel you need comfortable shoes so you can go explore or take leisurely strolls after dinner.

A cashmere sweater. No matter where you go there’s always a chance it might cool down in the evenings. A cashmere sweater thrown over anything (jeans, a pencil skirt, a dress, even beach pants or shorts ) will instantly make you look chic and put together.

What’s the most underrated fashion accessory for travellers?

A good pair of cocktail earrings – they can make any outfit (even jeans and a T-shirt) go from day to night and they take up no space in your luggage.

What’s the most useless thing fashion-conscious people pack?

Hats – they will get crushed in your suitcase and take up way too much room (the exception being knit beanies in the winter time).

You can purchase a cute big straw hat really cheaply at any tourist store, then toss it or give it away at the end of your trip.

I also think it’s silly to pack more than one pair of sunglasses. They can get crushed in your bag, are too easy to lose, and it’s just plain unnecessary. Just pick one pair that flatters your face and goes with all your outfits.

What’s the biggest mistake when packing clothes?

Packing too many shoes. They’re heavy and bulky and chances are you will wear the same shoes most of your trip.

I usually bring a cute sneaker and wear them on the plane. Then I pack a pair of ballet flats – they go with everything, chic up any outfit and are appropriate for any occasion – plus they are light and take up very little room. And then just one pair of neural heels that will work with any outfit.

That’s all you really need.

For winter I will usually replace the sneaker for a boot (and wear them on the plane). For a summer or beach trip I add a flat sandal or espadrille and sometimes will replace the heel for a summery wedge instead.

Any other cheeky tips you can share?

I always pack a little cloth bag with two separate sections with two zippers – one side for dirty laundry and one for clean underwear, socks, and bras.

If security goes thru my bags I don’t like them touching my undergarments, and it’s good to keep your dirty clothes separate from your clean ones.

When I return home I unzip and throw everything straight into the wash. I have a cute plaid one with the words “wash me” and “clean undies” embroidered on it.


For more fashion inspiration from Ilaria Urbinati, visit ilariaurbinati.net