adjective, often capitalized
pais·​ley | \ ˈpāz-lē How to pronounce paisley (audio) \

Definition of paisley

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : made typically of soft wool and woven or printed with colorful curved abstract figures
2 : marked by designs, patterns, or figures typically used in paisley fabrics a paisley print


geographical name
Pais·​ley | \ ˈpāz-lē How to pronounce Paisley (audio) \

Definition of Paisley (Entry 2 of 2)

burgh in southwestern Scotland west of Glasgow population 77,000

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Other Words from paisley


paisley noun

Examples of paisley in a Sentence


The wallpaper is a paisley print.

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Dressed up for his big TV moment in a turquoise paisley shirt, marigold vest and dapper cranberry suit (admittedly a marvelous feat of costume design), Arthur struts down an outdoor stairway like a rock’n’roll hero. Stephanie Zacharek, Time, "Joker Wants to Be a Movie About the Emptiness of Our Culture. Instead, It’s a Prime Example of It," 31 Aug. 2019 Lounging poolside with an electric orange bob and tangerine lipstick, and hovering above one XXL paisley kaftan, Amy Van Doran looks like the 2019 equivalent of Edward Scissorhands’s backyard salon muses. Vogue, "New York’s Coolest Matchmaker Shares Her Go-To Beauty Equation for Valentine’s Dates," 14 Feb. 2019 Trading in her white bridal gown, the actress was spotted leaving her hotel looking straight out of the '70s in a colorful paisley print suit. Lauren Alexis Fisher, Harper's BAZAAR, "Priyanka Chopra Steps Out in a Colorful Paisley Suit After Bridal Shower," 29 Oct. 2018 In the ’90s, that meant long beachy waves and paisley shirts at events where everyone else was decked out in black tie—his boho True Romance premiere outfit is a still a thing of beauty. Janelle Okwodu, Vogue, "At 55, Brad Pitt Is Still a Menswear Icon for the Ages," 18 Dec. 2018 Despite the widespread fear of color among men, there are outliers: Corporate raiders readily knot up red and yellow paisley ties, and budding junior executives slip on preppy pastel socks with their loafers. Jacob Gallagher, WSJ, "Why Men Fear Wearing Color. And the Secret to Pulling It Off.," 11 Oct. 2018 Her chiffon frock, by Claudie Pierlot, featured a tiny paisley print and a pleated skirt. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Pippa and Kate Middleton Had a Twinning Maternity Style Moment Three Years Apart," 8 Oct. 2018 Ross’s was a bold paisley print, while Noa’s was a darker green with a sheen. Alexandra Macon, Vogue, "Inside a Greenery-Filled Hawaiian Wedding—Where the Bridesmaids Wore Power Suits," 13 July 2018 The mural is composed of three pieces, a ceiling with a paisley-like motif spills down into two side panels each featuring the profile of a woman with blue hair and an upturned face. Cassie Dickman, sacbee, "Iconic Tower Records mural in downtown is getting a little love," 10 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'paisley.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of paisley


1790, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for paisley


Paisley, Scotland

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Dictionary Entries near paisley

pair up







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Last Updated

5 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for paisley

The first known use of paisley was in 1790

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English Language Learners Definition of paisley

: covered in a pattern made up of colorful curved shapes

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Nglish: Translation of paisley for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about paisley

Comments on paisley

What made you want to look up paisley? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to make a temporary encampment

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