S is for Seersucker

Like it’s puckered surface that rises and falls, seersucker’s popularity has

experienced a colourful history since it was first exported from colonial India

in the 1700s. The term originates from ‘shir o shekar’, a Persian phrase meaning

milk and sugar which refers to its weave of both smooth and coarse textures.

First a favourite of American workingmen who, in the absence of air

conditioning, relied on its dimpled cotton to keep them cool, it was soon

adopted by southern business men for its lightweight and wrinkle free

attributes. It wasn’t long before Ivy League students of the 1930s adopted the

fabric to wear to outdoor gatherings. It is said that for them, their seemingly

ironic attraction to seersucker lay in its working class origins. In 1945, the

well known New York newspaperman Damon Runyon humorously summed up this

unexpected pairing up;

"I have been wearing coats of the material known as seersucker around New York

lately, thereby causing much confusion among my friends. They cannot decide

whether I am broke or just setting a new vogue.”

Other notable seersucker wearers include Miles Davis, Tom Robinson as Atticus

Finch in ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ and Dustin Hoffman as Benjamin Braddock in ‘The


At Smyth and Gibson, our seersucker is thoughtfully sourced from the reputable,

and often experimental, Canclini Mill in Northern Italy. The neat collar,

lustrous mother-of-pearl buttons and tailored fit, elevate it from a casual

grandad shirt to a versatile piece that can be worn by the sea with shorts or at

the bar with a jacket.

Shop seersucker > http://bit.ly/2h4YxdB

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