Monday, April 5, 2010

Paisley is a timeless pattern

Before researching paisley on Wikipedia, I would have guessed that the paisley print was first introduced in the mid-1970s, when it was a popular print for extra-wide neckties (at least for my grandfathers).

According to Wikipedia, the paisley print dates back to the Safavid Dynasty of Persia (1501 to 1736). Perhaps that is why American quilters refer to paisleys as "Persian pickles." I'm not sold on the pickle idea; I have always thought paisleys resemble colorful amoebae. But, I agree that paisleys resemble Yin yang symbols, so that is why they are a fitting pattern for a spring ensemble.

I recently had a custom order for a colorful paisley wallet ($32), and I continued the theme to a mini pack purse ($24), a box pouch ($15), a mini zippered wallet ($11), and a lanyard ($6). Then I used a blue paisley print to create a Passport wallet ($10).

Whether a paisley resembles a pickle or an amoeba, it can be patterned and colored in myriad ways. And most paisley prints I come across are a lot more appealing than they were in the mid-1970s.