Saturday, November 10, 2012

Not Sure What To Do With All Those Lego's?

I have 3 boys. 
 3 boys who absolutely LOVE Lego's. 
 And a family who loves to buy them for them. 
(Which is a they are quite expensive.) 
 But as an organizer I racked my brain a million times as to how I could store them. 
Still having them accessible to play with at anytime and not losing my sanity with them being all over my floors. 

This is what I came up with:

I don't store a lot of toys in my kids rooms. It's hard enough maintaining them when they are central to one location...why would I make more work for myself? 
But I made an exception for Lego's. 
This little contraption was sized to my boys bunk beds. 
It sits on 4 casters so that it slides right under their bed. 
Out of sight. And out of this organizers mind. 
 Unfortunately I didn't take pictures of the building process but I will do my best to explain each step so that you can build your own.

I started with purchasing these green 10x10 Lego plates. They were the most expensive part of this project. I bought 12 of them at $6 a piece.  

 I laid each of the plates out so that they were touching each other on a sheet of 1/2 inch plywood. 3 rows of 4. I took a sharpie marker and traced the outside of the layout. (So that the measurement was exact to the actual plates I was using.)

I then took a circular saw to the outline. Once that's done, clean off the plywood and stain the color of your choice. (I only suggest staining the plywood because the Lego plates have rounded even as they touch, you will still be able to see the plywood.) Once this is finished and dry to the touch, take a caulking gun and a tube of Liquid Nails and glue each piece down to the plywood. Making sure to adhere the outsides of the plates well so that when your kids are taking pieces on and off of the doesn't pull it up. 
 Set aside to dry. 

 I used 1X6 pine boards as the frame of this table. I cut two of them at 65 3/4 inches and laid them on the ground as the length. I then cut four 1X6's at 30 1/4 inches as the dividers.

This is the layout for that:

We used a brad nailer (with an air compressor) to hold the boards into place. 
We then took our piece of plywood with the Lego plates and double checked that it fit perfectly into the center before we put screws into the frame. 

Once we determined that it fit perfectly, we removed the plywood again and set aside. We pre-drilled holes and put two 1 1/2 inch threaded screw into each connecting pine board. (16 screws total.)

 The next step was creating the lip that would hold the plywood with the Lego plates.

This is the layout for that:

We used 1X2 pine boards to create this lip. Cutting two of them at 40 1/8 inch and two at 28 3/4 inch.
We brad nailed them so that there was a 2 inch reveal on the top and it allowed the plywood with the Lego plates to sit recessed.. So measure 2 inches from the top of the table and set the top of your 1X2 into place. Follow the same for all 4 pieces. Once set....go through with 1 inch threaded screws to add extra stability. 
(Being sure to pre-drill.) 

Once the plywood is added later, you will have about a 1 1/2 inch lip to keep the Lego's from falling onto the floor.

Now....onto creating the Lego storage. (My most favorite part!)

Flip table over. 

For this part you will need two 1X12 pine boards.
Cut length on both to 30 1/4 inches.
You will need to run these through a table saw to get the boards to be the 11 inch width that you need.
Once that is done, place into the storage spaces. Flush with the top of the table. 
(Remembering that it's upside down so technically it's the bottom of the table.)
Brad nail into place.
Remembering to go through and add 1 1/2 inch threaded screws for more stability.
(Remember to pre-drill.)

While it is still upside down...add your casters. 
We didn't want to be able to see them so we put them on the inside frame boards.(Remembering to pre-drill.)

Flip your table back over and it's time to stain your project.

Once it is dry to the touch...grab your caulking gun again. (The one with the liquid nails)
Run a bead of liquid nails on the inside of the 1X2 recessed lip. 
Add your plywood with Lego plates.

Fill storage bins and slide under bed.

This has proven to be one of our most favorite projects that we 'threw together.' 
The boys love it and the OCD mom loves it too. 
Keeps Lego's in their area and clean up is a BREEZE.
It's also big enough that 4 kids can easily be playing on it at the same time and there is plenty of room to create.

Project List:

Materials List:
12 - Lego Plates
brad nails
1 inch screws
1 1/2 inch screws
1 - can of wood stain
paint brush or rag (for stain)
Liquid nails
4 - casters

Lumber List:
1 sheet of 1/2 inch plywood
2 - 1 X 2 X 40 1/8
2-1 X 2 X 28 3/4

2 - 1 X 6 X 65 3/4
4 - 1 X 6 X 30 1/4

2 - 1 X 12 X 30 1/4

Tool List:
Cordless Drill
Drill Bits
Brad Nailer/Air Compressor (not necessary but makes building much easier)
Table Saw
Caulking Gun


  1. I do have one question about the playing surface.

    Is your child able to place a long piece across the joint between two baseplates and have it fit correctly? I have heard that the edge on these baseplates makes it impossible to place pieces this way.

  2. I hope you don't mind, but we loved your Lego storage so much we put it in our blog about hidden storage.

  3. Can you make another one and sell it to me? Lol