What To Do With LEGOs After They’re Built?


LEGOs are a timeless favorite toy for kids and adults alike. Building sets is a fun and relaxing activity, but what happens to LEGOs after they’re built? 

After the thrill of building, do you just think, “okay, now what?” Or do you struggle to display all of your cherished LEGO creations once you’ve built them?

What to do with Legos After Building

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We grapple with the same dilemmas and have some ideas to share on what to do with Legos after they’re built.  Discover the best ways to sort, organize, sell, donate, or recycle your unwanted Legos, and unlock the full potential of your beloved building blocks.  Let’s explore!

Once you’ve built a LEGO set, you’ve got a few basic options:

  • Display your LEGOs
  • Store the assembled set(s)
  • Take them apart and store the pieces
  • Play with your LEGOs!
  • Sell, Donate, or Recycle them

What you decide ultimately depends on how much space you have, and if you (or the kids) are an avid builder.

Benefits of Keeping Your Lego Collection Organized

With the wide range of sizes and styles of pieces, it can be difficult to know just how to store and organize your LEGO collection.  Maintaining an organized Lego collection offers several advantages.

  • It’s easy to find the pieces you need when building new creations, saving time and frustration.
  • Using plastic containers and labeling them with the set names or themes can help quickly locate the specific set you want to build.
  • Organizing your LEGO collection allows you to keep track of instruction manuals, ensuring that you can easily refer back to them whenever needed.
  • Sorting your individual pieces by color or type in labeled Ziploc bags or small compartments within a storage unit can also make finding the specific pieces you need for your next project easier.

An organized Lego collection promotes efficiency and creativity, empowering you to build and innovate to your heart’s content.

Understanding Your LEGO Collection

When it comes to understanding your LEGO collection, there are a few key points to consider.

You need to size up your sets to determine how much space they will take up, and what you’d like to have on display vs what you want to keep intact, but store. A few questions to ask yourself:

  • What are your favorite assembled pieces?
  • Where will you display them?
  • How many completed pieces do you have room to display?
  • What will you do with “extra” pieces or bricks that are not part of a set?

For completed sets, consider rotating the pieces you display vs store if you don’t have enough space for everything all at once.  Assessing the floor space or shelf space needed for display or storage is crucial to ensure that your collection is properly showcased or stored.

Display Your Favorite Lego Sets

One option for what to do with LEGOs after they’re built is to display your favorite LEGO sets. If you want to showcase your creations and create a visually appealing display, consider setting up a display wall in your home.

You can use shelves or specially designed display cases with glass doors to protect your sets while still allowing them to be visible. An ideal LEGO display should showcase the sets in a way that highlights their unique features and captures attention.

You can find display cases in various sizes to fit the pieces you’d like to display (and keep safe.)

You can also create a permanent display by dedicating a specific area in your home for your Lego creations. This way, you can regularly change the sets on display and keep your collection fresh.

If you have favorite sets to display, check and see if there are LED lighting kits available.  These can really make you displayed pieces a focal point.

GEAMENT LED Light Kit Compatible with Lego Boutique Hotel - Lighting Set for Creator 10297 Building Model (Model Set Not Included)

Don’t forget to include your minifigure collections as part of your Lego display to add more interest and variety.

Play with Your Legos

If your LEGOs are played with frequently, there are a couple of ways you can continue to have fun with your sets.

Lego Bricks

One option is to build new creations using the pieces from your LEGO sets. You can use your imagination and creativity to come up with unique designs.

Another option is to combine different LEGO sets together to create larger structures. This allows you to expand your play possibilities and create more complex and engaging builds.  We have an ever-changing Star Wars battle scene taking place on his LEGO table, made up of pieces from many different sets as well as regular bricks and “guest star” mini figures.

Building New Creations from Lego Sets

After building Lego sets, you have the opportunity to unleash your creativity and build new creations using the pieces. Building new creations allows you to explore different designs and expand your imagination. With Lego’s wide range of building blocks and their various sizes, the possibilities are endless. You can build anything from intricate structures to vehicles or even characters from your favorite movies.

To help you organize your pieces for building new creations, consider using plastic bricks for toy storage ideas. These bricks can be easily stacked and labeled, making it convenient to find the pieces you need for your new projects. You may have extra pieces left over from your LEGO sets or loose bricks, which can be used to add unique details and personal touches to your creations. So let your creativity flow and start building something amazing with your LEGO pieces!

Combine Sets into Larger (or different) Structures

With a brick collection from various sets, you can create unique and innovative designs that go beyond the original packaging and instructions. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box and experiment with different combinations.

By combining a couple of sets, you can build larger and more intricate structures that keep things fun and fresh. Our son has a number of Minecraft LEGO sets, and loves to combine and rearrange the pieces to make one huge scene with them.

Remember, the key is to let your imagination run wild and have fun while building your masterpiece.

Related Post – Check out the STEM activities with LEGOs

Sorting & Organizing Your LEGO Collection

 When it comes to sorting and organizing your LEGO collection, there are a few key points to consider.

  • Separating sets from individual pieces and loose bricks can help keep things organized and make it easier to find what you need.
  • Storing finished LEGO sets in their own containers or bags can help protect them and keep all the pieces together.
  • Sorting and storing loose LEGO bricks by color, piece, or set can make it easier to find specific pieces when building.
  • Using label makers or writing on containers can help identify pieces and sets.
  • Sorting and storing LEGO instructions in a designated folder or binder can help keep them safe and easily accessible when needed.

Separating Sets from Individual Pieces and Loose Bricks

One option for separating sets from individual pieces and loose bricks is to organize them by set or theme. This allows you to easily find and rebuild your favorite sets whenever you want. For example, you can use labeled Ziploc bags or plastic containers to keep each set together.

Another alternative is to sort them by theme, such as space, city, or castle, which can streamline your building process if you’re working on a particular theme..

If you want to keep your sets in decent condition, consider using baseplate storage. This ensures that your sets stay intact and protects them from getting mixed up with loose bricks.

You can also consider investing in plastic storage containers designed specifically for LEGOs, as they offer compartments and dividers to keep your pieces organized and easily accessible. Finding the right storage solution for your LEGOs will not only make it easier to identify individual pieces, but it will also help prolong the lifespan of your creations.

Storing Finished LEGO Sets

After building LEGO sets, there are several options for storing them. To ensure long-term storage and protect your creations, it’s essential to choose durable storage containers.

Look for storage containers that are spacious enough to accommodate your finished sets without damaging them. Consider using storage boxes with slide-out drawers, as they provide easy access to your creations while keeping them organized. 

By investing in the right storage containers, you can ensure that your LEGO creations remain safe and well-preserved for years to come.

Sorting and Storing Loose LEGO Bricks

To effectively store and organize your loose LEGO bricks, you can consider sorting them by color, piece, or set, depending on your personal preference and ease of use.

For a simple DIY storage solution, you can use labeled Ziploc bags or ordinary plastic containers to separate and categorize your bricks.

Another option is to use cute brick storage tubs that are specifically designed for LEGO organization. These tubs come in various sizes and colors, making them a fun and convenient choice.

If you prefer a more organized approach, you can opt for plastic tub options with multiple compartments or drawer combinations, allowing you to easily access and find the specific bricks you need.

Whatever method you choose, make sure it suits your needs and makes the process of finding and using your LEGO bricks a breeze.

Using Label Makers or Writing on Containers to Identify Pieces and Sets

Now that you have sorted and stored your loose LEGO bricks, it’s important to find a way to easily identify the pieces and sets when you need them. One simple solution is to use label makers or simply write on your storage containers.

Brother P-Touch PTD220 Home/Office Everyday Label Maker | Prints TZe Label Tapes up to ~1/2 inch
Use custom labels to identify what’s in your bins and drawers

By labeling each container with the specific pieces or sets contained inside, you can quickly locate what you need for your next build.

Sorting and Storing LEGO Instruction Booklets

Once you’ve built a kit, don’t toss out the instructions!  You never know when a portion of a display piece may fall off and need to be reassembled, or perhaps your kid will want to reconstruct a kit that’s been taken apart.

When sorting and storing your Lego instructions, it’s important to find a practical and organized method. Here are some innovative ways to sort and store your Lego instructions:

  • If you’re organizing your LEGOs by the set, keep the instructions together with everything else in that set.
  • Use a binder with clear plastic sleeves to keep your instructions organized and easily accessible.
  • Utilize a filing cabinet or storage box with labeled folders or envelopes to categorize your instructions by set or theme. (This is probably the easiest method.)
  • Create a digital library by scanning your instructions and saving them on your computer or tablet.
  • Consider using a dedicated app or online platform designed specifically for sorting and storing Lego instructions.

By implementing these sorting and storing methods, you can ensure that your Lego instructions are well-organized and readily available whenever you need them, making your building experience even more enjoyable.

Personal Preference When It Comes to Storage Solutions

If you’re looking for the best way to store your Lego pieces, it ultimately comes down to your personal preference. There are plenty of options available to keep your collection under control.

Keep the Sets Separate

Organizing your Legos by set can be a great way to keep things organized and ensure that all the pieces for a specific set are together. Using the original cardboard boxes to store your Lego sets can keep all the pieces for each set together and make it easy to tell what set is which.

You can keep your sets within storage bins like these: 

Holay PVC Zippered Blocks Set, Toy, Clay Storage Organizer Case (Name Tag, Manual Pocket) (4 Large, Black)

Store Loose Pieces in Bins

One of the simplest organization ideas is to use storage bins, which allow you to easily see and access your Lego pieces.  Mind you, the little pieces always wind up down to the bottom of the bin, and you may spend a ridiculous amount of time sifting through the bin looking for the one part you know is in there somewhere.

A stackable craft cabinet with drawers may be the perfect solution to sort individual types of plastic

Akro-Mils 10144, 44 Drawer Plastic Parts Storage Hardware and Craft Cabinet, 20-Inch W x 6.37-Inch D x 15.81-Inch H, Black

Sort by Color

Another option is to sort your Legos by color, making it easier to find the pieces you need for your next build.  Sorting by color has its merits, though we’ve found sifting through a bin of pieces that are all the same color actually makes it harder to find a specific type of brick.

Sort by Type of Brick

Sorting by type of brick is our favorite way of storing LEGOs that aren’t being saved for display.  It’s the easiest way to find what you need when you need it, but does take some effort to keep everything in the right bins and sorted.

For smaller pieces, plastic drawers with labels can be a great option for easy access and visibility.  Depending on the size of your collection, larger bins may work better and allow room to sift through the pieces to find the part your need.

Ultimately, the best storage solution is the one that works best for you and your needs. Whether you prefer using labeled Ziploc bags by color or investing in specialized Lego storage containers to separate out your pieces, it’s all about finding what suits your personal style and keeps your Lego collection organized and easily accessible.

Creative Ways To Store Legos

If you have a large collection of building bricks, one simple DIY solution for storage is using baseplates. Baseplates can be stacked or mounted on the wall to save space and keep your bricks organized.

Another cool storage idea is to use tables or outdoor play areas that are specifically designed for Lego storage, allowing you to have a dedicated space for building and storing your creations.

These options can help you keep your Lego collection neat and easily accessible for future building projects.

Cool Lego Storage Ideas: Tables, Outdoor Play Areas, Etc.

One cool Lego storage idea is to create a dedicated play table with built-in storage compartments. This innovative solution not only provides a designated space for building and playing with Legos but also keeps them organized and easily accessible.

  • Storage Bins: Incorporate storage bins into the design of your table to keep different sets or categories of Lego pieces separated and organized.  If you want something a bit less utlilitarian, smaller LEGO themed storage containers can fit on shelves, closets, or under beds. If you’ve got a huge collection, regular storage totes may do the job.  Get clear ones to make it easier to find your pieces 
  • LEGO Tables: Combine play and storage to save space.  Each of our kids has a LEGO table with storage in their room.  They have a baseplate surface to build on, and built-in bins to hold some pieces.  The best ones have integrated baseplates for building and play with some bins for storage. That said, with some baseplates and bins, you can DIY your own LEGO table.
  • Integrated Storage Bin and Playmat:    This is great for stashing LEGOs for easy access and quick cleanup.  It’s great for traveling or giving the kids something to play with when visiting relatives.  The integrated playmat keeps the LEGOs (mostly) contained and allows for easy clean up.
Creative QT - SlideAway Toy Storage Organizer & Play Mat for Kids - Organizer Storage Bin for Toys - Kids Toy Box for Boys & Girls - Playroom Storage - Toy Holders for Kids Rooms - Beige
  • Baseplate Storage: A simple DIY solution for storing large collections of building bricks is to use baseplates as a storage method. By attaching baseplates to storage bins or shelves, you can create a versatile and efficient way to organize your building bricks.

Sell, Donate, or Recycle Unwanted Legos

It comes as a shock to us, but people sometimes toss out perfectly good LEGOs!  If you find yourself in a situation where you’re ready to part with LEGOs, you can sell, donate, or recycle them.

If you have completed sets in mint condition that you no longer want, consider selling or trading them. This way, you can make space for new LEGO projects while also finding a new home for your bricks. You can sell them on online marketplaces like eBay or Craigslist, or you can try selling them at a local consignment store or garage sale.

Another option is to donate your LEGOs to a school, library, daycare, or children’s hospital. Many charitable organizations are in need of LEGOs for educational purposes or to bring joy to children.

As a last option, you can recycle your LEGOs. Some recycling centers accept plastic toys, including LEGOs, and will properly recycle them. By choosing any of these options, you can ensure that your unwanted Legos find a new home and continue to bring joy and creativity to others.

OptionProsCons
Selling– Can make money from unwanted LEGOs– Can be time-consuming
Donating– Helps others and gives Legos a second life– May require research to find appropriate organizations
Recycling– Environmentally friendly option– Not all recycling centers accept toys

Wrap Up – What do you do with LEGOs after they’re built?

Now you know what to do with your LEGO pieces after they’re built! Whether it’s displaying them proudly, playing with them to unleash your creativity, or organizing them for easy access, the choice is yours.

And, in the unlikely event you find yourself with unwanted LEGO pieces, you can sell them, donate them, or even recycle them.

So go ahead, have fun, and keep building! Read more about LEGOs and STEM!

hevanmiller

Howie Miller is as dedicated to fatherhood as he is to life long learning. Musician, Photographer, Educator, Consultant, Entrepreneur, Blogger, and founder of STEMtropolis, where you can share his adventures in STEM and STEAM with his family.

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