Ah, golf. It’s the sport of gentlemen and ridiculous fashion. They have everything from mismatched prints to goofy pom-poms. Despite the inherent nerdiness of golf fashion, there is something charming and chic about it. There are people that pull it off perfectly, like Tiger Woods or Adam Scott. And in general, if you’re a handsome professional athlete, feel free to wear whatever you want. However, if you are not, this is a style you have to be very careful about.
I have to admit, I’m a sucker when it comes to nerd fashion. Pleated pants, sweater vests, messenger bags and don’t even get me started on blazers with patches on the elbows. I love it. I love the whole geek chic movement. But just like any other look, this can be taken to an embarrassing extreme. Bow ties, for one, are absolutely unacceptable. Then there are the plaid pants: new low in dorky dressing.
Now, I know what you’re thinking, “Plaid? That’s for lumberjacks and angry New York hipsters.” But let me tell you, plaid is practically an institution in preppy golf clothes. There’s the standard Tartan plaid: that the big boxy print. Tartan print usually comes in dark reds (your standard lumberjack fare) and greens. But in the last twenty years Tartan plaid has evolved and changed. The print can now be seen in bright teals and pinks. This new take on plaid seems to be a favorite among pre-teens, but once in great while, you’ll see an adult sporting a bright pastel plaid. It’s an upsetting sight, to be sure. Want a sure-fire sign that somebody craves attention a damn-near clinical level? Bright pastel plaids are a dead giveaway.
I don’t want to come down too hard on plaid. It’s loud and obnoxious, sure, but it’s not without it’s charm. It is a fun, cheerful pattern with a lot of great color combinations. I myself own a couple of plaid shirts that I like to wear on outdoor excursions. They both belonged to ex-boyfriends, and I think those shirts were maybe the best thing to come out of that relationship. Plaid is a fabric that almost needs a back story behind it. Like, you found an awesome plaid shirt at goodwill and you just HAD to have it, or a plaid jacket that belonged to your grandfather. Plaid doesn’t feel like something that you should buy new, it’s a print with history, you know? It’s something you have to acquire.
Plaid is such a bold print, it definitely works best in small doses. A Burberry scarf, for instance, can really make an outfit pop. But when you use plaid on pants, it’s overwhelming. It’s just too much fabric. It’s too busy. It’s just too plaid. It shouts “I don’t know what I’m doing! I have no idea how to dress like an adult! I bought these at Abercrombie because I thought girls would find me quirky!” We don’t.
When you think of the kind of man you see wearing plaid pants, you end up with three major groups: teenage boys in a punk band, dads on vacation and professional clowns. Personally, I don’t want to date any of those.