This year, our fall motto is: ‘tis the season to wear plaid. This rustic pattern has been a staple item to the alternative counterculture and preppy schoolgirls alike, and autumn is when this pattern truly has its time to shine. This time every year, UGG-wearing girls strut down the street in their favorite plaid flannels, topped off with the notorious PSL in hand. And while this popular outfit is an essential for those lazy off-days, we think plaid patterns have much more potential than this.
This hipster necessity actually has centuries of history behind it. We hate to burst your bubble, but plaid isn’t even the original name of this checkered pattern: proper plaid is actually tartan, a woven wool cloth donned with the iconic pattern. Different variations of the pattern were used in Scotland during the 1500s to distinguish one clan or geographical region from another — so basically, it was style with a purpose.
The original symbolism of tartan was so powerful that it became associated with the Scottish Rebellion as a rebel uniform. This caused the pattern to be banned in Britain during the 18th Century, only for it to become legalized in 1782 when tartan swayed towards fashion over politics.
As the years went on, the history and meaning behind this pattern fizzled out, and the term “plaid” was widely used by British and American manufacturers that were creating the pattern on a cheaper or more attainable fabric, thus birthing the criss-cross frenzy we know today.
From polished icons like Princess Diana to Cher Horowitz to rockin’ rebels like Courtney Love, plaid has become a fashion artform of itself. And while many of us play it safe by going for the classic red flannel, we’re ready to take the next step with our committed relationship to plaid with by fusing it with another fall essential: jackets.
At first glance, this switch may seem small, but it has a major impact. On top of staying warm in the chilled weather, these plaid pieces flip the script on everything you know about this traditional design. They contain the traditional spirit of this timeless fundamental, but take it to whole new levels with a contemporary spin that adds a more modern approach to the centuries-old look.
While there are much more “in your face” plaid-donned items out there — think shoes, trousers, and even denim — we know jackets are much easier to add to any ensemble. Think of it as the icing topping off the cake: it helps tie even the most basic of items together. A black-on-black outfit is automatically transformed into a 90’s grunge nod or posh SFW outfit when you grab a plaid jacket.
So, ready to become a confessed plaid-phile? Then check out some of the best women’s plaid jackets for the fall season. Whether your style is Soho chill or uptown boss babe, we know you’ll be enticed to grab at least one (or all) of these key fall outerwear choices.
The leaves are changing, and so is your closet: so switch things up with these plaid jackets for fall.
For the business woman who wants to make a statement once she walks in the room, suit up in style with this plaid wool-blend jacket from luxury fashion house, Chloé. The brand’s normally sweet aesthetic is given a run for its money with this powerhouse plaid jacket. Ingeniously, the masterminds behind this autumn necessity paired this classic androgynous red criss-cross pattern with a straightedge blazer shape, creating a strong and bold piece for every lady boss (and intern) to enjoy. Pair this jacket with your favorite work attire to create an edgy look that will spice up your office life.
Bomb Dot Com
On casual days, we always like to tie our fall styles together with a reliable bomber jacket. But, don’t settle for the same style that everyone has — be a gamechanger with this plaid bomber from Vince. This black bomber jacket drifts into the monochromatic trend with their plaid design, tying in the conventionality of this design with an adored trend of the modern world. It’s simple enough to be thrown on top of anything in your wardrobe, but still gives your OOTD a needed “oomph” factor. And it helps to know that this wool-blend jacket will give you some much-appreciated comfort during the chilliest of the fall weather.
Ahh, the 50’s: a time when sockhops and light pink plaid reigned supreme. Don’t you wish you could just step back in time and live those moments out for yourself? Well, this jacket from Shrimps is the closest thing you’ll have to doing so. It’s a modern revival of the adored 50’s-era style: the pastel pink is contrasted by cream and black stripes, creating a vintage plaid design. But, it’s given a breath of fresh air through some modern adjustments, with the black faux fur collar being the most noticeable. The scalloped hemline and sleeves gives this jacket a reformed, sweet with an attitude vibe that’s great for any big night out this fall.
If you like to play around with your fashion, then you’ll love this bomber jacket from Y/Project. At first glance, it may seem like a regular black bomber, but if you take a closer look you’ll notice that it’s what’s on the inside that counts. Hidden within this unisex bomber is a classic red flannel-esque plaid design, which holds much more than you’d think. When let loose, this jacket holds a whole flannel that acts as the perfect layering piece, creating a standout look that will keep everyone on their toes.
Got a fancy event coming up? Then slip into this black and white plaid jacket from Missoni. While plaid is usually reserved for more casual attire, this jacket serves elegance and class. Crafted from mohair and alpaca yarns, this luxe jacket features oversized proportions that will transform you into the belle of the ball from the moment you step into the room. It’s a great fit for any fall soiree you have planned, and is warm enough to be worn as a wintertime statement coat. Use this plaid jacket to give any of your autumn/winter styles a more posh approach.
For those warmer fall moments, reach for this plaid blue kimono from Billy T. This kimono is donned in a denim-blue color, and is given a country-meets-urban flare through it’s unique presence. The fringed bell sleeves create a funky energy that’s matched by the raw hemlining, and this kimono gets bonus points for having pockets — a right that many designers treat as a privilege. Top off an all-white outfit with this cool kimono to add some color while avoiding the post-Labor day ridicule.
The nude aesthetic is a strong one in 2018, and we’re pumped that Markarian created a plaid jacket that stays within the flesh-toned palette. This silk number is enhanced by a bejeweled hemline, creating a femme air that’s enriched with a glamorous (yet modest) feel. This jacket has a fun side, but also knows when to stay serious, which is why it’s one of our favorite jackets on this list.
When it comes to autumn, we can’t help but pull some color inspo from our favorite seasonal gourd. This jacket is the perfect pumpkin hue with its deep, burnt-orange tone, and it’s given a muted touch through the green and black plaid pattern. This jacket is the best embrace of the fall aesthetic, and its long length paired with the lightweight material makes this layering piece the one we all need for this transitional season.
Cinched & Snatched
One problem that we all run into with our jackets is bulkiness. The wrong jacket can give off a straight, shapeless look that isn’t really flattering, but Tibi crafted a simple fix to that issue. This small but mighty blue jacket not only has a chic plaid print, but also has a simplistic PVC belt to give your top half a cinched, styled fit. The black lapels also help this jacket’s plaid pattern stand out, and it’s overall one of our favorite pieces on this list.
Cool & Casual
Nothing beats the sweater jacket — well, except for a plaid sweater jacket. This mid-length option is great for staying cozy during those brisk autumn mornings, and also has a versatile black and white plaid pattern to easily mesh with any of your outfits. The sweater-like material keeps you warm on those days where fall feels more like winter, and the can be worn on its own or as a layering piece. Whether you’re headed to work, or getting ready to take on the night, this jacket has got you covered.