So no one told you lights were gonna be this wa-ay! *clapclapclap* The LEGO Friends Apartments 10292 set is here and it’s definitely lights, camera and action for the LMB team!
An amazing follow up to the wildly popular LEGO IDEAs Central Perk set, the LEGO Friends Apartment is roughly twice the brick size and a lot more than twice the detail size! This thing is full of great details spanning all 10 seasons of the show!
Set size comparison image courtesy of Jay Bricks Blog!
After the somewhat no-nonsense design challenge of building and lighting the NASA Discovery Shuttle and Hubble Telescope, the LMB team relished the opportunity to kick back and have a few (or a ton!) of laughs building the apartments! After putting in our VIP order, the set arrived quicker than ***
Several members of the design team who’re huge fans of the show took it in turns to build the set, first Chandler and Joey’s iconic but messy pad, then, of course, the much tidier Monica and Rachel place.
With so, so many hilarious references from the show, it was truly a joy to build and discover all the different details tucked into the design of the set. In-between howl’s of laughter, the team certainly made note of the layout and structure of the build and began forming a plan on how best to light this soon to be fan favourite display!
The main challenge in lighting the set was in that it's a very open build! A single wide-open level, made for interactivity with all those great details included. The designers went back to lighting layout 101 and hid the majority of the wires underneath the set, resulting in a simple and easy to navigate the instructional process.
Speaking of wires, technically our designers could have gotten away with a 15cm connecting cable to join both sides of the hallway to each apartment, but it was decided a 30cm cable would make the assembly experience more enjoyable with the extra length!
From there it was quite intuitive, however there we several points of the set that called for additional bit lights to brighten them up. These were the kitchens in both apartments, which due to their locations in the layout of the build, made them a little cramped and tucked away. We solved this by adding in an extra bit light above each stove, evening out the ambience in general.
We love the ‘on set’ design that's emphasised most with the stage lights. We first saw these ingenious items of course with the Central Perk set!
A perfect opportunity to really let our lights… well, shine! The secret is to employ a large warm white bit light, instead of a regular-sized one. This helps produce the ‘lights! camera! action!’ effect and gives the kit that on set look that is the icing on Phoebe’s birthday cake.
The other point to note is the balcony outside Monica and Rachel's apartment, again it's narrow build created a shadowy nook, while in the TV show it was always brightly lit by the New York City lights... either that or some set lighting! We relished the opportunity to implement our lights, making the set true to fan detail by installing a trusty spotlight above the balcony area. Mission accomplished!
While we think most fans will want to display all three 'sections' of the set as LEGO intends, it's still quite easy to display them separately. Perhaps with the boys on one end of a bookshelf and the girls on the other? Or in two different rooms completely! All that's needed to achieve this is an additional power source and a few quick switches of the expansion board ports.
There you have it, whether you're an OG fan from the 90's or just tuned in for the reunion, there's something for everyone in this certified fan favourite set. What's your favourite detail? Let us know by attaching a photo in your review!