Decorating with Plaid

We're seeing past plaid's front as the most traditional pattern on the list. Give this classic pattern a fresh face with these simple tips for decorating with plaid.

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Although often considered an exclusively classic pattern, plaid has started to work up the courage to break into modern homes with a contemporary flair all its own. Blown out scale, bright, unconventional colors, and the layering of styles have brought this once-uber-traditional pattern into the millennium with panache. Because it's a classic, plaid also endures as a no-fail pattern for more traditional tastes.

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If something still feels slightly "off" in your space, it could be a lack of dimension. One of the most effective (not to mention, affordable) ways to infuse dimension into a space is through pattern. Plaid gets the job done with a seemingly limitless array of color mixtures and scale combinations. You can use it as drapery fabric, throw pillows, bedding, even wall coverings. Introduce an oversize pattern for the greatest impact. Imagine for a moment that this room didn't have the plaid finish on the wall. Although still pretty, the whimsical edge is suddenly missing.

The Full Lineup

Plaid is one of the most multi-dimensional patterns there is. Whether it's tartan or tattersall, gingham or check, there's little argument against the fact that plaid could work its way into just about any type of unique decor. For sleeker styling, choose a favorite plaid scheme and use it in the room as a focal point in a sofa or accent chair. Or, if your tastes are more eclectic, play with several different types of plaid on anything, like pillows and drapes. When kept to the same color scheme, the combination of patterns will feel cohesive, not overdone. Different plaids abound in this bedroom, but they blend nicely, thanks to presentation in the same olive green tone.

Scaling Multiple Styles

Plaid is an eclectic stylist's dream. Bridging the gap between modern and traditional decor, it truly runs the gamut in terms of design. Keep the pattern tight with a handful of colors to achieve a classic look, or go more modern with an oversize print in just one or two colors. The latest trend you may have picked up on is the inclusion of thin metallic accents in plaid. Suddenly, we're seeing a pattern that used to work exclusively in historic homes find its way into the most glamorous of settings.

About Carrie

Carrie Waller is the founder of Dream Green DIY, where she blogs about DIY, design, and life.

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