in the style of: samantha varvel

we caught up with the tastemaker and mom of two during her family’s long-weekend escape to talk about motherhood, the essentials she never travels without — and her favorite pieces from our latest capsule.

samantha varvel and daughter wearing minnow

tell us about yourself! where you're located, about your beautiful family and amazing career.  

i grew up overseas between singapore and london, but am so happy to be settled with my little family in connecticut — we get the perks of suburban life and a lovely backyard with all the bustle and excitement of new york city, just a stone’s throw away.

i started my career in finance and stayed for seven years, knowing the whole time i was meant to do something more creative. after my second baby was born, i pivoted to turning my budding lifestyle content creation business into a full-time focus. i feel so lucky that it has led to many wonderful opportunities and has been the perfect setup for this phase of life when flexibility has been my priority. it is a dream working with so many brands that i love and being able to express myself through styling, photography, and storytelling with video in a way that is creatively fulfilling.

what are your favorite minnow pieces from the capsule? 

i am a sucker for a green and white stripe, so this capsule truly speaks to me! i felt so chic in the cabana stripe bikini set. and if there’s an opportunity to match my two kids, i will always jump at it, so i definitely love coordinating stripe pieces for little boys and girls.

for minnow staples, the terry cover ups for kids are on repeat in our house during the summer. in fact, my son requests to wear his “towel shirt and shorts” even in the winter because they’re his favorite and so comfy! and they’re adorable so it’s a win-win.

minnow one piece, minnow bikini, and minnow brief product imagesgirls navy with white trim ruffle sleeve rashguard one piece | women’s charleston green cabana stripe tie-knot bikini top & low-waist bottom | boys navy cabana stripe brief

what’s in your carry-on?

i always make sure my proper camera and laptop are in my carry-on as well as a day or two worth of outfits and necessities just in case our checked bags don’t make it! i’ve learned the hard way more than once! 

my go-to in-flight beverage is:

ginger ale, and i’m not sure why it seems to be everyone’s go-to! 

my go-to travel uniform is:

i used to prioritize looking chic yet comfortable but to be honest, since flying long-haul with two under two, i dress purely for survival — comfort is king! :) you’ll find me in a comfy pair of jeans and my favorite sweatshirt at best. 

little girl by pool wearing minnow navy swim suit with bow on the back

girls navy with white trim ruffle sleeve rashguard one piece

my biggest piece of travel advice is:

when it comes to traveling with children, my biggest pieces of advice are:

  1. travel as much as you can in the first year because it’s easy breezy compared to what’s around the corner! 
  2. the hardest period to fly is from right after they turn one until about two-and-a-half to three years old. they’re too young to understand what is happening, but old enough to want to run around everywhere. avoid this stage at all costs (i joke), but if you must do it, put your blinders on and don’t stress over potential rude looks from people around you — babies have the right to fly as much as anyone else. you’re doing your best and you *will* make it to your destination, and it *will* be worth it. every time we flew to france, i swore it would be my last time. there were certainly some very challenging flights that i’ve blocked from my memory. but, it was truly always worth it in the end, and we kept going back.
  3. every time you fly with a small child, they will be in a different stage and it’s like flying with a different person altogether. each time i bought new gear hoping it would be the magic fix. the truth is, gear can help, but at the end of the day nothing is a cure-all and it’s just you and that baby getting through it.
  4. the good news is it *does* get easier. i’m finally coming up for air with a nearly five-year-old and three-year-old, and i’m pleasantly surprised now each and every time we fly by how pleasant and fun it is starting to become with my two little adventurers!

samantha varvel wearing minnow on poolside lounge chair wrapped in a towel

charleston green cabana stripe weekender bag | navy cabana stripe towel | women’s white with charleston green trim one piece

aisle or window:


my favorite souvenir:

something handmade

my room service order is:

eggs benedict for breakfast :) 

my bucket list destination:

i’m dying to do an african safari someday!

my favorite soundtrack for family road trips:

i love listening to mika with my kids

my favorite destination for family travel:


my favorite vacation memory:

i was fortunate to travel throughout asia with my family while we were living there during childhood — one of our most memorable trips was nepal!

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