Legos - How Do You Organize?

Updated on December 20, 2012
L.M. asks from Chicago, IL
25 answers

Both my daughter and son like Legos and I know there are more coming into the house this Christmas. How do you keep all the sets organized??? There are so many tiney pieces and if they get too unorganized and mixed up I can imagine you can't even put them together anymore.

So far, we only have 4-5 sets so I've been able to keep them in ziploc bags, but I know there are many years of Legoing to come and I'm trying very hard to proactive about this.

The problem is - they play with the set for a while, then it gets left where it was because they don't want to take it apart and have intentions to come back to play. In the meantime, the thing gets bumped, moved etc and it starts to fall apart.

After the holidays, we have a plan for a Lego city on the dining room table, but they can't live there forever! Help!

What can I do next?

  • Add yourAnswer own comment
  • Ask your own question Add Question
  • Join the Mamapedia community Mamapedia
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

Featured Answers



answers from Anchorage on

We don't. I hate the way they are organized now into little sets, it takes all the imagination out. When my boys get a new set they follow the directions and built what the kit says to and play with it for a few days, then they break it up and add the pieces to their big bucket of legos and use their imaginations to built 100 different things.

8 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

We don't really keep them too organized either. We have kept all the instruction booklets and sometimes we keep them in baggies, but for the most part, it's a free for all. They are all in one bin. If my son REALLY wants to recreate what's on the box, he'll dig and sort for all the pieces. Usually he is very content coming up with his own creations. And I love seeing what he can dream up!

5 moms found this helpful


answers from McAllen on

I don't organize them, THEY'RE EVERYWHERE!!
I just have a plastic bin, and put all of them there, but I get the occasional lego in the foot. Lol.

3 moms found this helpful

More Answers



answers from Los Angeles on

we have a 15x24" clear plastic bin that fits under my son's bed for everything. If he gets a set, he builds the thing, plays with it for a while, then it all goes back in to that bin jumbled for next time.
I think there is some basic skill building for following directions to build it. More importantly, though, is for your kid to use all of the bricks to build some creation that they think of - not what was engineered for them. Let them run wild!
If you do want the old instructions, actually has many of the instructions as downloadable .pdf form to reprint. But my son never cares about building the lego-engineered spaceship again -he wants his own spacestation, castle, city, etc.

7 moms found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

Orga-what now? LOL! We have found it's just not practical to keep them organized. Bear in mind my son inherited a massive lego collection that previously belonged to dad, 3 uncles and grandpa! We keep them in two large bins that slide under his bed.
I had had to establish some ground rules regarding leaving things assembled after it became his favorite excuse to avoid picking up at night. He can keep one thing assembled at a time and it can't be on the kitchen table or any other surface that our family will be needing for some other purpose.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

If you want to keep "sets" together have your children put them in ziploc bags then toss everything in storage tubs, personally I find that too restrictive and that it takes away from children's creativity, Legos are meant to all work together. Buy different sizes of tubs/bins or a large one for all of them in one, whatever fits your style of storage. (Storage tubs/bins always go on sale in January, the traditional organizational month of the year.) Get some of the Lego building plates so they can be moved after building, let your daughter and son designate a place in their rooms for display, take back your dining room table. Teach your children now that cleaning up and putting them away is part of playing with them.

BTW, instructions are available online for projects as far back as 2002, should any get misplaced.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from San Diego on

I took all of the instructions and boxes when I could (flattened out) and put them in page protectors in a 3 ring binder. That way they aren't all over the house, getting torn apart.
Lego makes some great plastic chest of drawers that have the play boards attached so they can have their put together sets on there and the rest in the drawer. Lego also has some cases that are made for the mini figures and their parts so they don't get lost in the bottom on the drawer. There are also Lego play tables. The biggest help is having the play boards to put everything on.
Growing up I had a million Lego sets. My mom bought me a huge Tupperware tub and I dumped them all in there. When I played with them I dumped them all on the floor on a blanket or something. All my sets are at my mom's house for the kids to play with when they go over there.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Honolulu on

Get a BIG plastic bin. For each child.
Costco has these for cheaper.
Then, each child... has their own Bin.
Label it. ie: "Johnny's Legos." or "Sally's Legos."
And THAT Is where, they dump or put all their Lego pieces or sets.
And then THEY should be able, to do it themselves. Putting it back in their own bins.
My kids do that. And they are 6 and 10. Even when they were younger, they put their Legos back in their bins.
And then, for those very small pieces, I or the kids put those, in a Ziplock bag... that also goes in their respective bins.

And, have a CERTAIN place or table, where they can do their Legos. ONLY in that place.
Not the dining room table.
ANOTHER table or place.
OR, I use trays for them to put their Lego "in construction" things.
Just eating trays, which you can find anywhere. Because, trays have a lip to it, thus, the pieces will not fall off of it.... and trays are VERY easy to carry around and put somewhere else without disturbing whatever they are building or have laid out.

THEN for sets that my kids put together and want to keep as is, we GLUE IT TOGETHER. Even my 6 year old son... can do it by himself.
ALL by himself. Then it does NOT fall apart.

You need to teach and tell the kids, how to put it away and where.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Lakeland on

I got some of the stackable plastic containers and put each set into one box with the instructions. Target carries some nice clear ones that come in different sizes with tight locking lids.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

We don't. To be perfectly honest I don't even like the sets. To me playing with Lego is about creative play, coming up with your own stuff and learning valuable 3-D visual and math skills in the process. That is what makes Lego such a great educational toy - not building up and breaking down the same boring structure over and over again.
We do keep the instructions (DH is a stickler for that) but other than that I make no effort to keep the sets apart - and I hope that DD will start just putting them together as she thinks fits...
I will not buy the "sets". We go to the lego store and get a large cup of random bricks for $15, more fun for a fraction of the cost.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

Every spare surface of my son's room is covered with them along with most of the walls -onshelving. Many have 'died' though with their pieces living in various bins. You must be pretty organized to get them in ziplocs so don't feel so bad. They are just a hard thing to control but they are SO great for kids. I hate when I hear of moms who won't get them because of that.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

I HATE the kits - we only get them as gifts and DS builds them once. I am much happier that he likes to use his imagination and build whatever he feels like.

So we sort by shape and size and keep them in large zip lock bags - people, long bricks, square bricks, flat pieces, singles, twos, wheels and axles and random odd pieces(LOTS of those). We also keep a box for the unsorted stuff that needs to get cleaned up before bed. Then we try to go through that box periodically to sort what is in it. It is the best I have come up with and is less than ideal.

The reason we sort is because otherwise DS would dump the gigantic box on the floor and still be unable to find the one exact only piece in the world that he needs right this very second.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Portland on

I bought individual plastic boxes for my grandson to put individual sets into. I also bought a Lego box with niches for the people. My grandson did not use them. I tried keeping them separate for him but had to end up just letting him play with them as he wanted. So, the pieces are all jumbled together in a large plastic box. He was 8 when I started trying to keep them organized.

I kept the instructions. He has used them once to recreate the same planned object. He does sort thru the pieces and makes his own creations and I see that as a good thing.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Eugene on

My son sorts his legos by color and style. He uses small plastic bags and containers that go into the large bins from Costco. He also has several divided trays for heads and mini-figure parts.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

My son built the models, enjoyed them for a while, and then they were broken down and put into the large (wide and shallow) rubbermaid box of lego parts, where they were used over and over again to make creations out of his own imagination.
He enjoyed making the models, but honestly he enjoyed creating his own designs and toys even more.
I think if I had suggested organizing them he probably would have thought I was nuts, or being too much of a "mom" LOL!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

we got a long rubbermade container (about 4' by 2'. it slid right under the bed. had a lid. the kids could pull it out and play then put the project in and slide it back under the bed. worked great.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Augusta on

yeah it's not really practical to keep them organized. No kid I've ever met keeps only the legos from one set together , they mix , combine and build new things with them.
We have a set of those rolling plastic drawers and dump them all in there. I do try to keep the people in a separate case but that's just people.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

My two boys like to play (build) differently. The oldest could handle using a screw organizer drawer system. He mostly builds from the books and then takes them apart. Lately he only plays with his lego star wars guys and nothing is built (baby sister won't allow it, lol).
The younger son likes them all in front of him and really builds from his imagination. He doesn't really leave the spot he builds at.
So I had to leave the OCD aside and put all the legos in a bin...together...mixed up! When they were sorted by color, they barely built they build all the time!
I think I'll give them something to roll the legos under the bed, so they can leave things set up.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Grand Forks on

My boys have a shelving unit just for the Lego sets. They stay on the shelves as models. It is getting full, so I am thinking of having them unassemble some and storing those in Ziplocs along with the instructions, so there will be room for the new sets coming in.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

It's a battle. I have no solutions, sorry.
I know my husband and probably a teen could keep the parts straight. But kids? Nope. They get all over the place.

I was just wondering what to do about ours!!!
We have the pieces just get jumbled together and they can build whatever.

I could not keep the train tracks on the train table, so now it's for Legos! (So another post is how do you, after spending an hour setting up the tracks for yours kids, handle the fact that it's going to get pulled apart almost right away by the preschooler or toddler (if someone leaves the door open)? Glue it down? Huh!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from New York on

ziplog bags in various sizes hold the pieces, bags go in the boxes they belong in. Label baggies according to the set....Harry Potter....Star Wars....
Pirates of the carribean...etc. Worked awesome for me. I also took a sharpie and put a tiny letter to it of a different color in the event pieces got mixed up. IE: when my son would get a star wars set, I would initial ieach piece with an "S". Harry "H". If he had several Harry Potter's I'd give them a shape or something that would distinguish them from the other Harry Potter pieces. Hope it helps, It helped me LOADS!!! Especially when his friends came over and decided to make a mess of all sets. My son would have to do the clean up and it made it easy for him to do so as well.! Good Luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Portland on

First, I leave the organization more or less to my five year old. That sounds mean, perhaps, but I can only tell him "put the little pieces and people pieces--any special pieces--in the smalls container" (for unique pieces) so many times before my head explodes. And I am tired of being implored to find wee tiny Darth Vader or R2D2, so that's another good reason to get him used to being responsible for it.

I do help him by having a blanket that he can put on the floor for easy cleanup. (Help him fold it up on the corners, then dump into a bin.) We do have a few specific sets, which I did originally put aside separately and explain to him the reason for doing so. He mixed them in.

You can have a special shelf for creations, and then just remind them to put their creations there. I think there's a logical consequence in them learning that if they don't put their toys in a safe place, they get bumped and fall apart. If they get mixed in--" wow, I guess you'll have to look for that one".

You can encourage them to get out one set at a time and keep them in separate the ziplock bags. In my son's room, I actually cleared off his toy shelves because I was fed up with the creations everywhere (and an unwillingness to pick up on his part) so now he has a place to store his creations. The stored toys come out one at a time, so clean-up is guaranteed to happen.

Like Jenny O-- no wonder solutions, this is just what works for us.:) Legos *can* take over.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Atlanta on

We're in the 'everything goes in one box after initial assembly' camp. The instructions are still somewhere so the kid could make the spaceship/ what ever again, however he never has. He just builds planes or other things of his own design, and in my book, that's what Legos are for! I grew up in the pre-Lego set days--we had a small suitcase filled with every shape and size that we inherited from my older cousins. I actually thought it was weird when they started coming out with sets in the 1980s.

In terms of storage, we do tend to let them keep their built items, however they have to fit someplace out of the way, such as under the TV table or on a bookshelf. My rule is that I need to be able to walk through the living room without stepping on things and hurting my bare feet.



answers from Provo on

We have a big plastic container with a lid. When new sets come into the house, I give the kids the option of putting them in a ziploc bag inside the big box or tossing them in with all the other pieces. The kids choose. We keep the instructions all together in one gallon ziploc that also goes in the big box. It is a clear box so they can lift it up to look on the bottom for a piece too. My kids are allowed to keep a Lego creation out for a maximum of one day, but usually I make them put it all away before bed. I just keep a positive attitude and say things like, "Now you know how to build it and you can always build it again!" I adore Legos.



answers from Chicago on

Ikea has a shelf with 8 cubbie holes. You can stand it up too if you don't have alot of floor space for it. My son keeps his together and displays them in/on the shelves. It comes in black,white and a natural wood. Its about $70 and worth every penny . We have 2 . Hope this helps :0)

For Updates and Special Promotions
Follow Us

Related Questions