When the temperature rises the prospect of wearing a suit can be forbidding. However, whether you’re going to wear it in the office or at a wedding, in Tooting or in the tropics, there are ways to sport a suit and still beat the heat.

A linen suit represents the most effective way to stay cool; the key is to leave the jacket and trousers largely unlined. It’s true that linen wrinkles, but if the fabric has some body to it (cloth merchant W. Bill offers some substantial Irish linen) then the cloth may rumple but it shouldn’t crease. For me the ultimate summer suit is unlined and made from cream-coloured linen, but if you go that route do steer clear of red wine and spaghetti.

A more business-like answer is to order a suit in ‘Fresco’, a woollen fabric woven in a way that allows air to flow through it. It’s offered by cloth merchants Hardy Minnis and the sober blues and greys are all office-appropriate, while the navy would work well for a wedding that calls for a lounge suit.

The seasonal appeal of a cotton suit is more about its relaxed attitude than about climate control. A tan or olive-green coloured cotton suit (try Fox Brothers’ khaki, or a drill cotton from Brisbane Moss) will exude a mood of relaxation. If you’re unconstrained by strict office etiquette then seersucker is another avenue to explore.

The options are extensive, so be guided by where you’re going to wear the suit. Just one thing: if you need it this side of autumn then I suggest you urgently place an order.

Visit Chris Kerr at our Soho shop.


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