Most families with young children have LEGO®s in their home. It’s basically a universal item found in American homes…refrigerator – check, couch – check, bed – check, LEGO® – check! And by default, it’s almost a rite of passage for parents to step on a lone LEGO® brick at some point during their child’s upbringing. LEGO®s are such a great activity for children of all ages and there are almost an infinite number of LEGO® sets on the market these days. With their prevalence and abundance in every home, I bet there are many parents out there, just like you, that want to figure out how to properly contain all these bricks so that their kids can enjoy this activity and they can enjoy walking barefoot again in their home! Read on for my top tips on how to organize the LEGO®s in your home!
I’m Overwhelmed…Where Do I Begin?
Like I do with every organizing project, I’m going to tell you to begin with asking yourself a few questions:
- What are my goals when it comes to LEGO® organizing?
- What is my budget that I can spend on organizing bins/products?
- What is my timeline? Do I want this done today or take time to research ideas?
Once you have thought through the answers to these questions, you’ll also want to ask yourself the following about how your child plays with LEGO®s. Does your child enjoy putting sets together? Does your child enjoy taking LEGO® structures apart? Does your child enjoy building randomly? Do you have specialty pieces? Where does your child enjoy playing with LEGO®s…on the floor? At a desk? At a LEGO® table? The answers to these questions will help you create a functional, organized space that is tailor made to your son(s) and/or daughter(s) LEGO® usage.
Creating LEGO® Categories
Now that you’ve answered the above questions, let’s discuss next steps. With every organizing project, we move through a set of five stages and first up is to sort. How you decide to sort your LEGO®s depends on how your child(ren) play with them. Here are a few options to choose from:
- Color and size
- Various specialty pieces
Your sorting strategy should be based on how your child(ren) play with their LEGO®s. For my son, sorting by color and size was a must because he is always looking for specific pieces to add to his creations. Your child, however, might search more for specialty pieces or characters and not be as concerned about the specific color of a brick.
Typically, the next phase of an organizing project is to purge. Purging may or may not be necessary for your family LEGO® supply. You might consider purging if your child has outgrown a type of LEGO®s (Duplo® for example), has duplicate items, or if a piece is broken.
Where Will Your Child’s LEGO®s Live?
After sorting and purging, it’s time to move forward with creating a LEGO® home and containing the LEGO®s into a system. Type “LEGO®” into Pinterest and many options will come up to inspire you. You don’t have to get overwhelmed though…below you’ll find a few options summarized for you and the pros/cons of each option.
- Bookcase – the picture above shows LEGO®s housed and displayed on a bookshelf. In this example, the LEGO®s are sorted by size and color and contained in open, divided bins. This is a great option for kids who do not want to open/close bins every time they play with their LEGO®s. It’s also a good option for kids who want to use specific pieces for their creations and then display such creations. The con here is that this system does take time to set up and does require regular maintenance. Therefore, it’s more likely best for older children.
- Shelves – the picture below shows Legos stored in shoe bins with lids and stacked on shelves. Again, LEGO®s can be sorted by color, size, specialty, etc. This is a great option if you prefer shelving over a bookcase and if you want to stack bins to take advantage of the height of each shelf. This option is also great for younger children who have larger LEGO® pieces. The only con that I find is that the system requires children to take lids on and off bins.
- Drawers – the picture below shows the IKEA Trofast unit. While not used specifically for LEGO®s here, these drawers are another option for LEGO® storage. The system comes in multiple sizes and allows for big and small LEGO® pieces and it also allows for multiple ways to sort LEGO®s. The system’s pros are that it can hold a lot of LEGO®s and there is a work surface on top for LEGO® creation or display. The con here would be that children do need to take a few steps to grab LEGO®s (pull out drawer and reach in) and to put them away so the system will need ongoing maintenance. Additionally, these bins are opaque, not clear, but that is definitely a personal preference.
Pro Tip: With this system, it’s very important to consider the appropriate size bin for each LEGO® category. Dumping small LEGO®s into a large bin will not help your child find specific pieces and can lead to a very disorganized system.
- Pegboard – seen here, this option definitely takes advantage of the height of a wall as well as allows for a desk or table underneath for LEGO® creations. Baskets that hook into the peg board can hold LEGO® bricks, specialty pieces, and characters. A definite pro is that the sky is the limit in terms of creativity, functionality, and storage. A con would be that a system like this a bigger investment in your time and resources (remember we talked about timeline and budget at the beginning of this post?).
Keeping Your LEGO® System Organized
Getting an organized system set up is one thing, maintaining your system is another! A LEGO® system won’t magically organize itself, so it’s important to take steps to insure that your system stays in place. Here are a few suggestions:
- Adding labels for each category will help you and your child return LEGO® bricks to their proper home. You can add labels with a label maker or consider something a little more upgraded such as the vinyl labels seen here.
- Including clean up time after playing with LEGO®s will keep your system tidy
- Adding a labeled bin or a binder to hold LEGO® manuals
- Revisiting your system often to tweak what is not working and make changes that will grow with your child(ren)
Ready, set, now it’s time for you and your family to get LEGO® organized! Here’s the good news…you can easily shop for all of the products seen here by following me on the Liketoknow.it app! Simply download the app to your phone, follow Organized by Jenny, and you’ll see these pictures already loaded in with links for each organizing product. Happy LEGO® organizing!
*Affiliate links used above. With some links, I will receive a small commission if you purchase the product(s).