What’s the best way to display a LEGO set? The answer might surprise you

Fifty packets, over 6000 pieces, hours and hours of tedious work bent over clicking thousands of pieces together. And then finally. Behold!!! The magnificent Hogwarts Castle! The Taj Mahal! The Millennium Falcon! And that’s when seven words go through your head: WTF do we do with this thing? 

Where on earth do you put something this ginormous? On a piece of furniture you can never use again? As a new centerpiece on the dining room table? In a corner where it will slowly disintegrate one LEGO at a time? Nope. This is what you do. Enjoy looking at it for a few days or weeks, and then…

SMASH IT!

Yup. Break that entire thing into pieces and put them in a bin.

But but but, my child put so much work into that!!! 

Yes, I know. And believe me, we still have one or two sets “on display” (annoying the crap out of me) in our house because my kids refuse to let me destroy them, but I fully believe LEGO sets were meant to be smashed, and here’s why. What was once a spectacular display of your child’s ability to painstakingly follow directions can now become the building blocks of their imagination. Tear that LEGO set apart, and they’re gonna build some amazing shit with all those pieces. 

It’s taken me a long time to realize this. For years we had sets on EVERY flat surface of our house. But occasionally a set would get destroyed and the kids would use the pieces to create new ideas from scratch. And the sets come with really cool pieces you would never buy on your own. Windows, archways, slides, wheels, gargoyles, tracks, underwater sea creatures.

As much as the giant sets wow me, the ideas kids invent in their minds are wayyyy more impressive if you ask me. It takes imagination and planning and engineering to create these things. When Zoey was younger, her ideas tended to be on the cuter side.  

 

Like this little birdhouse. 

And this dog she came up with from scratch (I kinda think it looks like one of the scary Cujo dogs from Ghostbusters)

And Harry Potter before she was old enough to do the Harry Potter sets

And accessories for her American Girl Dolls


But as she got older, her creations got more complicated.

The details in this arcade crack me up. Wait til you see.

The woman revving up to throw in skee ball

The two guys high-fiving next to the air hockey table

This older gentleman trying to win something in the claw machine (don’t do it, it’ll just eat your money!!!)

And I love how she made these people on a boat look like they’re actually spreading out picnic blankets

This house was her latest creation. Check out the room in the middle. She took the arms and heads off a bunch of torsos, and voila shirts hanging in the closet! 

And then she added a backyard. The zip line, the ladders, the treehouses, they were all random pieces that came from old sets.

Last year Zoey asked me to get her a LEGO motor (I had no idea this thing even existed!). It was cheap and helped her take her creations to a whole new level. Practically everything she makes now has moving parts. 

Like this amazing motorized spinning lazy susan she made me for Mother’s Day!

Of course as complicated and cool her creations get, sometimes the simplest ones are still my favorites. 

ME: Oh crap, I forgot a present for Father’s Day. Quick, go downstairs and build something. 

So do I hate impaling my feet on LEGOs? Duhhh. But I also kinda love it. Because it means my kiddo is using her imagination to make something awesome. Something amazing. Something that no one else has ever built before.

And she’s not the only one. Not by a long shot. If your kids have made anything cool with LEGOs, please share them in the comments on my Facebook post so we can all look at them and go “Holy crap, that is AWESOME.”

If you liked this, please don’t forget to like and share it! Thank you!! And if your kid is just getting into LEGO, here are a few of our favorites (all clickable!! P.S. I’m an Amazon Associate. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases)





There are 11 comments for this article
  1. WENDY at 11:21 am

    Totally agree in that the kids’ own inventions are more creative. My son gets exasperated trying to follow the instructions to build specific LEGO models. But if I just dump a bunch on the floor and tell him to go at it, he has a blast.

    • JulieD at 12:53 pm

      I thought the same thing! I’m so hoping they’ll do a kids’ version of that show. We loved it – watched every episode.

  2. Judy Driver at 11:33 am

    These are awesome! If she likes the motors, you need to find out if there is a LEGO Robotics League near you! (When it’s safe…) Kids start in grade school and learn the COOLEST stuff. Computer programming to make their robot made of LEGOS do stuff, they do a science project, they learn teamwork, goal setting, it is so awesome. Especially, in my opinion, for girls interested in science and technology. Would be a great way for Zoey to make cool new friends. (When it’s safe… I hate that I have to write that, but it’s reality.) I would definitely recommend checking it out. There are likely some things they are doing online as well.

  3. Jenn at 11:49 am

    I tell my kids to smash there’s too. Display for a few days but get rid of it and create something by yourself.. My step son however gets really emotional cause of the hard work. So he keeps 1 or 2 on his dresser for months until I accidentally knock them off while cleaning “whoops”. The clutter drives me mental

  4. Helen at 12:33 pm

    Zoey is so very creative! Well done!

    You should show her these videos that are on YouTube that she may be interested in. This guy actually makes real working vending machines that dispense food. He uses motors to make them work. He does all the major fast food chains.

    • Dianna at 6:48 am

      We love LEGO’s. My son has the most awesome imagination and we love LEGO masters too. Since Quarantine, we have started a lego challenge every couple of days for my son. He has to create whatever we ask him to create. And he always loves it and so do we!

  5. JulieD at 12:42 pm

    So I suppose I have to get over my OCD about mixing up the sets then. I’m like the dad in Lego Movie. I guess I am Lady Business! Bahahahaha! Ugh. I’m not sure I can cope.

  6. Andrea T at 1:02 pm

    My kids went Lego crazy at the start of quarantine. We had a bunch of sets that hadn’t been put together yet (as well tons of other sets and pieces) and then spent hours and hours playing and building together.

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