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October 20, 2016

Design Crush: Black + White Buffalo Check

When you grow up in the Midwest among hunters and fisherman, LL Bean flannel and Sorel boots and Duluth Packs are not a fashion statement but a practicality. My father has been wearing buffalo plaid for more 50 years, well before it was cool. So it’s with a mix of nostalgia that I fell for the next generation of check, oversized and more refined and definitely more Upper West Side than woodsy when done in black and white.


It all started with this Dixon bench ($2,595), outfitted for a nursery here but sophisticated enough to turn even our beige condo into a thing of beauty. The price tag, however, was also something special.


The hunt led me to designer Caitlin Wilson, whose almost watercolor take on buffalo check has a softer quality. Less cottage. Her upholstered Dylan Settee is such a nice size for a smaller space and only $1000. In the end, though, it was too precious for the pup who I know would be snuggling (and shedding) on it.


Instead, I opted for an ottoman for our entryway, which fits perfectly under and acrylic console table. I love that pattern is the first thing people see when they walk through door. It always a bit nerve-wrecking to order furniture online—specially when its non-returnable!—but I can assure you the craftsmanship and likeness to the photos are spot on.


If you dig the retro vibe of buffalo check, how beyond is this 1960s style Kimball chair from Anthro?! I’d never get up.

If I could wallpaper, I would. This one looks more gingham to me, which makes me wonder what the difference is? So preppy with those red stripes, which also keeps it from looking too Country Living.


If you’re commitment adverse, there’s this removable version from Etsy. Seriously, people amaze me with their creativity.

buffalo-check-pillow-targetOne of my favorite ways of incorporating any trend is with just a pop. Hence my throw pillow problem. Target is making all of our lives easier with black, red, blue and gray check options, too. I can totally see these on a porch, in a kids room, or on kitchen chairs.


One last vision in check… a Pierre Balmain, circa 1952, photographed by André Ostier-Heil. Les sigh.

  • Elizabeth Dehn
    Born and raised in Minnesota by surprisingly low-maintenance parents, beauty writer and lifestyle editor Elizabeth Dehn (aka Bets) spent her awkward years buying Mood lipstick and whipping up DIY face masks before founding Beauty Bets in 2009.
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