Seersucker in New Orleans

By Christy, Buffalo Exchange New Orleans

Seersucker Style

My husband Thomas, decked out  in American Apparel shorts and tie, and a shirt, belt, and shoes from Target

When the air is laden with enough moisture to wring it like a towel, I go into hibernation. That’s not to say I don’t get excited about summer. I suspect our brains are wired to look forward to the hot, sticky months, even though there’s no break in classes for those of us out of school, just a break in tolerable temperature. And no matter what vacation plans I scheme up, I inevitably take trips during milder months versus escaping the heat. Go figure.

 Here in New Orleans, it seems like every year more summer social functions get added to the calendar that demand specific dress codes. Can ya blame us? We have a long ways to go until Halloween, and whether you’re donning a costume or adhering to proper event attire, New Orleanians love any excuse to dress up. There’s White Linen Night, Running of the Bulls, Red Dress Run, and Midsummer Mardi Gras, to name a few. And to start it all off, Sippin’ In Seersucker was this past Friday. Benefitting the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, the party gives a great reason to don a traditional get up, within the air conditioned Shops at Canal Place. And no matter if you are on the conservative side or prefer to buck tradition, it’s fun to indulge in group dressing.

Seersucker Style

Myself, wearing a seersucker dress from Imagine, orange scarf from Swap Boutique, and accessories from Buffalo Exchange

Seersucker is a Southern staple, but one with roots that branch beyond the Mason-Dixon line. The word itself is derived from the Persian “shir o shakara” meaning sugar and milk- the striped fabric is both slightly rough in texture yet cool on the skin. Made popular during British colonial time it has become synonymous with classic, preppy style thanks to local clothier Haspel bringing the seersucker suit out from the South and into the national limelight. Blue and white are the traditional colors, but there are endless variations to play with.

Seersucker Style

 Local boutique owner Hattie Collins and her husband Corey

It was a treat witnessing so many people decked out in those puckered stripes.  Aside from the mint juleps, sazeracs, and delicious food from local restaurants, the people watching was definitely the highlight of the evening. While attendees were sporting similar outfits, it was fun to see the various ways they added their own personal touches.  Poor judgment on my part meant that I didn’t take as many photos as I could have.  Juggling a clutch, a drink, and hors’ de oeuvres while walking around was a challenge for sure. If you’re going to clutch it up, make sure you have the option of a shoulder strap for maximum noshing capacity.  And even if you aren’t in the South, keep cool this summer by embracing seersucker into your wardrobe however you can. Make sure you channel a little Southern hospitality when you do!

Seersucker Style

 Ben Azevedo of New Orleans Bow Ties takes his girlfriend for a spin on the dance floor

Seersucker Style

Jean Therapy store manager Fallon Lewis adding some color to her seersucker pencil skirt

Excerpts of this post were originally published at Uptown Messenger and Slow Southern Style.