It's National LEGO Day!
It's International LEGO Day! So celebrate with one of our amazing official LEGO puzzes! Are you a you a Classic Bricks purest, or mad for Minifigures? We have four 1000 piece LEGO puzzles to build, delivering your Masterbuilder fix!
The History Of LEGO
International LEGO is held on the very same day Gotdfred Kirk Christiansen, first submitted the patent for the original plastic Lego brick in 1958.
Although this day is marked as the origination of Lego as we know it, Gotdfred's father a Danish carpenter had actually invented the original interlocking brick, having founded his wooden toy company in 1932. The name LEGO comes from the Danish words “LEg GOdt” which translates as “play well”.
Godtfred was an pioneering innovator in toys and an early adopter of the injection molding machine - LEGO was one of the first companies to create plastic toys, a move which quickly led them to create the very first plastic Lego brick in 1949.
Godtfred has become junior Managing DIrector by 1954 and it was a chance conversation with an overseas buyer that led to the idea of a toy system. Godtfred saw the immense potential in Lego bricks to become a system for creative play, but the bricks still had some problems from a technical standpoint: their locking ability was limited and they were not versatile. In 1958, the modern brick design was developed; it took five years to find the right material for it, ABS polymer. The modern Lego brick design was patented on 28 January 1958.
In an inspired move, Godtfred made sure not only to patent the design for his single Lego brick, but also to patent the concept of multiple bricks being used together in a building system, and thereby protected his innovative design from being copied by potential competitors.
In the 17 years from 1949 to 1966, Lego grew exponentially into a global company that was retailing in 42 countries. They now boasted a product range that now contained 57 Lego sets and 25 Lego vehicles and with factories that were producing more than 706 million Lego elements each year – but the company didn’t stop growing.
In 1967 the LEGOLAND Band was established and in 1968, the very first LEGOLAND opened its doors to the public, attracting more than 625,000 visitors in its first season. Today there are 9 LEGOLANDS across Europe, Asia and the US, with a further three due to open in the next few years.
Nowadays Lego is a truly global enterprise, its strong brand identity, and still unique simplistic design, keeps it a favourite amongst children, while its history and versatility make it even more collectible to adults. At some points investing in LEGO sets has been more valuable than investing in gold and LEGO replaced Ferrari in 2015 as the world's most powerful brand.
Ten Cool Facts About LEGO
- In 2016 LandRover set the World Record for the largest piece of Lego construction with their huge 43-foot-high replica of Tower Bridge. This monumental structure used 5,805,846 individual pieces of Lego which would have stretched all the way to Paris in France if laid out end to end.
- If Lego Minifigures were to be classed as a population, they’d be the largest population in the world! With more than 4 billion of them in total.
- There are so many Lego bricks in the world, that it’s estimated that they outnumber people 80 to 1.
- Despite the first Lego brick having been made in 1958, you could still interlock one with a Lego brick-built today – the design hasn’t changed a bit!
- In 2009, James May created a house entirely out of Lego! The house took more than 3.3 million bricks to make and even had a working toilet, a bed, and a shower!
- Lego is now so popular that 7 sets are sold every second.
- Although Lego is played by both girls and boys, women and men, they still have a bit of a way to go before they reach gender equality with roughly 86% of their Lego Minifigures being male.
- If you were to collect all the Lego bricks in the world and stack them together then they would be 2,386,065 miles tall!
- Although Lego makes toys they are also classed as the world’s biggest tire manufacturer, making over 400 million tires each year to keep their fleet of various lego vehicles rolling.
- Although Lego was the first to patent the Lego brick that we know today, they didn’t technically invent them. The story has it that the salesman who came to sell Godtfred his first plastic injection mold machine was carrying an example interlocking brick in his pocket which had been designed and patented by Hilary Fisher Page. Godtfred improved on the design by perforating the brick and adding tubes on the bottom to help tighten the connection.