Friday, May 30, 2008

Travel in style (and light) with Muji

Gone are the days when air travel was an enjoyable experience. With the advent of low-cost airlines and extra charges for checking in at the airport or checking in luggage, I am coming around to the idea that where possible I will only travel with carry-on luggage. I recently bought a lovely Samsonite wheeled case which meets the size requirements for cabin baggage and is also light enough that it doesn't take up half of the weight allowance while empty. I have used tote bags as carry-ons in the past, but if I do want to use the full 10kg weight allowance some airlines grant, a wheeled case is the only way to travel.

Once you have the right bag, the key to packing light is organisation, which is where the wonderful Muji comes in. A Japanese chain of lifestyle stores, Muji stocks a treasure trove of stationery, kitchen, household and travel goods.

Try the following to organise your clothing: nylon shoe cases for packing extra shoes, mesh garment bags are perfect for separating clothing and soft mesh laundry cases mean an end to packing your laundry in plastic shopping bags for the return journey.

Toiletries is where it can get complicated these days, with the ban on liquids or gels exceeding 100ml. Luckily Muji have a wide array of fliptop bottles, spray bottles, tubes and jars in a variety of sizes under 100ml - you merely need to fill them with your shampoo, shower gel and moisturiser, pack them in a ziplock bag or clear pouch and you're ready to go!

Happy travelling this summer!

Thursday, May 8, 2008

So, Lyndar tagged me a while back and I promptly forgot all about it, due to my lack of update-iness on the blog... oops!

Anyhow, I'm cheating slightly and going to describe six pretty, shiny and maybe even sparkly things that I'm loving right now, seeing as my little corner of the web-world is devoted more to things than to me.

* The sun, she is shining and my APC sunglasses have finally come out to play!

* Pretty, shiny and sparkly, my lips are adorned with MAC Euristocrats lipsticks in Milan Mode, London Life and Rue d'Bois these days

* It took me an age to get around to dropping them off to have rubber soles put on, but today I'll be picking up my cherry patent Pretty Ballerinas from the cobbler and I'll finally be able to wear them out this weekend!

* I recently added to my Pilgrim Charms collection with a heart-shaped locket, an antique key and a cute little duck - now my eye is on the multi-coloured hot-air balloon...

* Has the emergence of the sun prompted you to think about trips to the beach? If it has, you might want to hot-foot it to Brown Thomas or BT2, where they are selling this bright and cheery beach bag, designed exclusively for Fashion Targets Breast Cancer by none other than Diane Furstenburg. Priced at €45, all proceeds go to the Irish Cancer Society's Action Breast Cancer, so your money will be going to a good cause - surely a great excuse for another new bag, no?

* And finally, I'm not sure where it fits into the pretty, shiny or sparkly categories, but Isabel Allende has a new book out, The Sum of Our Days and it is a very enjoyable read. Following on from her memoir Paula, she writes about family life after the tragic death of her daughter. This is a moving and entertaining read and I'd recommend it whether or not you already know the author and her work.