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The Best Plaid Fabric - 2021

Last updated on October 15, 2021
Best Plaid Fabric

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Our Picks For The Top Plaid Fabrics

Show Contents
Our Take
  Top Pick

ZAIONE Cotton Buffalo Plaid Fabric Fat Bundles, 5-Pack

Don't Waste Your Money Seal of Approval

ZAIONE

Cotton Plaid Fabric Fat Bundles, 5-Pack

Overall Take

For Big ProjectsYou'll get five different pieces of precut fabric in this set, which includes the company's most popular patterns.

  Runner Up

Ambesonne Waterproof Buffalo Plaid Fabric, 1-Yard

Ambesonne

Waterproof Buffalo Plaid Fabric, 1-Yard

Overall Take

Versatile PickThe 100% polyester material in this plaid fabric is waterproof, so it will work for either indoor or outdoor use.

  We Also Like

New Star Fabrics Gingham Buffalo Plaid Fabric, 5-Yards

New Star Fabrics

Gingham Buffalo Plaid Fabric, 5-Yards

Overall Take

Many Different ApplicationsBlack-and-white buffalo print will make your project stand out, whether it's a tablecloth, scarf or other item.

  Strong Contender

Lunarable Tartan Plaid Fabric, 1-Yard

Lunarable

Tartan Plaid Fabric, 1-Yard

Overall Take

Traditional StyleThis durable, waterproof Turkish fabric offers an elegant and muted traditional tartan look in autumn tones.

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Guide written by Stephanie Faris
Last updated on October 15, 2021

When you’re feeling crafty, the right materials are essential. You can head to the fabric shop and feel your way through what’s available, but this can limit your selection. Buying fabrics online actually gives you a much bigger variety to choose from than if you just visited one or two local fabric stores.

If you’re looking for plaid fabric, you probably already have a project in mind. Just remember, what you’d buy for a tablecloth or curtain isn’t the same as what you’d buy for a scarf or dress. It’s important to know the best type of fabric for whatever project you’re planning; this will ensure it holds up over time.

Polyester is one of the most versatile and durable types of fabric, particularly if you’re making something that will need to be washed regularly. Depending on the dyes used in the fabric, you should be able to wash and tumble-dry the fabric as needed, although you’ll still need to stick with cold temperatures.

Plaid fabrics are especially popular during the cold-weather seasons. Tartans that incorporate reds, greens and golds and buffalo plaid in red and black are both Christmastime staples. If you’re preparing for the holidays, these fabrics can be great for dressing up your house or dining room table.

If you’re going for a more elegant feel for your home décor, cotton or linen make better fabric choices. Polyester will look great, but it won’t quite have the fine texture you’ll get with those two material types. Both cotton and linen are durable, holding up over many washes and uses, but they’re also absorbent: If you spill something, you might have a tougher time getting the stain out.

In a fabric store, you’ll often choose your fabric and ask for it to be cut to a specified length. With online fabric, on the other hand, you’ll generally purchase a precut swath of fabric and may have a selection of sizes to choose from. You can cut to length from there. Pay close attention to the size you’re buying if you’re purchasing online to make sure you’re getting enough.

Before you buy, you may wish know about the different types of plaid available. Here are some of the most popular:

  • Tartan: This is often what people think of when they hear the word “plaid.” Tartan is Scottish in origin and features thin lines going both horizontally and vertically. Burberry is known for this type of plaid, having used this pattern for years in the lining of their popular raincoats.
  • Gingham: This plaid is distinctive for having darker- and lighter-colored squares, which result from the way the stripes overlap on an often white background. This gives it a more muted design than other types of plaid and makes it ideal for some very specific types of fashion and home décor.
  • Buffalo plaid: Featuring very distinct squares, this bold type of plaid is often found in either red and black or white and black to make a bigger statement.
  • Houndstooth: The sharp, pointed edges that typify this abstractly-patterned fabric are said to resemble a dog’s tooth, giving this fabric its name. It generally appears to have a smaller checked weave than other types.

The Best Plaid Fabrics

1
  Top Pick

ZAIONE Cotton Buffalo Plaid Fabric Fat Bundles, 5-Pack

This set includes five 17.7" x 17.7" cuts of printed fabric, each with a different plaid pattern in black, white, and/or red. The 100% cotton fabric is natural, eco-friendly and soft to the touch. It also absorbs moisture well and offers plenty of warmth.

Features


Specifications

Brand
ZAIONE
Model
2
  Runner Up

Ambesonne Waterproof Buffalo Plaid Fabric, 1-Yard

Bold colors and safe dyes will bring a unique look to all your projects. Choose from several sizes (up to 10 yards) of 58-inch-wide medium-weight polyester fabric. The material is no-fade and waterproof, making it great for either indoor or outdoor use.

Features


Specifications

Brand
Ambesonne
Model
3
  We Also Like

New Star Fabrics Gingham Buffalo Plaid Fabric, 5-Yards

Although it's designed for use as a tablecloth, this durable fabric will work for a variety of projects, including curtains and runners. Buy the 100% polyester fabric that's 60 inches wide by the yard. The material is machine-washable, too.

Features


Specifications

Brand
New Star Fabrics
Model
4
  Strong Contender

Lunarable Tartan Plaid Fabric, 1-Yard

Measuring 58 inches in width and sold in lengths up to 10 yards, this medium-weight polyester Turkish fabric offers a tight weave. Choose from many fun patterns, including the autumn-toned plaid. It's waterproof, durable, and machine-washable.

Features


Specifications

Brand
Lunarable
Model
5
  Also Great

Ambesonne Waterproof Tartan Plaid Fabric, 1-Yard

Measuring 58 inches and sold by the yard, this 100% medium-weight polyester Turkish fabric is built to last. The fabric is precut and waterproof and comes in a large selection of fun patterns, made with state-of-the art digital printing technology.

Features


Specifications

Brand
Ambesonne
Model

Our Plaid Fabric Buying Guide

When you’re feeling crafty, the right materials are essential. You can head to the fabric shop and feel your way through what’s available, but this can limit your selection. Buying fabrics online actually gives you a much bigger variety to choose from than if you just visited one or two local fabric stores.

If you’re looking for plaid fabric, you probably already have a project in mind. Just remember, what you’d buy for a tablecloth or curtain isn’t the same as what you’d buy for a scarf or dress. It’s important to know the best type of fabric for whatever project you’re planning; this will ensure it holds up over time.

Polyester is one of the most versatile and durable types of fabric, particularly if you’re making something that will need to be washed regularly. Depending on the dyes used in the fabric, you should be able to wash and tumble-dry the fabric as needed, although you’ll still need to stick with cold temperatures.

Plaid fabrics are especially popular during the cold-weather seasons. Tartans that incorporate reds, greens and golds and buffalo plaid in red and black are both Christmastime staples. If you’re preparing for the holidays, these fabrics can be great for dressing up your house or dining room table.

If you’re going for a more elegant feel for your home décor, cotton or linen make better fabric choices. Polyester will look great, but it won’t quite have the fine texture you’ll get with those two material types. Both cotton and linen are durable, holding up over many washes and uses, but they’re also absorbent: If you spill something, you might have a tougher time getting the stain out.

In a fabric store, you’ll often choose your fabric and ask for it to be cut to a specified length. With online fabric, on the other hand, you’ll generally purchase a precut swath of fabric and may have a selection of sizes to choose from. You can cut to length from there. Pay close attention to the size you’re buying if you’re purchasing online to make sure you’re getting enough.

Before you buy, you may wish know about the different types of plaid available. Here are some of the most popular:

  • Tartan: This is often what people think of when they hear the word “plaid.” Tartan is Scottish in origin and features thin lines going both horizontally and vertically. Burberry is known for this type of plaid, having used this pattern for years in the lining of their popular raincoats.
  • Gingham: This plaid is distinctive for having darker- and lighter-colored squares, which result from the way the stripes overlap on an often white background. This gives it a more muted design than other types of plaid and makes it ideal for some very specific types of fashion and home décor.
  • Buffalo plaid: Featuring very distinct squares, this bold type of plaid is often found in either red and black or white and black to make a bigger statement.
  • Houndstooth: The sharp, pointed edges that typify this abstractly-patterned fabric are said to resemble a dog’s tooth, giving this fabric its name. It generally appears to have a smaller checked weave than other types.

DWYM Fun Fact

The houndstooth plaid pattern got its start in clothing worn by Scottish shepherds in the 1800s. Initially, the pattern was referred to by the names “shepherd’s check” and “dogtooth,” with a smaller-checked version sometimes being called “puppytooth.” The name came from the sharp edges of the pattern, which were thought to resemble canine teeth.

This plaid truly came into vogue in the 1930s, though, when Christian Dior adopted it for a shoe he created. A few decades later, Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant would wear a houndstooth hat on the sidelines of his University of Alabama football games, making the pattern popular with a new generation. To this day, Alabama fans still wear houndstooth on game days to honor the coaching legend.

The Plaid Fabric Tips and Advice

  • Within the different styles of plaid, you have multiple color options. You can shop around to find the exact fabric you need for your decor scheme.
  • If you aren’t sure what your future projects will need, you can buy sets of fabric that offer a variety of patterns to help inspire you.
  • Your fabric will include dyes. If you have sensitivities or concerns, check to make sure the fabric was made using safer dyes before you buy.
  • Polyester has waterproof features that make it a better option for outdoor projects than other types of material. If you’re making pillows for your patio furniture, for instance, you might want to look for polyester material.
  • Check not only at the size of your fabric but the weight. Your project might call for a lighter-weight fabric, or you might find that a medium or heavier weight is better. For items like curtains and pillowcases, medium-weight fabric or heavier might be a better option.
  • In many cases, you can find fabric that works as a tablecloth or table runner without much cutting or stitching. Simply pay attention to the dimensions.
  • You may wish to look for machine-washable fabrics, as hand-washing can be an inconvenience. Even if your fabric is rated as machine-washable, though, keep it to the cold setting and tumble dry on low heat.
  • Some material is designed to resist fading even after many washes. If you’ll be washing frequently, it’s worth the investment to choose one that holds up over time.
  • Turkish fabrics are often tightly woven for better quality, but the patterns are what make them truly unique. Turkey has become known for its textile craftsmanship over the years, so this label gives it a level of distinction.
  • The quality of the print itself can vary from one material type to another. You’ll want to make sure the manufacturer uses top-quality printing so that the images are clear and vivid. In a fabric store, you can take a look at the print quality and search for flaws in the pattern. Online, though, it’s a bit tougher to tell. However, a manufacturer that says it takes printing seriously can be an indication that you’ll be pleased with the results.

About The Author

Avatar
Stephanie Faris 

Stephanie Faris is a novelist and business writer whose work has appeared on numerous blogs. She worked for the State of Tennessee for 19 years, the latter six of which were spent as a supervisor. She has written content for entrepreneurs and marketing firms since 2011. In addition to her online content, she is also the author of eight novels for Simon & Schuster, including the Piper Morgan chapter book series.