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Lego is now letting you preorder unofficial sets, including an epic Lego store

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Designed by you, sold and sanctioned by Lego itself

What do a Lego store, a beautiful abandoned windmill, a retro bowling alley, a miniature aquarium, and a pair of Venetian houses have in common? They’ve all just become incredibly limited edition Lego sets that you can preorder from the Lego company itself.

They started out as candidates for Lego’s Ideas program, got rejected, and now, they’ve been crowdfunded back to life by fans like you through a separate competition called the BrickLink Designer Program that gives creators 10 percent of the proceeds for their work. That means you have a short window of opportunity to snap up these unofficial official sets for yourself.

And if you’ll allow me to indulge myself, they are glorious.

Atop this post, you’ll spot the $179.99 Modular Lego Store, originally submitted to Lego’s Ideas program way back in 2016 and nearly sold out as I write these words. (Note: It sold out Wednesday evening.) Click to zoom in for a closer look:

The $179.99 Mountain Windmill, a more recent design originally submitted to Lego Ideas in February 2020:

The $229.99 Retro Bowling Alley, originally from 2018:

The $289.99 Venetian Houses, originally submitted way back in 2016:

Lastly, the one I can actually afford right now (and did, in fact, order): the $64.99 Clockwork Aquarium, with its clever modular undersea diorama backgrounds and a crank to make the undersea life swim, jump, and spin. It was originally submitted in 2018.

Each set is limited to 10,000 preorders.

A caution: BrickLink (which is owned by Lego as of 2019) only ships to 30 countries; it warns that the “final product may vary from image” for each of these sets; and they won’t include paper instruction manuals like the Lego sets you buy at retail. It’s also not clear what their boxes might look like — the company’s FAQ lists the countries it ships to, but doesn’t address whether they’ll have official Lego boxes at all.

But they’re definitely fulfilled by Lego itself:

Orders are fulfilled by Lego’s own storefront, as you can see from my preorder.

And all of these sets have reached 3,000 preorders and are considered “fully funded,” so they should be good to go. BrickLink estimates each of them should ship around the third quarter of 2022.

There’ll be a third round of voting for different sets later this year.

Update, 2:51PM ET: Added that BrickLink will only ship these sets to 30 specific countries.

Update November 11th, 11:44AM ET: The Modular Lego Store is sold out, but the other four sets are still live.