What's A Seersucker Social?

by MADELEINE STARKEY · June 15, 2010

If you happened to be in or around Meridian Park Saturday afternoon, you undoubtedly spied a gaggle of bikers (not the motor cycle kind) dressed as though it were (circa) 1930.  Whether or not you were aware, you were witnessing the beginning stages of a Seersucker Social. Dandies and Quaintrelles, a DC social group whose sole purpose seems to be engaging in leisurely activities while quaintly attired, is responsible for congregating like-minded folks who flocked from near and far to hop on two-wheelers for a relaxed ride through Rock Creek Park.  The excursion culminated at Hillwood Estate, Museum and Gardens where lawn games, food and drink, and music were offered.  Et voila: a Seersucker Social.

If you feel as though you've seen something similarly curious in DC, perhaps you are remembering this fall's Tweed Ride, also organized by the Dandies and Quaintrelles.  While the fabric of choice was tweed in the fall, summer calls for a cooler, more breathable texture.  Hence, good ol' seersucker.

The afternoon looks as though it were lovely and whimsical:

[video by Eric Brewer, via Dandies & Quaintrelles]

Now, we must wonder: what is the point of all this?  Why get gussied up in garb of yore, bike about, and play croquet?

1. You are losing your mind over the state of world today: a failing economy, an oil spill disaster in the Gulf Coast, sexting.  You are nostalgic for a bygone time during which life was easy, and television did not yet exist.

2. You saw Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland and have since become obsessed with what you consider to be the most engaging sport ever created: croquet.  You dream of being able to play croquet with flamingoes as mallets and hedgehogs as balls as does the Red Queen, but settle for the more realistic aspiration to participate in any croquet match you can find.

3. You are broke.  Keeping up with a fashion world that pumps out new collections like A Rod goes through A listers is impossible given your financial situation.  You only shop at thrift stores (but insist on calling every old rag you own "vintage").  The only setting in which you can comfortably socialize given your sartorial predicament is a Seersucker Social, which practically demands antiquated get-ups.

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[photos by Adrian Loving via Facebook]