6 Smart Ways to Pick a Purse That Matches Your Outfit

Purse match guide
Photo: Kristina Petrick / Unsplash

Accessories can transform an outfit with minimal effort. Owning a range of bags and purses in different styles and colors can help you take your wardrobe from good to outstanding. They can also help you look more put together, especially when the purse matches well.

But, how do you build up a range of purses to match your outfit? Not everyone wants to buy many handbags in every color, so how do you find one or two that match your clothes?

If you’re looking for a purse match guide for choosing perfectly suitable items that complement your clothes and style, keep on reading!

Why Matching a Purse With Your Outfit Is Important

Not every outfit needs a purse, but many do!

Adding a matching purse to your usual outfits will keep you coordinated and in style too. If you want to look presentable or well “put together,” matching garments is a key sign that you’re on top of the trends.

It’s always best to choose a purse that represents your style or personality because you’re more likely to use this. Don’t throw money at an expensive purse to follow trends, as you most likely won’t use it much, and it’ll collect dust at home.

RELATED: How To Dress Like A French Woman: 25 French Style Outfits

The right purse will also complement your lifestyle. For example, if you work an active or on-the-go job, you might not want to be lugging a designer handbag around. If you prefer luxury items, a minimalist canvas tote won’t work with your style. Start researching online and see what models or celebrities that wear your style carry. This can inspire you to start your purse journey.

Does the Purse Have to Match the Outfit?

When you’re trying to find a matching purse, you can look at different categories. You can match the color of your purse, or the pattern, and sometimes even the material. Depending on how bright or colorful your outfit is, either can work!

Color Matching

Photo: stylemissmolly.com

When you’re matching the color of your purse to your outfit, you should assess your wardrobe and see what colors you wear a lot. This is so you can match the purse with more than one outfit – giving you more options!

Color matching is notoriously hard to do, especially if you’re looking for a color that isn’t in season. Because of this, we would recommend buying a purse in a neutral color or black and white. This gives you more versatile ways to pair it with outfits, and these colors never go out of style either.

On the other hand, if you love embracing loud colors, you should choose a bright purse. Brands like Michael Kors offer purses in a multitude of colorways, allowing you to buy on-trend bags in a color that suits your taste.

Pattern Matching

Pattern matching applies to designer purses and clothes. Often, you see influencers or models with purses that have the same designer print as their outfits. This is an easy match as you can buy a purse and jacket from the same collection, and they will usually feature a matching print.

The downside to this method is designer purses and clothes are expensive, so not everyone wants to splurge on them. Also, as you’re matching a print, it will only work with one or two outfits, whereas a plain purse can match a range of looks.

What Is Your Purse Supposed to Match?

Photo: notimeforstyle.com

There’s no set rule about what your purse should match, but there are some common ways to match your purse. For example, matching your purse color to your shoes makes an outfit more cohesive and allows you to build up accessories in a specific color.

You can also match your purse to your coat or jacket. This is a great match to make if you want to wear a variety of clothes with the purse, as only the jacket and purse need to match.

Another way to match your purse is to find clothes with trims or details of the same color. Instead of matching your purse to a block color, pick clothes with smaller color details for a not-so-obvious purse match.

4 Aspects of Matching a Purse to Your Outfit

We’ve already discussed that you can match the color or the pattern to your outfits. Let’s elaborate things a little bit.

Generally, we can consider 4 different aspects: color, bag style, design, and material.

1. Choose a Color That Contrasts With Your Outfit

Photo: fashionjackson.com

Contrasting colors aren’t always the first thought when we speak about matching. However, they can tie an outfit together.

A great example of contracting colors working together is black and white. These shades are opposites, yet if you add a white bag to an all-black outfit, it looks chic and on-trend. This match works the other way round too, a black purse with a white coat looks high fashion.

You can play with other contrasting colors too, a popular pair to wear is pink and green. Traditionally, pink and green oppose each other, yet pastel pink and pastel green have been constantly put together for street-style looks in the last few years. When you go for a muted tone, the contrast isn’t too hard, and it complements the outfit well.

2. Find a Bag Style That Is in Sync With Your Look

When we talk about purses, you may be thinking about traditional designer bags. If these don’t suit your look, you can also explore different types of purses that suit your style better.

A popular bag alternative is the clear plastic bag that you can see inside. We aren’t talking about grocery bags here!

This trend is popular for edgy styles and involves synthetic baths that are often tinted in color. If your style doesn’t work with Chanel or Louis Vuitton bags, explore the world of unique bags instead. Other styles you can use are tote bags, belt bags, and cross-body bags.

3. Choose a Design So It Complements Your Other Accessories

Similar to matching patterns, finding a bag with a motif or design on it can help you coordinate it with your outfit.

With so many stores available now, you can find an extensive range of patterned and different bags. Applique is a common technique used to make bags stand out too. Find a bag that features a range of colors and match your outfit to one or two of the smaller areas for a subtle outfit match.

4. Choose a Material Which Complements Your Other Clothes

Designers are so creative that you can find bags and purses in any fabric. This also allows us to match fabrics instead of colors, giving a subtle outfit matching look.

Popular fabrics to do this with include corduroy, denim, and plain cotton. Tote bags are often made from these materials, so buy some pants in the same fabric for a cohesive look.


Photo: Joshua Rondeau / Unsplash

Here are the most common questions about matching your purse to your outfit!

What Color Purse Is Most Versatile?

Everyone’s style is different, so picking one color for everyone is difficult. However, you can’t go wrong with black, grey, white, or beige. These hues can sit well with any color palette, meaning you’ll always be able to find an outfit to pair your purse with. 

Do Your Purse and Wallet Have to Match?

This question is most common when buying a designer purse as most stores offer a matching wallet. They don’t need to match, but if you’re a fan of coordination, you should get the matching purse! What’s more satisfying than a matching set? Plus, if it’s good quality, it will last for years.

How Much Should I Spend on a Purse?

The cost of your purse will depend on your personal budget. Just because designer purses are popular doesn’t mean you should go into debt to find one! There are so many affordable brands out there that offer good-quality purses for lower prices, so shop around and research before committing to an expensive purse.

The Takeaway

A purse is essential to the busy girl, especially when it matches her outfit!

Hopefully, this purse match guide has given you some inspiration for your future outfits. Always research your purse before buying too. Happy shopping!

About The Author