Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Let The Packing Begin


Yesterday in the studio, I started the tedious process of packing for the Bead Cruise. It is quite the undertaking. I had the option to ship things in advance to the hotel where some other instructors are staying the night before disembarking. I decided I didn't want to make someone else responsible for making sure my materials make it to the ship, though I'm sure they would have been very happy to do it for me. I checked with my airline and the checked bag fee for my second bag is only $40. Heck! I would have paid at least that in shipping... so why not just pack it all and bring it myself?

Um, ya'd think jewelry supplies would be little and lite... not so, people. Not so.

My first attempt at packing yielded a 57lb suitcase with about half of the things I needed to bring. Basically, here is what I am attempting to pack:

* kits - for students and extras to sell at the evening Bead Bazaar (about 100 kits total)
* wire - several spools of various gauge copper for practice projects in class and extra silver wire for any oops in class. I also want to bring sets of colored wire for students to purchase at the Bead Bazaar.
* tools - mine and extras for students that forget any of the important ones (ex, extra coiling tools)... pliers, cutters, hammers, a bench block (I'm leaving home the bracelet mandrel, it's just too heavy). My lovely friend Lindsey made me custom tool bags for all my goodies! That's what the purple and white fabric is.
* display - I realize that I can't bring much for display, but I thought I should at least bring a piece of my swirly fabric for a table cloth.
* books - copies of Totally Twisted. As an author, of course I want to bring copies of my book for students to purchase. I planned to bring 20 copies, but quickly cut that to 5 and knocked 18lbs out. Sigh... I guess I will offer to ship the book when I get home if anyone wants to order one!!
* loose beads - about 40 little packages of beads for students and the Bead Bazaar.
* lights & poster board - I'm teaching Snaptastic while on the cruise and need to figure out a way to get two lights into this already full and over weight suitcase.

packing 3
packing 2

I think I am getting ahead of myself here. I should explain exactly what my suitcase options are. My parents bought me a matched set of luggage years ago. I'll be bringing one decent size bag (the one shown), another that is smaller but the same shape, a carry on bag, and a purse. One of the challenges I'm having it the security process on the ship (oddly enough, not the airport!). Our Bead Cruise fearless leader, Heather Powers, was telling me that I should give my bag with clothes to the porters to be taken under the ship for security screening and my bag with tools needs to be with me for boarding security. We have special clearance to have our tools but if they go to the under-the-ship security it may be delayed longer as I won't be there to explain my clearance. At least, that's my understanding. At this point though, I can't figure out a way to put it all in one bag without going over weight (over 50lbs that is). Which means I will have to bring everything with me through security if I spread the weight out over all of my bags. I'll have to check with Heather to see if that is allowed.

Other challenges... there are two formal nights on the cruise, so I need to back at least 2 nice dresses and shoes. I also need to figure out how to get me beautiful fascinator on the ship without destroying it! Plus, um, I'd like to do my hair and whatnot while on the ship, so like, it might be nice to have my hair dryer and curling iron. All takes up space. (I just have to say... saying "matched luggage" always makes me think of the MOG on the movie Spaceballs... just saying... and my hair dryer is not industrial strength, but like Princess Vespa, I can't live without it.)

Here is what I'd like to pack for myself:

* dresses - 2 formal, 3 sun
* capris - at least 3 pairs (I don't do shorts)
* jeans - 2 pairs (I'll wear one pair and pack one)
* tops - a variety of shirts both t-shirts and blouses, let's say 5-7
* a light sweater - for cooler nights
* toiletries - all the usual... shampoo, conditioner, mouse, hairspray, make up, toothbrush, toothpaste, etc...
* shoes - flip flops, high heels (for formal), and sneakers
* camera & lenses - and all the chargers and cords that go with
* laptop & cords - I really only need to bring my laptop because my camera will only hold so many photos, I'd like to get pics off my camera, process them in my down time, and then take more pics!
* my Nook - for reading
* knitting - of-freaking-course!

Am I missing anything? If I am, it will have to stay home because this bag below is so small I don't think even my clothes will fit in it!

packing 4
even shooting this suitcase at a creative angle doesn't make it any bigger!!

Okay, I am gonna keep at it for a while more this morning and see if I can make it work. Otherwise, it might be time to start calling friends to borrow another larger suitcase. Sigh... at least I'm figuring it out now instead of Friday night, ha! That's good, right? Wouldn't it be grand if we could put everything in a giant trunk like the old days? I have one... it'd fit everything... but it weights almost 50lbs empty! HA!



TesoriTrovati said...

Dang. That means there is no way that I can sneak in your suitcase ;-)
I can only imagine how tough this must be for you. I usually take so much with me when I travel for a short time. Add in all the tools and beads. Yikes! You have to be good at jigsaws for a puzzle like that! I will be thinking tiny condensed thoughts for you, Miss Kerry!
Enjoy the day!

Diane said...

Oh my I am envious and not envious all at the same time! Bet you will have some BIG fun =)

Krys said...

I live out of the country and there is NO shopping where I live so for the past 15 years I have had to get everything in luggage etc for my home/business etc to go on planes to come home with me. My pathetic party trick is I can lift a bag and guess how close it is to 50 lbs easily.

Personally I would pack all of the books and dense items in the same suitcase with small versions of toiletries and clothes in the other with tools etc. Pack your bead kits in carry on luggage (out of the cardboard boxes) I carry beads and stones and wire all of the time through security. (also put one full change of clothes in) Tools and Questionable for ship security should go in the smaller bag.

I find with suitcase weight, that people try to spread the heavy things about, but really it works better to put books etc in one case and max out the 50lbs and then everything else in the other case.

I would have to see it all, but books + clothes in the big case. Tools/clothes/ toiletries in the medium case. Wear your tennis shoes (heavier/bulky and more comfy). Pack your flip flops and dress shoes. carry on your sweater as flights and a/c get cold. Take a large tote bag as your purse for carry on (you get one bag and one carry on) and put more beads/etc in it.

The boxes you have pictured take up room and weight, unless you need them for protection, get rid of them...

you can also pay a bit more for a third case which still isn't bad or just head over to target etc for a larger duffle etc.

Hope that helps.


Krys said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Krys said...

Sorry for the repeated comments, our internet has been really weird and I entered it in and it didn't show and then I got that it entered in about 15 times.

One other thought is to just put one set of kits (the one in the little box, in a tote bag to carry on, along with the stuff that doesn't fit)

Kerry said...

Thanks so much ladies!

A special thanks to you for your so well thought out comment. I really appreciate it.

I was able to get almost all the supplies into the one bag (the card board boxes are for protections of the kits) and it weights 47lbs. Phew, it's close, but it ain't over!

I think I can handle the rest from here. Phew.

Brandi Hussey said...

My secret for packing is not to fold the clothes, but roll them up. It's amazing how small a t-shirt will roll, and how it'll fit in between the bars on the bottom of a suitcase. Stack and roll everything - sure, it may involve ironing when you get there, but at least it'll fit more stuff!

Anne said...

LOL Spaceballs - "Take only what you need to survive!" Have a great time.