I thought they did. There's a huge tub of it in our family room. They have projects sitting on their bookshelves. The cats are forever finding odd bits and running around the house with blocks in their mouths. But an internet search for storage solutions disabused me the notion that our collection was huge. There are people who spend a lot of time and money storing, sorting, preserving, cataloguing and acquiring vast amounts of Lego.
My sons get new two or three new small sets a year. They build them, play with them for a while, then dismantle the pieces and build their own projects. Because I value creative play, I love that Zarf and Klaxon invent their own projects and do not treat Lego sets as if they are models, or fret about mixing together sets.
(The Titan of the Sea, by Zarf)
Playing with toys -- such a novel concept.
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(This one is my favourite: it's an inventor's workshop)
I don't remember Lego being gender neutral in the seventies and eighties when I was growing up. ONE SINGLE advertising campaign in the 80s might have readily employed the image of a tomboy, but I don't recall that decade as bastions of gender-free fun-time. I played Lego with my brother and his friends, or by myself. Usually the latter since I liked building shops and houses, whereas the boys were making vehicles or weapons.
I did not play Legos with other girls, because the girls in my neighbourhood preferred Barbies, Cabbage Patch Kids, Fashion Plates and Pound Puppies to bricks, tiles, baseplates and SNoTs. I am not casting aspersion on the girls I knew growing up. Rather I am questioning if women are accurately remembering their childhoods.
On social media I see comments from women my age expressing a nostalgic love for Lego which they played all the time. These women also tend to anti-Friends Lego. Sure -- I bet some women loved playing Lego. But how many owned their own Lego bricks or did they (as I suspect) borrow their brothers? Any women other than myself pass down a Lego collection to their children?
If the Friends line had been around thirty years ago, I'd have wanted it. Ideally Friends will operate like a gateway drug. Girls who receive Friends sets may play with these sets in early elementary when adherence to gender norms is strongest and continue to play with more advanced, less purple sets as they grow.
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Do you think it's fair that Lego's attempt to diversify their market share is met with derision, but no one makes a peep that American Girl and Maplelea dolls are marketed exclusively to girls?
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Don't tell JK Rowling or Lego -- lest they come after my mom for copyright infringement -- but she made these awesome pillows for Zarf and Klaxon based on their Harry Potter mini figures: