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My {son, daughter} read on a LEGO box that the set was designed by a LEGO fan. That is amazing! Is this common and how does my {son, daughter} get into that?

What sets were designed by fans so far?

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What's the product number on the box? –  BoltClock Oct 27 '11 at 22:19
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You could use "offspring" –  Joubarc Oct 28 '11 at 6:53
    
@Joubarc: I am tempted to put that in with my newly-earned edit privilege. –  BoltClock Oct 28 '11 at 8:23
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If you do that, I will no longer have sets. (ducks) –  Erik Olson Oct 28 '11 at 8:45

5 Answers 5

up vote 14 down vote accepted

In addition of the already mentionned Blacksmith shop and the three first LEGO factory sets (5524 — Airport, 5525 — Amusement park and 5526 — Skyline, combined from the 10 winners entries of the contest), the following sets have been designed by fans:

Also, you have to keep in mind that the line between high-profile AFOL and LEGO designer is becoming very thin, and some people have crossed that line (Pierre Normandin, for example). As such, can't it be said that the sets they design now are created by fans? Designers are fans in their own right!

Also, in addition of the fans-turned-designers, LEGO does invite fans for workshops from time to time. Theire influence on 10194 — Emerald Night for instance is obvious, if only for them pushing LEGO to make big train wheels.

So, the line between fan and designer is blurry, and that's for the better.

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I just remembered James Mathis' 10025 - Santa Fe Cars I and 10022 - Santa Fe Cars II two more fan designed sets. –  Erik Olson Oct 28 '11 at 7:06
    
Right, I had forgotten about these, I'll add them in, thanks. –  Joubarc Oct 28 '11 at 8:13
    
Blacksmith Shop!!! I missed that. –  BoltClock Oct 28 '11 at 8:22

If I recall correctly, it started in 2007 with LEGO's initiative called LEGO Factory, where fans were invited to compete in designing models using LEGO Digital Designer. The winners would then have their entries made into the very first fan-designed commercial LEGO sets.

Today, LEGO Factory is superseded by Design by Me. It follows a similar concept, except not in a competitive sense but a personal sense. This means you or your child can use LDD to design a set, share it, and even create custom box art for it, and have it ship right to your door, just as if you ordered a set from the LEGO online store itself.

I believe there were previous events that resulted in fan creations being marketed and mass-produced, but models created in the Factory competition and Design by Me initiative are not mass-produced.

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As for what mass-produced sets were made by fans so far, I know there are a number of them (I believe a couple of building/architecture sets) but I can't remember their names or product numbers right now. –  BoltClock Oct 27 '11 at 22:24

Set 3739 Blacksmith Shop was created by adult fan creation by Daniel Siskind, and was marketed by Lego in 2002. It was the first in the My Own Creation series.

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Lego Cusoo is a website where you can upload pictures of your creations, and if they get enough followers,votes, they can be made into official set by Lego. (The current requirement is 10k votes) The first model mass produced was the Shinkai 6500. To date, several more models have been released, including the Hayabusa satellite, a Minecraft set, Back to the Future, and the Mars Curiosity rover.(in order)

  • Shinkai 6500
    #001 Shinkai 6500
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The Lego Design byMe program offers the opportunity to design, build, and purchase custom Lego sets by utilizing the Lego Digital Designer software.

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The main Design By Me programme is shutting down on 16th January 2012 apparently: toysnbricks.com/lego-design-by-me-closes-on-january-16-2012 The homepage of DbM is also announcing this at the moment. –  Zhaph - Ben Duguid Nov 11 '11 at 13:03
    
A shame... that note wasn't there on the DbM page last week. With luck, Lego will improve the concept and come back with a better offering. –  JW8 Nov 11 '11 at 16:38
    
Nope, the announcement was along the lines of "It was too complicated for kids to use. We suggest you use Pick A Brick, or our "Hero Factory Recon" service. Fixing it will make it too expensive" :( –  Zhaph - Ben Duguid Nov 11 '11 at 16:45

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