After working my way through the various girls’ rooms (here, here and here) I got a bit hooked and was looking for some more affordable sets that tie in with the themes. Specifically, as “a man with a plan” I was on the search for some items that contain nice parts that might be used in later projects, not the usual masses of tall panels, pillars and windows to build facades that unfortunately is so prevalent in most Friends sets these days. Emma’s Art Stand (41332) seemed to fit that bill nicely.
Emma‘s color theme in my opinion is the best balanced of all the girls in that it is quite harmonious and consistent with its lilac and purple tones and unlike Mia and Olivia doesn’t screw around too much by overusing a single color from the theme. If you will, it all makes some kind of sense and while not ultimately “realistic”, you could indeed imagine this little trailer being propped up near a park on a sunny day for some outdoor art show. And the Light Aqua scooter could perfectly exist on its own of course. I’m just glad that after already owning several red ones I can now add some variety with this color version.
Speaking of variations, the wheel hubs are also of a type I hadn’t encountered before, so that’s a plus, too. As you would expect from a 15 Euros model the construction is quick and pretty straightforward with no specific finesse or elaborate techniques being involved. You really just stack the bricks and if you have the parts, you could probably recreate the model just from looking at my images.
A few things stick out, though. For one the many large tiles and panels make no sense without the stickers. That’s one thing you definitely have to consider if like me you loathe those adhesive little buggers. It really makes you wish LEGO had at least some generic printed “paintings” tiles. My own fault, I know. just sayin’…
The other thing that really bothers me are the bright pink doors. they look just totally out of place not just because of their color, but also of the plain backsides. That’s just annoying, considering that 2 x 2 inverted tiles exist in LEGO‘s portfolio and the doors being 4 x 4 it would have fitted perfectly for fairing them over. I simply would have done this entirely differently – make the last row of bricks at the bottom Bright Pink, have the doors in lavender with smooth undersides.
The interior shows that sadly zero effort was made to make it in any way interesting and line up with the chosen subject. There are only standard parts you get in every Friends set and nothing specifically tailored to Emma‘s artsy style. they could at least have thrown in some colored round bricks/ tiles to represent paint cans, a bucket and a paintbrush if nothing else. It’s really boring.
Another idea to spice this up would have been to actually integrate the easel on a slide-out floor piece or attached to the whole swinging upper section. Having it on a separate piece feels kinda wrong, as likely Emma wouldn’t move that far away and stay close to the trailer if she really wanted to sell her art pieces.
Overall I like the set for what it is, but at the same time it is once more a reminder of how LEGO squander interesting opportunities by being measly about parts and not going the full mile. It wouldn’t have taken much to turn this into something really loveable, yet it kinda falls short in its current state. On the whole it probably only really makes sense if you already own every Emma set and can resort all the bits and bobs to fancy up this art wagon.