If you are considering diving into the full-time RV lifestyle, then you know that figuring out what camping clothes and shoes to bring for RV living can be a challenge.
One of the best ways to make your RV feel like home is to have the clothing you need for all of your travel activities. Well, never fear! This blog post is here to help.
We’ll be discussing the best camping clothes for RV living and tips for RV clothing and shoe storage, so you can travel light and still be stylish.
So, whether you’re hitting the open road or staying in one spot, read on for some great tips!
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Tips To Bring Along The Right RV Clothes For Full Time RV Living
One of the biggest challenges of downsizing from living in a house to living in an RV is figuring out what clothing to bring on the adventure. You don’t have much storage space for clothes and shoes but need options for many different types of activities during your travels.
What Is A Camping Capsule Wardrobe?
The solution we have found is to travel with fewer but higher quality clothing items that have multiple uses. Since we have less clothing, it needs to be able to be used for multiple types of sightseeing and travel activities.
That is where the RV capsule wardrobe or camping capsule wardrobe comes in handy. A capsule wardrobe is a basic wardrobe of neutral mix-and-match items that all look great together.
It’s best to pick high-quality items that really hold up well to frequent wear. Our family loves outdoor activities so we often pick clothing items that are comfortable as activewear.
What RV Clothes Will Work Best For RV Living?
Before we get into the specifics of what we have in our RV wardrobe for full-time RVing, let’s find out what your clothing needs will be.
Some questions to ask yourself are: What kind of activities do you plan to do? How will RVing days differ from living in a house? Where do you plan to travel to and what is the weather like?
Some RV travel activities that you may enjoy and need clothing for are: going out to dinner, sightseeing, museums, amusement parks, sporting events, hiking, paddling or kayaking, festivals, swimming, visiting national parks, campground activities or rallies, long travel days, and just hanging outside at your campsite.
Once you think about what activities you are likely to do on the road in your RV, picture what you would normally wear for that activity. Can any of the activity outfits overlap?
For example, what I would wear out to dinner could also work great for museums. What I would wear at an amusement park to be comfortable with long walking days outside could also be great for visiting a national park.
Also, consider the RV weather for trip planning. Some RVers chase 70 degrees all year long. These travelers don’t have a need for snow boots or coats and probably won’t choose to waste precious storage space on those items.
Hopefully, you can come up with a few outdoor activity outfits, a few casual sightseeing outfits, and a dressier outfit that meets all of your activity needs. Picking quality items that mix and match within all of those activity categories are exactly how to build a space-saving RV capsule wardrobe.
Read on as I share the specific items we wear RV traveling year-round including shoes.
Our Favorite Camping Clothes For RV Living
When our family of 3 launched into full-time RV living 7 years ago, we really didn’t have a plan for what clothing and shoes to bring. So we made the mistake that most people make when they downsize for RV living, we brought way too many clothes and shoes!
We joke that our first year of full-time RVing was like the Oregon Trail, donating items at each stop as we traveled. Now I realize that we should have considered the activities we planned to do on the road and developed an outdoor capsule wardrobe for each member of our family that worked for those activities.
Hindsight is of course 20/20 but that is why I am sharing this information with you!
We also found that much of the camping clothes we did bring for RV living fell apart quickly because it wasn’t high enough quality to hold up to the outdoor activities we were doing on the road. If we were to start again, I would bring clothing items designed to hold up to frequent outdoor activities like KUHL clothing.
Summer Camping Clothes For RV Living
Our family falls into the group of RVers that love to chase 70-degree weather. We enjoy the sunshine, water activities, and the beach so most of our camping clothing falls into the summer clothing category. After all, when you can travel wherever you like, why not chase the best weather?
(It turns out that almost every RVer also wants to chase the perfect weather which can make it difficult to get RV camping reservations. Grab our FREE RV RESERVATION GUIDE which has all of our tips and tricks for how to snag sold-out campsites in state and national parks.)
Women’s Camping Clothes: Summer RV Camping Outfits
My RV capsule wardrobe includes high-quality neutral items that mix and match to create casual sightseeing outfits and comfortable outdoor activity outfits.
RV Wardrobe Shirts
• 6 + casual shirts
• 2 + nicer shirts
• 2 + active shirts/moisture wicking
• 3 + layering tees and tanks
Camping Pants Women’s
• 1 hiking pants/convertible pants
• 2 + leggings
• 2 + jeans
• 1 khaki pant (or substitute skirt)
• 3 + casual shorts
• 2 + active shorts
Nicer Camping Outfit
• 1 dress or skirt/top combo (or substitute khaki)
Camping Jacket Women’s: Lightweight For Camping Clothes Storage
• 1 lightweight pullover
• 1 thin hoodie
• 1 lightweight rain jacket
Swimwear RV Clothing
• 1 + swimsuits
• swim coverup
• rash guard
• sun hat
Women’s Best Camping Shoes For RV Living
• hiking shoes
• flip fops for pool and shower
• tennis shoes
• water sandals or water shoes for paddling
• dressy sandals or flats
Men’s Camping Clothes: Essentials For RV Living
Scott’s outdoor capsule wardrobe is very casual with mainly athletic clothing. He spends most of his time outside and enjoys comfortable moisture-wicking clothing.
Shirts – Men’s Clothes For Camping
- 2 + casual button-up or polo
- 6 + casual t-shirts
- 2 + active/moisture-wicking shirts
Camping Pants Men’s
- 2 + joggers or hiking pants
- 2 + jeans
- 1 khaki pant
- 2 + casual shorts
- 4 + active shorts
Camping Jacket Men’s: Lightweight For Camping Clothing Storage
- lined flannel shirt
- lightweight hoodie
- light rain jacket
Swimwear RV Clothing
- swim trunks
- rash guard
- swim hat
Men’s Best Camp Shoes And Shoes For RV Living
- hiking shoes/hiking boots
- flip flops or slides for the pool and shower
- tennis shoes
- water sandals for paddling
- casual shoes
Camping Clothes For Kids: Outdoor Living Clothing
It’s best to keep things simple with kid’s clothing while RV traveling. Comfy but sturdy clothing that is great for outdoor play is the best option for day-to-day RVing.
Girls’ Clothes For Full-Time RV Living
Sissy loves to play outside but also loves to dress up. When we lived in our house, she wore a dress or skirt every day. She was the most difficult to build a camping capsule wardrobe for.
To satisfy her desire to still dress up while RV traveling, we layered Target Cat and Jack brand cotton play dresses and skirts with leggings underneath when cold. Then added lots of t-shirts that mix and match great with skirts, leggings, or shorts.
To save space we used extra cotton dresses that could double as nightgowns. She had the same jacket, swim, and shoe needs in the RV capsule wardrobe as I did plus a pair of play sandals that also double as water shoes. We love Keen sandals for outdoor play.
Boys Camping Clothes For RV Living
Boys have similar clothing, swim, jacket, and shoe needs in the RV as men but are often very rough on their clothes. Extra pants, shorts, and t-shirts are great for outdoor play.
They also often need a pair of tough play sandals that double as water shoes as part of a boy’s outdoor capsule wardrobe. To save space, you can have boys sleep in activewear tees and shorts.
In fact, none of us wear pajamas in our RV. Most of our camping clothes are double-duty to save space!
Winter Camping Clothes: Cold Weather RVing
While we do our best to chase 70-degree RV weather when traveling, it can get downright cold sometimes even in the southern states during the winter. Even Southern Florida has cold snaps below freezing during the winter.
For winter our snowbird RV family embraces layers of tanks and tees under long sleeve t-shirts. We also all have a heavier hoody or fleece to wear instead of a coat.
One thing that does make a huge difference when we are out in the wind is a wool stocking cap. We all have one and it is perfect for chilly days out exploring.
Sissy and I also have low boots that we like to wear with jeans and leggings for winter. We all also have wool socks to keep our feet warm outside.
If you enjoy winter RVing locations or enjoy winter sports, then you will have different needs for coats, gloves, and boots. Dressing in layers though can still help to save RV storage space versus bringing bulkier items along.
RV Clothes Storage Ideas For Full-Time RV Living
Now that you have an idea what clothes to bring along for your RV living adventure, where do you store it all? Storage comes at a premium when RVing full-time. But don’t worry, I have some clothing RV organization ideas for you!
Tips For Camping Clothes Storage In RV Living
Our greatest RV clothing storage tip is to roll clothing. We hang all of our nicer camping clothing and roll everything else.
We even roll our socks, underwear, and swimsuits. Rolling camping clothing takes up much less space and if done carefully, still keeps many items wrinkle-free.
Rolled clothing can be stored in drawers, baskets, or fabric/plastic bins. If you are out of room in your RV drawers or camper closet, consider adding bins for rolled clothing in your upper cabinets in the living area.
Camping clothes are lightweight enough to work great in these upper cabinets. It’s always a good idea to avoid overloading upper storage cabinets.
Another RV clothing storage idea is to take out-of-season clothing and seal the items in Space Bags. Space Bags are used with a vacuum to suck out all of the air which allows the bag to lay flat taking up very little space.
It’s magical to watch how much the bags of clothes shrink in size! We store our space bags in the under-the-bed storage.
RV Closet Storage Ideas
The greatest space-saving invention ever for closets just happens to work great as an RV closet organizer. That invention is thin velvet-lined hangers.
The right RV hangers not only keep your items from falling off when bouncing down the road but save loads of space in your RV closet. They are a must-have RV living item.
Another RV closet storage idea is to roll clothing items and put them onto any shelves you may have in your closet. This works especially well for pants and leggings.
Another idea is to use packing cubes and roll clothing to fit inside. This can sometimes allow you to put shoes on RV closet shelves and storage cubes with rolled clothes on top.
A huge tip for taming RV clothing storage is something in and something out. Actually, this is a great tip for anything that you own when living in an RV.
If you bring something new into your RV clothes storage area or closet, then something has to go out. To live in an RV without losing your mind, everything has to have its place in your home on wheels.
Tips For RV Shoe Storage: Camper Shoe Storage Ideas
If you look at the items in our family’s camping capsule wardrobe for RV living, you will notice that each of us has 5-6 pairs of shoes. That is a lot of shoes to find a home for in an RV.
The first tip for storing shoes in an RV is to have a camper shoe storage location near your RV door for daily shoes. The dreaded shoe pile haunts many RVers and can drive anyone crazy.
RV shoe storage ideas next to the door include a shoe basket or a hanging shoe pocket organizer next to the door. This gives your family a place to keep the shoes when they take them off at the door.
If you are like me though, you don’t want to look at shoes at all. I have a few ideas for you.
Some RVs come with a shoe cubby under your inside RV stairs. If yours doesn’t, it’s often a simple modification to add a shoe cubby under the stairs that go up to your RV hall.
Another option is to have a storage cube or storage ottoman where shoes can be placed inside. Many of these also have lids that flip to function as a coffee table as well as a nice place to kick up your feet.
Another RV favorite is to get an RV shoe organizer from IKEA to place next to your RV door. The Trone is a skinny plastic storage system that hides 4 pairs of adult shoes but only sticks out from the wall 7 inches.
This is a great option for the RV hall or doorway. It can also be used in a closet. Another option is an RV shoe rack next to the door.
For the shoes that you aren’t wearing daily, our favorite RV shoe storage option is a hangable shoe pocket system that goes around the frame of your RV bed. This RV under the bed storage idea holds so many shoes and you usually can’t see the shoes under the mattress unless you lift your mattress or look under your bed.
Frequently Asked Questions: Clothing Full Time RV Packing List
How Many Clothes Do I Need To Live In An RV?
Consider how often you plan to do laundry when planning what clothes you need for RV living. We suggest building an outdoor capsule wardrobe that has quality neutral mix-and-match pieces.
It is great to have enough clothes to last a week before needing to do laundry. Sometimes it’s tough to fit laundry into a busy travel schedule.
What Do I Need For Full Time RV Living?
Many people wonder what to pack for living in an RV. When downsizing from a house to an RV, it can be tempting to bring too many clothes and shoes.
Storage space in an RV comes at a premium though, and it helps to bring fewer but higher quality items that hold up well to repeated wear and washing. We suggest building an outdoor capsule wardrobe to save space and have what you need for your outdoor adventures.
How Do You Pack Clothes In An RV?
It helps to find RV storage solutions to maximize space. Consider picking up a by-the-door shoe storage organizer or creating a cubby under your inside RV stairs.
Rolling clothes and using skinny velvet-lined space-saving hangers help to increase closet and drawer space. Packing cubes and Space Bags are other helpful RV clothing organizers.
What Camping Clothes Would You Bring RV Living?
Now that you know how to pick the best camping clothes for RV living and some creative ideas for storing them, you’re ready to get out there and explore! Stay comfy and save space by building your RV living capsule wardrobe following these tips.
What are your favorite pieces of clothing or shoes to take on an RV trip? Let us know in the comments below!
Looking for more great tips for RV living? Check out: Top 10 Tips For Living In An RV Full Time
Considering full-time RVing? Check out: Is Full Time RV Living Right For You?
For tips to avoid big problems in RV living, check out: When SHTF Full-Time RVing: 8 Ways To Keep Rolling
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Scott and Van of The Adventure Detour are travel writers focusing on RV travel, family outdoor travel, national parks travel, and hiking. They have been full-time RV living and traveling across the US since 2015. In 8 years of full-time RVing, they have visited 38 national parks so far with the ultimate goal to see them all. They work as digital nomads while roadschooling their daughter nicknamed Sissy. On the way to all 50 states, they have visited and hiked through 42 states so far. The travel bucket list is forever growing!