You may have heard about a Pop-Up Store and Gallery appearing in London this weekend, launching the new LEGO® Originals Series. The first in this series is a 5:1 upscaled mini figure, produced in conjunction with the Danish design house, Room Copenhagen. Returning to the LEGO Group’s wooden toy roots, this minifigure, crafted from oak, appears 60 years after the last plastic and wooden toy was released: a Bedford Fire truck, in 1959. Of course the company started off making wooden toys in 1932.
The Pop-up event includes examples of the wooden minifigure customised and decorated by LEGO designers. While I can see the joy to be had in customising such a figure, just as we tend to customise our own minifigures in different ways, I wonder if, at $AUD179.99, many fans will put their own stamp on them. I hope that they do though.
Be it with word carving, felt tip pen, lego bricks, polymer clay, fabric, airbrushing or just raiding the family craft box, there are lots of ways these models can be adapted, each becoming their own artwork.
Implications for Hobbyists
The minifigure holds a place in the heart for many AFOLs, and there have been hobbyists producing variations on wooden mini figures ( at various scales), over the years. However, the LEGO Group own the Minifigure as a registered trademark, and as such, have a number of mechanisms for protecting their intellectual property. Engaging Room Copenhagen, who will have the ability to mass produce the scaled up figures will potentially threaten this cottage industry that has sprung up, without resorting to (many) cease and desist orders.
After a limited period of VIP Exclusivity, the LEGO Original will become more generally available at shop.lego.com later in the month. Skip below the next images to read the press release, and for international pricing.
***The product is now LIVE for VIPs – 3/11/2019 0900***
Making its entrance for the first time in 1978, the LEGO® minifigure has become one of the biggest pop-cultural icons of modern times and continues to renew itself – this time paying homage to its heritage in a decorative wooden 5:1 upscaled version
London, November 1st: Launching with the LEGO® Originals Wooden Minifigure 853967, the LEGO Group and design specialists Room Copenhagen are introducing a new range of products dedicated to fans who love a bit of LEGO nostalgia and playful interior design. The product was revealed today at a unique LEGO Originals Pop Up Store and Gallery in Covent Garden, London where fans can drop by for a chance to pick up this rare and limited-edition model before it goes on sale more widely to LEGO VIP-members on LEGO.com from November 3rd to7th, then globally from November 8th.
Founded in 1932 by master carpenter Ole Kirk Kristiansen, the first LEGO toys were hand crafted from wood. His craftsmanship and attention to detail secured a high level of quality for the products, but when wood supplies became scarce in the aftermath of the second World War, Ole started supplementing his production with plastic toys and the rest is history…
Speaking in 1950, Ole Kirk Kristiansen said: “I have always been committed to making the nicest and most robust objects, and just like other carpenters I believe the best type of advertising is when the product promotes itself. Our purpose is to produce a really good, solid and finely crafted piece of work, and ensure LEGO products always be known for their exceptional quality”.
Respecting our heritage as a producer of high-quality handmade wooden toys, this premium model is handcrafted from FSC-certified oak, with adjustable yellow plastic hands just like today’s LEGO minifigures. The model measures over 7” (20cm) tall, 4” (11cm) wide and 3,5” (9cm) deep. The last LEGO product to combine both wood and plastic was the 1130 Bedford firetruck 60 years ago in 1959.
This 5:1 upscaled version of the classic LEGO minifigure is presented in a premium gift box with a 28-page booklet featuring the history of the minifigure and the story behind the development of this wooden model. Also included are inspiring examples of how LEGO designers personalised their models, as well as inspiration for accessories fans can build using the included LEGO bricks. A number of LEGO designers have already given their take on how to personalise the model, and the results will be exhibited for a limited time at the LEGO Originals Pop Up Store and Gallery in London.
Since its arrival in 1978, there have been over 8,000 different minifigures launched, not to mention the many versions children have created themselves. This new edition is no exception. Owners are encouraged to unleash their creativity to decorate and customize the minifigure in unique ways, display with pride at home or the office and share their creations via social media using #LEGOOriginals.
“It has been a privilege for us to expand our collaboration with The LEGO Group and contribute to the world premiere of a new series of design classics,” explains Jacob Eberhard, CEO of Room Copenhagen. “Going back to the roots of the company and helping to bring back some of the original LEGO toys in new creative ways is an exciting journey to be part of.”
LEGO® Originals Pop Up Store and Gallery in London
Location – 9 – 11 Shorts Gardens, Seven Dials, Covent Garden, London, WC2H 9AT
Date/time – Friday 1st Nov, 12.00 – 16.00 and Sat 2nd Nov, 12.00 – 16.00
Pop up event will showcase the LEGO® Originals Wooden Minifigure, alongside unique and individual personalisation versions of the minifigure by LEGO designers. A limited number of the wooden minifigure will be on sale and each purchase will come with an exclusive LEGO Originals piece of artwork only available from the event and the LEGO VIP Reward Centre.
Purchases at the event are limited to 1 per person per day.
|Czech Republic||2999.0 CZK|
|United Kingdom||109.99 GBP|
|Hong Kong||1099.0 HKD|
|South Korea||169000.0 KRW|
|The Netherlands||129.99 EUR|
|New Zealand||219.99 NZD|
|Russian Fed.||8499.0 RUB|
|South Africa||1999.99 ZAR|
The Originals Wooden Minifigure goes on sale more widely to LEGO VIP-members on LEGO.com from November 3rd to7th, then globally from November 8th.
What do you think? A blank canvas on which you can express yourself? Another collectable you have to get? A reminder of a bygone era? Why not leave your comments below, and until next time,