Krazy Ikes from Whitman (1950s)

Company: Whitman | Release date: 1950s | Where to purchase: eBay

“The funniest toys you ever saw!”

Krazy Ikes was a construction toy consisting of differently shaped and coloured pieces that could cleverly be connected in many ways.

Unlike more traditional building toys, Krazy Ikes let kids mix and match pieces to make people and animals rather than buildings and vehicles. The system of legs, arms, heads, and bodies was highly articulable and poseable, which added to the fun and creative possibilities.

The Knapp Electric and Novelty Company

Krazy Ikes was invented by Indianapolis, Indiana-based Knapp Electric and Novelty Company. Boxes of Krazy Ikes hit store shelves in the late 1920s. The primary coloured (red, yellow, blue) sets contained pieces fabricated from wood that could be snapped together. The toy’s popularity allowed Knapp Electric to later release larger sets, including Krazy Ikes Circus, an immersive playset set under a cardboard big-top.

Enter Whitman

Shortly after World War II, Whitman Publishing Company acquired the rights to Krazy Ikes. To make the sets more durable, the company began to fabricate them out of plastic. The “new and improved” offerings also saw new colours and different connector pieces added to the mix.

Whitman also extended the Krazy Ikes universe to licensed properties. The Mickey Mouse Krazy Ikes Club set offered up Ike-ified versions of some of Walt Disney’s popular characters, including Mickey Mouse, Goofy, and Daffy Duck.

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