I'm going to make a bold claim: A handbag is the most hardworking item in any wardrobe. Hear me out. How often do you change your clothes? Every day? Shoes? Depending on said clothes, you likely switch them up a few times a week. Your bag? Well, if you're anything like me, you can carry the same bag for weeks at a time until you fancy a change. Of course, I don't want to assume you're the same, but having spoken with my nearest and dearest ahead of writing this, they all use their bags the same way I do.
This brings me to my point; handbags have to be versatile and work with a multitude of items to make them worth their money, regardless of the budget you're working with. However, in the quest to make my handbags as adaptable as possible, I've fallen into a bit of a trap in that I only really ever buy black bags—or, at a push, tan. Eager to breathe new life into my arm candy collection and save myself from becoming weary with the bags I already own, I've decided to treat myself to a handbag in a different colour. Can you believe it!
This got me thinking—are there handbag colours that go with everything that aren't black or tan? I set about finding out. After hours of analysing, I can confirm that there are six. What I found most interesting was that many of these colours are found in nature, which bestows outfits with an air of calm. Then there are others which act like as palate cleansers against striking clothing.
Whatever your usual preference, I believe there's a bag for you just waiting to be discovered below. Handbag colours that go with everything? Coming right up.
Style Notes: It might surprise you to learn that classic red doesn't make my edit. Although there is something timeless about it, I found postbox hues to be too strong set against shades such as greige. Deeper shades of burgundy, however? They work with absolutely everything.
Shop Burgundy Bags:
Style Notes: The first of our found-in-nature tones, sandy-coloured bags made my edit over the likes of mustard or beige as the tend to loan themselves well to different shades on the colour spectrum. From navy and khaki to pink and even purple, I can picture them with the lot.
Shop Sand Bags:
3. Forest Green
Style Notes: Bright green hues are everywhere right now but handbags in forest green? They're for life. By this point, it should go without saying that I think dark green bags pair with pretty well every other colour out there. Owing to their deep shade, I'd even go as far as to say they work with bright red tones without running the risk looking Christmassy. Now that's impressive.
Shop Dark Green Bags:
4. Burnt Orange
Style Notes: While tangerine provides a cool contrast against lots of colours, I don't know how expensive ultra-bright oranges look. Instead, I'd recommend orange bags with a rusty undertone, which give the same effect as their vivid counterparts, but won't date a year or so down the line.
Shop Burnt Orange Bags:
5. Sky Blue
Style Notes: The more research I did, the more it became apparent that light blue bags are perhaps the most underrated in terms of their versatility. Who What Wear's Editor in Chief Hannah Almassi tells me she herself has a light blue bag which she's yet to find something it doesn't work with.
Shop Sky Blue Bags:
Style Notes: If you're looking for a bag colour that's 100% guaranteed to go with everything, then you really ought to consider white. Like a pair of box-fresh kicks, a white bag can give any outfit, and any colour of outfit, a cool overhaul.
Shop White Bags:
Maxine Eggenberger is Who What Wear UK’s deputy editor and has over twelve years of experience in fashion journalism. She been creating engaging and elevated style content for Who What Wear UK since 2018, covering runway reports, emerging trends, long-form features, self-styled shopping stories, and columns, including her edit of the best new-in buys. She ensures the highest editorial standards are met across the site, works closely with influencer talent on content initiatives, represents the brand at industry events, and regularly contributes to social media. Previously, Maxine appeared on TV in her own fashion segment and has interviewed countless celebrities—everyone from Victoria Beckham to Oscar winner Lupita Nyong’o.
Prior to Who What Wear UK, Maxine’s career began when, after completing her first-ever internship, she was offered a position on the Look magazine fashion desk. She accepted, leaving university a year early in the process. She went on to become the title's fashion news and commercial content editor, with a stint as InStyle.co.uk’s fashion writer along the way. She later served as Look’s acting Editor in Chief before embarking on a successful freelance career, working with Grazia, The Pool, and Marie Claire amongst others. Maxine works remotely from her countryside home near Edinburgh.
French Women Always Wear This Jeans-and-Flats Outfit Formula
Easy as un, deux, trois.
By Drew Elovitz
I Went to France and Saw Everyone Wearing These 5 Basics on the Streets of Paris
Effortless and chic.
By Bobby Schuessler
French Girls Laugh Every Time Americans Wear These 3 Things
By Lauren Eggertsen
Amal Clooney Wore Controversial Boots to the Airport That'd Make TSA Squirm
They're not exactly travel friendly, but they are incredibly chic.
By Erin Fitzpatrick
6 Stylish Influencers Shared Their Ultimate Spring Wish Lists With Me
Exclusively for you.
By Bébhinn Campbell
Lily James Debuted Prada's 2024 It Bag in the Departure Area of Milan's Airport
Consider it TSA approved.
By Eliza Huber
I Haven't Shopped at J.Crew in Months—These Elegant Picks Are Now in My Cart
By Grace O'Connell Joshua
I Spent 7 Hours Digging Through Saks—39 Items I Discovered That I Now Need
The perfect pastime.
By Aemilia Madden