So this was a little random, but starting the 2016 Star Wars Advent Calendar this morning made me kinda regret not getting another one to go alongside it. One impulsive lunchtime shopping trip later, I’ve ended up with a 2016 LEGO Friends Advent Calendar to go along with my Star Wars countdown!
If you’ve been reading my blog for sometime, you’d know that I’m a pretty big fan of the Friends theme which is why I opted to get this one over the City one. It seems like it all sorts of interesting parts and elements and the minidolls designs are pretty great as well!
Be sure to also follow my LEGO Star Wars 2016 Advent Calendar countdown as well!
Spoiler warning! I live in Australia, and we’re generally ahead of most of the world, so if you don’t want each day’s surprise to be spoiled, look away or come back when you’ve opened your window!
I’m also mixing up the photography for the Friends Advent Calendar to differentiate it from my Star Wars Advent Calendar! Here’s a look at the front box which portrays a very cosy, traditional wintery Christmas scene.
To make it easier for you to check out each day’s section, as this post is going to grow longer with every new window, all you have to do is click on the Day you want, and you will instantly jump to the corresponding section.
Please feel free to bookmark this post to make it easier to check back everyday. I’ll be updating this post as we countdown to Christmas!
Like all other Advent Calendars, the box folds out to create a playmat that you can use to display each day’s contents.
Without further ado, let’s see start counting down the days to Christmas with the 2016 LEGO Friends Advent Calendar!
Day 1 of the LEGO Friends Advent Calendar 2016 starts off with a minidoll! We get Emma, one of the main Friends characters who is dressed in a lovely green jumper. The printing on her torso is exquisite, and there’s all sorts of really nice details like the poofy balls, and her scarf. I might also add that her green top really brings out the colour of Olivia eyes.
I also like her tan pants, and her trendy brown boots. I think it’s one of the best variants of Emma, and I’m very satisfied with Day 1 so far.
That’s all for now! Check in tomorrow to see what Day 2 of the Friends Advent Calendar brings!
Day 2 of the LEGO Friends Advent Calendar gifts Emma with some fancy footwear. We get 2 pairs of ice skates (and one spare!) as well as a small stool for Emma to use as she’s putting on her gear. I think it’s a stool because of the tiles used which lets Emma sit down on it.
Or it could be a pedestal to display the shoes. They both work either way!
Here’s Emma getting her skates on and is all prepared to hit the ice! Day 2 is a little meh, but minifigure/minidoll accessories are always a welcome addition to any collection.
Check back tomorrow to see what Day 3 brings!
Day 3 of the Friends Advent Calendar gives us a delightful little mailbox. It’s top is covered by a sheet of snow, with a small plant popping out, defiant against winter! The mailbox is a fairly simple build, and rests on a bed of snow as well. We get a printed letter tile to go with it.
Here’s a look at the instructions on the window.
So that’s it for Day 3! Emma finally gets to send her Christmas letters out. With Christmas only 12 days away, they should arrive in time! Also, I still can’t get over how good her leg-piece looks. Those boots are to die for.
See you tomorrow!
In Day 4 of the Friends Advent Calendar, we get a cute little Christmas candle. It’s a pretty simple build, but I like the Christmas leaves which have bright red flowers attached to them to give it a very festive feel.
It’s perfect for to create an atmosphere filled with warmth and holiday cheer! All that’s missing are some marshmallows or a hot cup of cocoa!
Update: Thanks to Mark and Graham for pointing out that there’s supposed to be some sort of “Online Surprise” on Day 4 of the Advent Calendar. I had a poke on the LEGO Friends website but I couldn’t seem to find anything. Maybe it’ll only turn up when it becomes the 4th of December in the US?
Update 2: Finally found the Day 4 surprise. It’s located in the Downloads Section of the Friends Website, or you can use this link to directly download the instructions for the build, which seems to combine all 4 builds!
That’s all for Day 4! Plenty of toys and objects for Emma to interact with. Check back tomorrow to see what Day 5 brings!
We get another minidoll in Day 5 of the Friends Advent Calendar! This time, it’s Naomi, a relatively new character to Heartlake City. She’s quite rare, having only made an appearance in the Heartlake Cupcake Cafe. She has brown hair, tied in a ponytail, piercing blue eyes and freckles on her face.
She’s dressed in a very cute red jacket, paired with a red skirt, white leggings and some red laced up boots.
I didn’t expect to get another minidoll so close to the first, so this was a very pleasant surprise! Now that Emma has a companion, I wonder what else is going to greet us the next day. Hopefully something that the both of them can both enjoy together!
Day 6 gives us this adorable Hamster Feeding Station, complete with a sand-coloured hamster! The build is fairly simple, but I really like the tiny details like the water bottle, and the grass stalk for the Hamster to munch on.
The hamster, of course is the highlight of Day 6’s window. I really love these cute little LEGO animals, and you can never have enough little plastic critters.
Plenty of extra parts too!
So that’s it for Day 6! Naomi and Emma now have a furry little rodent as a companion!
Day 7’s build is a delightful little Fireplace, designed to keep Naomi and Emma warm during Winter. Too bad this doesn’t really apply to Australia since Christmas = Summer for us. I quite like the modern touches such as the transparent sides and the sleek shiny curved pieces on top. There’s a Christmas wreath as well which gives it that little bit of an extra festive feel.
The Friends Advent Calendar is coming along quite nicely, but I still feel that outside of the Christmas wreath on the fireplace, we’re still lacking builds that really capture the holiday spirit. Hope that changes tomorrow!
Day 8 of the Friends Advent Calendar features a very classic Christmas staple – a tray of cookies and milk left out for Santa… and for some bizarre reason… a carrot.
First things first, getting a carton of milk which is a printed 1 x 1 brick is always nice, and I also appreciate getting the printed cookie tile which is a relatively new element.
I did some research and apparently… carrots are a reindeer’s favourite food! That’s a pretty neat bit of trivia that I wouldn’t have otherwise known if not for the Friends Advent Calendar. Emma and Naomi are very considerate to not only leave some food out for Santa, but to also provide a treat for his reindeer, which to be honest, do most of the work hauling Saint Nicholas’ butt all over the world.
Can’t wait to bring this up at my office Christmas party!
Day 9 gives us a small performance stage and two microphones. This year, the Friends theme has dabbled into entertainment and singing, so this model isn’t quite unexpected.
The stage is fairly simple, with a rotating pedestal so that Naomi or Emma can twirl around as they belt out their favourite songs. I also love that we got two microphones so that the two of them can indulge in a duet or karaoke showdown.
So that’s it for Day 9. It’s not the most exciting build, but the addition of microphones which are fairly uncommon LEGO accessories is a really welcome addition!
Sorry this is a little late! Day 10 of the Friends Advent Calendar gets us building a small upright Piano, an excellent companion to yesterday’s performance stage. The piano is simple and charming, and I like the inclusion of a printed tile that has sheet music on it.
The colours are classic Friends, with pink and purple breaking up the brown base, but I would’ve loved it if they had made this a little more Christmasy.
A stool or chair for the minidolls to sit on as they play the piano would also have been a nice addition, but in its absence, I’ve used Day 2’s seat as a substitute. When you look at it this way, the piano does seem rather short!
All the models are coming together quite nicely, and I love that we can finally have some musical instruments to accompany the microphones from yesterday. That’s all for now!
Day 11 brings us more musical instruments, this time a purple and gold electric guitar complete with a stand! The guitar has some glamorous printing on it, and has only been available in two other sets, making this quite a rare-ish accessory! I don’t have it in my collection, so I’m especially pleased with it.
We’ve nearly got an entire band’s worth of music instruments already, giving this year’s Advent Calendar a very musical theme!
It’s Day 11 and the second Sunday of the 2016 Friends Advent Calendar, which means another surprise build! This time, LEGO seemed to be a lot better prepared, so you can find the instructions for the alternative surprise build on the Friends website. Alternatively, you can click this link to download it directly.
The surprise build utilises parts from all 6 windows to create this fancy performing stage for Naomi as well as an upgraded table/feeding area for the Hamster!
It’s kinda cute, but I do think that the individual contents look much better on their own. These surprise builds do give a bit more playability as you’re meant to pull the week’s sets apart. This also means that I’ll have to reassemble the week’s worth of builds!
See you tomorrow!
On Day 12… we get some cutlery, plates and some kitchen utensils.
To go with yesterday’s set of utensils, Day 13 gives us a cute table and a pair of chairs to go with it. The models are nothing particularly exciting, and there are two cakes on the table.
The build is a little too simple, but in the context of the Friends Advent Calendar, and the fact that most builds have been very “homely”, it is kinda nice to have more furniture.
That’s it for today! Check in tomorrow to see what we get in Day 14!
Day 14 is an excellent day! Perhaps, one of my favourites out of this year’s Friends Advent Calendar. We get a small table with a complete tea set! I really love the bright pink teapot – I’m fairly sure that the teapot is a new accessory that came out this year, so for me, this is a fantastic new addition to my collection! The red mugs are a nice bonus but I’m just ecstatic about getting a teapot.
I do love a really good cup of tea (earl grey or darjeeling) so it’s great to know that Naomi and Emma both enjoy a comforting pot of tea too. After all, the winter months are the best time for tea. Just joking – every day is the best time for tea.
Just like a warm cup of tea, Day 14 has lifted my spirits and I’m now eagerly awaiting the contents of Day 15!
Day 15 gifts us a handy little accessory, a camera with a tripod. It’s not the most exciting or unique build, but it’s still a pretty neat little accessory to have, especially if you don’t own one of these LEGO cameras.
While it may not thrill you, the camera makes for another excellent prop that Naomi and Emma can interact with. After all, what’s Christmas without taking photos or selfies with your loved ones.
For Day 16, we get a simple craft table that’s perfect for the Friends minidolls to cut wrapping paper and begin the process of wrapping their presents now that Christmas is a little bit more than a week away!
The table is fairly simple, and is raised quite high. We get a pair of scissors (and an extra one!) as well as a small lamp on it.
It’s a simple but effective build and I love the scissors accessory, so I’m pretty stoked to get two here!
On Day 17, we get some gift boxes! They each contain two accessories, a bow and some pink sunglasses for each of the girls.
When I opened up today’s window and put them together, I was really surprised to discover that the lids of the gift boxes were printed! I really dislike stickers, and love it when LEGO give us printed elements, so this was a lovely surprise. Way to go, LEGO!
Day 17 is a pretty good day! Naomi and Emma now get to sport some pretty cool accessories to jazz up their appearances.
Only a week left in the 2016 Friends Advent Calendar! Where did this month go?
Day 18 of the 2016 Friends Advent Calendar kicks up the festivity a notch with a Christmas tree! It’s a pretty standard LEGO Christmas tree, using green slopes for the branches and studs for baubels. The tree is topped with a yellow jewel piece.
Christmas Trees are a regular fixture in Advent Calendars, so it’s always a welcome sight to see them.
I didn’t feel like taking apart all my previous models, so I decided to leave the builds as it is this time!
If Day 18 was all festive, Day 19 has all that you need for a rockin’ Christmas party. You get a DJ turntable, which comes with a printed round 2 x 2 tile which is nice, but you also get 4 party hats too!
The party hats are one of my favourite new LEGO accessories introduced in 2016, so I’m always pleased to get more. Only 5 days remaining in this year’s Advent Calendar! I wonder what other surprises lie in wait.
Sorry for the delay! I’ve been travelling quite a bit. On Day 20, we get a pair of turkey drumsticks on top of some sort of grill. Or it’s some sort of turkey turntable!
It’s pretty bland, and kinda disappointing that you only get two drumsticks and not a complete turkey!
I’m sticking with a turkey turntable, the only ingredient you need to get a Christmas party started!
On Day 21, we get a festive Christmas Cake and a Piping Kit for decorating it. The cake is pretty simple, but as a consolation you get a cherry piece. The piping kit is pretty boring and unsurprising.
I do wish that we got a larger cake. Or if the cake had some sort of printing.
On day 22, we get… a table. With only two days left of the Friends Advent Calendar, I’m starting to think that it’s taking the piss. The table is a little too simple, and nothing much stands out other than the gold pedestal in the middle.
You can probably guess by now… but my enthusiasm for the Friends Advent Calendar has all but disappeared. It’s starting to feel like a chore and it’s been days since a window gave me something substantial.
Well… at least the cake has somewhere to live!
So…. as I was travelling during the Christmas period, I had originally taken photos of the last 3 days of the Advent Calendar to post while I was away from home. Turns out… I forgot to open Door 23 which was a Snowman as I soon found out!
In the absence of my photo… please see Heartlake Times’ photo of the Snowman from Day 23!
Here’s the grand finale, a Polar Bear on some sort of icy pond! Or a hole in the ice. It does look like the Polar Bear is part of a Zoo or something, since there’s a fish on a lure to tease it, possibly to do tricks or something.
I believe the Polar Bear is new variant of the Friends Bear Cub, so it’s quite nice to end on a relative high with an exclusive animal! I’m a big fan of LEGO Animals, so I’m pretty happy to get this Polar Bear – it’ll go very well with my collections of Friends penguins!
So this marks the end of the 2016 Friends Advent Calendar. To be honest, I was pretty glad that it ended as it got pretty tedious towards the end. I did expect it to improve as we got closer to the Grand Finale, but outside of the Polar Bear, there was nothing that really caught my eye in the final stretch.
Looking back, I did buy the Friends Advent Calendar on an impulse on the 1st of December – did I really enjoy it? Not quite. I felt that compared to the excellent Star Wars Advent Calendar or even the City ones, this year felt quite lacklustre.
Firstly, I think that only getting two minidolls is a bit too low. For reference, the Star Wars Advent Calendar gave us 9 minifigures. To improve the Friends Advent Calendar experience, I would like to see LEGO add more Minidolls, to make it feel like you get more value out of it as well as have more characters to pose around with each day’s builds.
I would also like to see more animals! The Hamster was a nice addition, and of course the Polar Bear is a pretty decent curtain-closer, but I’d like to have seen a bit more.
I also would like to see some more complex builds. There are some that were a bit too plain like the table, or desert table and chairs. I know that I’m speaking from the perspective of an adult, but I think that LEGO could step up the difficulty slightly and give us more interesting models.
Anyway, I hope you enjoyed the Friends Advent Calendar as much as I did! I’m not sure if I’m going to do one again next year, but you never know!
Thanks for following – I really appreciate you guys leaving comments and chatting over the builds. It’s been a great run.
Merry Christmas to you and your family! I hope you get plenty of LEGO this holiday season!