How to Draw Plaids

Written by rupinder dhillon
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How to Draw Plaids
Plaids consist of multicoloured horizontal and vertical lines. (Hemera Technologies/AbleStock.com/Getty Images)

People have worn clothing with plaid prints since 1500 B.C. Today, plaid patterns adorn everything from clothing to home decor and artwork. All plaid patterns consist of a series of vertical and horizontal stripes that are printed in different colours. A basic plaid pattern consists of evenly spaced stripes and three colours. Learning how to draw a basic plaid pattern equips you with the skills you need to create more complex plaids.

Skill level:
Easy

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Things you need

  • Ruler
  • Coloured pencils: grey, black, yellow

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Align your ruler horizontally with the top edge of your paper. Make small marks on the paper with your grey coloured pencil every 1 1/2 inches. Make small marks on the paper every 1/2 inch after each of the marks you made previously. Repeat the process along the bottom edge of your paper.

  2. 2

    Draw vertical lines with your grey coloured pencil to connect the marks along the top edge of your paper with the marks directly below them on the bottom edge of the paper. Use your ruler to make straight lines. Your paper is now divided into thick and thin vertical sections.

  3. 3

    Colour the thin vertical sections with your grey coloured pencil. Do not colour the thick vertical sections.

  4. 4

    Align your ruler vertically with the left side of your paper. Make small marks on the paper with your grey coloured pencil every 1 1/2 inches. Make small marks on the paper every 1/2 inch after each of the marks you made previously. Repeat the process along the right side of your paper.

  5. 5

    Draw horizontal lines with your grey coloured pencil to connect the marks along the left side of your paper with the marks directly to the right of them on the right side of the paper. Use your ruler to make straight lines. Your paper is now divided into thick and thin horizontal sections.

  6. 6

    Colour the thin horizontal sections with your grey coloured pencil. Press lightly as you colour to create a light shade of grey. Do not colour the thick horizontal sections.

  7. 7

    Colour all of the square-shaped areas where the light grey horizontal and vertical lines meet with your black coloured pencil.

  8. 8

    Colour all of the white areas of your paper with your yellow coloured pencil.

  9. 9

    Align your ruler horizontally with the top edge of your paper. Make small marks on the paper with your black coloured pencil every 1/4 inch before -- to the left of -- each grey vertical section. Repeat the process along the bottom edge of your paper.

  10. 10

    Draw vertical lines with your black coloured pencil to connect the marks along the top edge of your paper with the marks directly below them on the bottom edge of the paper. Use your ruler to make straight lines.

  11. 11

    Align your ruler vertically with the left side of your paper. Make small marks on the paper with your black coloured pencil every 1/4 inch below each light grey horizontal section. Repeat the process along the right side of your paper.

  12. 12

    Draw horizontal lines with your black coloured pencil to connect the marks along the left side of your paper with the marks directly to the right of them on the right side of the paper. Use your ruler to make straight lines.

Tips and warnings

  • Experiment with different coloured pencils to create different types of plaids, including combining different horizontal and vertical sections to create new colours: for example, a blue stripe crossing a yellow stripe will create green rectangles.
  • Create more complex plaid prints by using more than three colours and leaving uneven amounts of spaces between the horizontal and vertical sections.

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