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Blanket

Updated on November 29, 2016

Blanket, a warm coverlet used as a bed-covering or rug, traditionally made wholly of wool but sometimes made of cotton warp and woollen weft. In these blankets the threads of the woollen yarns are raised to the face of the fabric in a loose, soft mat so as to hide the cotton threads. The process by which this is done is called teaseling, and it is effected by means of steel brushes called teasels, which are fixed in gigs, or brushing machines, and brush up the threads on the face of the blanket.

The principal varieties of English blankets include the Witney (which gave its name to a heavy wool fabric used for men's overcoats), the Kersey, the Yorks, the Bath and the Bury (which was itself like woollen cloth). The principal Scottish mills producing blankets, tartans and other rugs are in Ayrshire, Berwickshire and Fifeshire. 'Blanket cloth' was a heavy woollen fabric used for warm English clothing. 'Mysore blankets', from India, are very delicate blankets.

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