My son has quite a lot of Lego, but he stopped playing with it. It turns out that he gets frustrated when he can’t find a particular piece. So we started exploring storage options.
One Big Box
When I was a kid – and I had way more Lego than he does – I just had it all in a big box. I used to love the noise and feeling of swishing through the box to find the piece I wanted. I remember deliberately looking for a piece other than the one I wanted, hoping to “trick” the Lego box, and to catch the one I really wanted out of the corner of my eye.
The “one big box” solution doesn’t work for him. Maybe he’s a bit younger than I was; maybe he just has less patience.
Or maybe there were fewer individual types of brick in my day?
We tried using takeaway tubs, but they’re a bit flimsy, don’t pack very well, and they’re really easy to knock over and spill the bricks.
Sort and Store
These are relatively expensive, and don’t seem to be useful for categorising the LEGO bricks. That is: there’s no way to separate the really small pieces. The “Sort and Store” is a clever idea, but these are basically just LEGO-branded buckets.
Chima Sorting System
However, completely coincidentally, I found the LEGO Chima - Sorting System Storage Boxes. This is a set of 3 stackable boxes, about A3 footprint, of varying heights. It comes with a single sorting tray, with individual compartments for the smaller pieces of Lego. This sits in the top of any one of the other tubs.
It’s pretty good, and it’s sparked my son’s Lego habit again, but it’s not perfect – again, it’s relatively expensive, and it only comes with a single sorting tray.
Really Useful Boxes
However, I might have found another solution.
At home, for my storage, I’ve been a long-term fan of Really Useful Boxes. They’re sturdy, they’ve got lids, and they stack. I use them in my home office, in the shed and in the attic.
I generally pick them up from B&Q or Staples.
While visiting their website the other day to get dimensions (I’m considering a large, flat box to go in the back of the car), I discovered that they also offer sorting trays.
These stack inside the existing boxes, and you can 2-4 trays inside the conveniently-sized 9L box. They’ve got a “hobby tray” with square compartments, a “stationery tray” that looks like it’ll be useful for the longer pieces of Lego, and a “sorting tray” which is taller and has larger compartments.
I’ve not ordered any yet – I’m waiting until pay day – but I think I might have just found the solution for a 5-year-old boy (and his Dad) with a Lego habit.