What better way to welcome in 2018 than with a LEGO model of a traditional Japanese shishimai mask, used for a lion dance at New Year? keiichi kamei has built a fantastic bust of the lion mask — the shaping of the face and mane are brilliant, and the restrained colour palette lends the image a real vibrancy. I particularly like the eyebrows and nose, and adding those fan pieces as a pattern on the coat is a lovely touch. But the masterstroke is the slight angle of the head, immediately injecting an air of fun and a sense of character.
Robert Heim created an accurate model of the traditional German Christmas decoration known as Weihnachtspyramide, or the Christmas pyramid. It is a multi-tiered structure with a fan on top and candle-holders at the base. When the candles are lit, the warm air that rises to the top propels the fan and spins the figures on the platforms in the model. Although the Lego version won’t do well with the heat, it is certainly charming to look at and a great decorative piece.
Acclaimed LEGO builder Markus Rollbühler is no stranger to making neat brick Christmas ornaments. We’ve covered some of his previous exploits in the genre before, and this year he’s back with an adorable new batch of ornaments that all make touching nods to the LEGO sets of yesteryear.
From the photo’s description, we learn exactly what set each ornament (from left to right) depicts…
1. 396 Thatcher Perkins Locomotive (1976)
2. 6285 Black Seas Barracuda (1989)
3. 6973 Deep Freeze Defender (1993)
5. 5571 Giant Truck “Black Cat” (1996)
6. 8480 Space Shuttle (1996)
7. 6098/6091 King Leo’s Castle (2000)
Hang the mistletoe, roll out the yule log, and saddle up your tauntauns, because Andreas Lenander has built a fabulous LEGO Star Wars-Christmas mashup. (Alas, this LEGO creation doesn’t have anything to do with a certain notorious holiday film.) This jolly parade of villains and heroes features several exclusive minifigures from Advent Calendars released over the years and one adorable chibi AT-AT.
And, for those of you eager to build your very own chibi AT-AT, Andreas has posted free 3D instructions for his creation on the Brixtar app.
All official LEGO BrickHeadz sets until now have represented characters from movies and comic books, including Marvel, DC, Star Wars, and The LEGO Ninjago Movie. With the unveiling of 70270 Valentine’s Bee, LEGO is highlighting the potential of non-IP BrickHeadz (in other words, BrickHeadz not inspired by a licensed intellectual property like a movie or comic book).
The back of the box also reveals five more LEGO BrickHeadz seasonal characters for 2018. If you prefer to be surprised by seasonal sets, consider this a SPOILER warning. If not, hit the jump and check out the rest.
It’s been a few years since we’ve posted a LEGO holiday gift guide, so we’re a bit overdue for a refresh. While the LEGO builder in your life will always appreciate more brick to add to their infinitely expanding collection, thoughtful gift-givers might want to consider these other LEGO-related options, including many under $20.
Custom LEGO minifigs & custom building kits
We’re big fans of Citizen Brick, Brickmania, BrickArms, and Chris McVeigh here at TBB. Each of these companies and individuals creates unique, innovative LEGO-themed products that LEGO is unlikely to ever produce themselves but that fit seamlessly with our existing LEGO collections.
Case in point, LEGO will probably never make The X-Files or Breaking Bad minifigures, but our friends at Citizen Brick have produced “Eks Files” and “Lab Partners” minifigs that match the quality of official LEGO minifigs. With custom pad printing on nearly every element, CB minifigs generally run about $15 each.
Our friends at LEGO HQ are kind enough to send us each month’s freebies, but it’s not every month that we’re impressed enough with the giveaway set that we review it. This month’s giveaway is 40254 Nutcracker, which you can get for free with orders over $99. It’s available early to LEGO VIP Program members through today, and available more widely with purchases on Black Friday. We think it’s cool enough to take a closer look.
The set includes 230 pieces and LEGO says it has a $20 value, but again it’s free with a purchase over $99.
LEGO’s winter holiday sets have become annual must-have items for fans looking to expand their winter village scene. LEGO has released a video in which the designer of 10259 Winter Village Station gives us a closer look at this highly anticipated set. A station seems to be a logical accompaniment to last year’s 10254 Winter Holiday Train, so we are excited to find out more. The set is available October 1st and will retail for USD$79.99 / £74.99. Look out for a thorough review by The Brothers Brick in the very near future!
It’s that time of year again: winter is coming, and that means another new Winter Village set. Having been a staple since 2009, Winter Village sets create a quaint cottage-style holiday town. Last year’s set was 10254 Winter Holiday Train, which featured only a small wayside stop. LEGO is giving it a huge boost with this year’s set, 10259 Winter Village Station, a proper station for the rail line. Winter Village Station has 902 pieces and will retail for $79.99 USD when it’s available Oct. 1. While LEGO has not yet confirmed, it will also likely be available Sept. 15 to VIP club members, as previous Winter Village sets have been.
Four score and twenty.. No wait. The only thing we have to fear is… Uhhhm. Mister Gorbachev tear down this… Hang on. Ok, got it: Associate with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation; for it is better to be alone than in bad company – George Washington. And George seems to be in pretty good company in this collection of busts by Tyler Clites depicting the Founding Fathers. WISHING OUR STATE-SIDE READERS A HAPPY AND SAFE INDEPENDENCE DAY FILLED WITH FIREWORKS, FRANKFURTERS, AND FREEDOM!
UK based builder Nick Sweetman has created a fantastic build for Pancake Day (also known as Shrove Tuesday). My new favorite LEGO creature – the lobster – is helping himself to a bottle of something from the sink as the Chef and his new apprentice create delicious floor pancakes for the annual holiday. But I guess you should expect floor pancakes when you hire a butcher to operate the frying pan!