At the Winter Olympics in Cortina the freshest look in cold-weather wear was that of the spectator who wore a bold plaid blanket cut into a parka, jacket or poncho (SI, Dec. 26). Inspired by this colorful display of European ingenuity, American designers this year have put scissors to precious cashmere car robes (opposite) for the year's most elegant blanket coat; cut up such typically North American blankets as Hudson's Bay beaver-points, Pendleton plaids and bright colored fleeces with border stripes into stadium coats for men and women, winter-weight women's suits and cozy wrap-around skirts. Many of the coats, in addition to the warmth that's built into the blankets, have hoods concealed beneath flat-lying collars, toggle fastenings borrowed from the sports car set and insulated linings. And along with the run on the blankets comes a renewed popularity for horse-blanket-plaid tweed sports jackets that vie in boldness of pattern with the coats.
Cashmere coat ( Tina Leser, $210) is of Pringle blanket, has fringed stole scarf and green cashmere lining. Man's jacket is of horse-blanket-plaid tweed (Chipp, $80).
Blankets in the stadium include light fleece with bold stripes and concealed hood collar ( Lakeland, $45); fleecy red suit of a St. Mary's blanket (Sportwhirl, $50) and multicolored man's hooded Hudson's Bay coat (Woolmaster, $65). The Hudson's Bay blankets are double-woven, the same as those used in the 18th century to trade with the Canadian Indians for beaver pelts.
Toggle coat (Buck Skein Brand, $39.95) is called the Yodeler. It has blanket stripes and a concealed hood underneath the collar.
Wrap-Around skirt ($17.95) of stadium blanket is worn with a bulky sweater ($11.95, both Pendleton). Bags by Roger Van S.