My family and I took the opportunity to head out on an early summer holiday to the Italian Alps to do some mountain walking with our eight month old daughter, Aífe. After COVID, pregnancy and having a baby, it has been three or four years since we’d both travelled to the mountains and we were brimming with excitement for some mountain air, and to see what we could do in an Alpine environment with our daughter in tow.
However before all that, we first needed to consider what and how to pack. We wanted to be fairly lightweight when it came to clothing as we’d have some bulky items like mountain boots, a car seat and baby carrier to contend with. I’m a big fan of packing items that can be used for multiple activities; items that are both technical but look nice if you were to wear them to a restaurant as well. This is why I love FINDRA items and they have become staples of my suitcase for any trip away.
In brief, I packed two FINDRA t-shirts, two long-sleeved base-layers, a pair of walking trousers, a lightweight jumper and some Merino wool socks, and I ended up wearing at least one of these items every day. Merino wool is such an incredible material for both hiking and travelling at all times of year. Typically I think people consider Merino wool to only be suitable for cold temperatures, but Merino wool is actually a temperature-regulating material meaning it will keep you cool in the heat and it wicks away sweat so you stay nice and fresh. As well as that, Merino wool barely ever needs washing as it can just be air-dried outside after a long hike and you’ll find any odours disappear by the following day. We spent ten days in Italy (followed immediately by three days in Wales!) and we didn’t need to wash any clothing, despite wearing them multiple times for long hikes in the mountains. One final benefit of Merino wool is that if it does get wet, it stays warm (as opposed to synthetic fabrics that will get cold) and it also dries really fast.
Below I’m going to outline the pieces I took to the Italian Alps and what I liked about them, to give you some inspiration for your own upcoming holidays.
I love how light and soft this t-shirt is, made from superfine, ethical Merino wool. As with all merino wool, the t-shirt wicks away moisture, regulates body temperature and is both breathable and fast-drying. Something I really like about this t-shirt is that it is 3D knitted which means there are no seams and it’s a zero waste item! Personally, I love the slim-fit and found it so practical and comfy on the mountain, but also great to wear to wander around town or go for lunch afterwards.
The other t-shirt I took to Italy was the Maisie Merino Lite Tee which has a different feel and style to the Route t-shirt, and so it was nice to alternate between the two depending on what I was feeling that day.
The Maisie Merino Lite Tee has a boxier fit, making it look and feel more relaxed and I like the rolled up sleeves. It’s made from a wool-blend which contains some nylon so it has a tighter knit and is very lightweight, packing down really small. Again, I would happily wear this t-shirt for both mountain walking and day to day activities.
it’s hard to choose between the FINDRA merino tops as they are all so beautiful, but I particularly liked this for our trip away as it would get a little chilly in higher altitudes, so it was nice to have a top with the roll-neck for a little extra coverage. We also did an overnight hike to a mountain refuge, to which I took the Rona Cowl Neck Merino Top as it’s so lightweight, both as a warm layer for the evening and morning and as a pyjama top as it’s so soft to sleep in. Like the Route t-shirt, this top has been made with the 3D knitting technology that means it has no seams and zero waste. I’d say this top is a staple in the backpack of any mountain walker due it being temperature-regulating, breathable, moisture-wicking, lightweight and odour-resistant — so many benefits! My partner also has the Harris Seamless Merino Hoody which he took with him and is very similar to my women’s top.
even if you’re expecting warmth, sunshine and to finally get some sun on your legs if you’re going away this summer, having a good pair of walking trousers is always a must. When we first arrived in Italy, it was a little cooler and we had some rain so the Cora Cargo Pants were ideal. The trousers are made with a four-way stretch fabric so they are versatile for a number of outdoor activities, as well as being breathable and water-repellent. I love the bright colour of the Loch Blue that I have.
The Torro Merino-Lite Sweatshirt is a new addition to FINDRA’s range and ideal for summer travelling as it’s a casual, lightweight jumper that provides comfort and warmth for the cooler evenings. I loved this jumper to wear to the airport and on the plane, and then when we arrived I wore it in the evenings and on the cooler days when we were having more relaxed days. It’s definitely had a lot of wear already despite being a new addition to my wardrobe as well!
Finally, a soft and cosy pair of socks is definitely a year-round essential for me and I love the Herringbone pattern of the Skye socks. As they are made from Merino wool, the socks are really breathable and keep your feet feeling fresh. Like my other FINDRA items, I would just air-dry the socks in the evening so I could wear them multiple times without washing, which was ideal to keep packing a little more minimal. My partner also has the Merino stripe socks and wore them for most of the trip!
All in all, the FINDRA pieces I took on this trip to Italy were ideal for mountain walks to 3000m peaks, picnics in Alpine meadows, trips out for pizza and pasta and overnight stays in refuges. I love how comfy, versatile, practical and stylish each of my FINDRA items are and found them essential for this trip in the Italian alps.
Happy summer holiday packing!
Scottish Artist, Ellis O'Connor is someone I have admired for years now. Her work is inspired by the wild seas and skies of Scotland and really evokes a strong emotion.
I don't have a lot of time to read these days since having my daughter but Nan Shepherd's 'The Living Mountain' for me is an absolute classic that always makes me want to go walking in the Cairngorms. Beautifully and poetically written.
Stop Your Tears by Aldous Harding is a really beautiful song that reminds me of road trips with my partner, Harvey. There are some beautiful lyrics in the song such as "I am the horse beneath his daughter, he is the mountain underneath."