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Saturday, June 1, 2013

Paisley: Going for the Bold

The paisley print has been sadly misunderstood in the last decade. Often poo-poo'd in favor of so-called trendier or more conservative ties, the paisley print ties would collect themselves on the department store display to share their woes and tales of rejection after store closing. 

But lately, the ties share more and more optimistic stories! Word is that patterns are a very chic, the way for the modern man to express himself through articles such as ties and socks. And what is the classiest, quirkiest print of all? Why, the paisley print, of course.

The paisley print itself has a rich history, originating in India and Iran and brought to Western Europe by the British. The paisley print is believed to represent the leaf of a cypress tree, which represents life itself, and is always kept on the most luxurious of fabrics. So, it's no wonder that paisley ties have remained a classic choice.

Now paisley print ties have found new popularity, with a few twists! They come in all colors and widths, and some ties even incorporate the paisley print into different designs. Bright and pastel prints have taken men's accessories by storm. It seems that the more accessories differ from one another, the more fashionable they are, so paisley prints are an excellent addition to any fashion savvy man's arsenal of ties. 

Paisley prints have the added bonus of having many strong, contrasting colors within them already, so they add a bold touch to any outfit. Pair them with a fun pocket square and patterned socks, and the gentleman is ready for any meeting or night on the town. Young men should especially embrace this bright new trend with contrasting, slim-fit shirts to go with their "new" retro look.

And, designers are taking ties to a new level by experimenting with favorite prints and patterns. There are now striped ties that have paisley prints worked into the design with houndstooths and solids, not to mention ties with over-sized paisley prints and ties that resemble vintage 90's shirts and ties with sparse sprinklings of paisley. These ties can even seem to be a solid color at first but have paisley print upon further inspection. This is accomplished by using embroidering the tie with different threads to create a subtle, same-color 3D effect.

Tie widths, too, are an important feature in ties, and especially in paisley prints since paisley can seem old-fashioned if it is not styled correctly. Skinny ties are back in style, so for a modern, clean-cut look, men should pick those ties over more traditional, wider shapes. Men with broader chests can wear ties that are just a bit wider with the same effect. 

So, with the current trends pointing toward bold contrast and louder prints, there's nothing to lose by welcoming a paisley print or two into one's closet. Paisley has a rich history that is still enjoyed today. Let's take advantage of this renewed trend and live it up this summer! Go for the bold!


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