Everyone wants to stay fashion forward. A handbag may be the perfect accessory. Most women own more than one handbag that they use for different occasions and color schemes. But, some women don’t coordinate their bag with what they are wearing. So, I researched how much your handbag does have to match your outfit.
Does your handbag have to match your outfit? Your choice of handbag depends on your lifestyle, but your purse should fit your style and personality, rather than just match the outfit that you have on.
Color matching is a hard thing for anyone to master. For example, deciding what purse matches with your shoes can be very difficult. Fortunately there are affordable and stylish brands out there making handbags (like Michael Kors Handbags) to give you plenty of options! Learning about what handbag is best for your style can help you elevate your fashion game.
Does Your Handbag Have to Match Your Outfit?
It is a no-brainer style secret that clothes and bags work together in creating that ‘it’ look. However great your outfit or other accessories, the perfect finishing touch comes from a good bag. So, to up your style quotient to the next level, you need to choose your bag with due care to go with your outfit.
Things to consider in your handbag selection:
- The setting of your outfit
- The patterns in your outfit
- If you outfit is casual or formal
Office, shopping, casual, dressy, formal, semi, informal, gala, red carpet- what you wear and which bag you carry with it depends first and foremost on the occasion.
Generally speaking, large bags give a relaxing aura, small bags add sophistication. That’s the reason, large bags go with casuals and small bags go with formals.
Too much matching between clothes and bag is quite injurious to your style quotient! The real trick lies in getting it right without looking like a monotone, monochrome mannequin.
Bags say much with their own style quotient. If you are using your outfit to make a style statement, let your bag add its own subtle chic message of resonance. Here’s how it works.
Leather clutches are classic. Crystal studded clutches are glamorous. Hobos are playful. Studded bags are edgy. Satchels and totes are practical. Cross body bags are casual. Decide the look you want. And carry the bag that echoes it.
A key basic rule to remember are that you should always be wearing one neutral color. Typically, people match their handbag to the shoes they are wearing.
If you are wearing gray shoes, you can choose a bag with fun colors or designs. An outfit that has many solid colors can be brightened up easily with a bad that has texture or an extra pop of color.
Another rule is choosing your bag based on the occasion. A stiff purse is good for a business outfit. This look is good for work and allows you to have a greater choice for dressier bags.
Additionally, you probably should avoid a stiff purse with an outfit that is more casual. If you like to wear casual or soft flowing clothes, your handbag should match the look. This purse is too boxy and stiff for this sporty outfit.
How to Match Your Handbag with Your Outfit
You should determine which occasion you are dressing for. Some of those occasions include office, shopping, red carpet, formal and so on.
How to match your handbag with any outfit:
- Try to choose colors that complement each other
- Choose bags that bring out your natural look and the positives in your outfit selection
You will realize that large bags give a relaxing aura while small bags normally make somebody look sophisticated. This is the reason you should carry a small handbag when going to a formal occasion.
Dark and/or strong colors are good with black handbags. The biggest rule of today’s fashion could be ‘improvisation’. Depending on the tone and shape of the shoes, it could be tacky, but it could look good also. If the purse is black, you can use the brown belt, but another colored shoe.
If it’s a formal event, then go with a black outfit, but if its less formal, try out something bright, like a white blazer. but most of all, it’s up to how you feel. and if you feel strange don’t use it.
For black and white outfits, you can bring a printed bag, if the bag the clothes have similar palette. For example, if you are wearing a black dress, it’s okay to carry a leopard printed bag that have white, black or even cream-colored tones.
You can also opt for a classic solid colored hand bag. Choosing this option can allow you to choose different colors to bring an unexpected pop of color.
For brown, cream and navy colored outfits, the rules seem to change. On the days of the week when you need a neutral color and are tired of wearing black, varying shades of brown and blue are the perfect ebony substitutes. For work, match these fail-safe colors with yellow, green and purple-colored handbags.
In the spring, your graphic navy and blue striped tops and dresses look their best when paired with a turquoise or kelly green straw handbag and brown slacks or with a red leather bag and jeans for a nautical look.
For pastel colored outfits, if you’re trying to look fresh for spring, you can follow a different set of rules. Wear pastel hues such as light blue, lavender, pale pink and lime green. Pair these colors with taupe, white, camel and charcoal gray handbags.
If you are mixing a pink pair of pants and a green blouse for an evening out with friends, carry a small eggshell or a metallic silver handbag to balance the pastel pairing beautifully.
Like your clothes, your bag too should help in upping your positives and taking the eye away from the unseemly bits. In other words, your bag’s shape and length should counterbalance your curves.
There is good news for leather bag lovers. Handbag leather is versatile and goes with most dress fabrics. Soft leather bags suit breezy summer styles better and heavy structured leather bags add gravitas to winter chic. So now you know how the divas get their bags and outfits so right.
Should your shoes and bag match?
Not necessarily. Your shoes and bag don’t have to exact copies of one another but they definitely shouldn’t clash.
If you’re wearing a certain tone of lavender shoes, let’s say a subtle lavender, you don’t want to have a handbag tone that disagrees with the subtle lavender.
Fortunately, there are a lot of colors that work with lavender! You can always match it to black, a light or pastel orange or yellow, but you wouldn’t want to have a dark red handbag or example. Contrast in this case isn’t the aim!
What are the Most Versatile Colors for Handbags?
It can be challenging enough to put a halfway decent outfit together, forget taking the time to change out handbags to go with each and every thing you wear.
Here are some of the most versatile colors for handbags:
The handbag colors that are the most versatile are brown and black. These colors should go with your basic wardrobe neutral color. For example, if one of these colors: black, brown, grey or navy is your wardrobe neutral a black leather bag will work.
If your wardrobe neutral is gray, brown or beige a brown leather bag will work. If you can only afford one or two handbags look for simple style bags without embellishments like logos, fringe, a lot of metal trim etc.
A classic handbag is an investment so purchase the best quality that you can afford. If you are looking for a colorful purse to ramp up an outfit or add a POP of color any solid color (red, orange, yellow, green, or metallic) are options.
A colored handbag will work with any neutrals and also work with some colorful clothing. When selecting a handbag be sure it is large enough to hold everything you need to carry with you.
Before you run out and purchase a black bag thinking it will be the most versatile handbag you can use I am going to suggest you purchase a tan handbag instead. Unlike the black bag, that you think will go with everything, a tan handbag will go with more.
Everyone believes that black accessories, like shoes and handbags, work with everything. But what happens when you wear brown or navy? Often, wearing these colors requires a bag change.
However, if your everyday bag was tan this wouldn’t have to be something you’d need to worry about.
To get the most out of the handbag you use every day, you want to choose a color that will fit right in with whatever you are wearing, from different shades of neutrals, like black, grey, navy, olive and brown, to any color of the rainbow.
There are about a gazillion shades of tan on the planet, from light buff to deep cognac. How does one decide which shade is right to use. There is no right answer to this, but going lighter in the warmer months and richer in the cooler ones is probably your best bet.
Also, look at your wardrobe on a whole. If your wardrobe is more yellow-based, meaning colors like autumnal shades, a warmer or more yellow based tan bag is better. If your wardrobe is filled with bright jewel tones and blue-based colors, more of a taupe tan will probably work better.
Pick a print, any print, and it is likely that a tan handbag will work. This can take a lot of aggravation out of getting dressed.
Red and tan is a gorgeous color combination, as is grey and tan. Often, when wearing grey, it is common to accessorize it with black. But shades like brown and tan look equally good, if not better. Additionally, if you are looking to do more with red, besides wear it with black, try tan. It’s so rich.
How to Pick the Right Handbag for Everyday Wear
When you are trying to choose the right handbag to wear everyday, there are a number of factors to consider.
Factors to consider in buying a handbag:
Think about the stuff that you want to have on you every day and then add a little more space, just in case you need to throw one more thing when the situation demands it.
Secondly, pay attention if the size of the bag is proportionate to your body type. If you’re short, it needs to be above your hips, if you’re tall it should end at your waistline.
This is important. Because it will be unfashionable if it doesn’t complement your figure. You can opt for some middle-sized bags, but if you know how to match to your body type and height, why not go for the perfect fit.
The bag shape can influence your overall proportions and appearance. If you nail that perfect shape, it will enhance your look. The general tip here is to go for the handbag shape that’s opposite of your body type. So, if you are very tall and thin, opt for a slouchy, rounded bag.
This will add some curves to your body. If you already have plenty of curves to go around and if you’re short, tall and rectangular bags are your friends. The rounder your physique is, the more structured and angular your bag should be.
This doesn’t mean you should go for the post-modern box like bags. For example, a petite, curvy body type should look great with a large rectangular clutch bag. Look at Adele in the many paparazzo photographs and you’ll get the idea on how to choose a handbag for everyday use with a style and the right size.
You must consider carefully how large of a bag you need and whether it would really suit you. If you are small or petite, carrying around a large handbag can overshadow your personality.
Here’s another tip: the part where the bottom of your bag sits is accentuated; so if you have small hips, select a bag that brushes the top of your hips. If that’s not the case, go for one that ends at your waist line. Also, be sure that your bag isn’t too small for your needs.
No matter how chic and stylish a bag is, it is of no use if it won’t last, especially if you are spending big bucks on it. Don’t ever let durability be the price of fashion and make sure that the bag you pick comes from a trusted retailer that would gladly guarantee the durability of the bag.
No need to experiment. If you already have a well-defined style, your bag needs to match that style. Not the other way around. If you love casual, buying a formal handbag won’t go well with your everyday needs.
Maybe for a meeting, but that’s about it. However, you do need to do your research. There are probably various handbag designs that can work. Comb through magazines, watch online fashion videos, search for women that like the same style as you.
Pinpoint the bag designs. You might not like the color, but it’s the style and design that might suit you. Try imagining them in different colors, slightly bigger, slightly smaller. Try seeing yourself wearing it. Does it look good? Does it say: me!
Remember, you need a handbag for every occasion. Don’t imagine yourself wearing it to elegant high-end dinner parties. Imagine the streets, the bus, the office and the date with the guy you like.
Sure, a green tote bag might be chic, or a big purple bag may look extraordinary, but do they really match items in your wardrobe? If not, they will more likely stay there till kingdom come and all the money you spent on them would be of no use.
So, pick something that goes with most of your dresses to get more chances to show off your new handbag.
Black goes with everything. It’s a safe choice. You can use it in spring, summer, autumn, and winter. You can wear black bags to a wedding, dinner party you name it!
But what if you’re tired of black and you want to explore other options? You will need to rampage your wardrobe and pinpoint predominant colors. See what other colors go with your palette.
If you’re having a problem extrapolating the queen colors, think about handbags in green, metallic, tan and teal. They are as versatile as black ones. Metallic bags are also season-less. Green is often called a “colored neutral” because it functions as a neutral shade.
Tan handbags are timeless. The color of the tanned leather is one of the best purchases you will ever make. You need to have one! Or two! And teal – as an accent color, it looks great in combination with a lot of other colors.
Consider how much storage you normally need in your bag. If it’s supposed to be used every day when you go to work, you may have a lot of things to stash into it. So, a small evening bag definitely won’t do, no matter how classy it is. Make a practical choice and pick a bag sized according to your needs.
Some of the best bag brands can cost you a fortune, but there are many ways to buy a good quality bag that doesn’t necessarily have to be designer. Stores like Target have a wide variety of fashionable purses for less. Other mall brands also sell fashion purses that can make your outfit stand out.
If you feel like you absolutely need to buy a designer purse, stores like Ross, Marshalls and TJ Maxx have a designer purses for less than their sticker price. You can buy a Michael Kors purse that could cost you hundreds of dollars for about 200 dollars. Second tier brands like Tommy Hilfiger are also available.
Of course, if you feel the need to buy a luxury bag, the sky is the limit. However, be sure to follow the rules to make sure you make a smart purchase!
(Want more handbag fun? Check out what Queen Elizabeth carries in her handbag for another fun read!)