Neon Nostalgia

With our famous mallard and iconic brand colors, it's no surprise that our vintage neon signs have captivated fans of the brand. Developed for Duck Head retailers in the '80s, the signs were one of the most recognizable pieces of merchandising that were eventually lost, stored away, or snatched up by collectors.  We've been lucky enough to reclaim three of the original signs so far, but have been on a mission to uncover more. While we enjoy a good treasure hunt as much as the next person, there's no point in postponing the joy that can be reveled in now. We recently decided it was time to take matters in to our own hands and finally reintroduce this special piece of our brand history.  

After diving in, it didn't take long to find that neon sign production is a bit of a lost art. A majority of production takes place overseas, and there are few USA made neon shops left. One of the most infamous being the Neon Company here in our hometown of Atlanta. We decided it was time to pay them a visit.  

When we arrived at The Neon Company in Inman Park, we were greeted by Gregg Brenner, owner and neon craftsman for almost 40 years. Our team had a mix of ear to ear grins and jaws on the floor, and we couldn't help but stand in awe of colorful lights and hand bent designs. From opening their space as a unique backdrop for prom photos, to collaborating with Marvel or Stranger things on their latest set designs, the shop itself seems to hold a thousand memories. Duck Head and the Neon Company share a common thread that when either is brought up, people can't help but share a personal anecdote. 

When we brought in one of our 1980s signs, the expression that washed over Gregg's face resembled that of being reunited with an old friend. He shared with us that he was the original maker of the piece and developed many for some of the earliest Duck Head retailers across the country. It was an unexpected delight to reunite with the original craftsman, and it makes this project all the more special. Until August 7th, you can enter to win our replica sign by sharing your favorite Duck Head memory. Whether it's your earliest memory of the brand or a major mile stone you achieved while sporting your most loved chinos, we want all the details!  Submit your memory here for your chance to win. 

As one of our customers said – "it's not often that you can say something is as good as it used to be", but Duck Head and the Neon Company are striving to be the outliers. Reproduced by the original craftsman, in the same hometown shop, our newly made signs lived up to the same quality and authenticity as the first iteration. We will continue to uncover Duck Head treasures from the past, but in the meantime, here's to reinventing them!  

1 comment

  • John Malloy

    The Duck Head pants were a weekend wear, travel, and office casual standard for me. No special temperance, no great discoveries made, or feats accomplished while wearing them. Just life. The pants worked and still work with or without a blazer or sweater, year round, for casual ‘class’. I’m glad they are back.

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