DIY LEGO Travel Box

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

A while back, my sister in law asked my mom to help her with a contest that her company was having. The requirements were to take a cheese box and transform it into something cool. I suggested my mom turn it into a LEGO travel case (something that we would LOVE and use all the time).


This is {kind of} a tutorial because I didn't document this with pictures. Sorry. However, it is crazy easy and I know that you guys are smart enough to take this and run with it.:)


What you'll need:
  • Wood box with sliding top - we used a cheese box and an old cigar box (some craft shops have similar boxes and several readers have suggested that wine shops and liquor stores have boxes perfect for this project)
  • LEGO building plate (this blue one is $4.99 - the two boxes we made are small so one plate covered both)
  • Strong glue
  • Spray paint


Steps:
  • Paint your box however you like (wait until completely dry)
  • Use scissors to cut your building plate to size
  • Glue the building plate to the top
  • Get your LEGO on! 
(As I mentioned before, the building plate we used was large enough to cover our two small boxes.)


 So easy and so fun. Perfect for trips, car rides, and playing at home.  We have yet to take these on a trip but the boys play with them all day long at home.


The only thing I'd like to add are handles. Maybe screw on a handle from a craft store? Leather? Rope?


I have a love/hate relationship with LEGOs (I know you can relate) and I'm hoping these will help with my sanity a bit - at least while traveling. If you whip one of these up, I'd love to see how it turns out!

3/26/12
One of my readers, Alicia, made a LEGO case for her 6 year old LEGO addict after reading this post. She used a flip top box from Hobby Lobby instead and it turned out great (in case you're having trouble sourcing a slide top box). I love how she added his initials (below).

84 comments:

Mommy of 3 said...

Awesome idea and I do share your love\hate relationship with lego's especially the smaller pieces.

Mommy of 3 said...

Love this idea and I share your love\hate relationship with Lego's especially with the smaller pieces. Will need to do this for my lil guy!

Holy Craft said...

So genius! I love this!

Grace said...

Thanks! It was super easy. Let me know if you guys try it.

Kate @ A Creative Cookie said...

This is brilliant! LOVE it!

Joey said...

I'm so excited to see this - fantastic idea!!

Lesley said...

what a great idea!

Anonymous said...

This is exactly what I needed this past weekend. Great idea. I have an old cigar box with a sliding lid that would be perfect.

Janette@Janette's Sage said...

This is just awesome...my son is going to love this...great idea

Sundee said...

This is a fantastic idea and I will be making these ASAP! I feel you on the love/hate relationship with Legos!

Grace said...

If you all try this, I would LOVE to see how they turn out.

@anonymous, the cigar box will work great! The second one we made was from a cigar box that we found at an antique store.

Ellie said...

This is genius. I just had to put away our Legos for a bit because my feet are bruised from stepping on them. I have 3 little boys and have decided that I MUST make 3 little boxes like this! But I am not sure where I will find boxes...

Anonymous said...

Perfect idea for boys and girls. I will be making this tomorrow. I love going to the craft store and I think I might need a frequent shopper card :)

Nancy said...

Great idea! I have an old "pencil" box that my daughter made it at one of the Lowes build it workshops we can revamp. Thanks!

Prairie Mother said...

Awesome idea! Thanks for the links, I just ordered everything to make these for my three kids. This will be a lifesaver on road trips!!

Courtney said...

Genius! Thanks so much!

Anonymous said...

This may make me rethink my NO LEGOS in the car.

Sarah said...

wish I had a little boy to make one for! Now I'm gonna have to have another baby! dang... *sarcasm* :)

Anonymous said...

WOW!!!!! I am totally doing this for our beach trip this year. Thanks!

Grace said...

@ellie, check your local craft stores and hardware supply stores. You might also want to check out antique stores - the smaller box we made is from an old cigar box that we found at an antique store. Good luck! :)

The Rodriguez Crew said...

Definitely making one of these!! You are chock full of great ideas. :)

Julie said...

I'm so excited for this idea!!! I will be making it this weekend. My son will be so excited :)

Gale said...

How cool! Pinned this on pinterest (if you prefer it not pinned there, please let me know and I'll remove it).

Grace said...

Thank you, Gale! I am "pin friendly" so no worries. :)

Anonymous said...

great idea! What did you use to cut the base plate? Did you have to score it before cutting it?

Grace said...

@anonymous, we just used our regular pair of Fiskars scissors (the same we use for cutting fabric). It was easy to cut - no scoring needed. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

I would be afraid of the lid coming off while carrying it. Maybe put a snap or velcro? Did the lid slide off while you were walking with it?

Grace said...

@anonymous, we don't have handles on our boxes yet so the boys are holding them upright. The lids haven't slid off. If we do put handles on, then that might be a problem. I'm thinking that some sort of adhesive dots (velcro or something like this: http://www.joann.com/k-company-studio-112-adhesive-gems-20pk-circle/zprd_10869014a/) placed underneath the lid will keep it from sliding off.

Peter Norby said...

If you tacked on a little strap handle on the small end where it slides open, then gravity would take care of things for you. Alternatively, maybe you can glue a small 1x6 lego at the end, and use a lego brick as a DIY latch.

Anonymous said...

I seriously love this idea. I love anything that can travel but not be messy. It will make eating at cafes/restaurants easier.
My little man is only 15 months but i know his obsession with lego isn't to far away so i'll put this into my to do pile and have it sorted for when our house fills with lego.
Love your blog.

Grace said...

@Peter, that is an excellent and simple solution! Now why didn't I think of that? ;)

Amy said...

I can't wait to try this idea. Great stuff!

ninalisnap52 said...

Adding to the list of things to make!! Love it!

Lexi said...

My kids will LOVE this. I think I'll make them for the Easter baskets. However, i think my brother (who is 30), might cry if I tell him I 'destroyed' a LEGO piece by cutting it. He was sad when one got destroyed in our garbage disposal ;)

Anonymous said...

This would be a great thing for in the camper! Thanks for the great idea.

Anonymous said...

Found this through pinterest! Love it! Thanks for sharing.

Grace said...

LOL, @lexi!

You're all welcome! I'm stoked that you guys like the idea.

Laura said...

HI Grace. This is the first time I read your blog. I love it! and I love the LEGO travel box. I have two boys and the box is going to be sooooo useful when on the road.

Thanks so much for sharing!!!

Anonymous said...

I love this idea! I had a horrible time finding a box with a sliding lid, and so I thought I'd post about my solution. I found this tissue box at Hobby Lobby. If you flip it over, the bottom has a sliding lid! It's not too much bigger than a cheese box. I'm going to use my upside-down tissue box to make the Lego box, and I'll just use a little slat of wood to cover the hole for the tissue. Thanks so much for the fun idea! Found it on Pinterest.

http://shop.hobbylobby.com/store/item.aspx?ItemId=158530

Grace said...

@anonymous, that is such a clever idea!! Thanks so much for sharing!

Tiffany Patterson said...

I love this idea... I was thinking about one for magnets maybe?

maria said...

such a cool idea.

Grace said...

Thank you!

Anonymous said...

I just finished making two of these for my boys. I pinned it:

http://pinterest.com/pin/236439049157096319/

Thank you for this idea! Hoping it will make the summer holiday trip from Holland to Italy (14hrs) a LOT easier.

Grace said...

@anonymous, they turned out fabulous!! I love the little compartments inside and the names on top. Well done! Enjoy your holiday to Italy (I'm quite jealous).

Anonymous said...

Haha, thank you. I hope the boys will like it as much as you do. ;-) Italy is still months away though, this is just part of the preparation fun!

Anonymous said...

Just found this on Pinterest. Great idea! We're preparing for a trip to Florida and I'm absolutely making two of these for my kids. As far as slide top boxes...you can usually buy the empties from cigar stores for a few dollars. You might also try wine stores, they usually have cool wooden boxes that wine bottles are shipped in.

Anonymous said...

that is cool

Grace said...

@anonymous, great suggestions on the cigar shops and wine shops! Thanks so much for chiming in. Cheers!

Anonymous said...

I've always been of the opinion that we should just glue the Lego pieces together but that would only allow making one version. Now that my son is 15 he somewhat agrees. I have mosaicked some cigar boxes using tile, mirror & pictures I mounted between color glass with solder tape. They make great jewelry or recipe boxes.

Gerty Mitchell said...

What a fantastic idea! Here visiting via apartment therapy. We're about Togo on a road trip to visit the grandparents and this is PERFECT. Will do my best to out one together. Thanks heaps!

Julie @ Creekside Learning said...

love this so much! thanks for a great idea!

AmyB said...

I got sturdy, wooden, slide top boxes from my brother-in-law who is a big wine guy...all different shapes and sizes! So perhaps a local wine shop or liquor store would have them.

Grace said...

Thank you for the suggestion, AmyB! Will add that into the post.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the idea! I just made each of my sons one using the boxes from old Melissa & Doug wooden jigsaw puzzles in a box. It worked great and my boys love them!

Anonymous said...

I so want to do this but I can't find a box anywhere. I've tried craft, cigar, and wine stores. Any other suggestions??? Thanks!!

Anonymous said...

These "Melissa & Doug" boxes work great!
http://www.melissaanddoug.com/vehicles-learning-puzzles-in-a-box

Grace said...

@anonymous, have you checked out hobby lobby? Or you could try the Melissa & Doug boxes (great idea!!) linked above. Good luck! :)

blackpaws said...

Thank you for the idea! Sweet and easy! We had fun making it and giving it!

Here's what we made.
http://blackpaws.wordpress.com/2012/05/21/lego-box/

Mal said...

what an awesome idea, both the box and the suitcase...definitely think we might have to do this!

Sarah D. said...

Wow, what a super idea. I have to try this and report back!

Beth said...

at first i thought the last picture was a lunch box with the lego building plate glued on top. it would be a super simple solution, with built in handles, even. you'd have to make sure your glue would work on both metal and plastic.

Anonymous said...

Hello again, I thought I'd stop back by and show you how my project turned out. I commented about the wooden Kleenex box from Hobby Lobby awhile back. I have made a few of these now - thank you for the idea! http://pinterest.com/pin/208573026462766872/ (I gave you credit for the original idea. :) )

Leigh Evans-Bullock said...

Fantastic idea. Great for the plane!

Grace said...

@beth, that is a great idea! Thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said...

What type of glue has everyone had the best luck with?

hayley said...

What are the dimensions of the base plate on your project and where did you buy the one piece that you needed? Thanks for this inspiration!!!!

Grace said...

@hayley, the dimensions of the base plate I used is 10"x10". The one base plate worked for both of my boxes. We're lucky enough to have a LEGO store nearby but you can also order them online here: http://shop.lego.com/en-US/Large-Green-Baseplate-626.

Let me know if you have any other questions! Best of luck!

marie said...

Awesome idea....perfect for grandbaby Christmas gifts!!

Jenn Lifford said...

This is fabulous!! I will totally be making one of these. Pinned!

Sea Mama said...

This is such a simple yet amazing idea! I don't have a boy but my daughter has such a mind (even at 17 months) that I think she will be very into legos. I'm definitely pinning this for later. Thanks so much for sharing such a great idea.

Grace said...

Thanks so much for all of the great comments! I appreciate you all taking the time. :)

ramblingrosie said...

Hi! Inspired by you, I made one: http://rosiesramblingragbag.blogspot.co.uk/2012/08/lego-travel-box.html

Rosie, x

Beemamá said...

Qué idea más buena!!!. Me encanta!!!

Anonymous said...

All great ideas, but what really caught my eye is the initials on the flip top box. XJB are my son's initials!

Mary Seaman said...

I do love your box! I made the SAME one Alicia made with a box from hobby lobby as well last year for my grandson because he wanted to play with his legos when we went out to lunch together. I put the Lego base on the inside of the lid though which makes it a bit more travel friendly in the car. This box is SO handy!

Karen said...

I do not have a hate relationship with Legos because I am a mother of 3 and grandmother to 7 and everyone STILL plays with Legos at our house! Of course, many of them are old (like me), but the learning that takes place with them is worth every piece that gets lost in the carpet, then "found" by a bare foot later! I actually wanted to share an activity that I did one year as we traveled from East Texas to Disney World in Florida by car. I bought 3 identical small boxed sets of Legos. Each child was given a set and a zip-loc bag to keep the pieces in once opened. As we traveled, they had "races" to see who could build the item that I assigned. Sometimes they could only use a certain number of pieces, or color, etc. They loved it and it kept them busy. They were 8, 11, and 15 at the time, so you can see that age makes no difference. The oldest is a girl. I wish I had one of these boxes "back then"!! Another great Lego game for travel is to have one person build something piece by piece and only use words to describe which block is being used and where it is being put. The others have identical sets and try to build the structure that is being described. Great to work on listening skills, as well as giving clear directions.

Emily Balenger said...

could anyone tell me where I can find this top of box from hobby lobby...I looked today and couldn't find anything, I also looked online at amazon by typing in flip top box??? I can't seem to find anything like this and i REALLY want to make it!

Heather Woyak said...

this is so great! going to come in quite handy in another year or so :) thanks for sharing!!

http://houseofwoyaks.blogspot.com

Grace said...

@emily, they have a flip top box at Joann for $4.99 - http://www.joann.com/latched-wooden-box/xprd75203/

If you want to try a slide top box and can't find one, you might want to check with your local wine or cigar shop (if you have one). A few of my readers have found one that way. Best of luck!! :)

Grace said...

@heather, thank you!

Amanda Kraemer said...

QuestiOn-I'm going to glue the Lego sheets onto a suitcase. What type or brand of glue have you found works best?

Julie said...

I just made one of these and I used a small (ish) metal lunch box that is plain white and I got it from Oriental Trading for $5.25. While I decided to go ahead and glue the lego plate, since it is metal you could also simply glue some magnets to the plate to make it removable as well. Tomorrow I plan to let my son decorate the outside with markers to his satisfaction. :) Vacation is in 5 days!! Another thought for the travel aspect is to create a few things with legos and take photos of them. Print them off and put them with the box. Good motivation and ideas for what to build for the kid who might not be crazy into legos.

leilani1105 said...

Great post, I made boxes for my boys a little over 2 years ago before a road trip, inspired by this post. I love making things for my kids that are also convenient for me! I couldn't do the exact box as yours due to different supplies available, but I love them as well as well as the boys. I referenced yours in my blog post. Thank you!

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