How to Pair Handbags and Shoes

By September 26, 2017Fashion, Lifestyle
Handbag Trends with Shoes

In the fashion world, there tends to be a lot of questions about whether or not women should match their handbag and shoes. For many of us, we’re just not sure how exactly we’re supposed to pair the two or what handbag trends are trending at the moment. We try too hard to match, or too hard to experiment with our style, and we end up either looking too coordinated, too outdated, or just plain crazy.

Just as with anything in fashion, how you pair your handbag and your shoes are going to be very different depending on your preferred style. If you’re in that boat of not knowing how to pair the two, we highly suggest you start gathering inspiration. Spend some time on Pinterest or Instagram to see which handbag and shoe combinations you’re drawn to. This will prevent you from trying a combination simply because it might be trendy; and instead, you’ll know exactly what you like, and have no trouble at all pairing your shoes and handbag.

Not totally satisfied with that answer? No worries, we’ve got some tips for you that will make your next outfit styling session a breeze.

Consider The Season

Consider the SeasonImage via Pinterest

First and foremost, when matching your bag to your shoes, it’s important to consider the season. When it comes to picking your shoes based on the season, for most of us, this is fairly simple. We know boots are for cold months, and sandals are for the warmer months. Easy, right? However, when it comes to then trying to make sure your bag is seasonally appropriate, it’s a little more challenging. As a general rule of thumb, lighter colored handbags work well for warm months, while darker colors work better for the cooler ones. If you’re wearing a pastel pink bag in a floral pattern, with boots, seasonally, you just don’t match. Trust us, when both your handbag and your shoes give off the same seasonal vibe, your look will appear much more put together and refined.

If the idea of having to coordinate your handbag with your shoes based on the season seems like too much, we suggest having a great neutral bag in a black or tan that can be worn for both cool months and warm months. While black is more suited for cooler months, it’s still something that can definitely be done in warmer months as well. We’re all about that versatility.

Handbag VersatilityImage via Stylish Wife

Don’t Get Too Wrapped Up With Matching

Mismatching is OKImage via @sassyredlipstick

This may sound like counter-intuitive advice considering the topic of this article, but really, it’s very easy to overthink matching. Rather than overt matching, try pairing your handbag and shoes with coordinating colors, or look for a small detail that can tie the two together. If your handbag is primarily black with a small pop of red, try out a red shoe for a subtle match. Alternatively, you can skip the matching altogether and instead just coordinate. The looks that tend to stand out the most are the ones where a fashionista uses a totally unexpected color combination. As shown above, would you ever think to pair hot pink with teal? Probably not. And yet, it works. This is where spending some time on Pinterest to see which color combinations you enjoy will help you when styling an outfit.

Neutrals Always Win

Neutrals Always WinImage via Pinterest

If you haven’t sensed a bit of a theme here, neutrals always win. While you can definitely go with those unexpected color combinations, you’ll find you get the most use out of your purchases when they’re easy to match, like neutrals. Black handbag with black shoes? Simple. Tan shoes with a tan handbag? Easy. The only neutral pairing we would stay away from would be brown shoes with a black handbag, and vice-versa. When it comes to neutrals, this is where you probably want to match pretty accurately, rather than trying different neutral combinations. Having said that, there are no rules when it comes to fashion. If you put together an amazing outfit that you think looks great with black and brown accessories, then we highly suggest going with your instinct. You know your style best, after all.

Match Colors and Mix Textures

Match Colors and Mix TexturesImage via Trend to Wear

If you are more inclined to match your shoes and handbag (i.e. black shoes with a black handbag), we suggest playing with texture and embellishment to get an overall more interesting look. If your handbag is plain black leather and your shoes are also plain black leather, this can tend to look flat and dull. To liven it up, look for a handbag that has embellishment like chic gold hardware, or perhaps a black boot in a suede with buckles. These small details make all the difference. Plus, your best outfits will come from experimenting and creating visual interest. If you play it too safe with your fashion choices, your style can look tired and outdated, and we definitely wouldn’t want that, now would we?

And there we have it: some simple tips to keep in mind next time you’re pairing your shoes and handbag.

Are you more inclined to match the two completely, or do you like playing with color? Trust your fashion gut; it always knows best. When you’re confident with what you’re wearing, and are truly embracing your own personal style, that’s when you’ll truly shine.

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