Buffalo Check Room Decor Jpg

The Buffalo Check Trend: A New Spin on an Age-Old Pattern

I’m always curious as to what patterns will be the most popular each year. One in particular, that has caught my eye, is buffalo check. The thing is, buffalo check isn’t new. In fact, it’s been around for centuries.

A Brief History of Buffalo Check

Traditional buffalo check, also known as buffalo plaid, is a heavy woven fabric made of intersecting blocks of red and black. Although considered an American classic, buffalo check actually originates from Scotland, where it was called Rob Roy MacGregor Tartan.

It wasn’t until the 1800s that buffalo check finally made its way to America, thanks to a Scottish Highlander named Big Jock MacCluskey, who traded woven tartan blankets for buffalo pelts in the Dakotas before settling in Connecticut.   

Largely in part to its representation in western movies and tall tales like Paul Bunyan, the pattern eventually became a symbol of ruggedness. Since then, it has become an iconic pattern in the fashion world and is becoming increasingly popular in home decorating.

Benefits of Buffalo Check in the Home

What is it about buffalo check that makes it such a good choice for home decor?

One major appeal is that it allows for more pattern diversity. Although buffalo check has a strong geometric design, it doesn’t compete with other patterns because of its minimal color and balance of stripes.

Buffalo check can also create a powerful focal point. Today, buffalo check can be found in a variety of colors. When opting for something high-contrast, such as black and white, however, it can really pack a punch.

Another great perk is that buffalo check can mesh with several design styles. Use it meagerly or sparingly depending on how best it would work in your home.

Best Places For Buffalo Check to Shine

Honestly, there are no rules as to where you can or can’t use buffalo check. There are, however, certain places where it works best than others, which include:

  • Window treatments, especially drapery panels and Roman shades.
  • Upholstered headboards (flat design). To keep the pattern from looking distorted, avoid using buffalo check on a tufted headboard.
  • Small to mid-size pieces of furniture and accessories. When used correctly, buffalo check can be a wonderful choice for furniture. Ottomans, bench tops, dining chairs, and even upholstered accent chairs are popular choices for this pattern.
  • Walls. No, don’t rush to cover your entire living space in buffalo check. However, if you have a powder room or small bathroom, go for it!

When decorating, keep in mind that high-contrast colors will stand out, where more subdued colors will blend in.

Ready to add this delightful pattern to your home interior? Be sure to stop by one of our showrooms or browse our buffalo check patterns online.


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