While doing some research for some sewing items (yes, very manly) I started to wander and found that old textiles can be valuable. That little nugget stuck in my mind for some reason. Tada! Today that useless factoid saved a friend from making a costly mistake.
My lovely wifey decided to make a serape for our granddaughter for a camping trip. It was to be made out of an old wool blanket. We had none, so through the magic of Facebook out went the call. Within a short while, a wonderful friend offered up her old Hudson's Bay wool blanket. Much to the chagrin of wifey, I suggested that she not donate this blanket to the cause because it could be worth depending on age over $400. A true piece of Canadiana, these iconic striped wool blankets have been sold and traded to First Nations for hundreds of years. They are known as Hudson's Bay point blankets. They were traditionally traded for beaver pelts and were desired for their ability to hold heat even when wet, and they were easier to sew than deer or other hides. The blanket was originally sold in 1780. They are made with a yellow, green red and indigo stripe on a white background.
In the point system, the points - thin indigo lines - are woven into the blanket to denote its size and weight, such that it need not be unfolded and measured for those facts to be known. A common misconception is that each point indicated a quantity of beaver pelts or Hudson's Bay Company money. Blankets varied in colour, weight and design.
From the Hudson's Bay Company website:
So, my apologies to my wifey, another blanket will show up, it would be a shame to take this old and valuable blanket and cut a hole in it. Granddaughter, you will thank me later.