As a child, I was always considered a bit of a ‘tomboy.’ My closest friends were boys, I refused to wear dresses, I liked to go outside and play in the dirt, and my favorite toys from a very young age were LEGOs. Unfortunately, at the time, LEGOs were branded as a toy for boys. This didn’t stop me from wanting the latest and greatest sets all the time, and holidays and birthdays were filled with the magic that came with each new set I would get to put together.
From pirates to cowboys, deep sea divers to space men, and from knights and nobles to space invaders, I was hooked on every theme I could get my hands on.
It always started out the same: I would get a new set of LEGOs with a specific theme – for example, a pirate set that included several small LEGO figurines along with the building blocks. I would carefully read through the instructions the first time I built everything, and craft the blocks together in a way that mimicked the look on the front of the box perfectly. After it was built, however, was when the real fun always began. The best part about LEGOs, for me, was always the imaginative aspect that came along with it. Granted, I know many people love LEGOs strictly to be able to build and create. I, however, loved playing with them after everything was built.
I was an imaginative child to begin with, always making my stuffed animals and figurines ‘talk,’ and put them in different pretend scenarios. LEGOs were no different, with the exception that the scenarios tended to be a part of whatever the set included. For a pirate set, I would grab the ‘Captain’ figurine and perhaps a ‘First Mate’ figurine, and set them off on an adventure, where they would have to fight off soldiers from the nearby kingdom, and steal gold from the rich, etc.
It’s wonderful to see that the overall branding of LEGOs has taken a turn in today’s world, and can be welcoming for both boys and girls to enjoy. I like to think that building aside, there are still kids today, in the midst of iPads and computer screens and smartphones, who still understand and appreciate the simple pleasures that come with creating something of your own, and using your imagination to truly bring it to life.