The word seersucker may bring visions of KFC's Colonel or muggy Louisiana summers, but it's not all pastel blue and white stripes anymore. With the classic warm-weather fabric seeing a resurgence in darker hues and more casual cuts, you don't need to look like an old-fashioned Senator to escape the heat.
Unlined blazer, $495
by Rag & Bone
Sartorially, the fabric started as the choice for laborers who made their living by working outdoors in the dead heat. Eventually, with the help of some names like Haspel, the fabric was cut into more formal shapes like trousers and suiting. Seersucker spread throughout the warmest regions of the US, and (because air conditioning wasn't always a thing) quickly spread throughout the country as a solution to dealing with dressing from early-May to mid-September. Of course, these days, the fabric has more of an old-fashioned reputation.
Fortunately, some of today's best brands are offering a fresh take on the legendary fabric. The lightweight, breathable cloth remains but the stodgy stripes have been swapped out for over-dyed indigos and inky navy blue hues. And it's been crafted into everything from sharp, office-appropriate suits to more modern jackets and washed, relaxed shirts. Consider them easy ways to keep your cool this summer.