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The Blow Mold Expert

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Everything posted by The Blow Mold Expert

  1. Can't get a better deal than that! The Empire snowman is one of my all-time favorite designs.
  2. I heard a video say its something like 1700 blow molds. I'm sure that includes all the little GP bells and sugarplums around the roof and over the driveway, and there's a lot of duplicates, but it is incredibly impressive nonetheless. I believe in terms of sheer number of pieces it's the largest blow mold display I've come across, with some incredibly rare stuff too, like that deer head.
  3. Don't mention it, glad to be of help! You're right with that being the first gen Empire logo used from the 60s to mid 80s. The snowman should say 1967, not 1961 as the modern blow molding process used to make it wouldn't have been common practice yet and I believe the snowman came out in 1967. The numbers on older Empire products are hard to read.
  4. Has anyone ever seen this? This display is really something, it spans three properties and is an entire topic in itself, but this reindeer head at 7:27 caught my eye. It doesn't appear to be the art style of GP or be made of the materials favored by Crystal Valley. You occasionally see a one-off tabletop blow mold made by a toy manufacturer or something along those lines and discover a previously unheard of company, but that almost never happens on the municipal blow mold scale, as people with the resources to make these things usually did so full time and are fairly well kn
  5. I don't find that Drainage is too difficult to ID simply because a lot of their designs are so unique. Farley on the other hand is a totally different story, especially considering their entire catalog (aside from the originally Union gingerbread people) was old TPI stuff. To make matters worse, both TPI and Farley were Canadian so both say made in Canada. Being in Canada, the majority of my stuff is TPI or Farley because it's dime a dozen up here, so I have both the TPI and Farley versions of several pieces. Side by side (similar to Cado) the Farley stuff is of obviously lesser quality.
  6. Very interesting. My records dont show Empire manufacturing that set in those colors until the mid 80s, and even then the colors were much more vibrant. These are very obviously older. The biggest mystery here is the baby Jesus. All the instances I've found of Empire manufacturing him have included a molded manger that looked like it was made of straw with a spot in the middle for him to lie in. The biggest help here is going to be that nice catalog # on that box - No.1372. That's going to make this much easier to date. I've helped as much as my records on my mobile device will allow me
  7. Nice discovery, I will say that with the new companies (Cado, Gemmy, Pan Asian, etc.) It's getting difficult to archive/keep up with what's being released. From a collector standpoint, Pan Asian having contracts with both Walmart and Home Depot (who have both ordered them to make similar blow molds that however cannot be the same due to contractual agreements) can get pretty confusing. Then you have something like this, where a company makes something specifically for an online retailer and only a handful of people buy them, and things really get confusing, especially since all Cado stuff is
  8. Those particular figures were manufactured by Beco in the early 60s. At the time Beco had 2 sizes of Nativity sets, a smaller set (what you have) and a larger one. Both were available in either color or plain white to resemble marble statues. Beco introduced the first true "blow molds" made out of the modern materials for the 1962 Christmas season, 2 caroler Children and a Santa. Prior to this three dimensional figures such as these would have been molded out of a thick hard latex plastic and too expensive for the public, mainly being sold to department stores and cities. Additionally, bl
  9. I've gotten to the point now where I'm needing to rotate what I put out every year, simply because I'm out of lawn space. I can't really go any closer to the road because of the sidewalk plow, and fear that if I add more on the rest of the lawn it will look too cluttered, so I'm rotating things out every year. For example, I had a (mostly) different set of figures sitting on the wall last year, some of which I used elsewhere, some of which I kept inside. I also used a different Disney set last year. The only new scene entirely this year is the Empire/Alderbrook snowman trio towards the bac
  10. Anybody seen this before? It popped up on Ebay a few days ago. Mold Craft and Heller always stamped their stuff and Sculptoris stuff usually had Wiken's name on it somewhere. That leaves ALFCO and Silvestri (unless there's a sixth molded-rubber era company out there anybody has heard of) as potential manufacturers. ALFCO didn't stamp some of their later stuff like their sleigh team, and I've never seen a marked Silvestri piece. If I had to guess, I'd say the mismatched art style looks similar to what little Silvestri stuff I've seen. I also looked into the possibility it could be spliced
  11. Crazy how much the price has gone up for stuff like that in the middle ground of rarity. Poloron and Beco were always pricey, but things like that and the Santas Best Disney characters you could get for 30 or 40 bucks a while back.
  12. The buyer is gonna have a heart attack when this thing shows up in a shoebox
  13. Unfortunately, the piece on the bottom where the original stands connected is notoriously frail across all companies and designs. Rather than building a stand to connect there in some way, your best bet would be to somehow build a 2 in 1 stand/light fixture to go in the hole for the bulb, or do what I did which is tie heavy duty fabric red ribbon around each deer and screw the ribbon into a pole.
  14. Im curious where you got that door cover! I've been looking for one for years because of how many catalogs that one was in and didn't think there were any left around. How fragile is the plastic or vinyl it's made of?
  15. Im curious about the angel. Is it a tree topper or is it bigger?
  16. And Poloron, GV, GF, Holiday Innovations, and it seems each made at least 2 or 3 styles of it 😂
  17. I think they were just a distributor like Garrison Wagner. Everything in that photo is either Mold Craft, Sculptoris, GP or Noma.
  18. Woah, that thing sold for like a twentieth it's value!
  19. Thanks Mel, it looks like they made all 6 mold styles in either brown or white based on what Bill said when put together with the info you provided. I'd say we can put this deer mystery to rest!
  20. Thanks Mel. Is that the rudolph from one of the old Junior deer sets?
  21. Thats awesome Mel! Are the Junior deer you're referreing to as being for sale in either brown or white the ones from image 1 or the ones from image 2? They're different molds but both called "Junior" size. Thanks again Mel, this is great stuff!
  22. Wow Mel! That image is incredible! The smallest deer is the Rudolph in image 2, and the largest deer is a king size reindeer from image 7. That white Rudolph appears to be the Rudolph from image 3 painted white. Look at the legs and the face, it's definitely from the same mold. Do you know if they made just the Rudolph in white or if they made a white variation of that whole life-size set? That would bring the total number of sets from the Wiken era to 7! If they did, do you know if they made white versions of any of the other styles we know they made in brown?
  23. Thanks Mel, I wasn't sure exactly the year they moved to Port Washington. In front of Rudolph in image 7 it says "see three sizes of reindeer on back cover." Is it possible that they used the image with the 3 deer on both the cover of the pamphlet image 7 is from as well as the choir pamphlet? I believe I remember seeing an old ebay post or post here that said both the choir image and the image of the three deer were from the same brochure too. I find it interesting that Mold Craft produced three sizea of deer in a Bambi-esque style dotted with white spots like a real deer, and three size
  24. No problem for the words Mel. The cover of the pamphlet I am referring to is attached (sorry about the poor quality). I believe images 1, 3, and 7 in my original post to be from that pamphlet as they were all together in my files and each of these images shows one of the deer styles on the front. Image 7 even references the cover, so I know at least that one cake from that pamphlet. Unfortunately, it doesn't say if Mold Craft had moved to Port Washington yet. I know a date of their move from Milwaukee to Port Washington has been something you and many others (including myself) have been s
  25. Thanks Mel. "Expert" may be my comical username, but I think I speak for eveyone here when I say there is no debating that you are the king of the blow mold community. As far as dating the ads, I looked through my files I have and from what I can tell the styles of Mold Craft's ads changed drastically around the mid 50s, but before they got some sort of new sculptor around 1957. If you look at postcards and ads from Wiken's residency with the company from 1951 to rougly 54', they're mostly color or b/w pamphlets with color covers. Around the mid 50s they focused more on ads in newspapers
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