You know when a trend is turned into sartorial magic so devastatingly good that you want to own every single piece of clothing that features it? That's how I feel about the fall 2018 plaid trend, which was initially curated by high fashion brands and has been affordably reimagined by fast fashion retailers in a way that's both accessible and really, really chic. This season's plaid isn't your average selection of peacoats and Clueless-inspired skirt suits, although those items still hold court within the lineup. Rather, the iconic textile has been reimagined into new silhouettes, refreshing color combinations, and playful accessories that most definitely will not remind you of your grandpa's wardrobe. Trust me, it's all fresh as hell.
Along with houndstooth, herringbone, and tweed, plaid is one of the most classic textiles there is, especially when it comes to fall dressing. The sheer look of it, no matter the color palette, conjures images of fiery foliage, steaming beverages, and crisp air. It's warm, thick, and comforting—it's no wonder it's been trending basically since it was invented. An autumnal wardrobe without plaid is no autumnal wardrobe at all, so if your closet is bare of the square-patterned fabric, it's time to change that. Shop the best under-$100 plaid pieces of the season below.
The slightly ballooned sleeves and structured bodice of this top give it an awesomely architectural silhouette.
Like a bathrobe, but acceptable to wear outside.
Twist & Turn
A Cher Horowitz-approved color palette and an everybody approved knotted waist detail.
It doesn't get more classic than this! Plaid mixed with a crewneck knit sweater—fall dressing heaven.
This dress plus black loafers and a long black peacoat would look effortlessly cool.
Jump To It
A mixture of playful '70s and '90s cool, this jumpsuit would pair perfectly with a black turtleneck and black heeled booties.
Pattern mixing at its best.
These amazing wide leg pants are named after Annie Lennox. Enough said.
Who knew brown ruffly plaid could look so cool paired with jeans?
It's yellow, preppy, and a whole lot of plaid. Hi, Cher.
Because cozy fall dresses can be sexy, too.
I love a good beret and this season they are absolutely everywhere. This one just happens to combine two fall trends into one.
The ultimate mix master of a dress.
Neck in Neck
Plaid doesn't always have to be in red, black, yellow, or other stereotypically fall color form.
This has got to be the plaid piece I've been lusting after the most and (no) surprise, surprise, it's from Zara. I love it's asymmetrical hemline, soft and dark fabric, and price tag.
What a Bummer
Whether you call it a fanny pack or a bum bag, there's no dispute that it looks rad in plaid.
Is it a shirt? A dress? Does it tie or twist? Who cares, it's effortlessly chic and pairs excellently with denim.
Okay, this is something your grandma might've actually carried in her heyday. But grandmas rule, so.