If you would like to keep sets together you can use large, heavy duty zip-lock bags to keep each individual set’s pieces and instruction booklet in. These bags can then all be stored together in a suitably-sized storage box to keep them contained.
If you have the room and can manage to, keep the original box the set came in too, even flat packed. LEGO discontinues sets all the time and, in the future, if you were ever looking to sell any sets, if you have all the pieces, instructions and the original box then you can get a lot more money for it. The second-hand LEGO market for discontinued sets is huge. So, buying all that LEGO is actually an investment!
Aside from keeping sets together, it’s a good idea to have a mixed pile of bricks for the kids to use to build whatever they would like. I like the large drawstring bags instead of boxes as I find it easier to tidy up.
I recommend having a box or bag of small pieces like wheels, eyes and steering wheels. Ikea do some robust, affordable boxes that work perfectly and don’t take up very much space.
If it’s all going back in a box or drawstring bag and there is a lot all over the floor, then using a dust pan (I’d keep one just for this purpose) to scoop it up is a lot quicker than just using your hands.
You could also have a handheld hoover (again, only to be used for this purpose) and use that to get it all off the floor and empty it back into a box if it’s always a big mess to clear up.
• Clear storage boxes – I think having small, clear boxes for different colours is good as you can stack them up and they don’t take up too much space. If you use a large drawstring bag, it’s quite good as it moulds into the shape for wherever you store it. I think having big stackable boxes can end up really heavy to move and end up being tipped on the floor to find pieces, so I would always watch the weight. LEGO gets heavy!
• Compartment boxes – I love tackle boxes for LEGO minifigure parts (if they end up pulled apart, which in my experience is often). They are also a great option for keeping the tiny pieces together – I think searching for pieces like this is what creates a lot of the mess and they are the worst pieces to pick up off the floor, especially if there are lots.
• Trolley – Good if you store your LEGO in another room than where it is usually played with as it makes it easy to transport.
• Sort by colour – I think this is a good idea if you can manage it for some of your collection. I’ve found it really encourages kids to build & get ideas.
• Sort by set – I think this is a good idea if you can but please don’t stress if there are a few pieces missing. If you call LEGO Customer Services with your set number (this can be found online if you don’t have the instruction booklet) then they send out replacement parts for free.
• Over-the-door shoe organiser – I’ve never tried this but would maybe worry about the weight. I don’t think they could hold too much.
• Sort by shape – If you have serious LEGO builders/designers then this is ideal, but it is a lot to keep up and continually sort.
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