TREND: Plaid Goes Gussied Up

For most Fashionistas, wearing plaid equals one thing: comfort. The pattern is tied to the ‘90s grunge look, marked by flannel, slouchiness, and an all-around relaxed style attitude. Fast-forward to 2011, however, and one can see that plaid just doesn’t get enough credit. Worn the right way, the pattern can be sleek, stylish and effortlessly chic. The dressy plaid trend is worn best with daywear, capturing the pattern’s innate casual appeal with a touch of glam.

This Fashionista proves that plaid has style staying power. Her Madewell button-down plaid shirt combines urban cool with a flattering structured fit. She continues the sleek and fitted theme with her Madewell blazer, perhaps the closet staple for any Fashionista. Her Madewell jeans keep the look cohesive, and her Zara oxford-inspired heels inject a dose of trendy into her outfit. This Fashionista sends the look off in style with a classic Longchamp bag and Chloé sunglasses purchased from IdeallyShop, a discount designer brand website. To get a similar style, make like this Fashionista and look for fitted plaid apparel. By keeping the cut closer to the body, Fashionistas will move away from the casual tendency of the pattern and lean toward the sophisticated end of plaid’s style spectrum. For a summery approach to the trend, Gap’s Plaid Roll-up Sleeve Shirt is on-trend with its waist-skimming cropped style, and would look great paired with a leather jacket, black jeggings and pumps. Forever 21’s Picnic Plaid Shirt latches onto the quirky “picnic-inspired trend” slated to be all over the runways in coming seasons, and would look fresh and crisp worn with a white eyelet tank and bold wedges. In dress mode, plaid is perfect with American Eagle’s Madras Strapless Dress. The piece achieves the fitted factor thanks to its empire waist, and can easily be dressed up a notch with a structured jacket and heels.

Hint: To make sure the plaid that you don lives up to the dressy factor of the equation, think sassy and sleek. Cinched waists or high hemlines are a great way to combat the normal slouchiness of the trend, and outfit embellishments like sky-high heels or flashy brooches will keep the pattern chic and classy. Happy shopping!

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