October 7th, 2011 is Plaidurday. I first found out about it on Facebook. Then I visited the Plaidurday site, a site dedicated to plaid. I love plaid, so I jumped on the bandwagon, and donned some checks myself.
Just kidding. I didn’t actually wear all of my plaid items at once. I thought I’d go for a subtler approach and test drive a new pair of tartan tights.
Top: Old Navy
Skirt: Dress Barn
Belt: Forever 21
Plaid is woven pattern of crossed horizontal and vertical bands in two or more colors. It’s an umbrella term that includes tartan, gingham, Tattersall, Border tartan, check, and even houndstooth. How exciting! I could wear plaid every day. My father’s side of the family hails from Scotland and we even have our own tartan. My first kilt was made of genuine Cockburn tartan. Here’s a photo of my dog wearing his Cockburn tartan coat, custom-made by The Heelan Hound.
I do own a lot of plaid. In addition to the clothes in the first photo, I have two plaid coats and a kilt. Plaid is a wonderful pattern. It’s classic and timeless, and even though its roots are Scottish, anyone can wear plaid.
And plaid is versatile. It reminds me of prim and proper prep school uniforms but it also reminds me of disillusioned grunge musicians and punk rockers. I think back to the hosers of my youth in Canada with their plaid lumberjack shirts and 24-packs of beer. And I’m also reminded of the Scottish drum and military bands and of fearless Highland warriors.
Plaid isn’t limited to clothing though. My grandma had an entire room in her home wallpapered in earthtone plaid. My friend Tatsuo has a Volkswagen GTI with plaid seats. The Porsche Targa from the late 70s also had plaid seat inlays. I’ve seen tartan tablecloths and checkered chairs.
For almost 40 years in the 18th century, tartan was banned in Scotland under the Dress Act, which attempted to squash any aspect of Gaelic culture. So show your rebellious side and wear some plaid today!