Whitehill & Wilsons

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Whitehill & Wilsons is the last company in Paisley involved in the manufacture of shawls in the famous Paisley teardrop motif.

Founded by partners Matthew Whitehill and David Wilson, Whitehill & Wilsons was established in 1847 to design and manufacture hand woven Paisley shawls, much in demand at that time. By 1870, woven shawls had more or less been replaced by printed shawls.

Matthew Whitehill left the company in 1870, leaving David Wilson at the head of the now family run company, which was subsequently handed down from father to son for the next 128 years. In 1998, the company was bought by another family run company, Macnaughton Holdings Limited. Based in Paisley for more than 150 years, it continues it’s long-standing tradition.

The Paisley shawl trade all but disappeared by the 1920s and the Wilsons wisely diversified into other textile goods, such as shawls for native North Americans and christening shawls, which kept the company ticking over in what were to be difficult times. In 1965, the company started making neckers for the Scout and Guide movement throughout the world and has been making them ever since.

Whitehill & Wilsons produces classic mohair, silk and wool shawls and scarves using the patterns from the company’s archive of over 20 volumes of timeless designs, one of the largest collections in the UK. Many of the archive designs are yet to be re-discovered by our in-house design team for future collections.
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