|Image from BlueBuddies.com|
You weren't a true '80s kid if you didn't play with Shrinky Dinks. These cool arts and crafts kits came with colored pencils and thin flexible sheets of plastic cut-out style figures. Once cut, the figures could be filled in or designed with colored pencils and then baked.
I remember how thrilling it was when Mom would flip on the oven light allowing us to witness the shrinking action. We'd watched the plastic melt before our eyes and take on a smaller, thicker shape. Like magic, the color would remain intact. I loved the feel of the texture of the Shrinky Dink once it was cooled.
I especially enjoyed making Shrinky Dinks Christmas tree ornaments and charms -- but it was important to make sure the whole was punctured BEFORE baking, otherwise you were screwed. It was impossible to break through the hardened plastic once baked.
Check out this vintage "Glow in the Dark" Shrinky Dinks commercial.
Five Fun Facts About Shrinky Dinks
- Shrinky Dinks were invented in 1973 by Wisconsin moms, Betty Morris and Kathryn Bloomberg.
- The very first Shrinky Dinks were sold at a shopping mall in Wisconsin.
- Cashing in on the popular characters of the 1980s, kids could purchase Smurf Shrinky Dinks, Scooby Doo Shrinky Dinks, Mr. T Shrinky Dinks, Pee Wee Herman Shrinky Dinks, you name it!
- In the early '90s, Mark McGrath's band was originally called Shrinky Dinx, but changed the band's name to Sugar Ray avoiding a lawsuit from Hasbro.
- Shrinky Dinks are still available and marketed by the original inventors. Click here to purchase or view today's Shrinky Dinks.