Traditionally 100-percent cotton, the fabric's unique feel is created by a technique called slack-weaving which creates alternating tight and puckered stripes. The crinkles also make ironing unnecessary.
Because of the way the threads bunch together, seersucker is often held away from your skin, improving heat dissipation and acting as a natural air conditioner. Which is why it's so popular with Southern gents.
With suits and jackets, keep colors muted and everything else (shirt, tie and shoes) simple and pattern-free. Think a crisp white shirt with a dark, solid tie. Or simply wear the fabric in small doses, like a belt or cutoff shorts.
Newbury jacket, $188 at Rugby; Cutoff shorts (above), $79 at Club Monaco stores
The name comes from the Persian words "shir o shekar," which meant "milk and sugar," in regard to the textures—smooth and crinkled. The term later evolved in the late 18th century from sea sucker to seersucker.