- Thomas Poulsomâ€™s designs have been adopted by the Danish company
- And one of his sets is now among the top ten bestselling Lego products
- Has already received about Â£20,000 in royalties for three months of sales
- Thomas married Diana after she saw his designs on the internet and contacted him
When a robin landed on tree surgeon Thomas Poulsomâ€™s spade one morning it was moment of delight â€“ and one that would change his life.
For the tiny visitor inspired the Lego fan to start building model birds with the famous toy bricks, and they could earn him a fortune.
His idea has even found him a wife.
Thomasâ€™s designs have been adopted by the Danish company and one of his sets is now among the top ten bestselling Lego products. The kit â€“ which makes a robin, hummingbird and jay â€“ has even sold out at London toy store Hamleys.
Model behaviour: Thomas Poulsomâ€™s (pictured with his creations and huge Lego collection behind him) designs have been adopted by the Danish company
Thomas, 37, a Lego fan since childhood, said: â€˜When I saw the robin it just struck me that thereâ€™s so much more to Lego than man-made objects such as cars, castles and trains.
â€˜In a week, Iâ€™d made a kingfisher, a blue tit, a woodpecker, a magpie, a barn owl and a goldfinch â€“ all birds I saw out while working. Once Iâ€™d started, I couldnâ€™t stop.â€™
A further 100 models followed and when Thomas posted pictures online, the images went viral, attracting 10,000 fans in 18 months.
He then sold his idea to Lego and has already received about Â£20,000 in royalties for just three months of sales. An estimated 50,000 boxes containing his robin, hummingbird and jay have been sold around the world since their release in January. The box is priced at Â£39.99 in Britain.
Flight of fancy: Thomas’s design for a kingfisher (pictured). The kit has sold out at London toy store Hamleys
Profit: Thomas, a Lego fan since childhood, has received about Â£20,000 in royalties for just three months of sales. Pictured left, a rockhopper penguin, and right, a snowy owl
Thomas met and then last year married Diana, a Colombian artist, after she saw his designs on the internet and contacted him.
Diana, 28, already made Â£1,000 models of birds out of paper. She said: â€˜I couldnâ€™t believe there was someone else out there doing what I was doing. We are both obsessed.â€™
Thomas, who features in Channel 4 programme The Secret World Of Lego tonight, said: â€˜Kids at school laughed at me for being a nerd. Now Iâ€™ve had the last laugh. Iâ€™m glad Iâ€™m a geek.â€™
His first Lego set was a castle given to him by his father for his fifth birthday. His 150,000-brick collection takes up a wall of his two-bedroom flat in Bristol. He hopes Lego will consider putting more of his designs into production â€“ and has plans to swap his Vauxhall Vectra for a Â£70,000 Audi RS4 with his earnings.
Hamleysâ€™ senior buyer Claire Smith said: â€˜Thomas has created a set that breaks the norm. The main purchasers have been adults but weâ€™ve also seen children buying the birds as gifts for their mother.â€™
The Secret World Of Lego will be shown on Channel 4 tonight at 8pm.
For a look at Thomas’ new designs, visit HERE
Bestseller: The set manufactured by Lego based on Thomas’s designs, which went viral online
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