What Are You (Really) Wearing? The Story Behind Seersucker


A seersucker piece is a timeless classic in any wardrobe – but what exactly makes this sunny fabric a summertime staple?

Seersucker is cotton with a slightly subdued stripe design. It’s woven in a way that puckers the material and elevates it away from the skin. The shirred effect gives seersucker breathability and makes it a practical pick for warm-weather months. The best part? No ironing required.

Up until air-conditioning became standard in the 1950s, the seersucker suit was a mainstay in the wardrobe of the Southern gentleman. Politicians observed Seersucker Thursdays in the summer once it was introduced on the floor of the Senate. Seersucker isn’t just for suits, though – Lilly Pulitzer, with her perfectly preppy designs, masters the seersucker shift dress almost annually.

Today there is still something so very special – almost nostalgic – about seersucker. Politicians and preps alike don it from the Kentucky Derby straight through Labor Day.

By Jillian Hudon, Staff Writer

Want the lowdown on fabrics and more? Follow our What Are You (Really) Wearing? column every Tuesday.

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