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How to Wear It: Small Bags

Don’t make your purse an afterthought. On a date night or a day of shopping, small bags are making a statement. Make sure you’re saying the right thing with these tips from local boutiques on how to pull it all together.

By Haley Phillips

Sep 2019

Variety of small black and white purses from Springfield MO boutiques
Photo by Brandon AlmsTiny bags come in many colors and shapes; we suggest choosing a neutral like black or white, so you can pair it with almost anything. Purchase Photo

Don't shy away from color

“The trend for small bags this fall is interesting geometric shapes with fun uses of hardware, lots of bold colors and colorblock designs. It is a time you can be both pragmatic and playful! You want your handbag to be eye grabbing.”—Lisa O’Dell, Blue Raven Emporium

Plan ahead and only take the necessities

“If you’re going to the pool or the beach in the summer or if you’re going on a trip, carry a bigger bag, but for a night out or going shopping, take a smaller bag so it’s not heavy and weighing on you. The best rule of thumb would be to think about what you’re going to do and then choose what size bag you want to use.”—Dalton Cohen, Texas Soul Boutique

Don't overload your bag

“You should avoid small bags that are too bulky. It is best to pick a bag that can hold the most items with the least amount of bulk.”—L.O.

Find the right fit for your style

“A good thing to style small bags with is an evening or date night outfit. I’m a mom, so that’s the only time I’m carrying a small bag. Try a good maxi dress or anything just a little bit dressier and add some wedges with it, even flare jeans with wedges and a blouse top. With the small handbags, it just gives it a little extra touch.”—D.C.

Don't forget to accessorize

“You can accessorize a small bag with a cute keychain or a scarf. Adding a small touch can really tie your bag in to any outfit.”—L.O.

Pack smart

“My essentials are the little wallet stickers that you put on the back of a phone; I just stick my cards and cash in that, and then my phone can fit in the small handbag. Or try a cute little coin purse for the evening to hold your money. Definitely pack your lipstick and a small compact mirror; that’s all you need!”—D.C.

Make the old new again

“A new handbag can give a classic or favorite outfit a fashion-forward new spin. You can wear a dress with booties and a small shoulder bag or clutch to give it a sleek look, or throw on a cozy sweater and your go-to jeans with a small backpack or [a bag with a] geometric shaped handle.”—L.O.

Don't be afraid to mix it up

“You can wear a small lantern-shaped purse with a casual everyday outfit or carry a black clutch to a formal event to hold your phone and lipstick.”—L.O.

Keep the bag cohesive with your look

“Make sure that the bag goes with your outfit. Try [a bag] that’s more neutral, so it goes with anything.”—D.C.

Bring the necessities

“Make sure you have a space for your phone and a small wallet. Throw in a lipstick, a small perfume, some travel-size oil blotting pads, a few pieces of gum and a hair tie or bobby pins.”—L.O.

Where to Shop the Trend

Find these bags, accessories and more from Blue Raven Emporium, Texas Soul Boutique, and Modern Society

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