The line launched Tuesday night at a packed cocktail party where guests noshed on nouveau comfort food–grilled cheese sandwiches with homemade ketchup, potatoes with bison tartare and maple syrup poured over freezer-made snow.The big attraction of the evening was the official unveiling of ten one-of-a-kind coats–together dubbed The Blanket Statement–that the Bay commissioned from a group of Canadian designers who played with the iconic point blanket.White blankets like this Hudson’s Bay Company (HBC) blanket were among the first to be traded among fur trappers and Native Americans in North America.

Formed in 1670 by the granting of a royal charter, the London-based Hudson’s Bay Company established its original fur-trading empire in the watershed of Hudson’s Bay in northeastern North America.

By the 1820s, the HBC had expanded its territory across the continent to the Pacific Ocean.

For a time, the HBC tried to fix prices by sewing stripes, called points, onto the edges of their blankets.

Blankets were marked for sale with up to four points, each point representing a “made beaver,” which was the accepted standard prime quality, adult size beaver pelt.

Colors and variations of the original striped theme have been adapted to reflect distinguishing characteristics of each park and blanket in the collection.

National Park Blankets are still woven right here in our Pacific Northwest mills, just as they were nearly 100 years ago.

Eventually the points were used instead as a mark of size, a practice which has continued to this day. John Mc Loughlin, chief factor of the Hudson’s Bay Company’s Columbia Department, wrote this letter to his superiors on August 10, 1828—two days after Arthur Black, one of four survivors of Jedediah Smith’s fur trading party, found his way to Fort Vancouver.

Smith’s party was attacked by Kalawatset (or Lower Umpqua ...

However, Native Americans across North America were quick to balk at the dictated prices since the pricing strategy didn’t allow for any haggling.