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  • What is a Welsh Blanket?

    A Welsh Blanket on the Loom

    Welsh Blanket on the Loom
    A FelinFach Welsh blanket on the loom


    Double Cloth Weaving

    A Welsh blanket or tapestry blanket is a double sided and fully reversible blanket. They consist of two layers of cloth which are woven together producing contrasting colours on each side of the blanket.

    Welsh Blankets - Dinefwr blanket showing both sides of the double cloth weaving
    The same Dinefwr blanket on the loom above, showing the different patterns on either side of the double cloth weaving


    The two layers of cloth, often known as a ‘double-weave’ cloth requires complicated stitching to produce one double-weave blanket. This double-cloth structure creates practical, hard-wearing, large and heavy blankets with bold traditional patterns.


    Carthen or Carthenni (in plural) is the Welsh word for traditional Welsh blanket. In earlier days there were woven on narrow looms but subsequently on wider looms in traditional double weave patterns and colours. They normally have fringes and are sometimes known as a Fringed Quilt.

    Welsh Weaving Patterns

    The tapestry blanket double cloth weaving produce patterns on both sides of the blanket. Many of these patterns were owned by Welsh mills and some of their names are still used today. For example, some of the most popular include Caernarfon, which is also called the Portcullis design, Pennsylvania and Dyffryn. The main features of these patterns are the bright colours, geometric designs and the reversible nature of the material. 

    Welsh blanket - Caernarfon pattern Welsh blanket - Dyffryn pattern Welsh blanket - Pensylvania pattern


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    Last updated 11th March 2024

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