A beautiful LEGO set that was released just a few days ago is the #10280 LEGO Flower Bouquet. This is one of four sets in the new LEGO Botanical Collection, along with the #10281 LEGO Creator Bonsai Tree, and the smaller #40460 LEGO Creator Roses, and #40461 LEGO Creator Tulips.
The #10280 LEGO Flower Bouquet is unique in many ways. It features several elements in new colors, many of the elements are used in unusual ways, a number of pieces are made from plant-based plastic produced using sustainably sourced sugarcane, the instruction book also has some unique features, and the story of how the set came about is also unique.
To examine the set, let’s start with the box and instruction booklet. The box is plain black with a colored band on the bottom, like all other sets in the 18+ collection targeting adult LEGO fans. The black background nicely highlights the beauty and vibrancy of the flowers. Unfortunately, the instruction book is also black, which makes it very hard to see some of the steps. LEGO has been getting a lot of negative feedback about their black instruction books, but for some reason they insist on continuing to use them.
The instructions book does have some nice features though. It has a little intro for each of the flowers discussing both the special features of the real flower as well as the LEGO version. Interesting little tidbits are also scattered around the rest of the pages, like for example that this is the first time the long axle appears in sand-green, or that some of the leaves were originally used as claws.
I especially like the pages about the designers. The main designer of the set was Anderson Grubb, but he also had the help of a LEO intern, Astrid Sundorf Christensen. Astrid is part of an internal LEGO program called LEGO ATE (Arbejde til Erhvervsafklaring or work-based capability assessment) that helps employees get back on track after a physical or psychological setback. This program was set up 29 years ago to create a framework around employees with particular needs. They carry out smaller LEGO building tasks for the company and it was here that Astrid first started creating LEGO flowers. Now her LEGO flowers are displayed all over the company’s reception halls and offices. In the designer-video below, you will see some of her beautiful flower arrangements.
The #10280 LEGO Flower Bouquet comes with three sets of numbered bags. Bags #1 include the parts to build the three roses and two daisies. The roses are identical, except that one of them has an angled stem. The roses are absolutely beautiful and are some of my favorites in the bouquet. Light-nougat (also called light-flesh by the LEGO fan community) is usually only used as a minifig skin color, so it’s nice to see several new elements in this color to make the roses. It works well to represent classic old rose. The two stems of daisies are identical. They are simple, but work nicely in the bouquet. I should mention that all the flowers use long sand-green LEGO Technic axles and dark-green axle connectors (some angled, most straight) for their stems and they are adjustable to different heights.
Bags #2 include the parts to build the two snapdragons, the California poppy, and two stems of grasses. The snapdragons are gorgeous with three different shades of pink used for the flowers. One of the snapdragons is on a straight stem, while the other one is angled. Both the roses and the snapdragons are quite top-heavy because of the large flower heads. Because of this, I feel like the straight stems work better for these flowers. They are adjustable, so you can swap out the angled parts to straight ones if you so desire.
There is only a single California poppy in the bouquet, but it adds a nice and bright splash of orange to the arrangement. The petals are made of the same car hood pieces as the petals of the roses, and are adjustable to make the poppy fully open or partially closed.
The two stems of grasses add a bit of greenery to the flower arrangement, and are made of dark-green bush pieces. Again, the stems are adjustable to the height that works best for you.
Bags #3 include the parts for a stem of lavender, an aster, and three decorative dart-shaped leaves. The lavender is made up of nine identical clusters, of pearl-gold leaves and crown pieces, brown stalks, and fifty-four lavender flowers. It’s a little tedious to assemble all the pieces, but the end result is worth it.
The three long, dart-shaped leaves are identical and are made of sand-green and dark-green elements (plus a bit of regular green and lime that aren’t visible). I like the use of sand-green surfboards for the tip of the leaves!
The medium-lavender aster is the final flower in the bouquet and one of the prettiest. It’s made up of 34 medium-lavender leaves and dark-purple clips arranged around a dark-green steering wheel and a sand-green modified round plate with bars. It’s a spectacular looking flower and a nice addition to the bouquet.
Once you build all the flowers, grasses, and leaves, you can arrange them in a vase. The adjustable stems make it easy to tailor the arrangement for any vase or container. In the promotional pictures, the flowers are displayed in a standard vase, but I plan to build a brick-built base for them (I just need to get more clear bricks!).
The sophisticated design and refined color-combination of the #10280 LEGO Flower Bouquet remind me of the #21301 LEGO Ideas Birds set released back in 2015. The birds set drew a new audience to the LEGO hobby; people who are normally not attracted to LEGO play sets, but love arts, crafts, nature, and unique décor. The flower bouquet has the same potential. It would make a great gift for parents, grandparent, coworkers, loved ones, or for yourself. If you would like to check it out, it’s available at the LEGO Creator Expert section of the Online LEGO Shop.
What do you think? How do you like the LEGO Flower Bouquet? Is this a set you’re planning to get? How do you like to flower designs and color combinations? What other flowers would you like to add? Feel free to share your thoughts and discuss in the comment section below!
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