Five Generations in Pendleton blankets

Today’s post is brought to you in honor of Native American Heritage Month. We received these photos from Sharon, and the words you read below are hers. We are honored to be part of this family’s traditions for five generations.


Dear Pendleton;

“We are who we are because they were who they were”.

Since November is National American Indian Heritage Month, how fitting was it to take a picture of my daughter, Allie, in a beautiful Pendleton blanket. My parents have a picture of my Grandmother, Agnes, in a Pendleton blanket. I’ve always loved that picture and wanted to recreate it. Little did I know, my Mother, Christine, has a picture of her Grandmother, Ruth, in a Pendleton blanket. My mother and I decided to recreate the picture also.

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Pendleton and Disneyland: We Go Way Back!

pendispc1The history of Pendleton Woolen Mills and Disneyland began when Walt Disney extended a personal invitation to be retail partners in the Park. Walt was a fan of Pendleton’s “fleece to fashion” vertical manufacturing, which at the time included ownership of our own flocks and scouring facilities. He saw a fit for us in Frontierland as part of his vision of America’s Wild West.

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Pendleton Harry Potter blankets are here, and oh so magical.

To celebrate the much beloved stories of Harry Potter and his friends, Pendleton has woven a series of Harry Potter blankets that feature iconic and memorable moments that will forever live in everyone’s imagination. These luxurious wool blankets, made in the USA, will warm readers young and old as they explore the story of the world’s favorite wizard, Harry Potter.


Gryffindor house is known for bravery and valor, and members of House Gryffindor demonstrate chivalry, nerve, and daring. On the scarlet and gold blanket, Gryffindor’s lion rampant is surrounded by cauldrons, owls, Godric Gryffindor’s sword and Harry Potter’s wand. See it here: Gryffindor Blanket


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It’s a Wrap–Pendleton Mill Tribute Series ends with last Racine blanket

In 2010, Pendleton Woolen Mills introduced our Tribute Series, paying homage to four of the American Mills that thrived during the Golden Age of Native American Trade blankets. Today, we will talk about Racine Woolen Mills, known for their intricate patterns. 


In 1865, a Racine company began producing textiles under the name Blake & Company under the leadership of Lucien Blake and John Hart. In 1877, the company incorporated under the name of “Racine Woolen Mills—Blake & Company.” Racine Woolen Mills went on to become the premier producer and marketer of Native American Trade blankets.


The Racine Woolen Mill

Racine was well-established by 1893. Records show employees of 150 skilled weavers and gross sales of $300K, which was an robust amount for the day.

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Mea Alford, 1945 Pendleton Round-Up Princess

When Mary Esther Brock (or Mea, as she’s been called most of her life) was appointed to the Court, there hadn’t been a Pendleton Round-Up for two years. World War II was still going on, but the community missed their annual tradition so much that they decided to hold it anyway. And an important part of the Round-Up is the Round-Up Court.


Pioneer Heritage

Round-Up royalty was chosen based on family history, age and ability to ride a horse. Mea, reminiscing, stressed that a family’s pioneer background was one of the most important criteria. Her father’s grandparents had come from Missouri on the Oregon Trail in 1848 or 1849, settling first in Heppner, where her father, Wilson E. Brock, was born. Her grandfather was treasurer of the first Pendleton Round-Up. So her pioneer pedigree was impeccable on her father’s side.

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Father’s Day and Pendleton: Generations of Love

Danijo Lopez 2

Photo (with his dad) courtesy Danijo Lopez

For generations, a Pendleton wool shirt has been a gift of gratitude for dads young and old, near and far. When Dad opens a package and finds a Pendleton, he knows you’re paying attention to what he wants.


Photo (with his dad) courtesy Matt Raven

Your Dad

He’s always had your back. Maybe that’s why you want a Pendleton shirt for his. What’s your father’s favorite style?

It might be The Original Board Shirt™, the original surf shirt since the early 1960s. The loop square collar and square hem make it suitable as a lightweight jacket, and the flaps on those bias-cut patch pockets are recognizable a mile away.

Or maybe your father is a Sir Pendleton™ man. This lightweight worsted wool shirt has been around for over fifty years without gaining an ounce. We have a Black Watch tartan version right now—a traditional pattern for a traditional dad.


Bri Heiligenthal Photography

Your Husband

He’s your true love, your best friend and your partner in parenting. Celebrate your shared path with with the Trail Shirt, recognized by its soft sueded elbow patches. It also has a pencil slot on its chest pocket, since Dad is so often the official pen-carrier in the family.

Our most traditional shirt (according to our customers) is our Fireside Shirt. This is trad all the way, with one matched-pattern chest pocket and a button-down collar. The Lodge Shirt is cut just like the Fireside, but with a spread collar. Both are available in Black Watch—or as we like to call it, the stealth tartan.


Grace Adams Photography

Your Son, who is Now a Dad

It’s beautiful and touching to watch young dads navigate the new role of father. You’ll be there for him as he takes on this new role. Mark this rite of passage with a Pendleton shirt. You can’t go wrong with the Original Board Shirt™, of course, maybe in one of our Surf Pendleton plaids or stripes.

But for the younger man, that Western fit is a hit, so also consider the Canyon Shirt. This is a snap-front and cuff model with peaked snap flaps on its two bias-cut chest pockets. The front and back yokes are on the bias, as well.

Options and more options

We have fitted versions of many of our shirts, cut closer to the body and a little higher in the armholes for a contemporary look.

We also have a range of new shirt models like the Buckley, the Boro and the Maverick that you should check out. With Pendleton wool shirts, Father’s Day is better than ever.

Click on the model below to see the details of your favorite style.


Types of wool explained: merino, lambswool, Shetland & more

types-of-wool-list-blog-postDo you know your types of wool? From Shetland to merino, it can vary widely. Earlier, we covered the differences between virgin and recycled wool. Today we’ll help you understand the main types of wool, including:

  • Merino wool
  • Lambswool
  • Shetland wool
  • Cashmere
  • Alpaca
  • Mohair

Quick note: Fibers are only wool if they come from sheep. So cashmere, alpaca and mohair (which come from goats and alpacas) are actually hair, not wool. Interesting, right? Now let’s get started!

Merino wool comes from Merino sheep, mostly found in Australia and New Zealand. Merino wool is finer (or thinner) than your average wool, which makes it softer, less itchy and more flexible. Our 5th avenue throw is a great example. It’s also cool, breathable and moisture-wicking, which is why merino makes for such a good base layer during hiking or exercise. Whether you’re hot or cold, merino wool keeps you comfortable—no wonder it’s so popular!


Merino wool 5th avenue throw

Even within merino wool, there are several different categories. Not to get too technical, but the larger the diameter of the wool fiber, the coarser and more itchy it will be. Some wool fibers can be 25 microns in diameter or more, and your hair is 50-100 microns thick. In comparison, merino wool fibers are typically 24 microns in diameter or smaller. Fine merino is less than 19.5 microns, superfine is less than 18.5 and ultrafine merino is less than 15. For sweaters, socks, blankets and more, merino wool is an excellent (and premium) choice. Check out all Pendleton’s merino wool blankets here.

Lambswool is the finest, softest fleece that comes from a lamb’s first shearing, usually when the lamb is six or seven months old. It’s smooth, strong and flexible, plus it doesn’t need much processing. Lambswool is excellent for blankets and bedding (and allergy sufferers) because it’s hypoallergenic and resists dust mites. Like merino and all wool, lambswool is breathable and helps your body regulate temperature. Check out our plaid lambswool throw and see for yourself!

Shetland wool comes from Shetland sheep, originally found on Scotland’s Shetland Islands. Over 200 years ago, Sir John Sinclair praised Shetland wool as having “the gloss and softness of silk, the strength of cotton, the whiteness of linen, and the warmth of wool.” The fibers are 23 microns thick on average, making it generally thicker than merino. Shetland wool is known for being durable and hardy, as the climate on the northern island can get quite cold. That means Shetland wool is terrific for warm and toasty sweaters. If it’s too rough for your liking, layer it over a shirt.

sheep-photo-wool-blog-postCashmere comes from the fine undercoat of the cashmere (or Kashmir) goat and is known for being supersoft, delicate and luxurious. Most cashmere comes from goats in China and Mongolia. Fibers are about 18 microns in diameter, so about the same as superfine merino. It’s often expensive: Only about 25% of a cashmere goat’s fleece is used, so it takes the hair of two goats just to make one cashmere sweater. Some of Pendleton’s wool blankets, sweaters and coats contain cashmere to make the texture blissfully soft yet still warm and insulating—like this throw.

Alpaca hair is strong, silky, warm and durable…plus alpacas are cute! (They’re related to llamas.) Alpacas were originally bred in South America and especially prized in Inca culture in Peru’s Andes Mountains. Their hair is hypoallergenic, so if you’re allergic to wool, try alpaca. If not, alpaca and merino wool create a wonderfully soft and light yet insulating blend. Fibers are similarly sized as cashmere and fine merino. Several of our women’s sweaters and cardigans are made with alpaca yarn.

alpaca-wool-hairAlpacas grazing

Mohair is hair from the angora goat. It’s smoother than wool (and slightly more expensive) but not as soft as cashmere, so it’s kind of a middle ground. Fibers are 25-40 microns in diameter, roughly the same as Shetland wool and even some merino. Mohair is known to have a fuzzy texture, because the goat’s coarser outer hairs mix in with its fluffy undercoat. Like wool, it’s wrinkle- and dirt-resistant. Pendleton’s new boucle wool throw blends mohair with lambswool for warmth and unique texture.

Any other types of wool you’re curious about? Let us know in the comments below!

Happy Halloween from Pendleton Woolen Mills

We encourage our people to celebrate, but the associates at our Lake Arrowhead Pendleton Outlet charmed the entire company with their recreations of our vintage ad posters.

Brandi brought to life “A MAN NEVER HAS ENOUGH PENDLETONS.”


Rose incarnated the “Every Pendleton owner wants another Pendleton” poster.


And Emili took on the ambitious “Vintage Canoe” poster.


That’s the spirit, ladies. We love it!


If you’re inspired to visit, please find us at:

Lake Arrowhead Outlet #52
Pendleton Woolen Mills
28200 HIGHWAY 189