|By the 1850s, shawls based on Indian designs were highly fashionable
in Britain. Paisley, in Scotland, had been one of the first manufacturing
centres in Britain to try to reproduce traditional Kashmiri patterns.
With new technology in the form of jacquard looms from France enabling
them to create and reproduce more elaborate designs, British manufacturers
were able to develop their own style, and the ‘Paisley’
patterns that we know today were born.
The design of this shawl (which was probably made in Paisley) shows
both French and Indian influences. The elongated pine cones and coloured
end pieces are based on Indian patterns, but some of the colours (such
as burgundy) would never have been used on an authentic Indian shawl.
By the 1850s, the Kashmiri shawl industry in India was largely controlled
by European agents, who brought their own pattern books, with these
new British designs, for local weavers to copy.
Victoria & Albert Museum T.111-1977 (CIS) (probably 1851-5)
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