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Russian Diaries: Packing in 2017

Carolyn Woodruff

Dwight and I have never been known for packing light. We just finished packing and we together are just under the allotted 200 pounds of checked luggage. So what weather did we pack for:

St. Petersburg, Russia 60 degrees F in June, with nights at 52 Degrees and days at 68 degrees. It also rains 16 out of 30 days.

Moscow is slightly warmer and averages 64 degrees F in June, 72 high of the day, and nights at 55 degrees. It rains 12 days out of 30.

I am going to perform in the Kremlin Palace. The top three items in my dressing room will be my fav Ardell Natural Lashes (no. 135). My ballgown is red and gold so I’m tossing in Nars Velvet Matt Lip Pencil in Dragon Girl and Urban Decay Lip Pencil 714.  I am carrying on my red ballgown and the mask and one pair of dance shoes.

In thinking about packing for my upcoming 8 day trip to Russia, I think back to my trip to Moscow in 2015. Notably, no tennis shoes. The people in Moscow in 2015 were classically and fashionably dressed, as contrasted to the casually jean and tennis show lifestyle that frequents the streets of the US.  In fact, I hazard to say they do not understand the clothing view of Westerners who wear tennis shoes outside the gym. In fact, most restaurants post that the “athletic shoes” are simply not allowed. The average person on the street in Moscow is dressed to the nines, not surprising for a city where the average car is a Mercedes SUV or Range Rover.

Yet walking shoes are a must, and I bought two pairs of suede oxfords from Cole Hahn, which will be a good daytime walking shoe with my Stance socks.

Trench coats are in all over Europe, and I have a light wool tan trench coat. I also have a silver raincoat with a hood, so that’s going, given the rain, particularly in St. Petersburg.

I am making the basics of my trip wardrobe black and red.  I am throwing in a black cashmere ruana, which I think I’ll use as a blanket on the plane. I also am packing a black velour baseball jacket for layering, instead of a sweater.  I tend to cold natured, so I must plan for layering.

Four pairs of Theory jean style pants will be the bottoms for my day wardrobe—two in black, one navy, and one taupe—all from Rebecca’s here in Greensboro.  These are part of my “go to” wardrobe basics, as they fit perfectly and have just the right amount of stretch for comfort.

Tops for day:  Equipment and Rails are my go to brands. I have a red silk blouse with over-sized sleeves—that goes.

One black short skirt for evening


A gray and white pullover sweater and a pink shredded sweater

Two little black dresses

One is Susan Monaco halter  which easily could also serve as a “skirt” when topped with a sweater.

The other black dress is one that could be used with a blouse and leggings, if needed, or of course, worn alone.

One red dress with black leggings

Shoes for evening:

Of course, my new pink and purple heart Ivey Kirzhner’s that will pop the black.

Then, of course, there’s my Kirzhner army boots that take a soft look of a little black dress both hard and current.

Dance practice wear: body suit and specialized skirt for Mystery of Masquerade

Costume and accessories and two pairs of dance shoes (just in case)

So what am I traveling in today:  My Sevens dark wash jeans, blue silk Equipment blouse, Stance Disney socks, Cole Hahn suede shoes,  obi black belt, fake diamond earrings, a mid-blue and burgundy sweater (matches the Disney socks, lol), and the ruana for an extra blanket on this long flight.

And the nails, Dwight and I both had our toenails painted the colors of the Russian flag.

By: Carolyn Woodruff

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