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PAISLEY


Paisley was at one time famous for its weaving industry. For nearly a hundred years until the 1870s shawls of the Paisley pattern were in fashion. Paisley designed shawls were ruling the market Until the Jacquard loom was introduced in the 1820s. Innovation of jacquard looms led to the industrialisation of the process and gave the paisley a set back. 



As a result many weavers lost their livelihoods and left for Canada and Australia. One of these, a man named John Hart and a Paisley mill owner, settled at Perth, Ontario, where he had a Book Store and Mercantile shop.Due to its damp, mild climate Paisley was for many years a centre for the manufacture of cotton sewing thread. When this was at its hilke it gave emplyment to 28,000 people. And was said to be the largest of their kind in the world at that time. In the 1950s the production of synthetic threads and Paisley began to diminish rapidly. By the end of the 1980s there was no thread being produced in Paisley. 



Gradually this business started flourishing and became one of the important means to provide employment to people because of its increasing demand. Paisley or Paisley pattern is a droplet-shaped vegetal motif of Persian origin to half of the Yin yang symbol, or the leaf of the Indian bodhi tree or the mango tree; or to a leech. The pattern is sometimes called "Persian pickles" by American traditionalists, especially quiltmakers.



The paisley pattern owes its name to the town of Paisley, in central Scotland. The pattern was adapted in India to its familiar shape and spread to Scotland when soldiers returning from the colonies brought home cashmere wool shawls. From roughly 1800 to 1850 , using Jacquard looms, the weavers of the town of Paisley, Renfrewshire, Scotland, adapted the design to weave woollen shawls, hence the design became known as the Paisley pattern.



Paisley was a major site for the manufacture of printed cotton and wool in the 19th Century, according to the Paisley Museum in Scotland. The design of paisley pattern was copied from silk that was costly. And some ideas were collected from cotton Kashmir shawls. But Changes in fashion led to the demise of the shawl, bringing hardship to the weavers in Scotland and the originators in Kashmir. This design was also adopted in the European Baltic states between 1700 and 1800 and was thought to be used as a protective charm. The paisley design motif was also known to be cashmere. Paisley has the advantage of being recognized as one of the renowned patterns.



The shape has been widely adopted since its early use. Paisley, particularly popular during the Summer of Love, has been suggested as also a representation of fractals. The paisley design often incorporates pregnant leeches; and a body cavity containing baby leeches. In Indian culture, the Paisley was originally an illiterate way for village people to communicate that it was harvest time. They would put ink on the side of their fist and stamp it places so that people would know it was time for harvest. This symbol was later adapted in design form in artwork and elaborated upon by the town of Paisley.



The rich, abstract, curvilinear patterns, modified from their Kashmir counterparts and deriving ultimately from Mughal art, have continued to be widely adopted in modern textiles, especially for clothing. A motif resembling an enlarged comma, a well-known Mughal decorative art, is the one by which most people recognize a paisley pattern.

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