Shrinky Dinks were invented in 1973 by Betty Morris and Kathryn Bloomberg of Brookfield, Wisconsin, as a Cub Scout project with their sons. The first kits were sold at a local shopping mall and became very popular. Shrinky Dinks were soon licensed to be manufactured by the major toy companies of the time such as Milton Bradley, Colorforms, Western Publishing and Skyline Toys. The shrink plastic is still available from many retailers and can be used for anything from charms to pins. The base material consists of thin, flexible polystyrene plastic sheets. Any sheets marked with code 6/PS can be reused as DIY shrink sheets. Code 6 plastic is common in packaging, and it can be easily recycled from discarded containers.

First sets

The first Shrinky Dinks were sold on October 17, 1973 at Brookfield Square Shopping Mall in Brookfield Wisconsin. Since then, there has been over 250 different Toy Activity and Craft Kits created and marketed. Shrinky Dinks shrink to approx. one third their original size and actually become 9 times thicker. Prior to heating, the plastic sheets can be colored with felt-tip pens, acrylic paint, colored pencils, etc. and cut into shapes. However, oily or waxy substances (such as cheap colored pencils, crayons, or oil paint) are not suitable because they melt or burn in high heat. After decorating, place the Shrinky Dinks piece into a Home Oven or Toaster Oven for 2 minutes and it gets smaller and smaller.

Most sets are pre-printed with outline images of popular children's characters or other subjects, which are then colored in before baking. Original kits are no longer being produced and the existing intact kits are in the hands of collectors and toy dealers.

Although Shrinky Dinks is considered to be an arts and crafts product for children, many adult crafters find the product to be suitable for jewelry making and other projects. Blank sheets are available for this purpose.

Updated: 2 September 2021

Shrinky Dinks value and price guide

What's your Shrinky Dinks worth in 2021? Here are some recently sold items.

Item Title Date Price
jim henson s muppets shrinky dinks playset colorforms Jim Henson S Muppets Shrinky Dinks Playset Colorforms 05/2021 C $438.85
1982 e t shrinky dinks by colorforms mini masterpiece 1982 E T Shrinky Dinks By Colorforms Mini Masterpiece 07/2021 C $250.77
the incredible shrinky dinks maker big time toys 2011 w The Incredible Shrinky Dinks Maker Big Time Toys 2011 W 06/2021 C $62.63
the incredible shrinky dinks maker 2003 new open box 3 The Incredible Shrinky Dinks Maker 2003 New Open Box 3 06/2021 C $36.30
huge garfield toys yo yo balloons shrinky dinks Huge Garfield Toys Yo Yo Balloons Shrinky Dinks 05/2021 C $62.68
no pictureSee all sold items on eBay for more prices09/2021C $-.--

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