Just about every kid in the 70s, at one time or another, either owned or wanted a Lite-Brite. And if you didn’t have one, you played with one belonging to someone else. The opportunity to create one’s own pictures from a palette of colorful pegs, was just too enticing to pass up.
Hasbro introduced the Lite-Brite in 1967 and the toy quickly caught the attention of youngsters all across the country. Shaped like a triangular speaker cabinet, the front consisted of a grill with rows of small holes from top to bottom.
Behind the plastic lay a light bulb. Insert a piece of black construction paper, either blank of containing a handy pattern, and it would block the light. Now, simply insert any of the ample supply of provided translucent pegs and they would light up.
Pegs colors included red, blue, green, purple, yellow, orange, pink and clear.
Should you eventually lose some of those small pegs, Hasbro offered replacement packs, some offering even more colors. They also sold numerous pattern sets so that kids could use their Lite-Brite to create comic book and cartoon characters, as well as other illuminating artwork.
Beyond the 70s, Lite-Brite made a number of changes to keep up with times. One version would spin and play music, while the latest version is a flat-screen take on the classic toy.
Today, if you prefer to create on your phone, there is an app that also simulates the toy. But it’s just not the same as pushing those little colorful pegs through the black paper and seeing your illuminated masterpiece unfold.
Were you the proud owner of a Lite-Brite back in the day? I’d love to hear your recollections in our comments section below.
I loved light brite! I played with that for years. About 15 years ago I was shopping for Toys for Tots in Toys r Us () & saw Light Bright & had to buy it. (Also, bought Green Ghost). Didn’t hold my attention as much in my 40’s as it did as a kid but I could still understand how I had so much fun with it. I will miss those trips to Toys R Us. I’d always pick a child who wanted board games & shop very happily with memories from the past.
Yup had a lite brite. They weren’t too far, in TSS, from the models of Frankenstein, The Mummy, Dracula, Creature from the Black Lagoon, Godzilla, and The Wolfman which I got as well.
You missed mentioning the Action Lite-Brite add-on. That consisted of an additional screen set and lever at the bottom. When you pressed the lver the rear screen shifted and that shift shut off the light to the previous holes and enabled light in the previously blocked holes. This allowed the patterns to support two states and by flipping the lever back and forth you could animate your creations.