Lightening the load: the perfect beach holiday wardrobe

This post is as much for me, as it is for my lovely readers.  If you were to ask the Domestic Prince about my holiday wardrobe, he would tell you that I take far too much and only wear half of what I pack.  I don’t know anybody who doesn’t love going on holiday, but no matter how excited I am about going on my holibobs, packing causes me a great amount of stress and a lot of deliberation.  I want to look great on the beach and fabulous in the evening, as well as making sure I have warmer clothes in case the weather turns, which in today’s unpredictable climate, is quite likely!  The later I leave my packing, the worse it actually gets, as I end up throwing things in, “just in case”.

So, by writing this post, I’m hoping to streamline my holiday wardrobe, take the hard work out for you, and show you the perfect beach holiday wardrobe.

What to pack for a two-week beach holiday

  • Maxi dress
  • Smart dress
  • Plain dress, which can be dressed-up with jewellery
  • Beach cover-up x 3
  • Day-time shorts x 2
  • Vest / t-shirt x 2
  • Bikini / swimsuit/ tankini x 5
  • Cropped trousers x 2
  • Skirt x 1
  • Jeans x 1
  • Evening top x 2
  • Work-out gear
  • Cardigan / wrap (you can wear this to travel in)
  • Flip flops
  • Wedges
  • Flat sandals
  • Trainers
  • Beach bag
  • Clutch bag
  • Sunglasses
  • Hat
  • Scarf – can be used a wrap

  1. Swarovski t-bar leather sandal, £35 from Accessorize
  2. Leather square buckle clutch, £60 from ASOS
  3. Plain white scarf, £17.99 from Zara
  4. Ivory strappy wdges, £45 from Next
  5. Aubin & Wills Patrickson bag, £65 from Net-A-Porter
  6. Tom Ford brown tortoiseshell sunglasses, £145 from My-Wardrobe
  7. Floppy straw hat with polka dot under brim, £18 from ASOS
  8. Slim white Havaianas, £20 from Havainas

  1. Sequin t-shirt dress, £80 from Topshop
  2. Navy linen waterfall cardigan, £65 from The White Company
  3. Grey belted chinos, £24.50 from Wallis
  4. Cream shift dress, £28 from Dorothy Perkins
  5. Kelly sequin top, £77 from Reiss
  6. Guipure lace skirt, £39.99 from Zara
  7. Sateen white cropped trousers, £55 from Banana Republic
  8. Red skinny jeans, £16.99 from New Look
  9. Beth cream top, £125 from Reiss
  10. Navy leaf print maxi dress, £22.40 from Dorothy Perkins
  11. Slim cropped trousers, £29.95 from GAP
  1. Double-layer jersey vest tunic dress, £65 from The White Company
  2. Long Island rope v-neck kaftan, £180 from Heidi Klein
  3. Bali bikini, £180 from Heidi Klein
  4. Skirt suit, £26 from Next
  5. White bikini, £20  from Oasis
  6. Pour Moi? Azure bikini, £33.60 from ASOS
  7. Seafolly Goddess swimsuit, £85 from John Lewis
  8. Fluro embroidered beach dress, £38 from Warehouse
  9. Navy striped vest top, £5.99 from H&M
  10. White vest top, £5.99 from H&M
  11. Casual shorts, £18 from Oasis
  12. Stone 5″ chino shorts, £29.33 from J Crew

Domestic Princess tips:

  1. Start with a list (I LOVE a list).  To make your lives easier, I’ve created a checklist for you to keep and print off:  Beach holiday wardrobe checklist.  You can thank me later.
  2. If you’re travelling with other people, mix up each other’s clothes between suitcases – if one goes missing, you’ll have at least one outfit to wear!
  3. Pack flip-flops, trainers and wedges at the bottom of your case.
  4. Roll-up swimwear, t-shirts and pack them around the edges of your case.
  5. Look for beach cover-ups that are easy to remove and replace.
  6. Only take clothes that you really love wearing and are comfortable in.
  7. Travel in your heaviest clothes and shoes.
  8. Think about investing in a Kindle – the weight of four books is the equivalent of 5 bikinis and a maxi dress!
  9. Put your bathroom bag in a carrier bag.
  10. Sellotape the tops of sun screens and moisturisers, to help prevent any leakages.
After writing this post, I think I’m all set for my holibobs and there won’t be any last minute, anxiety filled packing episodes!  Have you got any packing tips that you can share with us?

I hope you’ve found this post helpful and don’t forget to print off the checklist next time you’re off on holiday!

With much love
The Domestic Princess

Perfect Swimwear

If you haven’t already booked your summer holiday, I expect you’ve started thinking about where to go.  So, with that in mind, I thought I’d help you figure out your perfect holiday wardrobe, starting off with swimwear.

Most people are filled with anxiety when selecting their beach attire.  Not surprising really, as you’re going to be exposing a lot of flesh and who doesn’t want to look their best?  So, here’s my guide on choosing the perfect swimwear for your holiday, including the hottest styles currently available.

Before even stepping foot into a shop, you need to know your body shape, so you can select the most flattering bikini or swimsuit that works for your type.  There are several categories of body shape to consider; in fact, most people fall under two.

Determining your shape

  • Little or no waist, with your shoulders approximately the same width as your hips would be classified as an athletic figure.
  • Narrow hips, coupled with noticeably wider shoulders will make you a triangle.
  • If you have a slight upper body with substantially larger hips, this is known as pear shape.
  • Below 5ft 3ins with everything in proportion would classify you as a petite.
  • If you have an ample bust, generous hips, but a smaller waist, then you are blessed with an hour-glass or curvy figure.
  • If you’re carrying weight around your middle with a generous bust, then you’re probably going to fall into the apple shape category.

Selecting Swimwear

Athletic Shapes

Girls with this kind of shape can afford to be plucky in their choice of swimwear.  If this is your shape, you can pretty much wear anything.  So, choose styles that are bright, bold and make people look at your amazing figure!

If you’re athletic shape, you’ll want to try and create a waist, so look for bottoms that have a belt.  And if you’re looking to boost your boobs, opt for a halter-neck style top.

  1. Colour block bikini, bikini top, £26 from Next
  2. Baku Suit With Frilled Deep Plunge & Padding, £85 from ASOS
  3. John Lewis Bassa strip top, £10 from John Lewis
  4. John Lewis Bassa stripe bottoms, £8 from John Lewis

Triangle Shape

As a triangle shaped woman, think about drawing attention away from the shoulders and towards the lower half of your body.  Look for bottoms that have embellishment:  ruffles, a skirt, rings, a belt, ties, bold prints.

  1. Plain tie-front bikini, £10 from Warehouse (also available in black and aqua)
  2. Resort ruffle bandeau swim dress, £29 from
  3. Melissa Odabash Paris bikini, £212 from Net-a-Porter

Pear Shape

Around 60% of women in the western world are pear shape.  Pears are complete opposites of triangles, so what we’re looking to do here, is distract attention from the bottom half and draw the eye up the body. A pear shaped lady needs to look for a top with lots of detail, padded cups to boost your boobs and balance the body out, together with bottoms that offer full coverage and a high cut leg.

  1. Orange Seafolly Goddess bikini, £97 from Selfridges (also available in indigo, black, lapis, sable and white)
  2. Blue ruffle bikini, £22 from Next
  3. Ted Baker one shoulder swimsuit with buckle £65 from ASOS

Petite Shape

This is another shape that is quite easy to dress.  What you’re looking to create with your bikini is a cleavage and to lengthen the body with a high cut bottom.  Avoid large prints as these will just overwhelm you.  Petite ladies can get away with triangle bikinis and should look for vertical stripes to elongate their bodies.

  1. Geri floral bikini, £38 from Next
  2. Striped swimsuit, £109 from Harrods
  3. Ruffle bikini, £59.99 from Mango (also available in coral)

Hour-Glass or Curvy Shape

The majority of bikini and swimsuit styles available will suit the curvy girl, the exception being a bandeau top, as it lacks the necessary support a curvy girl needs.  Hour-glass girls typically have a bra size exceeding a C cup, so you should be looking at tops that have under wired support and / or side boning, which will help give you a lovely shape.  This is one of the categories that I fall into and since discovering Heidi Klein about 6 years, I have been a loyal devotee to their fabulous bikinis for girls with more up top!  This is the bikini I’m currently sporting when needing to don swimwear.  They’re not cheap, but I’ve still got my first ever Heidi Klein bikini that I purchased back in November 2006 and it’s still got plenty of life left in it!  Freya and Fantasie also have good options for the hour-glass girl.

Halter-neck tops, or wide-strapped tops are also very flattering on hour-glass ladies.  Look for good coverage on the bottom and go for plain dark or bright colours.

  1. Laguna wide strap bikini, £210 from Heidi Klein
  2. Black Goddess bikini, £22.98 from New Look
  3. White halter-neck swimsuit, £149 from Harrods

Apple Shape

An apple shape lady is looking to disguise her midriff and to make it look smaller than it actually is.  Look for swimwear with a high percentage of Lycra, which will help hold you in and smooth out your silhouette.  A new trend this season is the ‘70s “blouson” swimsuit or blouson tankini, as they don’t cling tightly to your tum, but blouse over; it’s really quite flattering.  Also, choose a top that either has a built-in bra, or one that lifts and supports your boobs.

  1. Resort shape wear bikini, £30 from
  2. Black Bondeye Nip Tuck one piece, £56 from Sand in my toes
  3. Leopard print blouson swimsuit, £35 from ASOS


Just because you’re pregnant doesn’t mean you can’t look stylish by the pool or on the beach.  Firstly, you’ll need to decide if you want to expose your bump, or cover it up.  Whether you choose a one-piece or a bikini, ensure that it provides plenty of support up top.

  1. Navy spotted bikini, £24 from Marks and Spencer
  2. Love Boat swimsuit by Pez Dor for Figleaves, £60 from Figleaves
  3. Dark pink tankini, £34 from Next

Domestic Princess tips:

  1. Determine your body shape before buying.
  2. Always rinse your bikini / swimsuit after swimming to remove salt or bleach – this will prolong the life of it.
  3. If you find a bikini / swimsuit that you love and fits like a dream, if you can afford it, I’d suggest buying a couple of them.
  4. If buying separates, buy the bikini bottoms one size up, to avoid creating extra lumps and bumps where it may cut in.
  5. Never be tempted to buy a thong bikini – leave these to the Brazilians!
  6. Do not contemplate wearing a string bikini top if your boobaloobs are larger than a C cup.
  7. Identify parts of your body that you would like to accentuate.
  8. A tightly tied halter-neck will create a deep cleavage.

Finding the perfect bikini or swimsuit can take time and needs a bit of perseverance. If you apply these simple rules and try on different styles and brands, be assured, you will find your perfect swimwear.  Do you have any other tips on buying your perfect swimwear?  Which shops are your favourite ones for beach attire?  Please share them with me!

With much love

The Domestic Princess


PS Look out for a forthcoming post to help the gents with their swimwear dilemmas.

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