Should You Match Shoes and Handbag?

Should you match your shoes and your handbag when styling an outfit? It's an age-old fashion question with varied opinions and answers. We checked out a multitude of sources to get the consensus on this age-old question. 

The answer is no, your shoes and purse don't have to match. Just like with any style choice, you can mix and match as long as your overall look is cohesive. If one piece is a true statement, then tone down on the others. Match your purse to your dress and have a pair of brightly colored shoes. Or, match your shoes to your outfit and carry an inspiring handbag.

A woman wearing a tight red dress and black shoes wile holder her black handbag, Should You Match Shoes and Handbag?

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Let's take a look at some variations so that you can decide what's the best style for you.

Matching Your Shoes And Your Handbag

If you love things that match, then, by all means, pick a handbag and a pair of shoes that go together. There's nothing wrong with creating that cohesion in your accessory choices.

A woman wearing a tight red dress and black shoes holder her black handbag


A black bag with a black purse is super classic for any type of outfit. Here a pencil skirt in red is an excellent complement to the pair.

For evening wear, consider matching a metallic toned bag with metallic shoes. Here a small gold mesh clutch pairs beautifully with a tall strappy pair of stilettos.

A fit woman wearing a gold dress with her golden shoes on and a gold engraved purse

This gold mesh clutch will pair beautifully with the shoes below. Click here for this bag on Amazon.

This pair from Badgley Mischka are spectacularly elegant for a formal occasion. Click here for these on Amazon.

A woman wearing a black dress and blue shoes while carrying her handbag

Like color? Here a bright blue fringed bag in suede color matches with a pair of shiny shoes. Though the same color, the difference in the texture gives it interest.

This suede leather purse is an excellent match for the shoes below. Click here for this on Amazon.

Click here for these on Amazon.

Choosing Similar Tones For Purse and Shoes But Not Quite Matching

Another option is to pick colors that are close or related, but not quite matching. For instance, this outfit with reddish-orange bag and truer red shoes looks put together without being too matching. 

A tall woman wearing a striped black and white dress with her red shoes on and holding her red handbag

Tones of tan and cream and white come together to create a perfectly beautiful summer look. In this photo, the model wears a pair of strappy nude sandals and pairs them with a creme quilted handbag with chain handles in gold. The look, combined with her white sundress, is cohesive and coordinated.

A woman holding her beige colored handbag with her matching sandals while standing on the side of the road

This pair of strappy lace-up pumps are similar to the model's shoes above. Paired with the bag below, you can get this not quite matching look for yourself. Click here for these shoes on Amazon.

This quilted ivory bag with chain handles from Moschino is an excellent complement to the shoes above. Click here for this purse on Amazon.

So You Don't Want To Match Your Shoes And Purse, That's Okay!

If matching is not your thing, then go ahead, put it together in your way. There's no absolute rule when it comes to the fashion of accessories, and we've found some examples to make you feel great about your choice.

In this look, a pair of black shoes are paired with a nude-colored bag. The shoes match her dress, and the bag is close in tone to her lovely pink overcoat, but they're not a match.

A formally dress woman holding her tablet and white handbag

When it comes to casual, really anything goes. Here the wearer has chosen a comfy pair of sneakers to pair with jeans and a gorgeous large coral colored tote bag. Nothing matches precisely, and it all works perfectly.

A woman sitting on the ground with a red handbag on the side

Here Kate Spade's tote in peach can give you that fun breezy color for a casual outfit on the go. Click here to see this fun bag on Amazon.

Should Shoes And Handbag Match For A Wedding?

Generally speaking, matching your shoes and handbag as a wedding guest may make the look a bit dated. Try a bold bag and simple shoes or vice versa. In this look, an elegant black clutch picks up colors from the leopard print dress, and nude-colored shoes give it a modern look.

A woman wearing a cheetah skin dress and a light yellow colored shoes holding her black handbag

If you love matching, it can work without looking old. Here a pair of hot magenta shoes are paired with a beaded and magenta clutch for a fun spring wedding look.

A woman wearing a black dress and pink shoes while holding her pink handbag

Should A Fascinator Hat Match Your Shoes And Bag?

Three women wearing colored dresses and matching shoes

Fascinator hats are those jaunty hats that sit perched on the side of the head. They're often worn to polo matches and horse races, sometimes to weddings, and often to society galas and parties. In general, you want to match your fascinator to some part of your outfit. It could match your shoes and your bag, or it could match your dress. That choice is up to you. But both will look great.

A black fascinator is easy to match as black shoes, and black purses are available in every style, shape, and price range. Click here for this hat on Amazon.

We don't know about you, but it seems like it's time to go shopping for a new handbag and the perfect pair of shoes to match or not to match. That choice is up to you. 

If you enjoyed our post here at, please do check out these other posts we think you'll enjoy below:

What Color Shoes With Gold Dress? [Six suggestions that work!]

Where and How to Store Handbags [6 Actionable Suggestions]

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