How to Wear Plaid for Fall (Without Looking Like a Lumberjack)

plaid clothing
Image courtesy of Shopspring/Brooks Brothers

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* One of fall’s biggest trends is plaid — and it never goes out of style
* Plaid can make a good outfit great — if worn right
* Start in small doses, with plaid shirts, jackets, scarves, and bags

As we start to identify trends coming into the fall, plaid is a standout. But with plaid, the saying “it’s not what you wear – it’s how you wear it” holds very true. When done right, a great piece of plaid clothing can elevate a modern outfit with just the right amount of cozy ruggedness. But when done wrong, it can make you look like a lumberjack – and not the handsome kind.

To make plaid work for you, introduce it to your look by pairing it with decidedly modern pieces that will compliment its classic appeal. Below are some of our favorite plaids for men and women that can be worn at work, traveling, on your day off, or even at the lumber yard… if you’re into that.


1. H&M Plaid Shirt

If you’re looking for a simple piece of plaid at a reasonable price, this H&M shirt is ideal. It has a slightly wider fit, so you can wear it by itself or comfortably over a tee. It comes in classic red and blue, but we prefer the more unique khaki green and blue (shown below).

Men's Plaid Shirt H&M Image courtesy of H&M


2. Original Penguin Tote

The plaid trend isn’t limited to clothing. Bags like this one from Original Penguin are popping up, and make a great alternative to plain leather or canvas everyday bags.

Original Penguin Men's Tote Image courtesy of Amazon


3. Levi’s Sherpa Trucker Jacket

Levi’s sherpa jacket (another trend this fall) gets a caviar plaid upgrade. If you’re in need of a new go-to jacket, pick up this one and nail two trends with one buy.

Men's Plaid Sherpa Jacket Levi's Image courtesy of Shop Spring


4. Penfield Corey Check Shirt

With the Corey shirt, Penfield has taken the rugged look of a lumberjack shirt and masterfully combined it with the preppy fit of an oxford shirt. Pair it with a leather jacket, black jeans, and sneakers for a bulletproof date night outfit this fall.

Men's Plaid Shirt Penfield Image courtesy of East Dane



5. Love Lakeside Women’s Cashmere Scarf

With the plaid trend, you don’t have to go all-in if you don’t want to. Plaid accessories like this cashmere scarf are great because they add that touch of edge that can turn a boring outfit into something fun and modern.

Women's Plaid Scarf Love Lakeside Image courtesy of Amazon


6. Glen Plaid Sheath Dress

Brooks Brothers does a truly commendable job of integrating plaid into a chic, modern shirt sheath without losing any sophistication. This dress can be worn with a nice pair of shoes and looks great whether you’re going to a dinner in the city, or having a clambake on the beach.

Glen Plaid Sheath Dress Image courtesy of Brooks Brothers


7. BB Dakota Eldridge Jacket

This oversized plaid shirt jacket by BB Dakota is undeniably modern with an extra-long fit and crisp lines, but the plaid design reigns it in, and makes it an ultra wearable piece this fall.

Plaid Shirt Jacket BB Dakota Image courtesy of Nordstrom

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