Full Guide to the LEGO Ideas Program: from Concept to Real Set

Full Guide to the LEGO Ideas Program: from Concept to Real Set

Have you ever dreamt of bringing your own LEGO creation to life and seeing it sold worldwide as an official LEGO set, directly approved by The LEGO Group? Well, you’re not alone. The LEGO Ideas program has made this dream a reality for many aspiring builders and enthusiasts.

The LEGO Ideas logo

From the iconic Central Perk café from the TV series F.R.I.E.N.D.S to the beloved Steamboat Willie featuring Mickey Mouse, and even the NASA Apollo V rocket, numerous sets have emerged from the LEGO Ideas program.

In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the entire process, from understanding what LEGO Ideas is all about to submitting your own brilliant ideas and navigating the exciting journey toward becoming an official LEGO set. So, let’s dive into the world of creativity, innovation, and limitless possibilities with LEGO Ideas!

What is LEGO Ideas?

LEGO Ideas is a platform that allows anyone to share their unique ideas for LEGO sets and submit them for evaluation by the LEGO Ideas community. It serves as a hub where builders and LEGO enthusiasts can showcase their creativity and propose new designs that could potentially become official LEGO products.

The platform encourages individuals to create their own LEGO models, ranging from intricate structures to iconic landmarks, vehicles, characters, and more. These ideas are then evaluated by the LEGO Ideas community, who can show their support by voting for their favorite projects. Ideas that garner 10,000 supporters have the opportunity to be reviewed by the official LEGO Ideas team for a chance to be developed into an official LEGO set that is made available for purchase worldwide. LEGO Ideas offers a fantastic opportunity for fans to contribute to the LEGO universe and bring their imaginative designs to life, creating a vibrant community of builders and collectors..

How to propose a new LEGO Ideas project

Proposing a new LEGO Ideas project is an exciting process that allows you to share your creative vision with the LEGO community.

Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to propose your own LEGO Ideas project:

  1. Have a great Idea!

    The most important part of building a LEGO Ideas project is… the idea! Make sure you have a winning idea, which can intrigue or attract thousands of collectors, and which is completely original!

  2. Review LEGO Ideas guidelines and Check for Intellectual Property

    Familiarize yourself with the LEGO Ideas guidelines to ensure that your project adheres to their requirements. Make sure your proposal is original and doesn’t overlap with existing LEGO sets. Also, pay attention to the points of the guidelines concerning intellectual property: your idea could be rejected if it proposes content on which LEGO does not have the copyright.

  3. Develop your LEGO model

    Start by building your LEGO model using real bricks or digital design software like LEGO Digital Designer or Bricklink Studio. Ensure that your model represents your idea accurately and showcases its unique features and design elements.

  4. Capture high-quality photos

    Take clear, well-lit photographs of your LEGO model from various angles to showcase its details and overall appearance. Highlight the key aspects of your design that make it stand out.
    In case you are using software to make your model digitally, export renderings of its final result.

  5. Prepare project description

    Write a compelling and informative project description that explains the concept, inspiration, and features of your LEGO model. Be sure to include details such as the piece count, dimensions, play functions, and any notable design techniques used.

  6. Create a LEGO Ideas account

    Sign up for a LEGO Ideas account on the LEGO Ideas website. This will allow you to submit your project and engage with the LEGO Ideas community.

  7. Submit your project

    Once you have your photos, project description, and account ready, navigate to the LEGO Ideas website and click on the “Submit a Project” button. Fill in the necessary details, including the title, description, category, and upload your project photos.

  8. Engage with the community and Gather supporters

    After submitting your project, engage with the LEGO Ideas community by sharing updates, responding to comments, and supporting other projects. Building connections and actively participating can help generate interest and support for your idea. Promote your project through social media, forums, and other platforms to gather supporters. Encourage friends, family, and fellow LEGO enthusiasts to vote for your project. Remember, you’ll need to reach 10,000 supporters for your project to be considered for review.

  9. Await the LEGO Ideas review

    If your project achieves the milestone of 10,000 supporters, it will enter the LEGO Ideas review phase. The LEGO Ideas team will evaluate its feasibility, market appeal, and alignment with LEGO’s values. They will determine if your project has the potential to become an official LEGO set.

  10. Celebrate success or try again!

    If your project is selected for production, congratulations! You will be credited as the creator, and your LEGO set will be developed and released. If your project is not chosen, don’t be discouraged. Learn from the experience, gather feedback, and consider refining or submitting a new project in the future.

The approval phases of a LEGO Ideas project

Once you have submitted your application, the phase begins where all users have the opportunity to support the idea by clicking on the “support” button. For an idea to reach the attention of the LEGO official team, it needs 10,000 supporters.

This is a considerable number of supporters, but it ensures that only the best ideas get noticed among the crowd.

During this voting phase, you can share your idea through social media, ask friends and family to leave a favorable vote, or anything else that can help the idea gain new supporters and surpass the barrier of 10,000 votes.

There is a time limit to reach this number, after which the submitted idea loses the opportunity to be voted on: if 100 supporters are reached within 60 days from the submission, the idea will receive an additional 12 months, which becomes 18 months if 1,000 supporters are reached in the meantime, and so on.

This chart shows the available time based on the obtained supporters

The Review phase by the LEGO team is certainly the most exciting because it is during this phase that LEGO decides whether the model is ready to become an official set or not.

How to vote for a project that you like

The LEGO Ideas community is a place full of creativity. Every day, new proposals arrive, waiting to be evaluated by users and hoping to reach the 10K supporters milestone.

Voting is very simple: in the “Explore Product Ideas” section, you can see all the ongoing projects, along with the number of currently reached supporters and the days remaining until the voting phase ends.

To vote, simply open the model’s page and click on the “support” button. You can also leave a comment to encourage the author to continue their journey.

Activities and Challenges

The LEGO Ideas platform often organizes contests or activities, providing the opportunity to win prizes such as LEGO sets and merchandise. The participation process for a contest is often similar as described above, but revolves around a specific theme that requires the creation of a LEGO model, which will then be voted on by the community.

Activities are small tasks designed for those who are starting out with creating custom LEGO sets. They therefore have a limited duration, and few necessary skills.

The Challenges, on the other hand, raise the bar of difficulty and skill a bit, but offer prizes for the winners.

All the LEGO Ideas sets produced

Among the most successful LEGO Ideas sets ever produced, several have captured the hearts of builders and collectors worldwide. Here the full list of LEGO Ideas sets:

NumberSet nameYear ReleasedMinifiguresPiecesOriginal Price
21100Shinkai 6500 Submarine2011413
21101Hayabusa2012136944,99 €
21102Minecraft Micro World: The Forest2012248034,99 €
21103The DeLorean Time Machine2013240139,99 €
21104NASA Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Rover201429524,99 €
21108Ghostbusters Ecto-12014450849,99 €
21109Exo Suit2014232134,99 €
21110Research Institute2014316519,99 €
21301Birds201558044,99 €
21302The Big Bang Theory2015748459,99 €
21303WALL-E201567749,99 €
21304Doctor Who2015662359,99 €
21305Maze201676969,99 €
21306The Beatles Yellow Submarine2016555359,99 €
21307Caterham Seven 620R201677174,99 €
21308Adventure Time201749549,99 €
21309NASA Apollo Saturn V20171969119,99 €
21310Old Fishing Store201742049149,99 €
21312Women of NASA2017423124,99 €
21311Voltron20182321179,99 €
21313Ship in a Bottle201896269,99 €
21314TRON: Legacy2018323034,99 €
21315Pop-Up Book2018585968,23 €
21316The Flintstones2019474858,48 €
21317Steamboat Willie2019275187,72 €
21318Tree House201943036249,99 €
21319Central Perk20197107079,99 €
21320Dinosaur Fossils2019291059,99 €
40335Space Rocket Ride20191154 GWP 
21321International Space Station202086469,99 €
21322Pirates of Barracuda Bay2020102545199,99 €
21323Grand Piano20203662399,99 €
21324123 Sesame Street202061367119,99 €
92176NASA Apollo Saturn V20201969119,99 €
92177Ship in a Bottle202096269,99 €
21325Medieval Blacksmith202142164179,99 €
21326Winnie the Pooh20215126599,99 €
21327Typewriter20212079249,99 €
21328Seinfeld20215132679,99 €
21329Fender Stratocaster20211074119,99 €
21330Home Alone202153955 GWP 
40448Vintage Car20212189 GWP 
40487Sailboat Adventure20212330 GWP 
21331Sonic the Hedgehog – Green Hill Zone20221112579,99 €
21332The Globe20222585229,99 €
21333Vincent van Gogh – The Starry Night202212316169,99 €
21334Jazz Quartet2022160699,99 €
21335Motorized Lighthouse202222065299,99 €
21336The Office2022151164119,99 €
21337Table Football2022222339249,99 €
40533Cosmic Cardboard Adventures20221203 GWP 
40566Ray the Castaway20221239 GWP 
21338A-Frame Cabin202342082179,99 €
21339BTS Dynamite2023774999,99 €
21340Tales of the Space Age202368849,99 €
21341Disney Hocus Pocus: The Sanderson Sisters’ Cottage202362316229,99 €

How to stay updated on LEGO Ideas projects

NerdCube fans stay up to date on all the latest LEGO ideas: the best projects, those that pass the review threshold, as well as winning projects and new sets in production. Subscribe to our Telegram channel for free so you don’t miss out on LEGO Ideas news!

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