Playwell Bricks began when founder, Jason Pyett, started his daughters’ LEGO® collections by buying second hand LEGO® sets for them (and maybe to boost his own small collection as well). He noticed as he purchased LEGO® collections from children who had outgrown their LEGO® (Can that really happen?) that many did very little with their LEGO® sets except, build the sets and put them on a shelf or in their closet.
This got Jason to start thinking about how to encourage kids to become more creative with their LEGO®. He began by inviting a few local kids over to his LEGO® room to a workshop to show them how to start designing with LEGO®. That led to him working with the local family center to offer that program to more children in the area, which again expanded when they moved it to the local elementary school. He now has a group of about 20 students a week who participate in his program, in a school of about 100. The main focus of the group is to encourage kids to create whatever they can imagine and Jason helps them along the way showing them various techniques to help them realize their vision.
During this same period he began to coach a FIRST LEGO® league team as well. This program teaches children how to solve complex problems and teaches essential core values in teamwork and competition. They do this through designing and programming a robot to achieve certain goals within a limited amount of time and then compete with other teams in the region.
While Jason volunteered his time putting on the program, he did need a way to provide enough LEGO® bricks to allow the kids to have as many bricks as they need to realize their creations. To do this he began a non-profit used LEGO® set buy and sell. He would acquire used LEGO® from local sales and reassemble sets and sell those sets to collectors around the world. In this endeavour he learned many LEGO® techniques and how LEGO® designers create their sets. After two years he had collected so much LEGO® for the workshops he decided it was time to close that business.
While working with the students giving them guidance on being creative, Jason also became more creative with his own designs. He began to experiment with LEGO® geometry and tried to figure out ways of creating complicated shapes with LEGO® bricks. His experiments led him to a deeper understanding of LEGO® design. This led him to his first design breakthrough of the “Magic Circle” created by using slopes to create a perfect circle from LEGO® elements.
After he wrapped up the non-profit buy and sell, he decided to try his hand at commission designing. His first commission was the Argonath from Lord of the Rings. This project was a huge challenge for a first design, but this design was to set his willingness to take on any design challenge. From that first commission Jason has continued to tackle any design challenge that came his way, always endeavoring to turn his clients wishes into reality in LEGO® form.
After nearly two years of doing commission design on his own, Playwell Bricks became so busy, that Jason decided it was time to bring on a team of designers to help him. All of the team that joined him all have the same drive to take on challenges and are creative in many different aspects. Each member adds a unique perspective of design and will continue to create amazing designs for Playwell Bricks clients into the future!