I love travelling and I’m lucky to do it often. When packing for a trip I like to be ready for any occasion, but also take as little as possible. After years of lugging heavy suitcases around I now have it down to a fine art. I recommend only taking hand luggage so there's no danger of lost bags. And that way you don't have to wait at the carousel.
On my next trip I'm visiting our store in New York, then swinging by our workshop in Tuscany before spending two days with our team at our store in London. Then two nights in Tokyo and home to Sydney. It will be cold over there but not freezing. Travelling to cooler weather is a challenge – you need more layers.
Inside my carry-on:
One dark-grey flannel suit, and one navy-twill woven wool suit. These are very versatile tailoring options for travel because the jackets and trousers can be mixed, and they can be dressed up or down as the occasion requires.
The key to keeping your suits fresh while travelling is keeping them in a woven suit bag (I use one from Goyard) – you can even put a dry-cleaning plastic bag over the top for extra protection. Make sure you hang up your suits in the bathroom as soon as you arrive (with the shower on) – wool gets dehydrated and the steam will help to restore the garment’s shape.
Two extra pairs of pants
I pack an extra pair of beige trousers and a pair of jeans (vintage Levis) that I can wear with my tailored jackets, for versatility.
I like to take Oxford-cotton shirts because they don't crease much and can be worn formally or casually. I always make sure I pack one denim shirt as a versatile, casual option, too. I iron my shirts and pack them folded, but if you're feeling lazy ask your dry cleaner to fold them and put them in plastic. (In Sydney, No-D-Lay Dry Cleaners in Rozelle is my go-to.)
My travel vest:
One essential bit of kit is my travel vest. After years of being dependant on my wife interior designer Tamsin Johnson’s handbag and many separate smaller bags to keep passports etc. in, I ended up designing a travel vest with plenty of pockets [available soon at P Johnson], which you can essentially load up – like you would a handbag – with anything you need. It’s really handy when you're going through security because you can take your whole vest off with everything in it. I’m dependent on it now and have a different version for summer and winter.
A piece of knitwear:
I always take a lightweight knit (our super-fine merino knits are great for layering, which I prefer to a big heavy coat when I’m travelling) or two sweaters. I also have a lightweight-cashmere field jacket that's good for layering and perfect for evening walks.
Shoes; take as few pairs as possible. I always wear the bulkier pair on the plane. In this case I'm taking a pair of traditional driving shoes (slip-on leather or suede loafers with rubber-grommet soles) by Loro Piana Walks that I can wear formally with suits, or casually. They have a rubber sole, which is great because it makes them waterproof and comfortable for walking.
I travel with two watches: one formal dress watch and another everyday watch. I like wearing a separate watch when I go out at night because it gives a sense of occasion at an event and it's the details that can really make these outfits. My dress watch is a 1930s Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso. I'm also taking two ties that can be worn formally or casually.
I am pretty strict when it comes to my toiletries. I like wearing my hair slicked back, but still soft and not greasy. The perfect product for this is the Evo Crop Strutters, which I've been using for years and can't travel without.
My toothbrush comes next, of course, and a fragrance. I like Italian brand Essenzialmente Laura. For winter I like "Alioth" – it has a deep and woody scent. For summer I take a lighter fragrance … I like Pepe from the same range.
Lastly, I always take a book – I've never been able to get around a kindle. I love books and travelling is one of the only times I get to read. At the moment I’m reading Georgian London by John Summerson.
As for what you wear on the plane, dress for comfort – nothing too hard to get on and off for airport security, especially if travelling in the States.
Patrick Johnson is the Australian tailor behind P Johnson Tailors and Suit Shop. He has appointment-only showrooms in Sydney, Melbourne, New York and London. The Principles is a monthly menswear series about timeless style and nailing the fashion essentials.