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Sunday, July 11, 2021

Texasware Texas Ware Dallasware Melmac Tech Giant of It's Day Plastics Mfg Co


Texasware Melamine dishes
A look inside a boxed set of Texasware Melamine Dinnerware from a set I had.

Gary Joy wrote me on February 14, 2015 saying, "My grandfather started Plastics Mfg. Co. in Dallas in the late 40s - my father ran the company until his death in 83. For many years it was the largest manufacturer of melamine dinnerware in the world, as well as the only plastic dinnerware sold at Neiman-Marcus! I worked in the outlet store while in college in the early 70s ..."

As I was reviewing his correspondence I never thought for a minute that they meaning the PMC molding company could have been the largest manufacturer in the world of melamine dinnerware back in their day, but this sure explains why there is so much of it.  If we compared this company to the "Big Tech Giants of Today" the only thing we could say is Google, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter.  

On one of my first podcasts I talk about the beginning of Melmac brand, and soon that manufacturers like PMC got wise and made their own powders/molding resins and what essentially happened is you had molders selling melamine dishes not having to buy the powders from American Cyanamid. 

Rare Texasware Ephemera
Small attentions to detail in the design of packaging, and brochures involved were often overlooked by the unboxing process, but these things took time to design. 

So essentially the giant PMC company had a huge army of employees doing this :

Making Powders

Design Concepts of Dinnerware

(this part would be mold making I wonder if they did?)

Molding Dishes

Designing Boxes and Packaging Materials, Pamphlets and Store Signs

Quality Control

Marketing and Distribution

A start to finish conglomerate if you will.  Even if they did not have a machine shop to make their own molds, then still they cut out so many middlemen by doing the marketing, molding, and distribution themselves.   

texasware melamine
Design and placement was key.


Imagine the accomplishment back then of getting your plastic dishes into Neiman Marcus! Competing with mid century modern ceramic and china designers like Eva Ziesal, Bauer's Art Pottery, Homer Laughlin and even the ceramic designs of Russel Wright.  If that high end department store housed only Texas Ware melamine that is saying something. 

Others have written me about their "seconds" factory store which was right down / across the street.  It seems they had so many they had to open a store for it.  Not to mention millions of pieces of Texasware and Dallasware are still in existence today. 

Do you love Texasware or Dallasware? 

See my post on Texas Ware Factory Tour Here. 

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