My Top 4 Summer Suit Recommendations

By Michael Satterfield

Living in the South means hot summers that carry long into fall. While living in shorts and flip flops might work for some men, not all of us can be so casual, with business meetings and more formal social events, owning a few lightweight suits is a must. Here are four classic summer suits that will keep you looking and feeling cool in the summer heat.


A true Southern classic that is uniquely American, that is usually in a white and light blue stripe. Made from a twisted cotton yarn that creates a puckering effect that gives the garment a slight crinkle. Because of the nature of the fabric, it is less prone to wrinkling, making it a great suit for traveling. This is the perfect suite to wear to summer weddings, garden parties, or anytime you find yourself in the South. While blue and white is the most common color combination, you may be able to find tan and white, pale red and white, green and white, various checkered patterns, and solid navy.

Pricing depends on the designer and quality, but generally, you can find nice quality suits for under $500, this suit from Peter Christian Outfitters is a great value at $200.

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Standard cotton waves do have the advantage of being lightweight, but because of the tighter weave, it doesn't breath as well as cotton Seersucker. For better breathability and fewer wrinkles, look for cotton blended with silk or linen. Look at lighter colors like khaki, beige, or light blue.

Good cotton suits should be under $500 as well, with mass-market brands many times offering cotton suits for under $200. This suit pictured above is by Peter Christia Outfitters and retails for $215.

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Linen comes from the flax plant and depending on the weaver it can be stiffer or softer. Italian linen is often softer than the Irish variety. Linen will generally have a natural wrinkle that gives a linen suit a unique look. Linen does tend to be a little warmer than cotton so keep that in mind when you are layering your undershirt, shirt, and tie.

Linen suits can range from $200-$2000 depending on the brand, but no matter how much you spend on the suit, be sure to budget for a nice Panama hat to complete the look. The suit pictured is by Peter Christian Outfitters and retails for $280.

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Fresco Wool

A fresco wool suit achieves incredible cooling comfort because of the specialized weave that allows the suit to breathe. Offered in several weights, not all fresco wool suits are for summer. A summer version should be only partially lined and should be 8-10oz weight. A quick test is to hold it up to the light you should be able to see the light source clearly. Fresco suits are also ideal for traveling thanks to their looser weaves it doesn't like to wrinkle as much as cotton and cotton blended suits. Expect to pay more for a wool suit, with most being $500 and up. This very nice mottled light grey suit from Proper Cloth retails for $795.

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Remember it is summer so keep it more casual with a two button single breasted jacket, light colors, and to allow even better breathing go with a bowtie.