Truth is, it took me a while to really embrace this pattern, mainly because I was brainwashed to hate the color red (go UCLA). That being said, the more I saw it on magazines, store windows, and print ads around town, the more I began to fall in love with the aesthetic. As a result, I now have a couple buffalo plaid pieces in my closet that have achieved the status of "go-to" within my wardrobe.
So exactly where did this ubiquitous red and black pattern originate from? Perhaps Paul Bunyan? Some hipster in the Mission District of SF? Nope. Buffalo plaid comes from the genius minds at Woolrich, a company that began producing shirts with this pattern around 1850. That's right, over 150 years ago! Talk about withstanding the ups and downs of fashion, huh?
Here are some of my favorite ways to outfit buffalo plaid.
1. Scarf to add some pop to an otherwise very conservative outfit. (See above)
2. Collared shirt underneath a solid blazer or suit. Adds a ton of complexity to a formal outfit, Timothy Olyphant representing below:
3. A classic buffalo check wool shirt from the OGs who created it. Definitely a more rugged look that can be used on the streets as easily as it can be out in the woods.
All in all, buffalo plaid is versatile, able to be worn as a subtle accent piece or stand out as the main attraction. I suggest looking around to find a piece that works for you. If folks are still wearing this stuff 150 years after it was originally made, it's probably safe to assume you'll be in style for however long you choose to wear it.
PS: To add to that Timothy Olyphant picture above, he had a full shoot with just buffalo plaid in this GQ article. Worth looking at.