This is how you should be storing your LEGO® collection

Turn dreary clean-up time into a fun activity for everyone with these amazing LEGO® storage pieces from ROOM Copenhagen.

There’s no question that LEGO® sets are an absolute essential in every household. But, ask anyone who’s stepped on a stray LEGO® brick and they’ll tell you just how important it is to pick up those sneaky little pieces.

Storing LEGO® bricks and other pieces certainly isn’t as fun as building with them, or at least it wasn’t until ROOM Copenhagen introduced us to its amazing LEGO® storage units. Using the LEGO® brick blueprint, ROOM has extended the LEGO® experience to lunchboxes, drawers and large storage boxes, turning clean-up time into an awesome game of “build the oversized LEGO® bricks”.

SHOP LEGO® STORAGE

Not only are these bricks proportionate to the LEGO® two-by-two and four-by-two bricks, they are buildable just like your normal LEGO® bricks, making them that much more appealing to your average LEGO® fan. Colours that are currently in stock at Kiddiwinks include blue, red and yellow. 

As if oversized LEGO® bricks and lunchboxes weren’t enough, ROOM has also introduced the iconic LEGO® minifigure head with the trademark LEGO® smile. Open up the top and store your odds and ends, or simply use it as a cute decor  accessory.  You can even use the large version as a fruit bowl, as per a suggestion by ROOM!

The LEGO® Iconic Storage Head makes a quirky fruit bowl.

“Though made first and foremost with children in mind, our products are sure to please parents as well as any adults with a soft spot for the LEGO® brand,” explains ROOM on their website.

The storage pieces are created with a strong focus on quality and functionality, making them ideal to add to your home. The items are BPA and Phthalate free, and no PVC is used.

Take your LEGO® adventures one step further with this awesome range from ROOM and finally get the family to clean up after themselves!

SHOP LEGO® STORAGE

What to get up to in the winter school holidays

School’s out for… winter! Which means there’ll be plenty of screen-time, sleeping in and maybe just a little bit of boredom. Avoid the dreaded moans of “I’m bored” by getting your kids stuck into building that challenging LEGO® set they’ve had their eye on all term.

Get engineering

For the older kids, LEGO® Technic™ offers advanced building. Each detailed model is inspired by vehicles from the real world, with loads of cool, working features. From pneumatics to motors, LEGO® Technic™ gets kids not just building but also engineering.

For the month of June, we’re running an amazing 20% off promotion on all LEGO® Technic™ sets, so get the sets you’ve been dreaming about and share the fun with your family and friends!

Get 20% off all LEGO® Technic™ and Power Functions sets, as well as the LEGO® BOOST Creative Toolbox and LEGO® MINDSTORMS® EV3, until the end of June!

Pay a visit to our four stores to check out the amazing LEGO® Technic™ displays in each!

Turn boredom into fun these winter holidays with LEGO
Turn boredom into fun these winter holidays with LEGO® sets.

An a-MAZE-ing LEGO Idea

After the heart-stopping adventures of Maze Runner, there’s really no reason why anyone wouldn’t want a go at creating their own maze from LEGO®, right? The LEGO® Ideas Maze is great, not only because it was created by LEGO® fan designer Jason Allemann from Canada and then selected by LEGO® fans, but also because it’s customisable. Yes! You can build your own maze to challenge yourself and friends, and there’s the awesome medieval-style maze which includes assorted buildable cottages, archway and castle.

Shop for the LEGO® Ideas Maze here and watch Jason talk about his design here:

Tots’ time

kid playing with lego

When it comes to keeping the very youngest members of the family occupied, there’s nothing more lovely than an outing to Kiddiwinks to get the LEGO® set of their choice. In fact, there’s a whole choice of June releases that will see them spending hours building, imagining and playing.

Pay a visit to our Habitat Centre store in Somerset West to spend time in our amazing play area too!

The LEGO® DUPLO® Train Bridge and Tracks set is great to add to any new or existing DUPLO® train set and develop early construction skills as your toddler builds the tall bridge and arranges the toy train track pieces in any way they like.

Kiddiwinks LEGO Train Bridge
Young fans of Unikitty’s universe can spend hours reliving favourite moments from the happiest, most sparkly and colourful TV series around with the LEGO® Unikitty™ Unikingdom Creative Brick Box.

Unikingdom Creative Brick Box

 

 

What are you waiting for? Turn winter school holidays into a delight with Kiddiwinks for those exciting LEGO® sets and enjoy hours of uninterrupted fun!

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom brings a whole new LEGO® series!

The dinosaurs are out and they’re taking over the world! That is according to Jurassic World™: Fallen Kingdom, of course. This marks the second film in the Jurassic World trilogy – a momentous one for dino fans across the globe. Naturally, the film would be missing a puzzle piece without a corresponding LEGO® Jurassic World™ series, a selection of which are now available through Kiddiwinks!

The series has something for all age groups, from LEGO® DUPLO® T. rex Tower which includes an Owen Grady LEGO® DUPLO® figure, to a selection of LEGO® Juniors Jurassic World™ sets, and of course, straight LEGO® Jurassic World™ sets.

Enter Jurassic World with your child and recreate all the drama and tension from the movie, with this exciting set!
Enter Jurassic World™ with your child and recreate all the drama and tension from the movie, with this exciting set!
Introduce your child to the thrill of exploration and a LEGO® Juniors Jurassic World adventure
Introduce your child to the thrill of exploration and a LEGO® Juniors Jurassic World™ adventure
Unite Owen with the faithful Velociraptor in this thrilling Blue’s Helicopter Rescue set, inspired by Jurassic World™.
Unite Owen with the faithful Velociraptor in this thrilling Blue’s Helicopter Rescue set, inspired by Jurassic World™.

Watch the final trailer here:

Plan to watch the film? Let us know what you think of it in the comments section below or on our Facebook page!

Click here to view the LEGO® Jurassic World™ sets available at Kiddiwinks!

Love it or hate it? “Solo: A Star Wars story” film

Some say it’s set to be a disaster, while others can’t wait to settle into their cinema seats, eyes glued to the big screen to take in the latest film in the Star Wars franchise, Solo: A Star Wars story.

This anthology film (it’s not counted as part of the final trilogy), tracks everyone’s favourite hotshot pilot Han Solo and how he became a smuggler (played by Alden Ehrenreich), before we meet him in the original Star Wars trilogy where he is played by Harrison Ford.

harrison ford versus Alden Ehrenreich playing Han Solo in Star Wars
Who played Han Solo better? Harrison Ford or Alden Ehrenreich?

Is Han Solo’s story here too soon?

According to The Guardian writer Tom Beasley, there is the distinct likelihood that the film will be met by what he terms “franchise fatigue” due it being released just 6 months after The Last Jedi.

“The novelty and goodwill that helped The Force Awakens and, to an extent first spin-off Rogue One, has mostly faded to nothing – especially among fans who considered The Last Jedi sacrilege,” he argues.

Beasley’s point may ring true with many as evidenced by the number of disparaging comments on the Youtube trailer all suggesting this latest film has little of the magic essential to the Galaxy Far, Far Away. Yet, it’s a story that others will be curious to see given that Han Solo’s character is a rather charismatic one. The film will track how he comes to meet Lando Calrissian (played by Donald Glover), as well as his burgeoning relationship with the ever-lovable Chewbacca, not to mention his forays into smuggling.

The general message coming from reviewers is: “don’t get your hopes up”. Still, if you’re not a Star Wars stickler (don’t expect much mention of The Force in this film!), this will be a great one for you and the family to enjoy.

LEGO® Star Wars releases

The naysayers couldn’t keep us eager LEGO® Star Wars collectors from coveting the latest releases in the series. Han Solo’s Landspeeder, The Imperial TIE Fighter complete with an Imperial Pilot, Han Solo, Tobias Beckett (in Mimban Stormtrooper disguise) and a Mimban Stormtrooper minifigure, and a whole lot more, there’s plenty to get excited about!

Here’s a list of available LEGO® Star Wars sets:

Share what you think about the film in the comments thread below or on our Facebook page.

For the whole of May 2018, we are running a promotion that gives you 30% off on all LEGO Star Wars sets. Shop for your favourite LEGO Star Wars sets over at the Kiddiwinks online shop.

Great LEGO® build ideas for the holidays

It’s the summer holidays. While the kids might be jumping for joy, parents can’t be blamed for feeling just a little overwhelmed at the idea of keeping the kids entertained and out of trouble for 7 long weeks. We have you covered, with a few fun LEGO® and LEGO DUPLO® projects that offer up plenty to keep the kids occupied for at least some of the time.

Count down to Christmas

Visit this link for the full instructions.

Build a Christmas tree…

Click here for the full infographic.

… and a reindeer

Just click here for the full infographic.

6 fun activities from LEGO®

These smart ideas are all simple tasks that invoke the Christmas spirit in us all. Get the kids making adorable Christmas cards and decorations and you’ll be ticking more than just “Keep the kids occupied” off your list.

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Checkmate!

LEGO chess set

Now here’s a fun building challenge for that budding chess player in the family.

Get them to create their own chess board out of LEGO®. This will certainly help them remember better how each piece is allowed to move on the board and, well, it’s kind of cool too!

Get all the instructions at teachbesideme.com

Got some of your own ideas on how to keep the kids busy with LEGO®? Share with us in the comments section below!

Discover your LEGO® favourites the old-fashioned way

Our fast-paced technological age means that kids are spending more time in front of a screen and less time learning to solve problems with their own hands and ingenuity.

Technology certainly has its place and knowing how to use it is an essential skill for kids these days. But so too, is the ability to create, discover and learn spatially.

We’ve all heard the long list of benefits of LEGO® play. Not only does it improve fine motor skill, (an essential and often under developed skill in young children), but it also helps kids to interact well with each other, forming relationships based on sharing and teamwork.

LEGO® play is versatile

It can be about teamwork or solo problem solving. It can be totally fantasy-driven, focused on free-building to create whatever you dream up, or it can be about following instructions.

It’s about being in the moment

Playing with LEGO® blocks and sets is always interactive and demands focus right then and there. Watch any young child absorbed in their LEGO® building task and you will understand the importance of losing yourself in the creation so completely, discovering the laws of physics and geometry and the wonders of creativity along the way.

Visit our stores to discover, play and learn

That’s why we’ve taken care to set aside interactive play areas in three of our four stores. We also hold regular LEGO® builds, as all of this encourages kids (and adults!) to immerse themselves in the wonders of LEGO® play.

What you’ll find:

  • Interactive LEGO® wall with troughs of bricks for free build activity that includes mosaic building
  • LEGO® Play tables
  • LEGO® DUPLO pit
  • LEGO® Club availability to sit and build one of a selection of complete sets provided for building on-site at tables

These school holidays, stop by our stores in Habitat Centre, Somerset West, Blue Route Mall and Willowbridge Shopping Centre where you’ll find piles of LEGO® blocks to build from. It’s a good diversion for the kids, and by good, we mean genuinely constructive learning through play!

Our interactive areas are always overseen by a designated Kiddiwinks staff member, and we encourage parents to stay and even join in.

Find a store near you by visiting shop.kiddiwinks.co.za

The brick that built an empire

Did you know that 33 000 bricks are manufactured every minute at LEGO® factories? That might seem a lot, but it’s just enough to keep up with the ever-increasing demand for this sought-after toy. The LEGO® brick’s simple design makes it versatile and so precise that it remains unrivaled over the almost 60 years it has been in production.

The two basic components that make a LEGO® piece unique are its studs on the top and the tubes within. The studs are a little bigger than the space between the tubes and the walls, so that when two pieces are pressed together, friction works to keep them together.

“Our products have undergone extensive development over the years – but the foundation remains the traditional LEGO® brick.

The brick in its present form was launched in 1958. The interlocking principle with its tubes makes it unique and offers unlimited building possibilities. It’s just a matter of getting the imagination going – and letting a wealth of creative ideas emerge through play.” – The LEGO® Group

This smart design means that you can build anything from a basic LEGO model airplane to a giant LEGO® sculpture, or in James May’s case, even a full-size LEGO® house in the country.

LEGO® parts are made from a durable plastic called acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) and are created mechanically, via robots which inject molten plastic into moulds.

 

The ABS comes in a granule form and is melted down at 232 degrees Celsius before being injected into the moulds. The moulds are extremely accurate, which is how LEGO® bricks are so uniform. The mould precision tolerance is as little as 0.002 millimeters, according to How Stuff Works.

Once injected into the mould, the ABS is compressed at a pressure of between 25 and 150 tons. It takes just 7 seconds for the LEGO® piece to cool sufficiently to fall out onto a conveyor belt and into a bin to be sorted.

When it comes to quality assurance, LEGO® has a thorough process. Drop, torque, tension, compression, bite and impact tests are mechanised all to ensure that pieces are safe and sturdy.

“Technicians use a measuring beaker to determine whether pieces could cause a choking hazard for small children. For every million LEGO® elements, about 18, or 0.00002 percent, fail to pass the tests.” – How Stuff Works

Perhaps that’s why a LEGO® piece is almost indestructible – and why it hurts so darn much to step on one! In fact, Software developer and LEGO® fan Phillipe Cantin conducted an experiment to find out just how much force you’d need to exert on a two-by-two brick before it gave out. It turns out you’d need the equivalent of 950 pounds of pressure for it to give way.

So, not only is the LEGO® brick built for versatility, it’s also built to last, making it one of the most outstanding toys out there.

 

Visit the Kiddiwinks online shop or find the nearest Cape Town store near you to find the LEGO® sets you love!

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Say hello to 2017’s LEGO® Minifigure Series

After much anticipation, the LEGO® Collectable Minifigures Series 17 is finally on shelves.

You can expect a good variety of the quirky and goofy in this set, including Corn Cob Guy and Butterfly Girl, sporting equally hilarious descriptions.

Corn Cob Guy’s description on the LEGO® site wins the prize for the corniest:

“Pop this guy any question about corn, and prepare to be a-maized! He’ll teach you how to plant, grow, reap, cook, pop, eat, dress like, and even act like corn.”

And Butterfly Girl’s description sits firmly in the quirky category:

“Flies like a butterfly, dreams like an entomologist. Can’t wait to grow old enough to raise a pet caterpillar of her own.”

A post shared by LEGO (@lego) on

With another 15 minifigures in this series, there’s plenty of variety. As usual, collecting them can offer a great incentive for the youngster (or even, eternal youngster) in your life needing to get good grades, do their homework and their chores.

The LEGO® Collectable Minifigures Series 17 list:

  1. Battle Dwarf,
  2. Veterinarian,
  3. Circus Strong Man,
  4. Corn Cob Guy,
  5. Elf Girl,
  6. Hot Dog Man,
  7. Gourmet Chef,
  8. Connoisseur,
  9. Rocket Boy,
  10. Retro Spaceman,
  11. Roman Gladiator,
  12. Professional Surfer,
  13. Dance Instructor,
  14. Butterfly Girl,
  15. The Yuppie,
  16. The Highwayman. He was the mystery minifigure that was recently revealed by BrickBrains.com.

LEGO Minifigure Series 17 Highwayman

How old is the LEGO® minifigure?

All this hype had us asking ourselves how the minifigure first came into being in the LEGO® Group’s long history. It turns out that’s almost 40 years with the first minifigure as we know it being released in 1978. Its facial expression is simple: two eyes and a smiling mouth. Three years before that, a version of the minifigure had been released, with the same cylindrical head as the minifigure we know but without moveable arms or legs, and no facial features either.

Watch this quick evolution of the minifigure:

By 1989, according to Gizmodo, new facial features were added to coincide with the release of LEGO® Pirates. The pirate minifigures sported stubble, eyepatches and beards and the female pirates had lipstick. Each wore accessories in the form of hats or carried some kind of weapon. And so the minifigure with its accessories became established.

By 1990, the LEGO® Group had released its first specialised minifigure along with the LEGO® Castle set: the LEGO® ghost. This particular minifigure had a ghost suit which fits over a normal minifigure. Thus, you could assume Corn Cob Guy’s direct descendent goes all the way back to the LEGO® Castle set of 1990.

Watch this video by Gizmodo to see how LEGO® minifigures are produced in the factory:

Order each new LEGO® minifigure from Series 17 at our online shop or
visit our three Cape Town stores.

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Why LEGO® DUPLO® bricks are the bridge for better building

It’s a common question many parents have when it comes to introducing their toddler to LEGO® bricks:

Should we start with LEGO® DUPLO® sets or skip straight to LEGO® sets?

The general assumption is that kids are likely to play with LEGO® bricks from toddler to teenage-hood. We often don’t even consider that LEGO® DUPLO® bricks offer the same longevity. After all, their design is compatible with LEGO® bricks and therefore a valuable element in the building process. There are even convertors which allow for LEGO® DUPLO® bricks to be used with other older LEGO® sets.

Adults love LEGO® DUPLO® pieces too

Many adult fans of LEGO® (AFOLs) make use of LEGO® DUPLO® pieces in their MOCs usually to fill out a large structure, since LEGO® DUPLO® bricks interlock with LEGO® bricks and are also the same colours. Brick Blogger expands on how LEGO® DUPLO® sets will grow with you.

This LEGO® DUPLO® cow jumping over the moon is done by Build with me blog.
This LEGO® DUPLO® cow jumping over the moon is done by Build with me blog.

 

 

 

Build with me blog also created this clever version of the woman who lived in a shoe.
Build with me blog also created this clever version of the woman who lived in a shoe.

Kids need to play safely

While we all love LEGO® play, introducing LEGO® sets too young not only poses something of a safety risk for children under three years of age, it also hinders their ability to make developmental progress on their own.

It can be a frustrating process for parents too as the smaller, more intricate LEGO® bricks will require that parents facilitate play, which can interrupt precious moments of discovery for your child.

DUPLO Friends castle, horse and carriage


Shop LEGO® DUPLO® sets


LEGO® DUPLO® bricks helps kids learn

LEGO® DUPLO® bricks are something of a developmental bridge for your child. Here are four broad ways that LEGO® DUPLO® play is beneficial for young children:

Fine motor skills

They offer the opportunity for kids to improve their fine motor skills through repetitive motions using blocks that are designed to aid and encourage play for this very reason.

Toddler building with DUPLO

Social skills

Playing with LEGO® DUPLO® bricks helps kids to build on their social skills through role play, sharing and teamwork.

Figure out the world

Kids spend a lot of time trying to figure out the world through experiments and deductions. LEGO® DUPLO® play encourages these thought processes and gets them to match up things like shapes and colours too.

Creativity and problem-solving

Two absolutely essential aspect of human thought are developed from a young age. LEGO ®DUPLO® bricks offer endless possibilities for experimenting and creating, offering kids the means by which they might follow one train of thought to resolve a burning question about the world, only to pursue yet another thought, seamlessly.

Consider including some LEGO® DUPLO® sets in your collection for a versatile, fun way to bridge the gap for young kids to learn through play and adults looking for great LEGO® building options.


Visit the Kiddiwinks online store


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Clean your LEGO® bricks the right way

From time to time, your LEGO® collection will need some freshening up. We take a look at various methods that people of the web have shared, as well as a few ideas of our own.

What The LEGO® Group says

First off, The LEGO® Group recommends that you wash your LEGO® blocks by hand using a mild detergent (something akin to Sunlight liquid) in water temperature of no more than 40℃. They add that you should take care to rinse the detergent off properly to avoid any discolouration. Let them dry naturally, or carefully dry each brick using a soft dry towel

Using mild bleach

This one is for those badly soiled LEGO® bricks. The LEGO® Group recommends that you use a very mild bleach and perhaps it’s worth also saying that you shouldn’t leave the bricks in to soak for longer than a few minutes.

Brighten up yellowing bricks

Older bricks tend to yellow if exposed to too much sunlight – especially the white, blue and light grey LEGO bricks. You can rectify this using hydrogen peroxide. According to Brothers Brick, the bricks undergo a chemical reaction to the H2O2, that effectively helps to bring the colours back up. You can get 100ml bottles of hydrogen peroxide from Clicks for about R16. Here’s a step-by-step whitening method that AFOL John Tooker swears by.

Darth Vader in the bath

Stick ‘em in a laundry bag and into the washing machine

If you’re pressed for time and needing a quick cleaning solution, then this might appeal to you, however, be warned that there’s a high chance that your bricks will sustain scratches. The LEGO® Group itself warns against putting your LEGO® bricks into the washing machine or dishwasher. But, some LEGO® users attest to this method, adding that they run the machine on a lower temperature wash. This LEGO® cleaning method is probably used most by parents that need a way of getting sticky food stuff off their kid’s LEGO® bricks quickly and with the least elbow-grease.


Visit our online store to find a wide selection of awesome LEGO® products


Keep clear LEGO® pieces shiny

Since tiny scratches show up more on the transparent LEGO® pieces such as windshield, so do keep them separate when you give your LEGO® bricks a good clean. To restore these pieces back to a shinier version of themselves, someone has discovered the wonders of wood floor cleaners. Andy Taylor has written an entire post on the subject over at The Brick Blogger, offering a step-by-step guide using Pledge WoodCare. It is the liquid acrylic that you want, which Andy later explains is “a clear very dilute acrylic medium based floor polish.”

Cleaning those minifigures

LEGO Minifigure doing his laundry

In order to keep the printed details of your minifigures intact, it’s critical that you take the utmost care when you go about cleaning them. Ebay has a great post on how to clean vintage minifigures, which is worth applying to newer minifigures.

Got any other LEGO® cleaning ideas up your sleeves? Share it with us in the comments section below.

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