19 Jun 2018

One For The Airport

One For The Airport on vickiarcher.com

What to wear to the airport?

Packing is one thing but what to wear to the airport is another.

The days of glamorous airport dressing seem to be a thing of the past and on my travels recently, glamorous is the last adjective I would use to describe my fellow passengers. Sadly aeroplane travel has changed significantly and pretty much anything goes for many travellers.

I’m old-fashioned and I can’t say I like it.

I’m not expecting three-piece suits and Chanel dresses but looking good doesn’t need to stop because we are crossing continents. In-Transit is not an excuse for sloppiness and poor dressing and yes, security measures have made practical dressing compulsory and luggage restrictions have meant clever packing is essential.

The right coat is my answer to all airport dilemmas.

Whatever the season, if the jacket works then my travelling hours are much easier.

A coat covers a multiple and if the pockets are right  – well, it all happens smoothly – I need pockets and at least two good ones. There are the glasses (can’t do without those), the phone and normally a passport and if I’m travelling old school, a printed boarding pass. I don’t want to open and close my handbag every step of the way as usually it is strapped on to the top of my cabin bag. Deep pockets make for a very easy transit through a not always easy environment. Most airports aren’t much fun and when I am on the move I want to be in and through security fast.

I have been looking for a lightweight utility jacket to swap with the khaki coloured number I live in. The khaki and camouflage are brilliant for travelling but recently I fancied lighter weight linen, maybe even white. White has taken my fancy in every form.

White? Are you thinking this is totally impractical?

Not really. White is easily laundered and a little bleach brings us back to business in no time.

I found it.

The white linen field jacket to take me here, there and everywhere. If you don’t believe me about the white it is also available in a very good grey. This one might be even a double buy; it’s good.

By the way, it’s not only for the airport. xv

One For The Airport

cinch waist utility jacket  ||  atm cotton field jacket   ||  alpha field khaki jacket

imageVogue Japan December 2014. Twin Peaks Photographer: Ellen Von Unwerth Model: Stina Rapp Wastenson & Frida Aasen

Stylist: Elizabeth Sulcer

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I agree, Vicki! Comfort and practicality does NOT have to mean sloppy. As a teacher, I am often asked why I dress up. To me, it’s obvious: I want to look good. I want to fee professional. I can’t do what I’ve seen others do, and that is to wear jeans and a sweatshirt to go teach. Now as for travel; I believe in being comfortable, but I also believe in looking presentable, while being comfortable. There is just something special about making every occasion to be out in public a time to tidy up, put on a nice jacket, wear some lipstick! Almost everything that we of a certain generation who have seen things invented (like air travel – it was SO glamorous in the 60s) has become routine and sloppy. The only thing we can do is continue our traditions of dressing up the moment with class and fashion!

Linda Boardman Kerr

I agree with Anita’s comment. We have to LOOK at each other for a long time, up close, especially when traveling long distances. Be neat! Wear lipstick, maybe some little pearl earrings (which work wonders on your face–really!). I am so sick of the new normal being sloppy.

Michelle à Détroit

Here, here to Vicki, Anita and Linda. I couldn’t agree more. Everyone, everywhere in the US now seems to
travel in shorts, flip-flops and even pajama bottoms. It’s disheartening. This is indeed the new normal.


I totally agree with you and Anita, Vicki. A casual look is one thing, but many people look slovenly on a daily basis, and rarely do they bother to dress up for special occasions. I believe it sets the tone for how lives are run and the level of respect (or rather disrespect) people show one another and themselves). I miss the days when going to the airport was an event for which you wore your best clothes. When I travelled for business I often wore suits and heels. It was expected. I do appreciate being able travel comfortably, but casual chic is always my goal.

Anne Woodyard (@MusicandMarkets)

Pockets – something I miss when I’m traveling in summer and don’t want anything more than a light linen sweater. Yes, it’s a hassle to pull out my phone and ID from my purse atop my carryon. You’ve reminded me of a decades-old light linen jacket WITH POCKETS in the depths of my seasonal closet – I will pull it out for the next trip, with thanks to you for the reminder!

Linda B

Oh my, how I wish I had a Nordstrom locally! This does look like the perfect summer travel piece. I am actually flying cross-continent to a conference–but leave in about 70 hours from now. . . Can’t justify the expense of overnight shipping, can I?

Michelle à Détroit

It’s still important to me to look good and pulled together when traveling. Even if I’m in jeans or khakis and a tee, I carry a little blazer or my favorite travel companion, a big, boldly patterned silk and cashmere shawl. It pulls whatever I’m wearing together and doubles as a lux blankie.


Oh, I couldn’t agree more! It’s not that difficult to be both comfortable and well turned out. I do hate seeing shorts and flip flops worn in the airport or people travelling wearing clothes that make them look as if they have just come in from working in the garden. It is so dispiriting that so few people now make any effort to look presentable, they just don’t seem to be able to see themselves through the eyes of others. I always want to look good at work and at play and I agree that a well cut jacket, some striking jewellery and a strong coloured lipstick make a big difference. Air travel will never be glamorous again, there are simply too many people doing it but we can still show others that it can be done stylishly.


Vicki, I travelled to Provence on TGV all the way through France and although I didn’t fly I still had a linen jacket almost identical to the grey field jacket purchased in the U.K. A perfect weight, enough to keep a little warmth if needed but not too much I overheated and a very good weight. Pockets held phone and glasses!! Cross body bag and some flat sandals as I didn’t want warm feet with walking through the station. Not forgetting some stylish but comfy chinos and a white t shirt along with a lipstick!!! Perfect travelling gear!!!

Trish Murphy

Vicki I could not agree more with you and the field jacket. I am flying to Italy next week from Sydney and will be wearing my Khaki field jacket. It is fabulous with its deep pockets to pop everything into in transit. It has been a fabulous tip of yours from way back. I loved you in your camaflouge jacket. Anita I am hearing you too. I am from the old school of dressing and am constantly horrified at the accepted mode of dress theses days at airports and everywhere. It is not hard to look reasonable and stylish. Loved the 70’s style of travel so glamorous. XxTrish

Jennifer S

I agree. I travel weekly and I prefer to wear high waist light stretchy jeans with a cami and a lightweight long kimono with either sneakers or Gucci style slides. I still feel glamorous yet comfortable.


I’ve got to say I too agree with you all. With the wonderful fabrics and a little imagination it is absolutely possible to dress comfortably and stylishly when travelling – whatever the mode of travel. While flying recently I was quite perturbed by the sight of a couple of teenagers in onesies and jandals. It was not pretty and definitely not appropriate – even if it was an evening flight. Unfortunately I feel it’s a sign of the times as dressing seems to have relaxed (read got sloppy) in all areas of life. I recently received an invitation with the dress code “Cocktailish”. While I have purchased a new cocktail dress for the event I know that sadly most will choose more ‘ish” than cocktail, leaving me, as so often happens appearing to be slightly overdressed in some eyes. But definitely not in mine. Let’s keep the standards up is what I say. By the way, love the jackets and think they’d all be fabulous and appropriate for travel and more.


A group of us SoCal gals were chatting about dressing for air travel. Chico’s makes a line called travelers. Vikki Vi is another company that does suiting in the same fabric. This stuff is handsome versatile and comfy. The woman wearing can make it chic for travel. LOVE this stuff. It’s in plus also. Love the blog!


I try always to wear natural low flammability clothes on airliners – black or navy jeans, black leather sneakers, cotton long sleeved shirt usually white, and a wool or combination wool mohair jacket when travelling between north and south hemispheres as one location is likely to be winter. Having worked with people who’ve survived plane crashes I know fire is the big risk and that survivors have generally been wearing low flammability clothes.
It’s true that pockets are a big help as so often there is nowhere easily accessible in flight to put essentials like reading glasses. BA Business class long haul is a case in point. Once you recline the chair to near flat bed position, it’s impossible to access the foot locker. The lockers above are so big and so high I can’t reach them in flight. So now I have my glasses on a leather sling around my neck and my toiletries in a small squashable bag I can retain during takeoff. There’s no front seat pocket as there is in short haul or economy. I feel sure these seating arrangements are designed by men with no thoughts for women’s needs. (I used to like the window seats in BA Business class jumbos because there used to be a compartment between the seat and the window that would take a handbag and more. But not on the 777s they seem to have replaced them with and not for other seats.) Best wishes, Pamela


Oh dear Vicki I lament the days when the public cared ! We as fashion types live in a sort of bubble , and when we get confronted by the sloppiness of others it’s hard to take. Not only travel but in many aspects life .
I went to the Theater the other week , which I like to dress-up for and make a night of it .I sat next to a woman in shorts and thongs . Really I know I’m not The fashion police but really .
Dress The Part


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