Brick by brick: Regina man turns passion for Lego into professional creations for locals

Sharif Alshurafa has been building creations with Lego since he was a little boy and now more than 30 years later, his passion has evolved into a business venture.

It all started when his father, who was an architect, inspired him to create houses.

“It was a combination between a hobby and a toy, and supervised at the same time by my dad,” Alshurafa said. “He taught me how to do scaling and how to use blueprints in building Lego models.”

He said having the common interest brought them closer as father and son.

“For me, Lego is my favourite toy and for him, he was practicing his domain or business at the same time. So we both were enjoying, learning and practicing and having fun,” he said.

Over the years, he has improved his skills and now builds intricate Lego homes. Many have decorated interiors which are also made of Lego. He said each home takes him about one to two months to complete on average. He said each house has between 1500-2000 Lego pieces. Throughout the years, he has made dozens.

Alshurafa is a member of the Saskatchewan Lego Users Group, a group of like-minded adult Lego builders from across the province. He said that group inspired him to start making replicas of pre-existing homes, instead of just creations from his own imagination.

“I thought about it and I started asking homebuilders if they were interested. Luckily, North Ridge Development accepted,” he said.

He said North Ridge Development asked him to build two projects which they are displaying at their show homes now. He said a townhouse replica he made for the company is his favourite piece that he has made yet because of its size, the colours and the design itself.

(Courtesy: Sharif Alshurafa)

Alshurafa has also built some replica homes for homeowners in the province, who seem to share his love of Lego.

“They appreciate Lego and they look at it from the art side,” Alshurafa said. “It could be considered as a decorative piece or a piece of art, so they can display it at their home and enjoy it.”

(Courtesy: Sharif Alshurafa)

Alshurafa has his sights set on much larger projects in the coming months. He said he’d like to create the Saskatchewan Legislature. Although it would be expensive, he said it would be an iconic project.

Because of its size, the Legislative Building will likely take him at least four months to complete. He anticipates it to be about four metres long, one metre wide and 50 centimetres tall.