Summer shirt upgrade: Seersucker Shirts
Say hello to seersucker
Words— Frank And Oak staff
There may not be a better summer fabric than seersucker. You’ll likely recognize it as a staple of Harvard prepsters, fancy Southern lawyers on TV, but that's not a reason to avoid it! It actually started out as a working-class fabric. After it's introduction from Colonial India (the word itself is an Anglicised version of the Persian sir o sakar which translates as “milk and sugar”), it made its way to the warmer southern states. The first maker of the classic seersucker suit, Haspel, produced seersucker coveralls for Louisiana factory workers. It was used far and wide for in the summer months for workers all across America from factories to farms because of its lightness and breathability.
The upper class got wise and decided it wasn’t gentlemanly to sweat in heavy suits all summer and the seersucker suit then became their go-to. Prep outfitter Brooks Brothers got in on the seersucker action and soon thereafter Ivy Leaguers co-opted the look.
Today, you’ll often find seersucker used for suiting, but this summer we’ve decided to simplify with shirting. These fine shirts are cut from soft cotton and a touch of spandex to create a smooth, lightweight feel that moves with you. These shirts use a slack-tension weave that allows for greater air circulation resulting in a true summer fabric that breathes. Seersucker is most often made with a striped pattern but we’ve switched it up with a more unusual windowpane design.
Wear them open with a t-shirt, short-shorts, and white Vans.
Suckered into summer
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