Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Essential Summer Fashion Must Haves - Summer Suit

Summer suits are completely under estimated... they are stately, sophisticated, gentlemanly and just downright cool (in the hip sort of way... not the heat way). When I put on a great summer suit I feel like a proper southern gentleman about to step out on to my porch for a mint julep before heading to a late afternoon wedding at the chapel. It makes me feel like the distinguished gentlemen of the 50's, but more updated.

Summer suits must not be your standard dark wool suit, too hot and too conservative. A good suit for July and August comes in three main fabrics and the variations on those fabrics: Chino, Silk, Linen and Cotton. Cotton suits come in a few different varieties but my favorite for many reasons is seersucker, another cotton option is cordlane (as we discussed earlier in this blog). Chino is technically a cotton too, but I see as different type of suit. For the purposes of this blog we will focus on my two favorites... Seersucker & Linen.

Seersucker is straight out of the south. It is old school, it can only be worn in the summer, it needs to have a modern cut. If the seersucker is not a slim fit... it will look like you are wearing your grandpa's suit (because he has one... I guarantee it). Seersuckers come in many different colors the most common and featured prominently on DF is the blue and white variety. They also come in red and white, brown/tan and white, pink and white and most other shades. (If you can find a cream and white seersucker, buy it immediately. They are amazingly gorgeous and hard to find.) I love the brown/tan and white (pictured below is the J.Crew version of this suit) as a starter seersucker, getting you used to the fabric and the suit. The blue and white is the prettiest with the right tie and pocket square (as demonstrated to perfection at the top of the page). Always wear a pocket square with your seersucker to help dress it up. It can be properly worn with a tie or without. If you are going with the blue and white seersucker and no tie stick with a pink or light blue shirt. One great advantage of seersucker is that it will not wrinkle and what an advantage it is!

The most elegant and classy versions of the summer suit is linen. Linen is often paired with cotton, wool or silk in a blended suit. I like the blended suit because of the beautiful look that comes from the mix of fabrics. Linen suits can be all colors but I would stick with the brown/tan, cream or navy. A grey linen suit can be beautiful as well, but I like it more for nighttime occassions. Remeber that linen wrinkles. This is how the suit is supposed to look, it is supposed to be rumpled and look like you actually wear it. That is part and parcile of the look. For a perfect example of a rumpled linen jacket check out A Suitable Wardrobe.

The rest of the suits featured (that are not seersucker) are linen suits. The first picture below is stolen (hope you don't mind) from the Satorialist. It is the epitomy of the perfect summer suit worn perfectly with the perfect fit. Kudos!

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