When it became clear that ivory and pastels were going to be one of the biggest trends of 2012, I felt a bit disheartened at first. Very light colors can be a bit challenging to most skin tones, much more so than brights or jewel tones. Since we’re all basically self-interested people, I feel as though I should admit that they look particularly bad on me, which makes it especially hard to embrace even a subtle and ladylike trend like the largely cool-toned (it makes them less retro!) pastels of the Spring 2012 runways.

That’s the beauty of handbags, though. If you want to embrace a color trend without having to wear it next to your face for an entire day, accessories are the perfect way to do it; when a piece is viewed mostly against the colors of the rest of your outfit, whether or not it looks good on your particular skin tone becomes something of a non-issue. After the jump, we have six of our pastel picks so that you can start wearing the trend before spring’s bags even hit stores.


Miu Miu Vitello Bow Bag, priced at $1495 via Net-a-Porter


MaxMara Bobbio Croc Print Leather Bag, priced at $336 via Matches


Reed Krakoff Standard Mini Shoulder Bag, priced at $525 via Net-a-Porter


J.Crew Edie Bag, priced at $238 via J.Crew


Nina Ricci Liane Tweed Evening Bag, priced at $1950 via Neiman Marcus


Alexander McQueen Knuckle Duster Clutch, priced at $1944 via Matches

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  • Linda

    For me, pastel bags have a very washed out look. They scream summer which limits their wearability unless you live where it’s fairly warm year round. And they’re near impossible to keep clean. I’ll pass.

  • lintmag

    I agree with Linda about pastels being difficult to keep clean. I would only buy a pastel bag again if it were a textured leather or patent that wouldn’t show the dirt as easily.

  • rose60610

    Apart from a “dove grey”, or a sophisticated beige, I don’t care for pastel colored bags. The only time I’d find them ok is on Easter. But I wouldn’t buy a bag to wear only one day a year.

  • Gisele

    Never again buy pastel bag, I have chanel pastel bag, it’s so not worth it, keep getting dirty and it’s very expensive to clean them…I think pastel bags are for those who have tons of black leather bag collection so this pastel bag just adding their collection!

  • Pinkfeet

    I do like that Miu Miu but would be afraid to get it dirty. And afraid to use it. And at that price, I would hate to keep it at home or get dirty.

  • Purse Mommy

    The Miu Miu is so cute, but I have a yellow pastel Marc Jacobs that only gets sun 2x a year

  • J Umm

    if i saw this post in spring it would create more of a reaction from me

  • Samantha

    Is the J Crew Edit bag Real Leather? I wouldn’t consider it in a pastel, but the black looks versatile.

  • Samantha

    Please disregard my question. I somehow missed the reference to leather in the J Crew site’s product description. Sorry!

  • Elyse Greenberg

    I love love love that Miu Miu bag. It’s so chic.

  • Shirley J

    pastels always have a place in my bag collection…the
    Miu Miu Vitello Bow Bag is so feminine :)

  • Alice

    Thank goodness for pastels because the recent derge of dark accessories was making me a bit sad. Loving the Miu Miu and of course the Reed is so simple yet classic.

  • Antonia

    I love pastels… esp. aqua and pink!

  • Mari

    The Knuckle Duster is so edgy and fantastic in any color, other than that pastels are not my style :P

  • Jennie

    Pastels are usually too cutsey for my style but the Mcqueen clutch is just the perfect mix of edge and pastel.

  • Alice

    I adore Alexander McQueen’s clutches they are unique

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