In Praise of Linen

Linen is alternately praised and condemned as an ultimate summer fabric for me; praised for its breathability and comfort but condemned for its wrinkles and sometimes stiff character. But nothing looks or feels better on a hot summer day than a cream colored linen outfit—wrinkles be damned.

It’s difficult to pull of cream jackets or suits in any other fabric (winter whites notwithstanding, and then only for trousers), for a tropical weight worsted wool suit might look fine in a khaki tone but tends to look strange in cream or eggshell. The choice, if one is inclined to go with cream, is either linen or cotton. Cotton has its advantages, sure, but somehow the deeper creases and wrinkles linen develop (within minutes, at that) give the wearer that air of a devil-may-care attitude, and a well-tailored and proportioned suit will always look good, no matter how wrinkled. The wrinkles can, of course, be steamed out at the end of the day, or the suit can simply be hung outside a hot shower…

This jacket is bespoke, part of an old suit that looks good with jeans, too. Some may argue for it to be blazer it should have patch pockets and a center vent, but I say who cares? I’ve worn it as a suit to summer weddings, and I like the contrast between the formal cut of the jacket with beat up jeans. Wrinkles? You bet. It’s even been in the washing machine a couple of times, and wrinkles have steamed right out.

Linen is wonderful during these hot months, but I avoid the fabric in a shirt. Miami Vice was good, but only for the eighties.

Labels: Fashion, Homme, Style     permalink

3 thoughts on “In Praise of Linen

  1. Thank you! This post is extremely helpful. I think I own the same linen suit and have worn it to 2 weddings with much success. It is an off white Claiborne that I’ve had tailored to fit my shrinking middle-aged size. The pleated baggy pants are little too 2002 for my taste now but I will surely break out the jacket this Summer and damn the wrinkles.

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