Difference between Tartan and Plaid

Difference between Tartan and Plaid


The word “tartan” refers to cloth with patterns of intersecting lines colored checkboxes and is associated with a clan.

Tartan design acquired a national significance not only in Scotland but universally, it’s made up of crisscrossed horizontal and vertical bands or threads of colors whose variations are symbolic of the various clans that have historically made up the Scottish people.

Tartan originated in the Highlands and it makes each tartan pattern some extent of pride for Scots as a united national heritage.

Types Of Tartan Kilts

  • District Tartans
  • Clan Tartans
  • Universal Tartans


In the UK, the word “plaid” refers to the long, shaped, tartan piece worn over the shoulder of a tactical kilt outfit, usually worn by Grooms at their weddings.

In the US, however, you would not go to buy ‘a’ plaid. This is because, in the US, the word ‘plaid’ describes any checked cloth of two or more colors. Therefore, you would buy ‘some’ plaid because it is the cloth you are ordering, not a particular product.

Plaid and tartan both contain horizontal and vertical lines that intersect at 90-degree angles. Plaid is used in the US to describe a multi-colored, cross-linked pattern.

Plaids come in many various styles including the:

  • Belted Plaid
  • Ari said Plaid
  • Shepherd’s Plaid
  • Fly Plaid
  • Straight Plaid
  • Pipers Plaid
  • Drummers Plaid

What is the difference between a tartan and a plaid?

All Tartans Are Plaids, But Not All Plaids Are Tartans

What are the similarities and differences?

  • Both are a pattern with horizontal and vertical lines that meet at the right angles.
  • The tartan has a more intricate motif with more threads than a typical plaid pattern, while a plaid is generally two colors in an alternating pattern.
  • The central differentiation of a tartan is it is assigned to a particular clan and holds
  • Americans use the word tartan, but when it is used it should describe the checkerboard associated with this tribe.
  • The repeating pattern of tartan lines remains constant throughout the fabric. This is a “set” pattern that is usually 5 to 6 inches and repeats many times.
  • Plaid differs in that a set pattern does not always exist, and more importantly does not have to exist, it is a “set” pattern.
  • Therefore, the most important difference between tartan and plaid that people in the United States should note is that tartans are associated with a tribe. Evil has nothing to do with historical tribes.
  • A good example of plaid is gingham, which comes in two colors but is not associated with any historical clan or family.
  • In addition, all tartans are registered with the Scottish Tartan Authority and can also be designed using our tartan design service. The final piece is the tartan registration against your clan, family, or organization.


Tartan patterns are registered patterns, using specific colored thread counts.

plaids are any checkerboard, interwoven pattern. In the USA, people often prefer “plaid pajamas, shirts, and skirts.

Each Scottish circle of relatives has their material, prominent through their name.

Fly Plaid is most popular to wear with high mountain clothing.


What is the Irish word for “tartan”?

Tartan (Scottish Gaelic: breacan [ˈpɾʲɛxkən]) (Irish: breacán) is a patterned fabric consisting of crisscrossing horizontal and vertical stripes of different colors. Tartan began as woven wool but is now made from many other materials.

What is the main difference between tartan and checkered?

1- Tartan is officially recognized in Scotland, but not plaid.

2- While tartan only refers to a specific clothing pattern, plaid is a more homophonic and versatile term.

Why is it called tartan in Scotland?

Tartans are associated with families and clans, and plaid are associated with other tartan patterns.

What is the difference between plain tartan and tartan?

Tartan is a type of fabric. Plaid is part of traditional Scottish clothing and is worn on the shoulders.

What is the difference between a kilt  and a plaid?

Quilt made of wool fabric with tartan check design. The knee-length great kilt is pleated and its upper half is covered.