I want to tell you the story about my favorite blow mold, which is named Jack. I’m not sure if my father coined the name Jack or if it was me – but somehow this blow mold ended up being called Jack!
Now Jack was not always my favorite blow mold…in fact, my family had this Halloween decoration for as long as I can remember and at the very beginning I HATED Jack.
You see, as a child, I was always the creative vision behind our holiday displays. I would toddle behind my dad telling him what should go where and why. At Halloween time, I had a specific vision of what the decoration scheme should be. As I got older, I wanted it to be scary yet whimsical. And then, dad would drag Jack out of the attic as we were wrapping up yet another dazzling display and I would declare, “Dad, NO!!! Jack clashes with the rest of the decorations!!!” (my young naive self was not mature enough to appreciate Jack’s uniquely vintage style and instead all I could see was…ugly).
Today I do not understand what I saw that was ugly about Jack at all. In fact, I am so worried about neighbor kids stealing my precious vintage blow mold that I would bring him inside every night upon turning off the Halloween lights to ensure his safety and well-being (I’m ridiculous and clearly have trust issues – I know! You don’t understand though, I had someone uproot and steal the mums I planted that fall so I think my actions toward protecting Jack were clearly warranted).
I’m sure you’re wondering how I ended up with Jack to begin with (my dad still claims that he owns him – but it’s technically his fault that Jack resides with me now…)
Around the time my husband and I bought our first house, my dad was tinkering around in their attic and he stumbled upon old happy Jack. My dad, being the goofball prankster that he is, thought that it would be a great idea to bring Jack over to my front porch while I was at work and plug him (since he knew how much I LOOOVVVEEED this Halloween decoration).
I remember coming home and cracking up! I asked him, “Dad, why is Jack at my house?” he would say “because you love him!”
I then would sneak Jack back over to my parent’s front porch one night and the cycle continued until he was back with me…and, I have grown to love Jack. He reminds me of all things nostalgic and wonderful about Halloween, like decorating the house with my dad, carving pumpkins on the porch, trick-or-treating…because Jack was there for all of it!
Before Jack ever met me – he was imagined then created by Empire Plastics in 1996 and was discontinued in 1998. As some of you might know, the Empire Plastics Seasonal Division of Tarbro, NC made a plethora of holiday blow molds during their prime.
Given the date he was manufactured, that would have meant my parents picked him up in Tulsa, OK. They claim he was picked up at either Garden Ridge (now known as At Home) or Kmart.
As you can see above, here is Jack in his younger years keeping the Halloween spirit alive (I love that my brother is “Mighty Max” – I am some gold Barbie martian it looks like…oh the 90s). In 1996 he certainly was the most charming piece of decor – and not ugly!
Here’s Jack in recent years, reminding me about how happy Halloween makes me!