It’s a common misconception that the Prince of Wales check originates from Edward VII’s classic black and white check, which he donned in the latter part of the 19th century. However, the timeless design’s heritage actually dates further back than this. We look back at the Prince of Wales check's fascinating history, before taking a closer look at the design on our single-breasted Chelsea suit.

Royal Roots

It was the Glen plaid that first inspired Edward VII to adapt the design into what we know as the Prince of Wales check today. The Glen check itself originates from the valley of Glenurquhart in Inverness-shire, Scotland. It was here that Caroline, Countess of Seafield adopted the pattern for the Seafield Estate in 1840.

On a shooting trip to Castle Grant, the Seafield’s Estate, a young Edward VII first came across the Glen design. He tailored the pattern to his own requirements, creating the renowned black and white large Glen check. This design then went on to become known as the Prince of Wales check, before being updated again by the Duke of Windsor, who added the coloured over check.


The Glen/Prince of Wales check is a woollen fabric identified by its woven twill design of small and large checks. It tends to be made of black, grey and white stripes that create a crossing pattern of irregular checks.

On Reiss

Our three-button Chelsea suit is the perfect example of the Prince of Wales check at its best. The bold design nods back to a bygone era with its 20s-inspired vintage undertones. The classic black and white crossing pattern of the checks creates a classic grey colour that is completely true to the style once worn by Edward VII, although the suit is brought right up to 2012 with its contemporary cut.

Keep your look casual by wearing the suit's jacket with a fine roll neck knit like Neptune in dark brown, and a pair of dark jeans.