Best Lego Storage and Organization Tools
Few toys can scatter across the house and vanish as quickly as Lego bricks. Luckily, methods to contain the chaos of a Lego collection are as varied as the builds themselves. There are, however, a few tried-and-true vessels that we’ve found make cleanup, sorting, storing, and even displaying easy.
We have enough Lego fans on staff to warrant a dedicated #Lego Slack channel, where we show off new acquisitions, discuss sets we’re pining after, and share cool custom builds (called MOCs) that we find across the internet.
We also have plenty of parents here with kids who love Lego, and we’ve published a couple of guides with various great ideas for toy storage. And now we’ve compiled all of the Lego-appropriate receptacles here, in one easy-to-find spot. Have any great DIY hacks of your own? Let us know in the comments!
This play mat and storage combo solves organization and storage issues by keeping everything in one convenient package.
Pulling double duty as a play mat and a storage container, a Swoop Bag opens flat to display a Lego collection, and when it’s time to tidy up, all you have to do is pull the drawstrings, and in less than a second the floor is Lego-free.
A single Swoop Bag can store thousands of bricks. Wirecutter senior staff writer Doug Mahoney used a Swoop Bag when his kids were younger and appreciated how it minimized the scattering of Lego during play, which in turn “minimizes the number of Lego being stepped on.” Speedy cleanup is especially useful for homes with toddlers who roam around looking for things to put into their mouths.
Doug also points out an additional, unintended benefit: “The soft cloth somewhat mutes the unique sound of sifting Lego. Plastic bins seem to only amplify that sound, which can become quite grating to even the most even-keeled parents.”
Swoop Bags come in multiple colors and three sizes: large (3 feet wide), medium (just under 2 feet wide), and mini (16 inches wide).
This variant of our top pick for drawer organization offers a great way to sort Lego pieces while you’re building smaller sets.
You have two primary methods of sorting bricks during a build: emptying each bag as you go and pulling from the pile, or separating bricks by color or shape before you begin each step. There’s no wrong way to do it. As Lego Masters finalist Boone Langston told me in a phone interview about how to organize a large adult collection, “The way you sort should support the way your brain works.” Having a few receptacles on hand helps keep your pieces organized regardless of how you like to sort.
The iDesign Linus 4-Section Drawer Organizer is a variant of Wirecutter’s favorite drawer organizer for small kitchens. It has rounded corners and a smooth lip, which makes sliding smaller pieces out easy. Trays like this one also make it simple to set aside your in-progress work in the middle of a build, as the unused pieces won’t get jumbled up or lost.
No need to complicate things, however. If you have bowls and plates, you have Lego sorters. It helps to use lighter colors with no patterns so that the bricks pop out from the jumbles. Shatter-resistant materials such as plastic, paper, and melamine are advisable for kids. Even a baking pan works.
For me, building Lego helps justify buying random bowls and plates that I like. My go-to sorters are Target’s Magnolia Hearth & Hand stoneware dishes. I think they’re pretty but don’t want to set a table with them. Their monochrome colors and their curved-rim design make these plates ideal for corralling bricks during a build, and they add to the soothing vibe that building Lego brings me.
Using a mix of plates and bowls can make mid-build cleanup a little more complicated if you have curious cats or if you want to clear off your work surface, but that just gives me an excuse to pick up cool trays at flea markets to help ferry everything to a different room.
This combination of bins tucked inside frames makes it easy to keep Lego pieces neat and organized.
A favorite in our guide to toy storage ideas, the IKEA Trofast Storage Combination has nine plastic bins that slide in and out of a particleboard frame. (Unfortunately, the retailer no longer sells the wood-frame version shown above.) It’s ideal for keeping medium-size and large Lego collections organized, and you can store each Lego kit in its own bin or sort pieces by shape and color.
The bins are removable, so you can pull out exactly what you need for each project. The Trofast organizer also comes in a smaller version with six bins, and IKEA offers compatible add-ons such as lids and a table with drop-in slots for the bins.
Glass doors on this classic IKEA shelving system keep completed display sets free from dust and curious pets.
Compartments double as display shelves for projects, but you need to buy separate bins for storage.
The IKEA Kallax line is a flexible system that can store loose bricks in bins as well as display completed projects, and IKEA Billy shelves come with glass doors that showcase a collection while offering protection against accidental falls.
You can customize the Kallax shelving with drawers, doors, hanging organizers, or any number of bins designed to fit, made from lidded plastic or fabric. (Note that we don’t recommend IKEA’s wire and rattan bins for Lego—tiny pieces can slip out or get stuck.)
The Kallax system is also sturdy—one Wirecutter editor has a unit that has survived three moves. And as kids outgrow their toys, the Kallax system can eventually become a bookshelf.
For adults and teens who want to showcase their Lego collections, we like the Billy system for its price, especially since you can line several units up next to one another for a large display. The shelves are adjustable, too, so you can make room for taller builds.
Always be sure to affix either shelving system to a wall with the included hardware to keep the units from tipping.
This storage bin is cheap and roomy, and it has a snap-on lid.
What you see is what you get with these sturdy, inexpensive clear bins with snap-on lids, a recommendation in our guide to how to organize a playroom. If you want something larger with latched lids, we also love the many different sizes of Iris Weathertight Totes.
The studded lid on this Lego-sanctioned IKEA container transforms it into a building base.
IKEA partnered with Lego for a collection of boxes featuring stud-covered lids that double as a building baseplate. It’s a clever concept, and the Bygglek also comes in a medium size as well as a small set of three, which are quite compact and probably work best for storing favorite pieces and minifigures.
Really, any inexpensive bin or shelving system will do. Wirecutter supervising editor Adrienne Maxwell’s daughter is particular about how she stores her Lego collection and prefers the three-drawer plastic sets you can find at Target or Walmart. She also cleverly repurposed the shell from a Lego Advent calendar to hold smaller pieces.
If nothing here fits your specific needs, you’ll find no shortage of YouTubers showing off massive storerooms—with hundreds of small drawers and bins—for inspiration. And for the ultimate tidy-up system, check out builder Alice Finch’s collection (video) of over 4 million pieces.
The article was edited by Alexander Aciman and Annemarie Conte.
Joshua Lyon is the supervising editor of emergency-preparation and home-improvement topics at Wirecutter. He has written and edited for numerous outlets, including Country Living, Modern Farmer, The New York Times, V and VMAN, Marie Claire, Jane, and Food Network Magazine. He’s also a Lambda Literary Award–nominated author and ghostwriter. Learn more at jklyon.com.
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