29 July 2018

LEGO® Harry Potter: A Wanderful New Element

LEGO® Harry Potter has returned once more, along with Fantastic Beasts, within the overarching theme of Wizarding World. While we are busy exploring all the details of the new sets, in this initial post Elspeth De Montes introduces a very small item that is essential to any wizard: a wand. 



23 July 2018

LEGO® Ideas 21311 Voltron: Exclusive Niek van Slagmaat interview

Voltron is the latest set from LEGO® Ideas. Niek van Slagmaat (pictured below at San Diego ComicCon) designed the set based on the original fan submission by Lendy Tayag (pictured below in the picture in the picture) and you can read our review of the parts here. Meanwhile, Are J. Heiseldal met Niek in Billund to find out how the largest LEGO Ideas set to date came about.


What kind of response are you expecting from the big Voltron fans when this comes out?

Niek: I myself come from the fanbase, so if I was looking at this from that point of view, what I would probably immediately check out is whether it matches the original fan submission. We very much wanted to try and get the set as close as possible to the image that the original fan designer submitted. With LEGO, we have very rigorous quality standards, so we have to make sure things are stable and can last for the ages. This model has been going through an incredible amount – I’m fairly sure it’s a record amount – of long-term testing, because it was such a hotly debated topic within the company. But I’ll be mostly looking forward to seeing if people like the proportions, because for me personally, super robots are all about proportions, and for Voltron specifically, because it’s all animation, proportions change a lot from frame to frame. I’ve been working very closely with Lendy Tayag, the fan designer, to check in with him – he really knows his Voltron stuff, so he had a lot of feedback about the head designs for the lions and the general shaping and use of finishing elements like slopes and stuff in certain areas. So I’m very interested to see if they like the general expression of the model, if you like. That’s a very long answer to a very simple question.

18 July 2018

LEGO® 10262 James Bond Aston Martin DB5

Each summer the LEGO® Creator Expert theme release a large scale vehicle, such as last year's 10258 London Bus. This year, the subject remains frightfully British: today The LEGO Group revealed 10262 James Bond Aston Martin DB5. Sven Franic took an early look to find all the new parts and of course, to play with the gadgets!

The latest LEGO® Creator Expert car model is an acquired taste. To be fair, the slick Superleggera design is not easily translated to brick form. I learned to love this model through the building experience and it turned out to be one of the most ingenious LEGO model designs I have ever come across.

12 July 2018

Alt Star Wars: Kev Levell's mothership and fighter

We set Kevin Levell an epic task: to come up with his own original build using only the parts found in the latest wave of LEGO® Star Wars sets. That's seven sets with over 3000 parts at his disposal! Kevin shows us today what he's come up with and describes the creative process.

The challenge was to build something from the newest wave of LEGO® Star Wars sets but throughout the building process, one of the biggest temptations for me has been to sneakily/subtly add to the available selection of parts from my collection. I have remained disciplined, using only the parts contained within sets 75206, 75207, 75208, 75209, 75210, 75211 and 75212.

I had a number of ideas I wanted to explore, and I experimented extensively with various building techniques along the way in order to try to realise some of them. What I have finished up with for my main build is a long way from where I started out.


7 July 2018

Sustainable LEGO® elements: 40320 Plants from Plants

Here at New Elementary we usually talk about new shapes and colours of LEGO® elements but today we’re looking at a new material from which some botanical elements are now being made. By 2030, The LEGO Group (TLG) intend to use sustainable materials in all of their core products and packaging.

This article is a collaboration between Are J. Heiseldal who met TLG employees Matt Whitby (Environmental Responsibility Engagement) and Bistra Andersen (Senior Materials Platform Manager) at LEGO Fan Media Days in Billund, Tim Johnson, and Elspeth De Montes who has her hands on the limited edition gift-with-purchase set, 40320 Plants from Plants.

LEGO plastics

The first bricks made in 1949 were made from cellulose acetate, which warps over time. After some research by plastics companies, TLG replaced it in 1963 with acrylonitrile butadiene styrene, used to this day.