The Chrysalis Cardi- My Ultimate Travel Essential (And How To Use It)


I’ve always been a notoriously horrible packer. I wait until the very last minute to decide what I should throw in a suitcase. I pack ridiculous items that I never use at home, but for some reason feel like I must bring along just in case of an emergency. (You know, the shoes/lotion/sunhat/other miscellaneous items I found tucked away in the back of the closet hiding beneath a blanket of dust.) And, without fail, half the things I end up toting around—or, let’s be honest, Dan ends up carrying—don’t get used at all.

In recent years I’ve gotten a little bit better at packing. I won’t say I’m an expert, but I’ve written enough articles about it (and had practice traveling to 30-some odd countries) that I’m no longer completely embarrassed by my luggage.

Without a doubt, one of the reasons I’ve been able to pack far less is by learning how to make the most of multi-purpose items. Why pack three dresses, a scarf and a cardigan when one classic piece can be worn all three ways?

Enter: The Chrysalis Cardi

I first stumbled upon Encircled, the company behind this versatile piece, around three years ago. I rushed ordered a Chrysalis Cardi so it would arrive before we headed off to Europe—and since then, it has been a constant travel essential for all our trips. From Sweden to France to Costa Rica to Hawaii, my Chrysalis Cardi has racked up quite a few miles—with much more to come in 2017 and beyond.


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“Pack lighter. Do more with less.” Rockin’ my Chrysalis Cardi as a Cardigan in Southern France and an infinity scarf in Sweden.


Encircled is all about helping you pack lighter so you can do more with less.

We value travel and adventure above all else, so of course, this is a message that we 100% support.

But what I really love about Encircled is that they don’t compromise style, ethics or the environment to create their clothing collection.

Encircled only uses sustainable, low-impact and earth-friendly fabrics. All their pieces are made locally in Toronto, Canada, with fairly-paid labor. And Encircled believes in a slow, mindful approach to fashion that ensures they only add timeless, high-quality pieces to their collection.

My Chrysalis Cardi has gotten quite the love over the years, yet it’s still in pristine condition—despite the fact I don’t wash it as carefully as I probably should.

If you’re headed out on a round-the-world adventure, or you’re just looking for versatile clothing that will work in all seasons at home, then you’ll love Encircled.

From snowy Stockholm to the beautiful beaches of Costa Rica, here are my favorite ways to wear my Chrysalis Cardi:

Long Dress


There are a few different ways you can transform the Chrysalis Cardi into a dress. This one-shoulder look is probably my favorite. I love the shape of the dress, and it’s perfect to dress up for fancier events or wear barefoot in the sand.

Short Dress


My second-favorite way to wear the Cardi as a dress. I tuck the fabric beneath the belt so it’s a bit shorter and super comfortable to romp around in all day.

Cross Back Shirt


It took me a while to master this transformation. To be honest, I can never get it to look right without someone in the back to adjust the straps. But once it’s on, this top is super comfortable and perfect for life in the tropics.



While the dresses and top are super cute, I probably wear my Chrysalis Cardi the most as a poncho. It’s absolutely ideal for air travel, as I can wrap it as a scarf while I’m going through customs, then transform it into this super soft and draped poncho for ultimate comfort on long-haul flights. Plus, even though we live in the tropics, our house can get surprisingly fresh in the mornings and evenings. I love wearing my poncho with a cup of coffee in the early mornings and while cuddling on the couch with our pups!



And of course, a must-have scarf photo. The scarf is easily wrapped once, twice or three times.



The classic cardigan! Another one of my favorite ways to quickly wear the Chrysalis Cardi, especially when I’m lounging around before yoga.


A Few Notes On The Chrysalis Cardi

-It takes some practice to play with the fabric. If you’re more fashion savvy than I am, you likely will have an easier time snapping and twisting to create more looks. I tend to stick to these basics that I’ve mastered and feel super comfortable wearing. Encircled has really great video tutorials on their website that explain in detail how to create the different looks.

-If you’re 5’4, consider a petite. I’m not sure if petite was on offer yet when I first purchased my Chrysalis Cardi, but I might have gone that route. I’m closer to 5’5 so I’m right on the border, but I do like to wear shorter dresses.

-The Chrysalis Cardi is surprisingly great for warm-weather locations! Our first trip after I bought mine was the Arctic, so I had scarves and cardigans and ponchos on my mind. But I get a ton of use out of my Chrysalis Cardi in Costa Rica. The fabric is super breathable, and I never find it too hot or suffocating.

-The Chrysalis Cardi comes in a whole bunch of different colors. I love black, but if you want something with more pop, there are plenty of other options.

If you want a lightweight, versatile piece of clothing you can wear a bunch of different ways, through different climates, that is ethically made and eco-friendly, then you can’t go wrong with any of the pieces from Encircled.

I’ve loved watching this brand continue to grow and roll out new items over the past few years, and I can’t wait to invest in more of their pieces in the future! Stay tuned for more photos this year when my Chrysalis Cardi comes with me to Hawaii, India, Africa and Europe!


Purchase A Chrysalis Cardi Here


What’s your favorite multi-purpose travel essential? Are you a pro-packer or do you find your bags are constantly exploding?


This post is made possible by Encircled. All thoughts and opinions, – including the decision to purchase the Chrysalis Cardi with my own hard earned cash and take it gallivanting around the globe – totally our own.



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The Chrysalis Cardi- My Ultimate Travel Essential (And How To Use It)