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Posts from the ‘Pendleton Woolen Mills’ Category

Jackson Sundown and the Pendleton Round-Up

Note: In honor of the Pendleton Round-Up, we’re sharing an older post about Jackson Sundown, who is one of the great riders of the American West. We’re adding new photos to make the read worth your while. Let’er Buck!

 

The Pendleton Round-up  is going on right now—an amazing rodeo adventure in Pendleton, Oregon, celebrating its 102nd year. Our designers travel there for inspiration, entertainment, and to watch our westernwear in action on rodeo competitors and fans. Oregon Public Broadcasting has a video titled “Pendleton Round-Up: The Wild West Way”  that’s well worth watching, and Cowboys & Indians magazine has some great background.

Among the historic images, you’ll see this shot:

This is Roy Bishop and Jackson Sundown posing at the Pendleton Round-Up. This image actually made the fashion blogs in 2009, when recreations of Roy Bishop’s fringed coat and Jackson Sundown’s oval-print shirt were part of Pendleton’s Centennial offering. But the story is about more than fashion history. This photo is about rodeo history.

The association of Pendleton Woolen Mills and the Round-Up goes back to the very beginning, when along with his brothers Clarence and Chauncey, Roy Bishop established the first mill at its current location in Pendleton, Oregon. The brothers combined their production and retailing expertise with an idled mill, a river, and fine fleece provided by local wool growers. Back then, PWM was a blanket company. Our first and most valued customer was the Native American, and the Bishop brothers worked hard to fill the strong demand (we still sell approximately 60% of our blankets to Native customers every year).

The Bishops were key to the conception of the first Round-Up. Rodeos are big business now, and they were big business then. It was an undertaking to get to a rodeo, especially for a working cowboy. The Round-Up needed something special to draw the crowd. It was unheard-of to include Native Americans to a Western rodeo, but Roy Bishop rode out to meet tribal leaders and invite their participation. He was politely received and quietly listened to, but he left without receiving a definite answer.

The rodeo’s starting date approached, and still he waited. On the morning before the rodeo began, Roy stepped out on the mill’s loading dock. In the distance, he had his answer when he saw the dust of the tribes as they made their way to the Indian campground. The cooperation between the Columbia Basin tribes and the Pendleton Round-up, unique among modern rodeos, continues to this day.

So what about the other person in this photo?

Jackson Sundown was born Waaya-Tonah-Toesits-Kahn in 1863 in Montana. During the Nez Perce war of 1877, he rode with Sitting Bull, retreating to Canada with the Sioux. He eventually returned to Washington, then to Idaho, then to Montana, supporting himself by working, breeding and breaking horses.

In 1912, at the age of 49, Waaya-Tonah-Toesits-Kahn began entering rodeo events in Canada and Idaho using the name Jackson Sundown. The crowds went wild when he tied his braids under his chin, lifted his sombrero and started the ride, his wooly angora chaps streaming.

He took so many prizes that other riders refused to challenge him. Stock owners pulled their animals when they saw his name on the list of possible riders, as after Jackson Sundown rode a horse, it might be so thoroughly mastered that it never bucked again.

Jackson Sundown entered the Pendleton Round-Up several times, placing but not winning. In 1915, in a controversial decision, he placed third and decided to retire from rodeo riding. But a sculptor named Alexander Phimister Proctor prevailed upon him to try one more time. In 1916, he did. Jackson Sundown came out of the gate on a horse named Angel, and the spectacular ride that followed has become legendary. The crowd went wild, and threatened to take down the grandstands board-by-board if Sundown wasn’t awarded the title he had so clearly won.

At twice the age of his competitors, the lanky six-foot tall Indian not only won the bucking championship, but the all-around title as well. He lived out his life on the Nez Perce reservation, raising horses and passing on his skills until his death in 1923. He’s been inducted into more rodeo and athletic halls-of-fame than I have space to list. He is a key character in a novel by Ken Kesey, The Last Go ‘Round.

Jackson Sundown is also featured in a terrific documentary called “American Cowboys.” This is a detailed look at the frustration of competitive riding for contestants of color. It was playing at the Tamastslikt Cultural Center just outside Pendleton, which is a fantastic place to learn about the history of the tribes of the Columbia Basin. It may or may not be part of their permanent installation, but this documentary includes footage of Sundown riding. Sadly, photographs of him riding rare; this may be the only one.

It is sad that a man who possessed such incredible skills in horsemanship isn’t memorialized while sitting a horse. But there are plenty images of Jackson Sundown that show just how much he understood the role of wardrobe in a great performance. Chaps, hat, and that aloof expression. Jackson Sundown had it all, a fact well-illustrated by this logo for the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum. Yes, that is Jackson Sundown.

So today, in honor of the Pendleton Round-Up, please enjoy these images of Jackson Sundown; Nez Perce warrior, compatriot of Sitting Bull, bronc rider, horse breeder, main character, documentary subject, fashion blog icon, Round-Up Champion and Inductee into the Hall of Fame at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum.

And a true proponent of individual style.

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Pendleton Wool Decade Shirts for Women: Steal His Shirt

Women have been carrying on a love affair with men’s style since the 1940s.

1940s teenager in Pendleton wool shirt. We won't apologize for the cigarette, because everyone smoked in the 1940s, including doctors while they performed surgery.

Call it Boyfriend Style, call it Menswear-Inspired, call it dressing like boys or whatever you want to. Women have always loved wearing male-inspired fashion and men’s garments. Especially, it seems, men’s Pendleton wool shirts.

Photo courtesy of Rachel Comey Boots

Boyfriend style is hot right now, but it’s not new. The Pendleton 49’er grew directly from this trend. To quote our blog post on this iconic jacket:

Pendleton’s success with men’s shirts had happened twenty years earlier, but during WWII, men were not the only people enjoying distinctive plaids and ombres in pure virgin wool. Women began to borrow men’s work shirts for both work and warmth.

1940s women in Pendleton wool shirts. The fetching ax-wielder on the right looks like Mad men's Peggy Olson AKA Elizabeth Moss, doesn't she?

 It’s possible that by wearing their husband’s shirts, women kept the memories of their husbands, fiancés and brothers close, though many undoubtedly needed some serious work wear that was simply not available for women at the time. Whatever the reason, women loved Pendleton shirts.

We answered this love by introducing the Pendleton 49’er jacket in (you guessed it) 1949. (As an aside, how much does the woman on the right resemble Peggy Olson?)

Women loved the 49’er, but continued to raid men’s closets. Here are two 1950s icons of femininity, rocking their Pendletons.

Marilyn Monroe in a Pendleton wool shirt.

Jayne Mansfield in a Pendleton wool Board shirt. With chihuahuas. Cooking breakfast, because that's how all chihuahua owners cook their eggs.

These photos of Marilyn Monroe and Jayne Mansfield offer a clue as to why Boyfriend Style was so popular in the 1950s.  It was associated with relaxation, home, comfort, ease, the outdoors. It probably offered them a break from their sexpot styling, though this Life magazine series of Jayne Mansfield cooking breakfast in a Pendleton shirt still manages to radiate her kittenish allure.

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(As another aside, clearly Jayne inspired today’s selfie-pout).

The desire to steal his shirt didn’t end in the 1950s. Diane Keaton’s Annie Hall style showed up in the 1970s, creating a wave of skinny-tie-and-vest wearers. Women tucked shoulder pads under the bigger shoulders of men’s shirts and jackets and belted them tightly to create the signature silhouette of the 1980s. The 2000s brought the rise of thrifted style. Countless women reworked shrunken men’s Pendletons into their looks. And when we introduced our Fitted line, market intelligence informed us that a surprising amount of these slimmer-cut shirts were selling to women. Women still love wearing Pendleton men’s shirts.

When we decided to celebrate our Nine Decades of Pendleton Wool Shirts, we knew that women would want to celebrate this milestone, too. So we developed three Decade Shirts for women using plaids from our archives.

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Three styles, five fabrics, all available at pendleton-usa.com. The Prineville is a popover with a 3/4 placket. The Ranch Hand is based on our Men’s Canyon model, the original High Grade Westernwear shirt. The Ponderosa uses our beautiful Sir Pendleton worsted fabric, meaning there’s almost a mile of yarn in every shirt.

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To finish things nicely, because we love to do that, each shirt has a special Decade Shirt label in the placket. We wanted to give you everything you love in our Men’s shirts with Women’s more fitted shaping.

Here are the Decade Shirts for Women in action.

Photo by Lauren Field

You can see the special Decade label in the shot above. Copyright 2014, Lauren Field All rights reserved by Pendleton Woolen Mills

03930003Copyright 2014, Lauren Field All rights reserved by Pendleton Woolen Mills

photo by Blaire Russel

Copyright 2014, Blaire Russel All rights reserved by Pendleton Woolen Mills

photos by Travis Hallmark

Copyright 2014, Travis Hallmark All rights reserved by Pendleton Woolen Mills

Our Decade Shirts for women celebrate our past and inspire our future. But even so, we know from experience that you’ll continue to steal his shirt.

Macklemore: a Northwest Artist with Pendleton Wool

Macklemore is originally from Seattle, WA. Maybe that’s why his videos use Pendleton wool  letting us act as a signifier for the west and the wilderness.  We’re glad he hasn’t forgotten his Pacific Northwest roots.

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The train seats are upholstered with our Canyonlands fabric, and bring to mind the Portland Express run by AMTRAK last year. The blanket on the camel (okay, so maybe we don’t get that one, either) is one that benefits the American Indian College Fund called the Earth blanket. These are both great songs, but we’re still partial to his first big hit, which also celebrates a Portland passion; going to the thrift store. We don’t have anything in this one, but hey, don’t you love finding Pendleton when you’re thrifting?

 

The Decade Shirts: Nine Decades of Pendleton Wool Shirts

The Pendleton Decade Shirts for men celebrate our ninety years of shirt making using re-creations of fabrics from each decade. We went deep into the archives to find the wool shirt fabric that best expressed the men’s fashion ethos of each decade, and here’s what we chose. Pendleton wool shirt 9 decade wool shirt fabric

We used these special fabrics  in your favorite Pendleton shirt styles; those that have stood the test of time, just like a Pendleton should. That includes the Gambler, a western shirt that first debuted in the 1930s.

January 1959 vintage pendleton wool shirt ad

And Sir Pendleton, which is turning sixty next year.

Sir pendleton wool shirt advertising vintage

 

We are offering the Lodge, Trail, Epic, Guide, even the Zephyr shirt from early in the 2000s. And the Board Shirt is offered twice, including a labeled version of the shirt made famous by the Beach Boys in their Surfer Girl days.

Photo of Beach Boys

If you want to make sure you’re getting a Decade Shirt, check the front placket. You see a special label there, letting you know you’re getting the goods.

pendleton wool shirt label

And here they are: all the shirts and all the fabrics and all the styles and all the decades.

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Of course, there are nine decades and ten shirts. The tenth is the numbered limited edition Guide Shirt, that you can read about here.  All the shirts are currently available at pendleton-usa, and in most of our retail stores.

We are fairly certain that there’s a shirt for every man in that assortment. But quality shirts are not just for men. We marked the Nine Decades with some beautiful Pendleton wool shirts for women, which we will talk about next week.

In the meantime, ladies, just steal his shirt.

 

 

Greg Hatten and a Wooden Boat Proposal

Greg Hatten is our guest blogger today. Usually he writes about heart-stopping whitewater river journeys in his wooden boat, the Portola. Today’s post is about another kind of adventure, and it’s more heart-tugging than heart-stopping. We hope you enjoy it.

My youngest daughter and her serious boyfriend, Josh, took an Oregon river ride in my wooden boat one hot summer weekend last year. Despite the lack of fishing time, we all had a great time. This trip was about the water, the waves, and the old man checking out the young man in my daughter’s life. He checked out fine. I liked him much more than the others that had come and gone before him.

One year later, he was eager to come back to Oregon. He was ready to get back in the boat and maybe catch a steelhead on a fly. Understand, this is an accomplishment that requires thousands of casts and years of suffering broken rods, broken leaders, broken spirit. But he had a goal, so we saved the date. As it approached, his interest and questions about the details of the trip increased.

It was going to be a hot, sunny day. We started early. ‘0 dark 30 early, 4:30 AM early. Mentally making our offerings to the steelhead gods, we climbed in my FJ40, pulled the choke, turned on the headlights and headed up river, boat in-tow. We pulled into the boat launch. Judging by the lack of trucks and boats at the ramp, most fishermen had stayed in bed, conceding the day before it even began.

The most elusive of Pacific Northwestern fish proved to be just that. For two hours we fished some of the best pools and slots on the river and felt nothing – not a bite, not a hit, not a take-down, no sign of a steelhead. A familiar fishless ache in my gut prompted me to remind Josh of the degree of difficulty and disappointment associated with chasing steelhead on the fly. And then–WHAM! Josh felt “the tug” — a strong one – and suddenly line was peeling off the reel and the rod was doubled over in a rainbow arc. I heard him say, “WOW.”

It was a great fight with impressive runs and a few sharp jumps caught in vivid HD by the Go-Pro mounted on the bill of a fishing hat. A thirty minute tug-of-war brought a tired fish to the net and into the boat. He did it! On one of the hottest, sunniest days of the summer, Josh had hooked and LANDED his first steelhead on the fly.

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We took the required pictures. He sat there holding the big fish in my boat, looking very serious and clearing his throat. Then he asked my blessing to propose to my daughter. Then it was my turn to feel “the tug,” and Josh heard me say “WOW.” But this had nothing to do with a fish. I thought, are you kidding me? Who’s writing the script for this? He’s holding a trophy fish in my wooden boat and asks for my daughter’s hand in marriage. What could a fly fishing father say but, “Let me shake your slimy hand and welcome you to the family, Son.” Especially since fifteen minutes later, in the very next pool, Josh hooked up and landed a second steelhead in a battle that was even more dramatic than the first. That time, we both said, “WOW”.

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Greg&Josh_fishing

That evening, after a dinner of fresh steelhead on the grill, Josh pulled out a ring and proposed to my daughter Sarah by the light of the campfire over the sound of the McKenzie River flowing behind Eagle Rock Lodge. She said yes. And then I’m pretty sure she said, “WOW.”

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Quite a day.

 

Our congratulations to the happy couple. Be sure to read about Greg’s river adventures here, here and here.

Dawg Grog: Because Dogs Deserve It

First, anyone reading this from out-of-state needs to understand that Oregonians love Oregon. We love  the mountains, the rivers, the ocean, the cities. We love the biking, the hiking, the climbing, the skiing. We love the dining-out scene, the wine country, the craft breweries, the makers’ markets. Oregonians love all these things, but what do we love most of all?

Our dogs.

Danimal and Lola Jane, Pendleton wool blanket, photography Skyler Hughes

Yes. That’s right. We love our dogs more than anything! We want to share all our best adventures with them. That’s why dogs are everywhere here, on trails, on the beach, at dog parks, on the leash at the Oregon Garden, under the tables at so many places that let us dine out with our dogs. Oregon is Dog Nirvana.

And that’s why there’s Dawg Grog. Because Dawg Grog is beer. For dogs. Well, it’s as close to beer for dogs as you can get.

Please understand, there’s no alcohol in this brew. No hops, nothing that would harm a dog. In fact, there’s a lot in Dawg Grog that will help your dog, especially if he’s getting a little creaky in the hips.

To quote the company website:

Daniel Keeton launched his business in the summer of 2012 with one idea in mind, to supply the dog friendly community of Bend, Oregon with a delicious and nutritional liquid treat. Living in Bend since 2001, Daniel’s love for craft beer and dogs spawned an idea – Develop a liquid treat for dogs that incorporated the craft beer side of things while having a nutritional value specifically for dogs. Knowing that hops are poisonous for dogs and that dogs don’t process alcohol like us humans do, Daniel discovered that the brewers wort, made in the primary process of beer making, would make for a delicious base for his product. The brewers wort with the addition of K9 vegetarian glucosamine and a trace mineral supplement would make for the ultimate liquid dog treat.

And there you have it! A craft-brewed, healthy treat for your dog that satisfies your own urge to crack a cold one with your canine, because (as we’ve stated here repeatedly) in Oregon, we want to share all our best experiences with our dogs.

Danimal and Lola Jane, Pendleton wool blanket, photography Skyler Hughes

Here’s Dawg Grog’s founder, Daniel, AKA Danimal, with Lola Jane. As you can see, they travel in style in a ’63 Fairlane.

Danimal and Lola Jane, Pendleton wool blanket, photography Skyler Hughes

This is the official Dawg Grog ride, with a header and dog lap (remember those?) upholstered in Pendleton’s Sugar Skulls wool.

Danimal and Lola Jane, Pendleton wool blanket, photography Skyler Hughes

It was customized by Doug from the Auto Clinic in Bend, who made the headliner from the material and installed it.

Danimal and Lola Jane, Pendleton wool blanket, photography Skyler Hughes

Erik Elbek – AKA Grind King –  completed the back package tray of the headliner to tie it all together, and gave the ’63 Fairlane the finishing shine for the photo shoot with Skyler Hughes of Skyler Hughes Photography.

Danimal and Lola Jane, Pendleton wool blanket, photography Skyler Hughes

The remaining fabric went to Lola Jane for her own custom Sugar Skulls blanket, perfect for a nice lie-down after a drink of her favorite treat. The blanket was sewn for her by Maddy Wasserman.

Danimal and Lola Jane, Pendleton wool blanket, photography Skyler HughesIt’s a dog’s life, yes? Be sure to visit the Dawg Grog website to learn more. You can find a distributor near you, and even learn how your dog can become a Spokes-Dawg for the brand. And follow them on Instagram, while you’re at it.

Thanks to Danimal for letting us feature him, his car, his company and Lola Jane. All photos by Skyler Hughes of Skyler Hughes Photography, copyright 2014. Photos used with permission.

The Limited Edition Guide Shirt: 9 Decades of Pendleton Wool Shirts

Limited Edition Guide Shirt for 2014 by Pendleton, photo by Taylor Painter

This fall, we’re offering a limited edition Guide shirt in an edition of 1863. Why 1863? Because, of course, that’s when our weaving legacy’s founder, Thomas Kay, arrived in Oregon. We made the shirt in an amber and brown ombre plaid that appears to be straight out of the Pendleton archives, but was developed just for this year. Each shirt has a hand-numbered label:

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This shirt model first appeared in our 1927 men’s shirt line. Back then it was called The Buckaroo. Thanks to the Pendleton archives, here’s a look at the Buckaroo’s debut (you can click to enlarge):

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Yes, we understand that it looks comical to the modern eye to have a man going hunting wearing a bowtie and trilby. Perhaps sportsmen really were that much more dapper in 1927.

Bowtie

He also oddly resembles Peter Sellers, but this was long before Inspector Clouseau’s time.

But back to the Buckaroo. As a manufacturer of Native American trade blankets, Pendleton Woolen Mills was (and still is) headquartered in the west.  It made sense to capitalize on America’s fascination with all things western in the early part of the last century, so our garments were named accordingly. But despite the rodeo name, the Buckaroo was meant to be worn in a variety of settings. The dressiness of the shirt depended on the fabric, not the cut; plaids for hunting, solids for fishing, and broadcloth solids or stripes for “dress-up.” The plaids/solid demarcation is a bit baffling. Were the plaids better for forest camouflage? Would plaids startle the fish? Despite these marketing mysteries, America responded to this shirt line with enthusiasm. The Pendleton wool shirt became a wardrobe staple.

Pendleton wool shirt, Taylor Painter photography

Of course, you become a part of this history every time you choose a Pendleton shirt. The limited Edition Guide Shirt is available at pendleton-usa.com and other retailers. Enjoy some special shots of this shirt taken by Portland photographer Taylor Painter, who you should immediately follow on Instagram.

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Stana Katic from Castle in Pendleton! VIDEO

Stana Katic, a small-screen favorite on “Castle,” is lighting up the pages of Good Housekeeping this month with our womenswear. Below is a behind-the-scenes video. It looks like this was a fun shoot!

 

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Here she is in our Juneau Vest (this color will be arriving soon).

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Chronicles of Pendleton: Pendleton and Chronicle Notebooks

There’s nothing quite as inspiring as a blank notebook. We might be doing away with cursive handwriting and sending email rather than letters, but we still love a blank book full of empty pages that are waiting for our own words.

The advantage of a notebook lies in its portability. It weighs less than a laptop, and is even thinner than a tablet. You don’t have to power it on, wait for a signal or connection or three bars or whatever else to make it work. It’s ready to go, and though it might run out of pages, it will never run out of power. You can refer to it without plugging it in. And you can make sketches quite easily.

All you need is something to write with.

Inspiration usually requires fuel. Sometimes that’s travel, sometimes it’s solitude. Very often, inspiration comes in the form of coffee, whether hot:

Or iced:

When you’re ready to record your deepest thoughts, your secret dreams or just some recipes and grocery lists, you can get your Pendleton notebooks here. The covers are based on our wool blankets, combining National Park Blanket stripes with Native American-inspired geometric patterns.  The covers are sturdy, the books are stitched, and the pages are ruled. Just add a pen, and you’re ready to go.

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Happy inspiration, from Pendleton Woolen Mills.

 

German VOGUE–Summer 2014

We had a gorgeous feature in German VOGUE this summer. The weathered walls and dry landscape make an atmospheric backdrop for our Native American-inspired blankets. Please click for larger views!

Cover with the NIKE N7 blanket, which benefits the American Indian College Fund: Innovation meets tradition with this collaboration between Nike N7 and Pendleton Woolen Mills. For inspiration, Nike designer Derek Roberts looked to traditional Native American dress and how the patterns work together to create a garment. He started at the bottom of the blanket with a smaller pattern of arrows that repeats and grows in scale toward the center. The top is a mirror image of the bottom. Putting a unique twist on the traditional Pendleton blanket, he used only black and white instead of the usual multitude of colors. The result is a distinctive, contrast-driven look that subtly blends black and white to create varying grey tones in heathered and color-blocked designs. The center of the blanket prominently features the Nike N7 mark–three arrows pointing back to signify past generations, three arrows pointing forward to signify future generations, and arrows in the center to represent the current generation. The arrows, sometimes appearing as triangles or other shapes, convey both movement and balance. The blanket reverses for a positive/negative visual effect–with a black base on one side and white on the other.

 

The Crossroads  blanket.

The Crossroads design reflects First Nations teachings and the power of the four directions – the number “four” is sacred among many Native American tribes. East represents the physical body, the realm of the Warrior. West represents the heart and the path of the Visionary. North is the region of the mind and the wisdom of the Teacher. South represents the spirit, enlightenment and the realm of the Healer. Balance and harmony are achieved where the directions meet at the center of the Medicine Wheel. Crosses in this jacquard pattern symbolize the crossroads where the paths meet – the place where an individual becomes whole.

 

The San Miguel blanket.

A pattern inspired by mid-to-late 19th-century Native American weaving traditions and the influence of Spanish missionaries in the Southwest. The design's roots are in the traditional banded Chief Stripe pattern which evolved into a "nine-element" layout. The reversible jacquard has two dramatically different looks.

 

The Saxony Hills blanket.

The Saxony Hills Blanket references the changing landscape of Navajo weaving in the 1800s. Spanish explorers had introduced Churro sheep to the Southwest in the late 17th century. The Churro bred by the Navajo produced a somewhat coarse, long-staple wool that was hand-spun and woven into shoulder robes or blankets, shirts and sashes. Hand-spun wool from these animals was the main source of yarn for Navajo blankets until the 1860s. Then Saxony yarns arrived in the Southwest by way of the Santa Fe Trail and later the railroad. These fine 3-ply yarns spun from the wool of merino sheep were produced in Saxony, a former German state, and in England, France, and New England. By the mid-1900s, Saxony yarns were used by the Navajos for general weaving. The Saxony Hills Blanket incorporates traditional, geometric Navajo motifs—diamonds, stepped triangles and Spider Woman cross patterns.

All blankets are available at pendleton-usa.com.

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