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Porter
Art of Style

How I pack by Sofia Sanchez de Betak

From trekking through Patagonia to exploring the jungles of Myanmar, fashion consultant-turned-designer Sofia Sanchez de Betak is a seasoned traveler with a sense of adventure. Her top tip for faultless vacation style? Don’t overthink it…

Fashion

KEEP IT SIMPLE

“I’m very disorganised when it comes to packing – which is particularly ironic as I travel constantly for work. I don’t have a system but I never, ever over-pack. I don’t care about putting together ‘looks’ for my vacations. I’d rather get out and start exploring as soon as I can, which is why I always pack easy pieces, such as dresses, and jeans that I can mix and match, plus a couple of pairs of shoes that work for every occasion – like ankle boots and chic leather sandals. I love LouLou Studio for cashmere sweaters, LemLem for swimwear, Perfect Moment for ski gear and Isabel Marant for everything else. I’m lucky in the sense that I’ve designed pieces that cater to any gaps in my closet, so I can also just stuff my latest collection into my suitcase and I’m usually good to go. Honestly, the important thing is to be respectful of the sartorial customs of the country and sites you’re visiting.”

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PARE IT BACK

“I don’t have an in-flight beauty routine. I’m a mother, so when I’m on a long-haul flight with a baby in tow I’m just in survival mode. However, my one indulgence is a bottle of lavender oil – it relaxes me and my daughter when we fly. And I have fresh ginger for tea, which helps me battle jet lag. I also always make sure to have headphones handy – that way, if I don’t have time to open a magazine, I can at least listen to an audio book or podcast. Even when I’m at home I don’t have much of a beauty regimen; I barely wear makeup. The few products I swear by are Rodin face oils and hand cream and Dr. Barbara Sturm lip balm.”

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ACCESSORIZE LIBERALLY

“No matter where I’m vacationing, I always come back with new trinkets and fall in love with the local jewelry. I actually first found my engagement ring in Istanbul’s Grand Bazaar, on a trip with my then-boyfriend, now-husband. A few years later, when he was looking to propose, he managed to track it down and surprise me. That thoughtfulness and effort is one of the reasons I said yes!”

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BROADEN THEIR HORIZONS

“Traveling with a child is really challenging – you have to be so much more cautious – but it’s also so thrilling as you see the world through fresh eyes. A lot of people say that my husband and I are crazy to take our daughter on far-flung adventures, but I think it’s important to expose her to different places, environments and challenges. She’s only two and she has already been to more than 20 countries. However, traveling with a child means you do have to bring way more in terms of clothing (for them) and toys. We always make sure to donate these pieces to the local communities; it’s not that I think they are any better than what is made locally, but if they can bring another child joy then I am happy to leave them behind. I believe in handing things down, especially with clothing. It feels much better to give a piece a second life than leave it hanging in your closet.”

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BE INSPIRED

“My travels inform all my designs. From stunning landscapes to local markets and architectural details, I soak up every detail and try to translate them into beautiful but wearable pieces. In the past, I would buy clothes on my trips that made total sense in that context, but once I got them back home, I’d realise the fabric or cut just didn’t work for me. My brand Chufy was born from my desire to create pieces full of wanderlust, but that were also versatile enough to work in any location, from sandy beaches to city streets. I want women to be able to slip on my pieces anywhere in the world and feel like they’re still on vacation.”

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Sofia Sanchez De Betak is not associated with NET-A-PORTER and do not endorse it or the products shown