Block Party!

We love brick building themed parties. It combines two of our favorite things: celebrations and building! So if you are looking for a fun theme for a party, we’ve got you covered, regardless of your DIY skills level. Here are some great ways to incorporate brick building into your big shindig:

Brick décor is pretty easy to do. The logo and many bricks are easily recognizable basic colors, so red, yellow, green, and blue decorations will work well. You can even make your own decorations fairly easily. The birthday person will love seeing their name spelled out in bricks—hopefully, their name isn’t too long! If you want to make a banner or invitations, you can use rectangles of colored paper as the base of your brick, trace the bottom of a cup onto the same colored paper, and put them on top as the “studs” with 3d foam tape. The same technique will work on solid-color gift bags if you decide to give any out—fill them with bricks, of course! You can also “disguise” juice boxes this same way. If you’re looking for something bigger, tissue boxes are also the perfect brick shape. Wrap them in solid colored paper, make holes in it, and fit colored plastic cups inside. They will look great stacked around the gift table. You can draw faces on solid yellow paper cups to make them look like minifig faces. Be sure to make some silly ones! We also like the idea of using bricks as placecards. For centerpieces, you can fill nearly any container with bricks and leave it in the middle of the table. Either you can encourage them to, or when your guests get bored, they can build with the pieces! You can also make your own utensil holders, coasters, and napkin dispenser with bricks.

They sell cake molds in the shape of bricks if you are the baking type; they are worth it—the cake will look AWESOME, especially if you are any good with fondant. Also, cake pops can be made in the shape of minifig heads, too. That is always a crowd pleaser, and the sticks can be held by actual minifigs! We have also found hard candy in the shape of bricks that you can actually stack. Fun and delicious! Or, if you are not baking inclined or internet-savvy enough to search for and order these types of things, you can always build little shapes out of new, CLEAN, bricks and add those to the top of cupcakes or a cake. You can also build a brick cake, either using round or square blocks and candles; although it will look cool, unfortunately, it won’t be edible, though.

If you are into games, you can get mini build sets and see who can build them the fastest, or put out a bunch of blocks and then vote to see who made the coolest thing out of the bricks. That works for kids or adults, in case you were wondering. We also like pin-the-head-on the-minifig. The sillier you make the minifig faces, the more fun the game will be! Or, you can get a bunch of minifig pieces and have the guests “build” themselves!

Can you tell we’ve thrown a few of these ourselves?

Brick-building parties can be a lot of fun. Just let your imagination be your guide.

Our Family’s Favorite Sets

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LEGO sets are great for two awesome reasons: the joy of LEGO building and the fun of a toy. We love LEGO sets here in the Brick household, and here are a few of our favorites (and why!)

Kiddo loves LEGO Creator sets, and as parents, we have to agree: they are pretty cool. The best part is that they are three sets in one. More build combinations = more playability, which means more value for your money, too! Right now Kiddo’s favorite is the Park Animals set we got him earlier this year. He loves the fact that he can build a dog, squirrel, owl, or a duck(complete with ducklings) depending on what he wants to play with. The animals are all adorable and are posable, too. The dog is a special favorite of ours! He is just so cute, it is easy to forget that he is made from bricks.

Daddy Brick loves just about any castle that LEGO comes out with. His favorite, though, is a set he had as a child that started his love of all things LEGO in the first place: the Black Knight’s Castle. It had super cool turrets complete with banners waving and crossbow-wielding minifigs. The dungeon and the drawbridge are also pretty cool. Daddy liked this set as a kid mostly for the minifigs and because the older castles were named after a King, but there were never any king minifigs included. This set, on the other hand, came with loads of guys to play with. The knights came with decked-out horses, including sword scabbards, and there’s even a ghost in case one of them meets a ghastly fate. Daddy’s set is a little worse for the wear, from all the action it saw over the years, but he will never part with this one! Kiddo loves the raised base, not a feature you see very often. This set can keep both Brick boys entertained for hours!

Mama is a fan of the modular building sets. From a city herself, she loves the charming urban style and is always looking for new buildings to add to her city. Her favorite is the Town Hall set that came out a few years ago. It is the biggest set we own, and it took Mama a long time to build (mostly because she wouldn’t let anyone else help). However, once she had it complete, it became a favorite of everyone in the Brick household! it is super cool to play with. It has an elevator so that your minifigs can get to each of the three floors. There’s a business office and a podium on the first floor, the Mayor’s office is on the second(we love having the Mayor officiate minifig weddings) and then there’s a conference room up on the third. Plus, have you seen that clock tower? It is awesome!

There you have it, our favorite sets. We love brick boxes too, where we can build anything, but for specialty pieces and added fun, you can’t go wrong with one of these sets!

Do You Follow the Instructions?

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We have met a lot of other brick-building fans over the years; some face-to-face at conventions or building events and others only virtually, on message boards or sites just like this one. It’s been a great experience sharing our love of brick-building with others. Over time, we have learned that people have strong feelings about those blue booklets that come with the sets. Some people like to follow the sets exactly and never deviate or build anything else because it is the set that attracts them to building in the first place. Others like to build objects of their own creation because the endless possibilities in a pile of bricks are what compels them to build.Some do a mixture of the two—they’re just happy when they’re playing with bricks!

We are a mixture by marriage household. Mama Brick was big on sets, never deviating from the instructions, and Daddy is more of an experimenter. He will pick up a bunch of leftover pieces and make some interesting stuff. Kiddo can do either with the same amount of joy and has taught us to see things his way more often than not. Now we try to accommodate everyone. There are sets that we buy because we like the look or playability of them. They look like fun to have, to build, or have interesting features/specialty bricks that we haven’t seen before. Then there are sets that we buy kind of like a car at a junkyard—we strip it for parts. Mama is learning not to cringe. Other options include the pick-a-brick site and the pick a brick wall at your local LEGO store, where you can get any number of interesting and useful pieces. This is especially helpful if you lose a piece of your set or if you have something very specific that you are looking for. It is a much more economical choice than buying and then pilfering pieces out of a set if you have the option.

LEGO is one of those rare companies that actually appreciates ingenuity. They are in the business of creativity, after all. They have a website where people can actually submit their awesomely unique LEGO creations as product suggestions. So for those of you who don’t follow the instructions, if you make a set cool enough, and enough people like it (as of this writing, you need 100,000 supporters), LEGO will actually take your idea into consideration. There are tons of rules (for example, you can’t mix themes, you can’t use too many pieces, you can’t create your own pieces or modify existing pieces) but if they review your product and like it—they really make your set! They’ll sell it in stores! They even give you credit as the creator! And—here’s the best part: you get a (small) cut of the profits from your design, as well as 10 free sets.  It is on Daddy’s list of life goals, and he will continue to try and come up with a worthy idea. Stay tuned for that one.

What about you? Are you strictly a set-builder?