Lego Blog: Homemade “Winter Village Toy Shop”

Happy Lego Building Season

As I promised a little while ago, I’m finally posting some pictures of my version of Lego’s Winter Village Toy Shop . This is what Lego’s rather lovely set looks like. I didn’t really care about the tree, it was the toy shop itself that caught my eye.

Variation and Variety

The original Lego design calls for a number of specialist parts that I just don’t have – but there was no reason for that to stop me. Once I’d adjusted to the need to improvise I had a lovely time.

The bricks that caused special problems are the neat Technics curved half-beams used to create the main pitched roof. The build opposes two of them producing a neat attractive little roof. How hard could that be duplicate with other bricks…

Well since I didn’t have those I tried a few different variations and ultimately made the possibly terrible decision to prioritise the shape of the front of the roof. The best thing I had is this weird hinged beam brick (from Mindstorms?) that produced a whole series of new engineering challenges that resulted in a dramatically pointed roof. I could more or less match the angles produced but then had to build completely different roofs and a way of fixing it to the rest of the building. Ultimately though I think it looks lovely!

I also had a huge empty space to fill, and continued the pink/green tile choice I’d made inside for the floor and the window overhangs (since I didn’t have enough of the bricks with arches in even three different colours to follow the instructions) and added the three joined wheels. It feels playful and matches the spirit of the toy shop. I also stuck in a nice tile ‘Veni Vidi Vici’ from the Caesar minifigure – it filled the gap and looks nice!

I also didn’t have any of the nice framed windows as intended (I could have dismantled my Colby City Shootout but that would have caused even more problems later on…) so I chose a set of matching blue-tinted windows from various police sets. The narrow windows in the garret have panes from early ’90s train carriage windows.

How It All Turned Out

So yeah – that’s how it worked out. The roof is dramatically braced and I’ve had to reinforce it inside so it doesn’t tear itself apart! I have subsequently thought of dozens of ways to make it more easily.

I tossed in some extra gold to gussy the building up a bit, and added the snowman R2-D2 from 2011’s advent calendar.

I think the inside is much prettier than the Lego original – they used tan and brown for the flooring, but I thought bright colours would be much more fun!

Extra Bobs And Bits To Peek At

Other than the flooring (ground and garret) I’ve stuck quite closely to the interior design, only varying colours and adding some more toys depending on what I did or didn’t have. The aircon/TV/thing above our Abominable Toymaker (one of my favourite minifigs ever) is a placeholder for a white light-brick. The only ones I have are red which would have been creepy to say the least.

I added some textural variations to the snow-laden roofs to give it a snowier feel. Other than that I had to vary the side-window because of parts (again!) and so ended up with a display window including a toy turtle. I decided to rebuild the chimney entirely using my beloved ‘brick’ bricks: I like the jumbled effect.

   

  

You can see the full set of pictures here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/eric_the_bewildered_weasel/sets/72157639619815223

The Toy Shop In Our Winter Village

Finally – the Toy Shop at home in our final festive winter village diorama using slightly adapted The Lone Ranger Lego sets, the Winter Feast set and a bunch of other random things! Naturally it got invaded by the steampunk gang. Oh, and all the buildings are on rotating bases for even more joy!

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