Living in a Backpack. Project 333.

I’m setting myself a pretty gigantic goal for the next three months – I say gigantic because, coming from an earlier career in the fashion industry, the idea of ‘surviving‘ on 33 items of clothing for 3 months (the premise for Project 333) is a pretty big deal.

Surprisingly, choosing the 33 items in question wasn’t actually that hard. The hardest part was storing the other 77 items that didn’t quite make the cut.

The first question you’ll have is an obvious one: Why? Well… other than aiming to live with less, it all comes down to this one thing here:

Yep – a measly backpack!

Not just any backpack though – this 40L beauty is perfect for carry-on travel. Which just so happens to be my goal for 2019 – to travel everywhere (both international and domestic) with carry-on only.

It’s best perk also is it’s biggest setback. It’s beyond comfortable for hiking, but because of the technical structure it’s a lot heavier than most – the total weight is 1.7kg. The international average weight allowance for carry-on is 7kg, which leaves just 5.3kg to travel with.

Challenge accepted!

And I figure, if I’m going to start blogging about minimalist travel, not only do I need to walk the talk – but I should definitely aim to live a more minimalist life.

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De-cluttering as it’s mostly referred to, I believe, is fundamental to a less stressful life. Now, I get it’s not for everyone, after all a wardrobe is a hard one to consolidate because so many of us rely on it for our identity, our worth. So many of us mistake retail therapy for actual therapy and yet are we any happier?

It all became too real for me when I read Brooke McAlary’s book ‘Slow’ earlier this year. I related wholeheartedly when she said she’s “… also tired. Tired of stuff being used to measure our success and the value we place on others.” She paraphrases actor Will Rogers and it finally sunk in:

“We buy things we can’t afford to impress people we don’t like. And we do it everyday.”

It hit me because three years ago, I was staring down the barrel of ten thousand dollars of accumulative debt over multiple credit cards and I had absolutely no idea where or what I had done with it. Stuff. That was literally it. Stuff and travel.

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So I’ve decided to take action. I paid off that debt and I cut up those cards. I’m slowly cutting out the things that mean little to me and I’m leaving only what brings me joy.

So here it is, the 33 pieces that’ll be bringing me joy for the next 3 months:

Dresses x 7
T-shirt/Shirts x 10
Shorts x 5
Skirt x 5
Jacket x 1
Pant’s x 1
Shoes x 4

I took a little liberty with the original ‘rules’ set out by Project 333 creator Courtney Carver from ‘Be more with less’ because I haven’t included jewellery or accessories in the final count. Note, the following are NOT included in the 33 pieces:

Underwear
Active wear
Swimwear (including wet-suits)
In-home lounge wear


It all started with a little inventory, as each item was put into one of three categories: what was destined for the charity bin, what was joining me for the challenge and what I wanted to hold onto for winter. From there it was all too easy, I just needed more storage space to keep the unwanted items out of sight.

So far it’s been a piece of cake, I couldn’t be more happy to live with less. In fact, I highly recommend it!

Until next week xo

Images via Unsplash


2 thoughts on “Living in a Backpack. Project 333.

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