Your Guide for Choosing the Right Garment Bag for Traveling

Suits tend to need extra care when traveling. It’s not enough to just throw one into a duffel bag or fold it gently in a rolling suitcase. When you’re traveling to a special event such as a job interview, wedding, or professional conference, you need to look your absolute best.

Keeping suits in tip-top shape while traveling isn’t a guarded secret. You just need the right tool for the job - and that begins with a quality garment bag.

1. What is a Garment Bag?

A garment bag is a piece of specialized luggage designed for carrying formal attire. If the item is stored on a hanger, garment bags are designed for their transport. They go by several names, including dust covers, suit covers, or tux covers.

What is a Garment Bag?

Their basic design includes a protective outer layer to stand up to storage in a car trunk, plane cargo hold, or dusty closet. The inside is usually lined with a soft material meant to cradle your clothing, keeping it from creasing or wrinkling. Both carrying handles and loops to hang the bag from a door hook or closet rod are standard features as well.

2. Why Invest in a Garment Bag?

Garment bags are essential travel items for any individual looking to safely move high-value attire. These specialized luggage items carry added benefits as well, serving as a valuable part to any luggage strategy. Some other perks of the garment bag include:

Why Invest in a Garment Bag?

1) The Perfect Short-Trip Standalone

Garment bags are ideal for transporting that special outfit for any occasion, but their sturdy construction and ample carrying capacity guarantee they can be the only piece of luggage you need for a short-term trip. Most garment bags can easily handle 1-2 nights of clothing, along with a pair of shoes and some socks and underwear! Sling the whole bag over your shoulder and go conquer the weekend!

2) An Acceptable Flight Companion

As long as the garment bag isn’t stuffed to the brim like a suitcase, some airlines won’t consider this your carry-on, allowing you to set in an overhead compartment or on your lap - in addition to your actual carry on. Some attendants will even allow for the garment bag to be hung in a low-travel area of the plane for the duration of the trip. Make sure to check ahead of time with customer service before your flight departs.

3) Extra Space in your Duffel Bag

Garment bags can handle one suit or a few day’s worth of clothing, creating more room in your main duffel bag to bring additional items. Perhaps it’s an extra sweater for cool evenings, an additional pair of sneakers for casual time, or even a small gift for a relative. With your weekender bag over your shoulder and your garment bag in hand, you’ll be traveling light without traveling bare, thanks to this perfect combo.

4) Long-Term Wardrobe Protection

Over the years you’ve invested significantly in your wardrobe, and you need to protect your precious clothing items while in storage. This is especially true for garments made of leather, wool, or suede.

Leaving high-value clothing open to the elements, even if stored in a closet, invites irreparable damage to your clothing. Dust, mold, moisture, humidity, and insects such as moths are all potential threats when clothing is packed away long-term.

Choosing a high-quality (avoid plastic or non-woven) garment bag will protect your outfits from the elements, preventing holes, discoloration, mold, or odors.

3. How to Pack a Garment Bag Properly

The trick to using a garment bag properly is all in how it’s packed. It’s not a gym bag, and shouldn’t be treated as such! Some tips to using a garment bag properly include:

How to Pack a Garment Bag Properly
  • Pack clothes on pant or specialty hangers. This allows for piggybacking of wardrobe items (slacks hung on the pants bar with the shirt and sportscoat draped over). Don’t cut corners when doing this - pull shirt sleeves all the way through jacket sleeves, ensure buttons are all buttoned on shirts and fold pants along the crease. The tighter the packing job, the fewer wrinkles you’ll have to deal with later.
  • Only pack clothing made from natural fibers. Materials like cotton, linen, and silk all naturally absorb moisture. This means upon arriving at your destination, you can hang the bag from a shower rod, turn on the hot water, and the weight of the damp clothing will remove the wrinkles.
  • Pack clothing in the order it will be worn. If the job interview comes before the class reunion, make sure the business suit is packed before the polo and chinos.
  • To cut down on garment creasing, stagger the weight of your clothing items. This balancing of the entire bag makes a big difference in how clothes will hold up during travel.
  • Use outer pockets to store items that can be flattened. Some common items to place here include belts, neckties, bow ties, or pocket squares.

4. Choosing Your Next Garment Bag

Ready to invest in your wardrobe’s safe future with garment bags? Well, all options are not created equal! Cheap plastic bags, commonly made from the same material as your shower curtain, can trap in heat and moisture, leading to garment discoloration. Non-woven options, similar to the materials that comprise reusable shopping bags, prevent natural airflow and cause accelerated deterioration of your clothes.

Choosing Your Next Garment Bag

When planning your next garment bag purchase, trust a brand known for quality. Butler Luxury designs, manufactures, and sells luxury clothing accessories throughout the world to premier clothing designers, tailors, and hotels. They are recognized as the most demanding and best in their field.

Their very best items are now available directly to the public. You can shop with confidence and the firm knowledge that what you buy is at the top of the mark in every way.

5. Garment Bags by Butler Luxury

Developed in partnership with museum textile conservators and manufactured in Brooklyn, New York, our Butler's Closet® Wardrobe Covers use no chemicals, bleaches, or dyes and are constructed solely from finely woven cotton fabric.

Choosing Your Next Garment Bag

Our garment bags are held to the same standards used to protect priceless historical and important garments in museums!

Maintain your suits in stellar condition. Our garments bags all come with the following features:

  • Original designs—beautifully tailored
  • Bespoke covers to protect clothing from light, dust, insects, and damage in the closet
  • 24" x 4" x 42"—generously sized with a 4" gusset, allowing bags to usually hold more than one item
  • 100% cotton percale - woven to textile conservator specifications
  • 200 thread count
  • Free of dye, bleach, sizing, and chemicals
  • Fabric scoured with a final "pure finish" water-only rinse
  • Buttons—not zippers—to prevent snags, and an overlapping placket to keep out light, dust, and insects.
  • Machine washable and proudly "Made in New York"

Whether it’s a tuxedo, suit, gown, or jacket, garment bags from Butler Luxury reliably protect your clothing all year long. You can rest easy knowing our covers will shield your wardrobe and keep your outfits looking their best - whether in the closet or in transit.

Start your journey with garment bags today. Your wardrobe will thank you for it! Visit us online at ButlerLuxury.com to shop our selection of garment bags and high-quality hangers. Questions? Contact us today with any questions or comments. We’re here to help!