Chrys B. of Heathcote, Australia had an interest in LEGO in her early teens but endured a Dark Age that lasted a number of decades until she discovered the Star Wars LEGO range. It was after attending Brickvention 2012 that she decided she really was an AFOL. Chrys is currently a member of MUGs (Melbourne LEGO User Group) and BALD (Bendigo Area LEGO Designers). Her favourites themes are Space, Space and Space.
LEGO storage for Chrys is organized by colour and then by part. As an artist, this structure helps Chrys encourage creativity and allows for organic design and building. Common pieces have their own space and most are stored in zip lock plastic bags and others are in drawers. She likes to keep sets together and these are stored in boxes by theme.
Chrys loves the creativity that comes from building with LEGO and enjoys the sharing culture of the AFOL community where she can display her work and see the work of others. Her main block to creativity, as with many other AFOLs, is her lack of actual LEGO pieces with which to complete her MOCs. She has many fantastic ideas but lacks the resources to bring them to fruition.
Steve R. of Melbourne, as with so many AFOLs, was unable to keep his childhood LEGO as it was donated to cousins during his Dark Age. He fondly remembers a yellow tow-truck type vehicle from his childhood but also recalls his family having a number of castle sets. He’s not sure when he was first given LEGO sets but does recall having some when he was around 10 years old. Steve emerged from his Dark Ages in his twenties when he started buying random sets. At the time he told his then girlfriend (now wife) that he was buying for the nephews and nieces or for their future children. Moving forward some years, he is now an avid LEGO collector and builder and regularly attends meetings of the Melbourne LEGO User Group (MUGs). Now that his kids are into LEGO, he has to fight to keep them away from his LEGO collection.
“Semi-organised” is how Steve describes his storage method. Steve prefers to sort by colour and has his most common colours loose in a box with other colours bagged and stored in the same box. The bulk of Steve’s LEGO is on display so he doesn’t have to worry too much about organizing his spare parts.
Being part of the local LUG community has been a fantastic opportunity for Steve. He’s met some awesome people who wouldn’t be part of his life if it weren’t for being a member of the LEGO community. For Steve, sharing his passion for LEGO with his kids is an important part of being a LEGO Fan. He wants them to love LEGO just as much as he does. The downside is knowing that he will probably never have the opportunity to own any of the San Diego Comic Con exclusive superhero figures and sets. Sadly, they are outside of his budget. In the meantime, he’ll continue to modify sets and build his own superhero creations.
The “LEGO Library” of SE Melbourne was originally from Sydney but moved to Melbourne in 1979. Although a serious collector of LEGO for around 20 years, she developed an even greater love for the plastic brick when her then young son also became an enthusiast.
“LEGO Library” prefers to store her LEGO bricks by part type so all similar parts are stored together. The rare colours, like the greens and purples, are stored together by colour as there are not many of them. The sorted parts are in drawers, the partially sorted are in plastic crates and the unsorted remainder are in plastic tubs with lids. She’s hoping to eventually move everything into drawers and crates.
As an AFOL, “LEGO Library” loves having an excuse to play and build with LEGO. She really loves showing her builds and talking to other AFOLs and the public about LEGO. Despite loving to display her creations, her least favourite thing about being an AFOL is time and effort required to set up and pack up the displays.
Travis M. of Melbourne prefers to go by the name Space Commander Travis. Space Commander Travis spent the first part of his life in country Victoria but moved to Melbourne in 2003. He has been a member of the Melbourne LEGO User Group (MUGs) since around 2002 and is the current LUG Ambassador for the group. Unlike a lot of AFOLs, Travis did not really have a true Dark Age. His mother started purchasing LEGO for him in 1976 before he was even born and, consequently, he’s been a fan of it all of his life. He does admit that he did have a “can’t really afford this” age but he still tried to buy LEGO whenever he could.
Despite being a lifelong LEGO fan, Travis doesn’t really have a well-organized storage system. In his own words, he describes it as “chaotic”. Ideally, he says, it should be in tubs by type of brick (2x brick, 1x brick, plate etc) with ziplock bags for specific parts (1×1, 2×1, 3×1, 2×4 etc) but, as you can see from the pictures, Travis’ setup is not perfect. A lot of that comes from being an avid builder so his parts are all over the place as he designs and develops his latest creation.
Travis loves having LEGO as his creative outlet. He likes that it appeals to those who like “art” as well as anyone who had LEGO as children. They can appreciate the effort involved in the creation of the design. However, it is somewhat frustrating when people ask if the model he has spent months working on is “just a set”. On a side note, Travis hates sorting bricks and would love someone to sort all of his for him.
JC of Melbourne doesn’t remember when he first developed a love for LEGO bricks as it happened when he was a small child. However, he was able to revisit his love of LEGO when his son started collecting the second series of the Collectable Minifigs in 2010.
He doesn’t have much of a storage philosophy at the moment because he has limited space in his small apartment. The majority of his spare parts and LEGO bulk are stored in cardboard boxes until he needs them for a build. Whilst building, he stores the parts he is using in tubs and drawers, which he acquired from Aldi (see picture). JC described this method as a “mess” but he hopes to one day have an organized set up in a double garage with lots of room for storage and building.
The best thing about LEGO bricks, for JC, is watching his son play and use his imagination. JC enjoys the social interaction with other AFOLs and loves seeing the creations made by other people. His least favourite aspect is the cost. For him, it severely limits his ability to complete builds. As a MOC builder he has a wealth of ideas of models to design and build but he believes it will be years before he can make them a reality due to the restrictive cost of purchasing the LEGO bricks. JC states that, costs aside, the only true limitation to building with LEGO bricks is one’s own imagination.