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Your lifestyle, your quirk
It just would not be summer without seeing madras plaid clothing on the racks, along with the other warm weather fashion trends. Madras is another one of the fabrics that signify summer has arrived. This colorful cotton fabric is one of my all-time favorites, and I religiously buy at least one new item each year, even if this fabric doesn’t make it to the top of the hot list of the season.
If you’re not familiar, madras is a lightweight cotton fabric with typically patterned texture and plaid design used primarily for summer clothing. It also has a bit of personality. During the ’60s, a popular form of this fabric was made with dye that was not colorfast, so it would bleed to create a new look each time it was washed. Another form of patchwork madras is made from cutting several madras plaid fabrics into strips that are then sewn back together as three-inch squares. It’s also interesting that the front and back of the fabric are often indistinguishable.
My typical rule for dressing is dark solids on the bottom, but that all goes out the window when it comes to pair of madras plaid shorts or a cute skirt. It’s often the uniform of my more preppy fashionistas, but one of my favorite warm weather outfits is a plain white cotton button-down with a pair of madras plaid shorts. Madras is used for both men and women’s clothing, and although it has a casual vibe, it can also go out on the town for hot summer nights.
Because the temperatures have shot up, a shorter length might be the bill of fare right now, but don’t pass up longer lengths if that’s your style. There are always several variations of length and style to choose from if you decide to work this warm weather trend. You can go low on the waist or check out a pair with a high waist, pleats, or maybe a cute boy cut.
Madras plaid fabric, although traditional, can be considered to be part of the retro trend and also a staple if you want to copy that “country club cool” look in several of Tommy Hilfiger’s funky ads. You can also go with a traditional madras plaid in darker shades, but check out bright colors and neons. I have to say I default to my trusty white button-down or white t-shirt, but I have come across a few ideas and I may try to shake things up a bit. I will definitely be working the mixing prints trend with my plaid shorts, like wearing a pair with another plaid print or a completely different print. You can go old school preppy with a tailored blouse or polo, or pair your plaids with an ultra-feminine blouse and maybe a pair of pearls. Since this is also a summertime staple for the guys, you want to make sure you add a few feminine touches. You may want to stick with a flatter shoe, but do try on a few pairs of platforms with your plaid shorts, cause if you got it, flaunt it!