Seasonal Shirts: Merino

For our final seasonal shirt posting of the summer, we’re going out there and recommending merino.

“Wait a minute,” you say.

Now hear us out, a couple of civilians just broke through to the edge of space in a commercial aircraft. We’re living in unprecedented times. And that calls for innovative thinking. Which in turn calls for anti-bacterial, anti-odor, wrinkle-free, breathable, thermo-regulating and washable fabrics. Because after hitting Mach 2, seeing the curvature of the earth, experiencing weightlessness, and returning to the tarmac in about nine minutes, we’d want to look poised, confident, professional, comfortable and completely unflappable. If we were going to space, this is the shirt that we’d pack to wear to the press conference, even at the height of summer. Imagine what it can do for you.

Keep your cool for days on end in a custom made merino wool shirt from Leviner Wood’s John Cooper Collection. The future is here, call us at 804.928.7946 to experience it for yourself.

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Seasonal Shirts: Linen

Head for any hot country on earth and chances are the best dressed people you encounter will be swathed in linen. And there’s a good reason for that. Linen fabrics have been worn for at least 10,000 years. The lightweight fabric is more durable than cotton (only silk is stronger), takes color well and tailors beautifully, while the open weave lets through whatever breeze there is to cool you. Linen can absorb more moisture than cotton, but releases it quicker, making it an excellent choice for humid summers in Central Virginia. Will it wrinkle? Guaranteed. But a good pressing will keep you looking professional enough for the office or an evening dining outside at a sidewalk café.

Call Leviner Wood today and set up an appointment to look through our swatches and design your new favorite summer shirts before the really hot days hit. 804.928.7946.

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Seasonal Shirts: Seersucker

Traditional summer shirt, updated style.

From the Hindu sīrsakar which borrowed from the Persian word shīroshakar, meaning “milk and sugar” (a reference to the two different textures, one smooth, the other puckered), seersucker has a long history of keeping us cool. The colonial Brits figured out early on that the fabric was perfect for hot locales. And from the outer reaches of the Empire, it was a quick jump to the former colony here in the States.

Seersucker quickly caught hold here in the south before our Civil War and anywhere where men (and women — see USMC, Women’s Reserve, WWII and “Candy Striper”…) worked in hot and humid conditions.

Yes, worked.

Seersucker, made from cotton, was a working man’s fabric until the early 1900’s when Joseph Haspel started making seersucker suits in New Orleans. The Ivy League kids picked it up in the ’20s. Brooks Brothers took note in the ’30s. Miles blew blue notes in Newport and birthed the cool of the seersucker suit on the cover of his live album in 1958. Seersucker was, by then, an American Classic.

Yes, it still comes in blue and white. But it doesn’t have to…

Today’s seersucker is a relevant now as it was then, with some improvements. The traditional puckering that results from the way the warp and weft are woven makes a series of channels that let air flow easily around the wearer, keeping you cool. That natural puckering also makes seersucker easy-care. Don’t starch it to death, it defeats the genius of the design. Just wash, touch up and go. Add a tiny bit of elastane to the cotton and it’s even easier wearing and more packable.

What more do you need in a summer shirt? How about a more modern palette? Thinner stripes, darker colors, solids, checks… they’re all here. Make up a few and wear them with any trousers, or shorts, from the backyard BBQ, to the beach, to your casual days at the office.

Call us at 804.928.7946 to discuss styling options like your favorite kind of collar, roll to button sleeves, color matched buttons, pop-overs, polos … and even suits. Seersucker is always cool.

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