This twisted teardrop or kidney shaped droplet is a Persian and Indian design. It is better known as Boteh Jegheh; a symbol of Life and Eternity. It is believed that this pattern is the union between a cypress tree and a floral spray. The paisley originated in Sassanid Dynasty (200-650 AD) and later in Persia from 1501-1736. The majestic pattern has been used by royalty for weddings, table clothes, jewelry, paintings, and other special occasions.
The pattern was introduced to the European in the 17th century. It was believed that this pattern would ward off evil demons. Due to its popularity and rising demand of the charmed paisley pattern the East India Company was not able to produce enough to keep up with demand. Local manufacturers began to mass-produce textiles in 1640. England started producing the pattern textiles in the 1670’s and Holland followed shortly after in 1678. However, France had forbidden the production of import of the paisley pattern by royal decree during the periods of 1686-1759.
In the 19th century the Persian design production increased due to soldiers bringing home shawls on silk and cashmere with the pattern woven into them. The soldiers were returning from a Scottish town named Paisley and they became the leading producers of these shawls. Which originated the pattern into the Paisley?
In the late 19th century the Paisley was being printed instead of woven on small pieces of fabric, also known as the bandanna. Due to the printing of the pattern it drove the cost down and was gained popularity once more.
In 1968 Paisley’s were popular once more as a highly psychedelic style during the Summer of Love. The trending pattern has had record labels and a song named after it and is still seen in many styles today.