For years, I was scarred by permanent Lego indentions on the bottoms of my feet. I cursed those small bits of plastic. I vacuumed them up, feeling no sorrow as I heard the “clickclacksmack” of them being abandoned to the vacuum bag.
But then I also saw the huge smiles on my boys’ faces when they created a masterpiece. Their art was on shelves, train tables, coffee tables and art tables around my house. They were so proud of those final Lego creations and I knew we had to do something to contain the crazy, but preserve the memories and fun.
That could be said for so many organization projects, could it not?
Here’s our take on organizing Legos. It works for us and perhaps a thing or two might work for you.
1. We sorted the Legos by color (the boy’s idea, promise). Initially, I thought it might be easier to donate a kidney but the boys did the sorting remarkably quickly and without much complaining. I just kept repeating to them, “Eye on the prize, boys. Eye on the prize.”
2. Based on the size of the color pile, we decided which colors got which size bin and which colors had to share.
3. There are some creations that sit atop shelves permanently. For example, Will loves the Architecture series. So, his White House and Falling Water sets are proudly displayed in his room, far away from little fingers that want to destroy. It was a good compromise.
4. The books are in the top bin and then all the other colors are below. Occasionally, they will dig out all the pieces to a specific Lego set, but more often than not they combine ideas from multiple books or use their own imagination.
5. We did make a bin especially for the girls: Friends. They certainly don’t engage in Lego play as much as the boys do, but they still have a bin to contain all that pink and purple.
6. For labels, I created these in InDesign, then cut and laminated. At first, we used double stick tape to affix them to the plastic bins. FAIL. Then, I read a tip over on iHeartOrganizing and used velcro instead. It’s been great ever since. As a sidenote, it’s a good thing this posted isn’t labeled “Organizing Superheros” because based on this photo, I clearly need some help in that department.
7. Speaking of iHeart, imitation is the highest form of flattery, no? She used a similar system for her boys’ Legos. I just modified it for us.
8. The bin system works pretty well in that the boys just take out the bin they need, then put it back when they’re done. I no longer have thousands and thousands of Legos all over the gameroom floor. That right there is worth a million dollars.
9. We splurged the extra $1/bin and purchased lids for the bins. We knew the Legos would be accessible, but that Luke was unable to pull out the bins and certainly couldn’t take off the lids. Now, I recognize most three-year-olds have that ability, but Luke doesn’t. And, since he can’t see what’s inside, he rarely goes over to that part of the gameroom.
10. And, just in case you’re wondering, we did secure that system to the wall so there’s no tipping over. The Trofast system comes with anchors and it took the Mr. about five minutes to secure it.
For more HDYDI posts, visit my How I Do It Page.