How Ikea and LEGO built a creative solution to messy play
LEGO knows fully well that the toys they produce often result in messy play. We are not saying that it is a seriously bad thing that kids usually end their interesting LEGO sessions with figures and bricks scattered on the floor. The LEGO team thought of how they could help parents cope without any kind of stifling creativity. So, this made them to partner with Ikea, the storage giants. They worked together to make a simple and creative solution which was being named, ‘Bygglek’.
The collaboration to make Bygglek
This accessory is fun to almost any kind of household. The LEGO box in general is a place for children of different generations to sharpen their imaginations. All parents already know that there can be some sort of chaos when it comes to creativity. After one has ended a play for the day, it is almost unavoidable to step a foot on, at least, one or two eye-watering sharp pieces.
Therefore, this motivated the LEGO team to decide that they provide a solution for children and parents as well, which will make cleaning to be included in their creative build and play process.
Logstrup Rasmus, who is Lego's head designer, asked, "At a point, we came to realize that the perfect partner to work with is Ikea, but how is that going to be possible?" He also added, "Are we just going to pick up a phone and contact them through their main number?"
Rasmus remembers the incident that happened while the group was trying to contact Ikea. He said that the future collaboration between two amazing Scandinavian brands began during the chance encounter while they were in a school board meeting. He also added that there was a coincidence that saw an Ikea member and the licensing department leader of LEGO sitting next to each other, and they began to talk about the project that is likely to go through.
This coincidence motivated the LEGO group to take advantage of the courtship to send an invitation to Ikea to the ‘Come play’. To do this, they had to spell out all the challenges that LEGO faced by sending one amazing stop motion video to them. Fredriksson Andreas, an Ikea designer said, “This offer is an attractive one and it would be difficult for anyone to refuse it, only a few could”. He also added that it would be a perfect match as everything about Lego is play while they work at home with small space.
The decisive or most important point of the matter was how we were going to produce something that looks far off from ‘organized fun’.
“Our plan was not to make the play organized, but to make it easy for one to organize it”, said Fredriksson. He also explains “We also never wanted the toy to be something that will, by default, end up in the kid’s room. We wanted it to look nice and to seamlessly fit into a living room.
Løgstrup talked about how their team went through some researches that have already been made for them to develop the ideas they had. He says “According to research, the process of searching is vital”. He also said "We do not want to help kids to sort out everything. The play has something that inspires the children when they are about to build, and then, they suddenly find a shark or steering wheel, making the play to go in a different new direction. We also discovered that kids are always happy when they are playing on the floor.
Therefore, the designers came up with an idea to design a box (functional) that encourages play. Løgstrup went further to explain a challenge viewed from the perspective of LEGO. “Our system looks just like the recipe of Coca-Cola. It is difficult to copy and at the same time, secretive. If you want to design a product, ensure that the whole things are accurate so that everything can perfectly fit together. And this is not any easy for a big molded item in the history of LEGO. So, we already expected it to be challenging and complex.
He still acknowledged the fact that the partnership was more valuable because of that challenge. He still said that if LEGO begins to work by themselves without any special assistance, the team may be forced to seek for solutions right from the beginning. “But, when we have some people from the Ikea group, it means that are working together with them, asking a lot of unnecessary and stupid questions, like what stops me from doing this? And then, later, you engage in a personal challenge. This means that we have been able to achieve what we have not done before”.
To ensure that a perfect product was developed, workshops were staged by both Lego and Ikea where the designers of the two groups collectively produced a lot of ideas, referring to their joint resources. Fredriksson said, “We first made use of cardboard to create prototypes. The size also needed to be scaled, and so the bricked served as the starting point. We began to place them over each other and this was enlightening”. He also added, “We began to realize that this can serve, not only as some sort of storage device but also in the play”.
With prototypes finally developed, Ikea and Lego set about testing them out on their target audience. “We trailed them at Ikea with different children, to see how they played with it,“ says Lego‘s Løgstrup. “The first test was with a five-year-old who stacked the boxes on top of each other and turned them into a cake, and then went out into the kitchen to find some biscuits and candy,“ he recalls. “We also sent out in-home tests to trial the boxes in situ. “
“After the prototypes, Lego and Ikea were prepared to test them on the audience they are targeting. “We used different children to trail them to see how well they will play with it”. That was the comment made by Løgstrup. He added, “We made use of a 5-year-old kid that was stacking and piling the whole boxes on each other’s top, thereby, transforming them o a delicious cake. He said that the kid will also go and look for some candy and biscuits. He said that they still tried the boxes by doing some in-biscuit and candy. He also said that they used some in-home
This solution that we collectively produced, which consists of many different storage boxes that have been beautified using a special brick of Lego and a Lego studs will have to wait until it is already October before they can get it. After designing the product, they named it ‘Bygglek’. This is a Swedish word that means ‘play, build’.
Løgstrup says that this product has opened the way for a long-term partnership between Lego and Ikea. He also added that we will all see what the future holds for the two groups.
“This is just the starting base. The Bygglek is meant to be a lasting product, its the way it‘s been designed. It‘s something that you can collect and pass on to the next generation.“
“This base is the beginning. The product has been created to last for a long time. It was designed in a way that a person can make use of it and decide to pass it on to another generation”. Løgstrup concludes. This was how Ikea and LEGO built a creative solution to messy play.
Now, let us just keep you updated with some of the newest LEGO sets that are capable of exploding your creative mind.
Newest LEGO sets to blow your mind
LEGO Super Mario
The world of Super Mario is coming to life all thanks to LEGO. The Super Mario set begins with the starter course set.
LEGO is now making Super Mario come to life as they have produced about 16 Super Mario models and also accompanied it with an app that makes it more fun. Now you can see how Mario hops,meet Bowser, collect coins, dodge dangers, and many more.
Gone are the days when you will have to put your LEGO toy back into the box after play. Now, LEGO has released these colorful sets for you to put wherever you like. You may decide to hang it on your wall, place it on your shelf, or even on your desk.
The sets are used to honor Iron Man, The Beatles, Star Wars Villains, and Marilyn Monroe. In the sets, there are characters from Batman and Star Wars. Joker is also among the characters.
According to LEGO’s website, the sets are created on a 12 by 16 base plate and can be displayed freestanding or the built-in hook can be used to hang it on a wall.
LEGO made it clear that a person can decide to make it stand on its own or make it hang on his wall as they have been built on a base plate measuring 12 X 6.