The SXSW Packing List Nobody Talks About
SXSW is upon us, and if you're among the lucky thousands headed to Austin (I shake my fist in your general direction by the way), you're going to need a packing list that isn't lying. Enough cowboy crap. Let's get real.
Yes, you're going to a sh#tshow. But you're not going to a sh#tshow unprepared, not on my watch. With a little help, you can maintain your personal style while simultaneously arming yourself with everything you'll need to have the actual time of your life.
What you need:
1) A tiny umbrella. It's not sexy, it's smart. The weather in Austin is as predictable as earthworm futures. Be prepared.
2) Shoes you can walk in. Better yet, ankle boots you can walk in, lest ye have feet covered in SXSSoot. This is a marathon, and it's one spent on your feet. The last thing you want to do is trek back to your Air b-n-b just to change shoes. Who knows what fun you'll miss?
3) Layers. A denim jacket, a shift dress you can easily layer up. A lightweight plaid tied around the waist, or a cool tee that looks amazing under any jacket. Think its cold out? Wait 20 mins. You'll be peeling layers off like some sort of frantic human banana.
4) A bag that holds stuff. You don't need a massive commuter bag, but you do need a bag that holds your stuff. In addition to the items you need to keep with you during the day, you'll accumulate random trinkets. Trust me. Everyone wants to give you a new wave energy bar or a thumb drive with their media kit on it, or a carabiner emblazoned with their logo. Nod and smile. Pop it in your cute tote and move on to the next show.
5) A collapsible water bottle. Fill her up! A week of free beer and BBQ (again, shaking my fist), will leave you hurting and dehydrated if you're not careful. Keep a bottle or pouch with you and fill it up at every opportunity.
What you don't need:
1) A fashiony hat. Where are you going to put that thing in a crowded show when people can't see around your huge cranium? Stuff it in your bag? You'll bend the brim. Set it down? Kiss it goodbye. Leave this useless thing at home, you don't need it. Just bring some good dry shampoo for bad hair days.
2) Heels. You're going to be standing/walking for five days straight. Are you insane?
3) A tiny, cute bag. Yes, it's adorable. But it doesn't even hold your phone, much less your backup cell battery.
4) An SLR camera. Having fun with that thing sweetie? Shoulder hurting yet? Oh, you took amazing photos? Better run back to the hotel to upload them on slow-ass WIFI so you can email them to yourself and Instagram them. Or you could just use your phone.
5) Tons of sparkly, piled-on accessories. Come on y'all. This is Texas.