Wikipedia informs us that blanket word came from the name Thomas Blanket (Blanquette), a Flemish weaver who lived in Bristol, England in the 14th century.
I went deeper into synonyms, not believing that there weren’t blankets before the fourteenth century, and I found a wonderful online resource: “Pashmina” by A. Pathak.
According to Pathak, shawls and woollen fabric traditions existed since the Indus Civilization. They were even mass produced for export in the 14-15th centuries. It was a huge cottage industry in the Himalayan region and got a new life during Zain-ul-Abidin’s reign in Kashmir. There were gift exchanges of fine goat hair mar’izz(a) shawls even in the 13th-14th Centuries.
Apparently, the English and French weavers were inspired by Kashmiri shawls, discussed in detail by J. Irwin and M.L. Strauss. Forster in 18th and Moorcroft in 19th Centuries detailed about the process and enterprise itself, noting that floral designs became popular.
Aurangzeb’s physician, Bernier, in addition was so impressed in 1655, that he wrote down accounts about every aspect of the mass production of these prized shawls.
P.S. If you know facts from your cultural histories, kindly add links/ info below because I believe it is necessary to give due weightage to facts available in any language.
Ref: (Gorgeous images) http://www.kashmircompany.com/blog/william-moorcroft-and-the-journey-of-the-kashmir-shawl-to-europe/