If you struggle to choose the right handbag to offset your outfit, don’t worry – here are some tips to help you look perfectly put together every time.
Carry it or wear it?
Cross-body bags have been huge news over the last few years, but this is a casual style on the whole so mightn’t be the best choice for work if you’re based in a formal setting. Cute cross-body bags are perfect for casual weekend looks and go great with summer dresses or jeans and t-shirt combos.
The classic shoulder bag is the safest choice if you work in a smart, formal environment; worn either long or short, the shoulder bag adds an elegant yet serious touch to any outfit. If you prefer a larger bag, a slouchy holdall in soft leather-look fabric is great for casual attire and can be slung over your shoulder or carries in the crook of your elbow.
The best bag for the occasion
Your first consideration should be formal vs casual. A stiff, structured handbag looks great with formal wear – i.e., a suit or a tailored outfit – while a soft, slouchy bag is far more suited to casual attire, such as jeans or maxi dresses like the ones at https://www.axparis.com/collections/maxi-dresses. Carrying an overly formal bag when you’re off to the pub or the park doesn’t really work; likewise, carrying an oversized hobo style bag to your corporate office job might not be the best look. If you’re off to a fancy wedding, you might be able to get away with something more whimsical – Vogue https://www.vogue.co.uk/gallery/wedding-guest-bags selects 10 to look out for.
Clutch or strap?
Clutch bags certainly have their place, but they’re not convenient for everyday use as they require you to hold the bag in your hand at all times. They’re best saved for events such as weddings where a pretty jewelled or sparkling clutch adds an extra element to your outfit and there are plenty of places to set your clutch down safely so you’re not holding it all day.
Try a few different bags in the mirror to find a size that works with your outfit. For example, if you’re wrapped up in a big coat and lots of layers and a scarf, an oversized bag might swamp you and look too much.