May 23, 2018

Friends Designer on "The Toys That Made Us" documentary

The Netflix documentary series "The Toys That Made Us" included LEGO last season.
LEGO is featured again this season -- available on Netflix starting May 25,
and will include a LEGO Friends Designer - Fenella.
She has been with the LEGO Friends team since before the theme launched January 1, 2012.

So, if you have access to Netflix -- enjoy the insights!

May 21, 2018

Friends Go-Karts crossed the finish line on ReBrick!

   The winning entries for the ReBrick "Friends Customize Your Go-Kart" building contest have crossed the finish line!
Grand Prize Winner ~ Supersonic Star

1st runner-up ~ Number 1 Tiny Bunny

2nd runner-up ~ Olivia's Flying Go-Kart

Congratulations to the winners -- lots of building inspiration racing along!

May 20, 2018

Review: 5005326 Clubhouse Pod

Bring a bit of Heartlake City wherever you go, with this purple pod playset!

I was delighted when I first spotted this little gem. I’ve always had a weakness for carrying around select bits of LEGO, and this cute kit includes many of my absolute favorite new 2018 Friends elements. Even when I later saw pictures of the five other Friends pods (one featuring each girl), this set still felt special – like a micro sampling of the Friendship House, which unifies the characters. The LEGO Company seems to have special thoughts for this pod too, as it’s been packaged and distributed differently.

My set arrived, in new condition, from a third-party seller. Unlike the other Friends pods, this one is not under a plastic blister, mounted on a card, ready for retail sale. Instead, it is sealed inside a heavy-duty polybag. On the front, I see the new logo and art for 2018 Friends plus writing in eight different languages. 

May 15, 2018

Review: 30403 Olivia's Remote Control Boat

Olivia has brought her remote-control sailboat to a pond near Heart Lake.

Polybag front -- a bit crinkled from being in a retailer's shelf bin.
We get a peek of the curvy "Heart-topped" building in downtown HLC ... beyond the pond area and trees.

All the parts are loose in the polybag (some previous polybags had interior bags for parts) with the folded instructions sheet.

May 5, 2018

Review: 41334 Andrea's Park Performance

An ordinary stroll through the park turns into something spectacular with tasty lunch and a live production! Get ready for puppets and parrots and pianos – Oh my!

This set was provided by the AFOL Engagement of The LEGO Group for the purpose of sharing set details with fans. Opinions provided here solely reflect those of our reviewer. Photographs are property of Friends Bricks and are not directed by TLG in any fashion.

This wave of sets brought all five of the Friends girls to Heartlake City Park, each for her own purpose, and with her own building set. Olivia is on a mission [41333], Emma has set up shop [41332], etc. Well, Andrea is here with her own trademark specialty: musical performance. 

At nearly 14” long, this box seems surprisingly large for the number of pieces (229), but it certainly looks inviting. The front has new Friends brand graphics for 2018 with updated logo and group picture. The main scene gives me the impression that Heartlake City citizens are appreciative of the arts and support an active public theater group – complete with their own outdoor venue. How nice! 

A detail shot in the lower left corner indicates that the stage can rotate (cool!). Portraits of this set’s featured characters appear in the lower right. The concentric circles framing Andrea remind me of a vinyl record. She is joined by two new faces: the bearded Steve and baby Diana. 

Detail shots on the box's back highlight special parts and features. I notice that we can press the keys of the piano!

April 29, 2018

Review: 41329 Olivia's Deluxe Bedroom

Clever builder Olivia is at it again and this time she has re-invented her room as a high-tech playground.

This set was provided by the AFOL Engagement of The LEGO Group for the purpose of sharing set details with fans. Opinions provided here solely reflect those of our reviewer. Photographs are property of Friends Bricks and are not directed by TLG in any fashion.

This kit is part of a series of sets, each featuring one of the girls in her bedroom. Two others were released in January (Stephanie’s [41328] and Mia’s [41327]), and two more are expected in the second wave of 2018 sets. Each is quite distinct and reflects the character’s interests. Olivia, being our “gizmo guru,” has filled her room with techy contraptions. Her small robot friend, Zobito, is here. He has a few control stations and an “elevator” up to his own shelf.

The color scheme, of dark pink, light yellow, and dark azure is distinctly Olivia’s this year. The same colors are used in her Mission Vehicle [41333]. Having worked in print publishing, I'm reminded of the cyan, magenta and yellow of the process color palette (CMYK). 

Taking a look at the box, the front shows Friends branding that’s been updated for 2018. The five girls are illustrated together with their hands in a stack to form a heart shape. In the lower right corner, we see Olivia’s portrait, framed by a dark pink 8-toothed gear. The gear has become her associated symbol now, replacing the heart which moved on to become the group's symbol.

This is a good photo of the completed set, except that the faded art shown above her pillow is actually a clear window. 

Background art makes me think Olivia’s room is up high, amid skyscrapers in Heartlake City. I see a construction crane out the window, which has a space-themed shade. That wall is angled, as if she’s living on the top floor, and two posters are on her wall. One appears to be of Pluto, with it’s appropriately heart-shaped area (Tombaugh Regio). The other is a science-y poster with an atom symbol. It reminds me of her green t-shirt from a few years back.

The back of the box shows Zobito’s “elevator” in action and some play scenarios. There is a visual explanation of figure assembly and illustrations of both the group of girls (lower left) and Olivia alone (upper right). In the latter, we get a nice view of her necklace, some matching bracelets, and a wristwatch. 

The box sides contain required fine print. We are warned about small parts in no less than thirty-three different languages and told the parts’ countries of origin. There’s also an ad for the LEGO Life app and an actual-size minidoll picture for scale. 

One side (left) shows a special tall-and-skinny peek at the set. These photos are new this year and I love them! My box's top face also has some special photography: a montage of parts from the set, arranged in an abstract pattern. This gives it a festive and creative feel.

April 24, 2018

Review: 41330 Stephanie's Soccer Practice

It’s a beautiful day in Heartlake City Park. Let’s follow Stephanie and Dash on a sporty adventure!

This set was provided by the AFOL Engagement of The LEGO Group for the purpose of sharing set details with fans. Opinions provided here solely reflect those of our reviewer. Photographs are property of Friends Bricks and are not directed by TLG in any fashion.

Just days ago, I looked out my window to see yet another coating of snow. Ugh. How nice would it be to feel the sun on my face and run on a grassy field, in shorts? Those days are just around the corner. But, until then, I can play along with Stephanie at her soccer practice! Let’s take a closer look at this fun set.

This small box lacks the extra two curved sides of larger kits, but they are implied. New branding art for the Friends line depicts the five girls in a “hands-in” pose to form a heart at upper-right with logos to the left. A detailed and inviting background illustration sets us on a grassy area. In the distance, we can see the lake, its dock with gazebo, and a performance stage beyond. Tall buildings poke up beyond the treeline.

The set’s color scheme uses Stephanie’s palette of medium azure, light pink, yellow, and dark blue with white. Her name and portrait, framed in azure, indicates that she is the featured character in this set.

Dashed white lines indicate the set’s movable parts and functionality.

The back of the box does an excellent job of demonstrating play scenarios. It indicates how a figure is constructed and that there is an included instruction booklet. We see Stephanie thinking in emojis, reminding me of the LEGO Life app.

This European packaging includes warnings and other info about the contents in many different languages. I love, love, love the new tall photos appearing on the sides of set boxes this year. So inviting!

April 22, 2018

Review: 41336 Emma's Art Café

Paint for a Panini!  Ethan is willing to work for a delicious meal at Emma's swanky new spot!

The *Art* of making a delicious Panini! Ethan is willing to paint for one and Emma is happy to create it!
The LEGO Friends "Friends" Logo has changed a bit for 2018 with a TM (trademark) symbol replacing the previous years' butterfly; most likely due to many clone brands infringing.

This set was provided by the AFOL Engagement of The LEGO Group for the purpose of sharing set details with fans. Opinions provided here solely reflect those of our reviewer. Photographs are property of FriendsBricks and are not directed by TLG in any fashion.

Box Front: Lots of lovely Lavender here! Flanges have Emma-style art doodles over dark purple. The new Heartlake City skyline (better pic in instructions) has more prominence now without the previous ribbon graphic, and is quite close -- indicating her cafe is Downtown.

While it looks like Ethan is about to spray graffiti, Emma is looking for him with a Panini sandwich and cuppa something ... hopefully hot cocoa or coffee.
The bottom left insert shows inside. It's nice to get the "cameo" appearance of which Mini-doll is in the set, since some product descriptions can vary.

Box Back: Shows all the fun (and yummy!) stuff at the cafe --> coffee machine, hot Teapot, Panini press, cupcakes, cookies, and Cake! Relaxing to enjoy some of it too, while outside Ethan is painting something.

Box Top shows detailed pictures of some great elements we get, like the Artist palette. A cute scene of E & E enjoying a picnic outside near the paint table.
Then Emma as a feature and illustration of actual size of Mini-dolls.

April 20, 2018

Summer 2018 LEGO Friends set images

 Andrea's Bedroom 41341
 Emma's Bedroom 41342

Heartlake City Airplane Tour 41343
Andrea's Accessories Store 41344


Heartlake City Pet Center 41345
 Friendship Box 41346
 Heartlake City Resort 41347

 Service & Care Truck 41348

 Drifting Diner 41349

Spinning Brushes Car Wash 41350
 Creative Tuning Shop 41351
 The Big Race Day 41352

Advent Calendar 41353


High-Res set build images of 2HY2018 LEGO Friends (too big for HT)