Accessories A to Z

The ultimate glossary for all things accessory.

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Your essential guide to any accessory-related words that will be constantly updated. Brands will be in italics.

Please suggest words or brands to add by emailing


Anya Hindmarch – a fun British bag and leather goods brand founded in 1987 by Anya herself. The brand could be blamed for the popularising the customisation of bags and ‘stickers’ after their launch in 2014.

Aviator – this style of sunglasses originally developed by Bausch & Lomb for pilots to protect their eyes while flying. They have large thin lenses with the thin metal frames and a double bridge. A style Ray Ban is famous for.


Ballet pumps/flats – a flat shoe with round toe derived from the ballet dance shoe. Can have a ribbon tie round the ankle.

Beanie – a knitted hat designed for cold weather. It is traditionally simple but has since been altered and can now have extra features like a large pom-pom at the top (bobble hat).

Bucket bag – a bag, which as the name suggests is bucket shaped. With a circular or oval-shaped bottom and a straight-up shape they usually have a drawstring fastening.

Baker boy – a style of hat, which is similar in shape to a flat hat in terms of the peak and body, however the body is rounded and fuller.

Boy bag – Debuted in 2012 the Boy Bag has become a Chanel classic. The design features a foldover flap and the distinctive Chanel twist lock. Available in a range of sizes: small, medium, new medium, large shoulder bags, as well as shopping tote and clutch.

Brogues – a closed lace-up shoe with a thin sole and low heel made of sturdy leather with decorative perforations (broguing).


Cashmere – extremely soft wool from the Cashmere (Kashmir) goat often used in scarves, hats and gloves.

Camera bag – not be confused with a carry bag for an actual camera. A small rectangular bag, with a zip around the top, on a long cross body strap.

Cat eye – a shape of eyewear that sweeps up towards the outer corner where the arms join the frames. They were in the 50s and 60s.

Chelsea boot – a flat, tight-fitting ankle boot with elastic panel usually with a tab of fabric at the back to help you pull it on.

Clutch – a handheld bag, which is usually smaller in size and flat. Designed to fit a few essential items clutch bags are often reserved for evening use.

Cross-body – a bag with a long strap to be worn on one shoulder and rested over the body.


Dogtooth – a pattern of broken checks, usually in black and white.


Espadrille – a summer with woven rope sole. Usually with a cotton or canvas upper.

Etsy – an online marketplace where independent brands sell their goods. It can be a great place for finding unique, handmade accessories.


Faux fur – imitation fur made of synthetic fibres.

Fascinator – a fancy headpiece usually worn to special occasions such weddings or days at the races.

Fedora – a style of hat with a flat, wide brim with an indented crown and usually features a hat band or ribbon at the base.

Fishnets – tights or socks with an open diamond pattern.

Flower crown – a headpiece made of faux or real flowers. Typically associated with festival wear.


Gold – a metal popularly used in jewellery.


Holdall – a large bag used often for sportswear or a weekend away. Usually has a rectangular base, two handles and a shoulder strap.




Kitten heel – a short, thin-heeled shoe.


Leather – a material created from animal hide. It’s durable and often used footwear, bags and purses.

Loafers – a flat slip-on shoe with tassel-style decorations on the front of the foot.


Mohair – an extremely soft fabric made from the hair of the Angora goat.

Mulberry – a premium British brand producing handbags, purses and small leather goods, which established in Somerset in 1971. Their designs were originally inspired by rural pursuits such as hunting and riding, which the brand still looks to for inspiration today. Johnny Coca is the current Creative Director.

Mule – a backless, slip-on shoe of any heel height.


Nubuck – a type of leather, which has been sanded/buffed on the outer side of the hide to create a surface texture similar to suede.


Ombré – a dyeing technique where one colour gradually changes to another.



Pebble grain leather – leather embossed with a grainy texture.

Peep-toe – shoes with a cut-out section at the toe.

Pendant – a piece of jewellery that hangs from a necklace chain.

Platform – a shoe with a thick sole, or platform, to add height. Platform heels are typically thought to be more comfortable.



Satchel – a rectangular, leather bag with a long cross body strap. The back piece of the satchel extends and forms a flap which folds over the front of the bag to fasten.

Safiano leather – a type of leather with a crosshatch texture pressed into it, which adds durability

Scrunchie – a fabric hair tie made of gathered material.


Sliders – a flat slip-on shoe with just one thick strap over the front of the foot.

Smart watch – an electronic watch that is often linked up to a smart phone. It is more than a basic time-telling piece and performs functions such as heart rate monitoring, running apps and receiving messages.

Smooth (leather)

Sneakers – the American term for trainers.

Snood – a knitwear item that gets it name from being a mix of a scarf and a hood. A snood is a continuous looped piece of fabric, which can be worn round the neck in a number of different ways, such as looped round the neck and then rested on the head.

Sock boot – an ankle boot that is extremely tight, and sock-like, around the ankle.

Speedy bag – a classic bag from Louis Vuitton launched in 1930 as the brand’s first bag intended for daily use. First introduced in size 30, the bag now comes in Nano, 30, 35, and 40. The bag features the classic LV monogram or checkerboard print.

Stiletto – high heels where the heel is tall and skinny.

Swarovski –


Ray Ban –

Rose gold


Tortoiseshell – a material originally made from the shell of turtles or the tortoise that is a marble of dark brown, orange and yellow. Now most tortoiseshell accessories are imitation.

Tote – a bigger bag, square or rectangular in shape with handle attached from each side of the opening. Tote bags are usually left unfastened or have a minimal fastening like a single magnetic button.



Visor – a hat similar in style to a baseball cap with a rounded peak, however a visor has no body and is simply a peak attached to a band, which sits around the head.


Wayfarer – a style of sunglasses with plastic frames. It is a shape associated with the Ray Ban brand.





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