One of the most fashionable looks for men this Fall season is plaid, otherwise known as tartan, is literally one of the most classic men’s styles that’s still going strong after more than three millennia. From kilts and military uniforms to grunge fashion and gang colors, plaid remains one of the most popular patterns in men’s fashion, with designs by Alexander McQueen, Vivienne Westwood, Versace, and countless others, Fall 2016 is about to go plaid. Dalys 1895 explores the current men’s tartan fashion that is sure to catch the eyes of many fans of plaid.

Tartan Origins

Tartan originated out of Central Asia with regional Indo-European traders that traversed the original Silk Road, incorporating ancient Chinese textiles and techniques, which resulted in the patented tartan pattern that is now most associated with Scottish fashion. While tartan was adopted into Celtic fashion over the course of history, it’s often mistaken for plaid, which is the type of heavy cloak with the traditional tartan pattern used by the Celts to ward off the inhospitable highlands.

Tartan Origins

From the Highlands to Hollywood

Tartan remained a popular pattern throughout the 20th century, and as men’s fashion grew into the spotlight with the advent of film and television stars, whose generally impeccable senses of style set the tone for what men should be wearing. Tartan had officially gone from the Highlands to Hollywood, and the actor most apt to wear tartan is none other than James Bond and the world’s most famous Scotsman, Sean Connery, who is known for donning a kilt as part of his Scottish pride.

From the Highlands to Hollywood

Grunge, the Dark Side of Tartan

Kurt Cobain epitomized the grunge style of the 90s, which had a lot of tartan. The legendary rocker’s iconic red tartan flannel shirt became a symbol of rebellion, and now has made a resurgence with the neo-grunge style that is trending with young Millennials who are co-opting this look for a more modern take, let’s call it grunge-chic. And as long as hip, young celebrities like Tom Hardy sport tartan on the red carpet, the tartan style isn’t going away anytime soon.

Grunge, the Dark Side of Tartan

Sweaters, Jackets, and Coats, Oh My!

Fall is an amazing time of year, with Fall/Winter fashions embracing the cool, blustery days that force us into bundle up in layers of thick clothing. Modern menswear for Fall typically includes sweaters, jackets or blazers, and trench coats made from wool, tweed, and cotton twill using the tartan pattern. The collection of tartan jackets, coats, scarves, sweaters and more coming out of fashion houses as varied as Burberry and Prada.

Sweaters, Jackets, and Coats, Oh My!

Tartan Colors

While tartan comes a wide spectrum of color palettes, traditionally tartan patterns consisted of lots of browns, greens, grays, reds, and purples. This is due to the fact that the ancient Celts only had access to vegetable dyes. The invention of chemical dyes during the Victorian Age introduced more bold colors to the tartan pattern, and today’s tartan styles harken back to a more nostalgic era of tartan fashions, yet infuse the contemporary sensibilities of the modern man. Depending on your style, there is a tartan that will work for you.

Tartan Colors

Subtly Plaid with Tartan Accessories

Not all tartan needs to be front and center in your ensemble, and there are many excellent men’s designer accessories including socks, bags, pocket squares, bow ties and more. Tartan accessories can be ostentatious if the pattern is bright or clashes with the rest of your apparel, but when paired together well, tartan accessories can elevate your entire look.

Subtly Plaid with Tartan Accessories

Casual Tartan

Remember that tartan can work for both professional and casual attire. Tartan has thrived in men’s fashion as long as it has because of its versatility, and is seen in casual menswear from collared shirts and polos to slacks and shorts. While tartan is greater than just grunge, the grunge-chic style is one of the more prominent casual uses of tartan, and the pattern has proven itself to work with almost any style.

With tartan playing a major role in this Fall’s men’s fashion, there is a multitude of styles that you can pull off. What’s your favorite way to go plaid?