I’m an adult collector of both Hobbit and Lord of the Rings Lego sets which I like to build and then keep out on display. I don’t own all the sets because I’d have to have a rather large bank account for that to be possible. However, that does tend to make me just a little bit more picky about what I do choose to buy from the sets that are available.
Hobbit homes, in particular, are a wee bit of an obsession. My young daughter enjoys making up and drawing pictures of these for me because she knows that her mom dreams about living in one. Since I have very poor construction skills of my own, I was excited when Lego finally brought out a version of Bilbo Baggin’s home. And it remains my all-time favorite set despite getting newer ones along the way.
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The Lego Hobbit House
Lego bricks and Hobbit houses shouldn’t really work. The bricks are made from a tough, man-made plastic while the real habitats favored by these Tolkien creatures are at one with nature: Bilbo’s Bag End home is set into the side of Hobbiton Hill in a lush and pretty village of The Shire. The famous plastic bricks are well known for their sharp corners and edges while Bag End is famous for having soft curves, round windows and one perfectly round, green front door!
Despite all the obvious differences, you can tell just how hard Lego worked on doing justice to this legendary fantasy house from the moment you open up the huge box. It is packed with 4 large bags of brick parts, 2 big and detailed instruction manuals, stickers and the base plates necessary to build the foundations. Not being that good at building things, I was just a bit daunted at everything that came in the box.
Box contents of the Hobbit home Lego set which is rather epic
It took some 4 hours (with help from my young daughter) to build this whole set. We did have a break about halfway through for dinner because every good Hobbit knows just how important it is to eat at regular intervals! Luckily the instruction manuals were absolutely fantastic and easy to follow. Apart from one occasion where I messed up by putting the windows in the wrong way, everything was quite straightforward. Luckily I noticed the error quite quickly and went back to fix my mistake.
The project got to the most exciting point when we started on the inside of the home which is a cut-away section at the back. We both made lots of ‘ooh’ and ‘ahh’ noises along with the odd excited squeal when we started to add in the details like the old-fashioned brick fireplace, Bilbo’s journal and quill pen, the charming windows and (the piece de resistance) the big green, round door – which even features the runes marked in them by the wizard Gandalf! You can watch that part in the movie: An Unexpected Journey.
The sweet front garden yard of Bilbo’s Hobbit Lego Home
We both loved adding in the charming front garden with the fence, flowers and vegetables and I’m sure Samwise Gamgee (gardener to Bilbo’s younger cousin and heir, Frodo Baggins) and his Gaffer father before him would be very proud! Then there’s the tree on top which comes with some very cool, Lego leafy branches.
Bilbo’s Lego house was one set that just got better and better as it went along. It has been cleverly designed with older children and collector adults like me in mind. There is plenty to look at and play with including 6 minifigures (Gandalf, Bilbo and 4 Hobbit dwarves: Balin, Dwalin, Bofur and Bombur) and lots of accessories including weaponry, food, maps, a treasure chest and home decor.
We love the fact that you get two sides of play with this unique house: the famous frontage where you can imagine Bilbo or Frodo Baggins sitting out on the wee wooden bench before Gandalf arrives, and the interior of Bag End which is very easy to play with and enjoy from the back. For me as an adult collector, I get two ways of displaying it too. Quite simply, it’s my absolute favorite set and the one I’d recommend older kids and adults to get. Younger kids may want more action orientated sets.
Smaug the Ultimate Fantasy Dragon
Apart from Bilbo, one other real favorite character for me from this amazing fantasy tale is Smaug the dragon. So I was waiting and waiting for Lego to bring him out. I thought they might do this to tie in with The Desolation of Smaug movie but they didn’t which was a big disappointment at the time.
But they made us wait and I really think it was worth it because this particular set, The Lonely Mountain, looks awesome. I’m saving up to get this one eventually and maybe Santa will help me out. If you love fantasy, then why wouldn’t you want to get the best dragon of all time!
Thranduil the Elven King and Elf Army
Elven King Thranduil from the Mirkwood Elf Army Lego Set
One big reason to get the Mirkwood Elf Army set is to get hold of the fab minifigure, Thranduil. I love this character played by Lee Pace in the movies. He is powerful, elegant and commanding and makes the most awesome Elven King. Here’s a personal photo of him from my set.
This is a smaller kit with less than 300 pieces but it packs a lot in with 6 minifigures, a warg and a tree based play set which makes a great backdrop to the Elven army. I really like this one out on display too and am thinking of making a forest themed backdrop for it to really show it off. It makes more of an action based set for kids to play with and is ideal for building up your Elven forces.
These are my favorite sets that you can currently get in The Hobbit line although that is down to my personal opinion as a collector. Which ones you choose may have something to do with your budget or thinking carefully about who you are buying for. Perhaps you need to look for specific characters and minifigures or for sets that provide more of a challenging build or more activity once made. Do bear my thougts in mind and then take a look at the range available.
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All personal images belong to the author of this article, Marie Williams Johnstone, and are marked as such. All other images are product photos from Amazon.