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Pendleton Woolen Mills - 100 years
Submitted by Pam on Thu, 02/26/2009 - 16:17
To celebrate PENDLETON WOOLEN MILLS 100th anniversary, I finally made this tote for "craft projects in progress" from a remnant I picked up at the mill store 12 years ago! Blanket weight 100% wool that feels and looks almost like felted wool. The price tag was still attached - $2.00 for this 60"x24" piece!
From its beginning in 1909, Pendleton Mills focused on the Indian trade blanket market, basing its designs on those used by the American Indian rug and blanket weavers. Read more about Pendleton Woolen Mill's facinating history here. Or seek out a copy of The Language of the Robe for the full story of the American Indian Trade Blankets.
The Mill Store in Washougal, WA is an little-known treasure trove of gorgeous remnants and mill ends left over from the fabulous wool fabrics produced for the retail market. Here is a testimonial from one happy fabric shopper! You can find blanket-weight fabrics, lightweight fabrics and even fabric for wool skirts and jackets.
The remnants (which are usually 60" wide) come in handy for lots of household projects, like this table runner I made out of a lightweight fabric. All I had to do was hem the sides. The selvage ends are just beautiful as they are. The colors in this piece are what my friends refer to as "Pamela colors". (In case you are curious, that lovely piece of blown glass is from my favorite glass artist, Susan Kindland, at Ice Fire in Cannon Beach, Oregon which is right next door to Center Diamond Fabrics. Two good reasons to go to the Oregon coast!)
Now look at this! Because Pendleton employs Jacquard looms, their fabrics designs are double-sided... so I actually have two table runners from this one remnant!
Another narrow remnant; 60" x 16" that I use as a table runner. This one is made from the heavy blanket-weight fabric, which is so much like felt I don't even bother to hem the edges!
12 years ago, I recovered my dining chairs in this teal blue blanket-weight wool remnant. You might want to consider finding a lovely remnant at the mill store for your own chairs because it wears like iron! These chair seats have been in almost constant use since I covered them (you see, my dining room table is also a sewing table, a craft table, a microscope station for viewing microscopic minerals, and a wedding album assembly table). And the fabric looks as beautiful as it did on day one.
And then of course there is my stash of remnants for skirts that I will sew... someday! I am NOT going to dig them out and photograph them because I don't need to be reminded!
If you live anywhere close to the mill store or plan to visit the Portland area, be sure to check out this best kept secret! Map, and store hours and woolen mill tour times are here.
Pendleton Mills Outlet Stores throughout the United States are listed here. I don't think they carry the fabric remnants, but anything Pendleton, especially at a discount, is worth seeking out.
Oh! Almost forgot to mention - these remnants make excellent scarves! A great Christmas gift idea to get started on right now!
The fabric in this scarf is not a Pendleton fabric, but this is a great opportunity to show off one of my most treasured handmade gifts from Diane! You know - it's a Mother thing!