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Material Guide: What is Seersucker?

What is seersucker fabric?


What is seersucker fabric made of?

Seersucker was originally made of cotton and silk but, these days, it’s usually made from just cotton. You could probably make it from whatever you like if you’ve got the tools and the knowhow, though. Spider silk, maybe? That’d be good. Spider silk seersucker. Someone write that down.



Is seersucker breathable?

You’re damn right seersucker is breathable. It’s designed to sit away from the skin, allowing free movement of air over your lovely epidermis. That air is free to go wherever it bloody well pleases when you’re wearing seersucker.



What does seersucker mean?

Seersucker was originally used to suck bad spirits out of the souls seers and clairvoyants. It wasn’t. We’ve just made that up. It actually comes from the Persian phrase shir-o-shakhar, meaning milk and sugar. Seersucker is partly smooth — like milk — and partly bumpy or puckered (or granular) — like sugar. So that’s a fun little etymology, isn’t it?



How is seersucker made?

Back in the day — The Day being the times of British colonialism — you could find seersucker made from alternating striped of silk and cotton. The cotton would bunch up when washed, whilst the silk would remain smooth and, well, silky. This meant the fabric would mainly rest away from the skin and allow for the cooling effect of airflow over the skin — useful if you’re wreaking absolute havoc in the merciless heat of the Indian subcontinent. Nowadays it’s generally made by using combining cotton that’s been woven at different tensions. A slacker weave combined with a higher tension weave creating that famous puckering effect.



How to wash seersucker?

You don’t have to worry too much about seersucker in the wash — it’s pretty durable. Don’t take liberties, of course — keep it to a low temperature just to be safe — but you don’t need to stress about seersucker.



Does seersucker shrink?

Seersucker will shrink a little on its first wash by its very design. Once it’s properly puckered it should be fine, though. Just don’t wash it on high heats and we’d recommend drying naturally as opposed to machine drying.





Can you iron seersucker?

Don’t do it. Ironing defeats the whole point of seersucker. Embrace the wrinkles graciously.



Percival’s new men’s seersucker collection



Seersucker Shorts

Our seersucker shorts are made with the best cotton money can buy, available in Navy, Ecru, Forest, and Espresso. They’ve got jet pockets and back pockets for your euros and your pesos. Cut just above the knee, giving maximum functionality and easy style.





seersucker shirts

Our Seersucker Cuban Shirts are the best thing about summer 2023. Yes, there’s the weather, there are the barbecues, the garden parties, the holidays — not bothered. These shirts are informal, formal, breathable, comfortable, summery, and perfect. Pair them with shorts, trousers of just about any fabric, wear open or buttoned, layered or alone. Embrace seersucker this summer — make smart choices.



Unfortunately this size is no longer in stock.