Stickle Bricks are a construction toy primarily intended for toddlers invented by Denys Fisher. Fisher (1918, Leeds, England - 2002, Furness, England) was an English engineer who also invented the spirograph toy. Born in 1918, Denys Fisher was brought up in Leeds, spending his early years living in a railway carriage in a field. He did not shine initially as a youngster, until illness laid him up for six weeks, weeks that he spent in bed with the company of Lamb's Infinitesimal Calculus. Fisher was captivated, and a lifelong passion for logic and mathematics ensued.
Fisher left Leeds University to join the family firm, Kingfisher (Lubrication) Ltd. In 1960 he left the firm to set up his own company, Denys Fisher Engineering, in Leeds. In 1961 the company won a contract with NATO to supply springs and precision component for its 20mm. cannon. Between 1962 and 1964 he developed various drawing machines from Meccano pieces, eventually producing a prototype Spirograph. Patented in 16 countries, it went on sale in Schofields department store in Leeds in 1965. A year later, Fisher licensed Spirograph to Kenner Products in the United States. In 1970, Fisher sold his company, which, as Denys Fisher Toys, produced other toys and board games, before being bought by Hasbro. Through the 1980s he continued to work with Hasbro in developing and refining the Spirograph.
Vintage Dutch Playskool Stickle Bricks commercial:
The brand is owned by Hasbro and they are currently manufactured by Flair Leisure Products plc. An individual stickle brick is a colourful plastic shape a few centimeters long which has a brush of small plastic fingers on one or more edges. The fingers of adjacent stickle bricks can interlock, allowing them to be joined in various ways. Standard sets of stickle bricks contain triangular, square and rectangular pieces. Most sets also include other types of pieces such as heads, wheels and teddy bear shapes.
Several companies manufacture similar toys, not all of them compatible. Names for these toys include "Nopper", "Bristle Blocks", "Fun Bricks", "Clipo", "Krinkles" and "Thistle Blocks".
What's it worth? Take a look at this Stickle Bricks price guide: sold listings for a value indication.