You’ve found the perfect wedding guest dress, the shoes, and now all that’s left is a wedding guest bag to match. I’ve made the mistake of prioritising everything but the bag before and won’t be making it again.
A beautiful bag is that final piece of the outfit that ties everything together, when pulling a mis-matched clutch bag out of the depths of a wardrobe or making do with a heavy everyday handbag doesn’t give your wedding guest outfit the final flourish it deserves.
How to pick the best wedding guest bag
Size: The ideal wedding guest bag will be big enough to hold all your essentials (phone, make up, money, confetti!) but not so big that it detracts from your outfit and is uncomfortably heavy. Over shoulder straps are always useful if you want to go hands-free.
Colour: Switch your everyday black leather bags for pops of colour, pastels or neutrals so that your bag will compliment your wedding guest outfit, rather than detract from it.
Longevity: It might sound obvious, but I can’t stretch to buying a new bag for every wedding (let alone a new outfit!) so make sure you really love the bag you pick, and it’ll become the special occasion bag you look forward to bringing out at every opportunity.
Best for luxe on a budget: Mango
When I’m checking out the best of Mango’s new in section, it’s shoes and bags I look to first. The designs look really expensive for the prices and you know you’ll find some of the best designer dupes amongst the fashion-led pieces.
Best for a statement: Zara
You have to act fast when it comes to shopping Zara handbags. One day they’re there, the next they’ve vanished. Unlike that Zara bomber and the Zara It dresses of the year, their handbags fly more under the radar, so you can pick up something special without worrying everyone else will be wearing it too.
Best for abstract design: Charles & Keith
Charles & Keith lead the way when it comes to unexpected, unusual and modern handbag and shoe styles on the high street. They’re nearer the £100 price range, so are more of an investment, but are a great choice if you’d like the designer handbag experience, for significantly less.
Best for boutique styles: Anthropologie
When you’re looking through Anthropologie’s handbag selection, it feels like you’re browsing through a curated designer boutique. Expect an eclectic mix of different brands and unusual styles, perfect if you lean more towards a colourful and vintage aesthetic.
Best under £30: Reserved
Every one of these bags from Reserved is under £30, but you would never know it.
Best for minimal design: Arket
Best for embellishment: Oliver Bonas
Jetting off on a destination wedding in the sunshine? Make sure you take a look at the beautifully embroidered and embellished handbags at Oliver Bonas. They’ll take you from wedding guest to dinner and drinks on the rest of your holiday.
Best for elevated straw bags: & Other Stories
Another handbag pairing for a destination wedding guest outfit would be a straw style, but, as & Other Stories demonstrates, it’s all about elevating the straw designs with leather detailing and pops of colour.
Best for classic pastels: Katie Loxton
Katie Loxton’s selection of bags is full of classic designs with subtle twists, in spring-ready pastels and versatile neutral shades that would compliment lots of wedding guest outfit options for now and future wedding seasons to come.
Best for leather colour pops: Radley
For bolder colour pops look to Radley, where you’ll find elegant handbag shapes that are the perfect size for wearing to a wedding this spring.