This is the time of year when you will spot them in droves: people wearing plaid. Some of them don the striped pattern especially for fall time, while others where it all the time, no matter what season it is. Some will make you contemplate the apparent lack of originality shared by most of the population, others may be your friends. Here are some of the types of people that you will surely see this autumn – and probably every autumn to come – wearing plaid.
The Couple On A Fall Vacation
If you live somewhere remotely resembling Stars Hollow of Gilmore Girls, you know that come October, the tourists are everywhere. And they all (creepily) seem to wear the same thing: plaid, and lots of it. Plaid in blouses, blankets flannel, hats, bags, scarves, you name it (hopefully they don’t wear all that at the same time). Their entire suitcase is surely overflowing with plaid, as they are utterly bedecked in it. You’ll hear them oohing and awing at little white chapels nestled amongst fall colors; watch them forming annoyingly long lines at every single cider mill; and screech to a halt to pull over to take a photo of one of the many orange/gold trees you pass by on your way home. In some ways you can’t blame them (fall is your favorite, after all), but they’re tourists, so you default to being all around annoyed by them. How to spot them: They almost always have a pumpkin spice or apple cider something in their hands.
The College Or Just Out Of College Woman
This is the type that you’ll see all over the damn place. Boots, leggings/jeggings, an optional infinity scarf, and of course, a nice plaid-patterned top is her must-wear-everyday outfit. This woman loves taking photos with pumpkins, of her boots with fall leaves, and sitting on a plaid blanket in a park amidst colorful leaves. She’ll be sipping pumpkin spice, or caramel pecan or whatever fall latte is in season this fall, and is fully sincere that she loves everything to do with fall. Sure, it may all seem ultra clichéd, especially when you pass by twenty of these women within a five-minute span, but you know they mean well, and that they really, really love fall.
The Sophisticated Lady
Just like College/Post-College Woman, The Sophisticated Lady loves all things fall, but she has something else in her back pocket besides plaid to help proclaim her love: class and elegance. She’s the woman you wished you were friends with, or could at least say was a former co-worker or classmate. Sure, she’ll wear plaid, that classic fall favorite, but it is no longer the focal point to her outfit. It may be a plaid scarf, or the collar of a flannel shirt may be peeping out from her cream sweater. You’ll usually see her reading a New York Times bestseller book, coupled with a cup of tea or glass of wine (red, not white), looking almost intimidatingly cool.
The Wannabe Mountain Man
Perfectly trimmed beard, the Wannabe Mountain Man has a pocket sized beard care kit he carries around with him at all times. He wears boots, denim, and a dark plaid shirt, which his beard just brushes the collar of. Within five minutes of meeting him, he’ll have already mentioned his Instagram account, which are full of images eerily similar (though he doesn’t know it) to @SocialityBarbie’s Instagram. You’ll find him at any local bar, and at your signature you’ve-probably-never-heard-of-it coffee shop. Just don’t look for him in the mountains for any amount of time longer than it takes to take twenty pictures with his iPhone.
The Real Mountain Man
Real Mountain Man doesn’t wear plaid as a fashion statement. It’s part of his lifestyle. He opens up his closet, grabs a random plaid flannel shirt to pull over his enviously full beard, burly muscles, and perfectly hairy chest. You’ll rarely see him as he’s hardly ever out of the woods, but you might catch a glimpse of him whenever you go camping. Otherwise, you may spot him at your local secondhand bookshop, because the Real Mountain Man loves to read in between his time spent chopping wood, skinning animals, and whittling wooden flutes.
Ritzy Dogs Who Have No Choice
True, they aren’t people, but try telling that to some of their humans. These are dogs who are stuffed, laced, and trussed up in plaid jackets. You’ll pass them walking with their humans on the side of posh streets, or else frolicking in the parks, where there are plenty of colorful autumn leaves to compliment their autumn adorableness (as their humans know only too well). It’s not just the short-haired dogs who actually need the extra layer of warmth that are in jackets. In fact, the dogs who already grow enough fur to keep warm in cooler months are usually the ones you’ll spot wearing the latest plaid fashion. Fluffy Pomeranians, those unquestionably better than teddy bears known as Goldendoodles, shivering Italian Greyhounds and Chihuahuas, little wee Scotties, and made-for-Halloween black Labradors (really any Labrador, but a black Lab in a red plaid jacket? It’s a win). Unlike most of the types of people wearing plaid, you never, ever get annoyed – and are instead enraptured – by these animals trotting around, looking ridiculously photogenic amongst the fall foliage.
The Token Cool Guy and Cool Girl Couple
You’ll find them at a bar, or at trivia night, or maybe at the friend of a friend’s bonfire party you went to last night. She’s in a green and black flannel plaid top (first few buttons undone), he’s donned a red flannel plaid shirt (his topmost button is open, so his chest tattoo just begins to peek out). They are at that undefinable and ever vague twenty-something age, with job titles that you’ve never even knew existed. Most of their conversation topics center around craft beers and ciders, tiny houses, and living minimally. They only use local products for everything, including the locally crafted pumpkin ale that they are sipping the entire time you’re with them.
The Hyper-Happy Newly Engaged Couple
Oh, yeah. These are the couples who decided to wait for the colors of autumn to take their engagement photos. Both are wearing plaid, maybe matching, but certainly complementary. They may even have an extra shirt or two of plaid to change into, and they finish off their outfits with boots, and maybe some woolen hats and scarves. They march hand-and-hand around the park, with photographer in lead, awkwardly hugging each other, looking over shoulders, and whispering jokes in the other’s ear, in order to hitch a genuine smile on their faces for the camera. They walk down lanes lined with trees, and may even throw leaves up into the air at the suggestion of the photographer, rather than because they actually want to. You may not see them in the flesh, but come November/December, they’ll show up on your Facebook news feed. Perfect fall photos of the happy couple, in plaid will be everywhere you scroll, and part of every new profile picture. They’ll be kissing under a tree of red/orange leaves, and the token photo of her ring, just placed so on a log strewn with a plethora of autumnal leaves. Yeah it’s pretty, but when you see four other couples with almost the same exact photo shoot, and also in plaid? That’s when you begin unfollowing them.
The Artisan Coffee Shop Guy
This guy is super easy to spot, and is everywhere. His perfect hair (facial hair is a bonus), trendy glasses, and his leather bound notebook are key features. Although plaid is a staple to his fashion sense, autumn is his time to shine. You’ll see him wearing flannel with a unique, or very traditional plaid pattern. He’ll probably have his sleeves rolled up, ensuring that they don’t get in the way of him writing down his dozen or so obscure and philosophical takes on life, and that you’ll get a chance to see his tattoos. Look for him at coffee shops, outside coffee shops, on park benches near coffee shops, and at the coffee bean booth at the farmer’s market. Or don’t.
A Horse Girl
Like Real Mountain Man, plaid is this chick’s uniform. She has it in short, long, and even three-quarter sleeves. She wears it in flannel and cotton, and in the widest range of colors you ever saw. Why? Because she wears it all the damn time – be it winter, spring summer, or fall. She’s a Horse Girl, and plaid, paired with some worn denim jeans, is ingrained in her being. She doesn’t care if it’s trendy, or the thing to wear as soon as Labor Day is over. She doesn’t have time to think about that. All she has time for is grooming her horse, riding her horse, getting apples for her horse, and making sure she has cute riding boots – because she does have time for cute riding boots.