Author Archives: Colin King

Three-Dimensional Puzzles – 30 Aug 2021

Hello puzzlers – Sarah from Jigthings here. Photo of Blogger Sarah

I’m a big fan of Game of Thrones. Not only have I read the books (hurry up George Martin and get the series finished), but I’ve also seen the show at least 10 times!

My screensaver is Drogon, Daenerys’ biggest and fiercest dragon and there are two gorgeous ceramic ornaments of dragons on my windowsill. This past Christmas I received a Game of Thrones globe 3-D jigsaw.

Well I never did! It was the hardest jigsaw I’ve ever come across. In fact, I’m ashamed to say I had to follow the numbers on the back of the pieces to put it together. It now lives between the Aconyx and Pyronyx (the two ceramic dragons) on the windowsill.

For today’s jigsaw theme, we are looking at 3-D puzzles. Let’s start with Hogwarts. What a fun puzzle for a Harry Potter fan to do. It’s a total of 197 pieces and the size of the completed puzzle is 32.5 x 45.5cm. Available at £26.00, this would make a great birthday gift for a budding wizard.

Hogwarts Jigsaw PuzzleHarry Potter Hogwarts

For something a little more complex, how about another famous building? This is, of course, Notre-Dame in Paris. It’s 830 pieces and looks rather difficult. Not one I’ll be adding to my Santa list this Christmas. Price is £40.99.

Jigsaw Puzzle of Notre-DameNotre-Dame de Paris

How cute is this one? He could even live outside in the garden on dry days. It’s a little pricey at £34.99 but with 269 pieces made of wood, I think it’s worth the extra.

Turtle Jigsaw PuzzleTurtle

And last but not least, here is the Game of Thrones Globe jigsaw. Perhaps not as colourful or interesting as the others, but as a GoT fan, it’s something for your collection. There are 240 pieces and the size is 22.9 x 6.4 x 22.9 cm. It retails at €22.04.

Game of Thrones JigsawGame of Thrones 3D World

If you’ve never done a 3D puzzle before, now’s the time to start!

Happy puzzling.

Buzzy Bees – 27 Aug 2021

Hello puzzlers – Sarah from Jigthings herePhoto of Blogger Sarah

One of my favourites in the animal kingdom is the insect family. The sheer variety and weirdness of them really appeals to me. They are like miniature aliens roaming the planet. I just love them!

For today’s jigsaw theme, we are looking at the little creatures. I’ve found a few to choose from and none are scary close-ups so don’t worry.

Let’s start with a round puzzle. Even though it’s not the usual rectangular shape, it will still sit lovely on our Jigboard 500. It is 300 pieces and retails at £8.99. Soft, gentle and not too taxing. If you are doing this with a youngster, you could ask them to count the butterflies and see if there are, in fact, 99 of them!

Round Jigsaw Puzzle of Butterflies99 Butterflies

When I’m doing a jigsaw, I love to see loads of different colours. Makes it easier to sort the pieces into their respective colours. This one is a vibrant eye-catching puzzle. It’s 500 pieces and is £11.99.

Jigsaw Puzzles of BeetlesKaleido Beetles

The next one is for the very young. It’s simply gorgeous! Made of wood, it will last many years. Get your little ones into jigsaws at an early age!

This jigsaw puzzle is only £7.00 and orders are processed within 24 hours.

Jigsaw of LadybirdLadybug

Finally, we have an absolutely stunning jigsaw puzzle of a beautiful dragonfly. The colours are so rich and vivid. The jigsaw is a 1,000-piece wooden puzzle and retails for £31.49, which I think is a snip considering it’s made of wood.

Jigsaw Puzzle of DragonflyDragonfly

I hope you’ve enjoyed my selection of the little creatures!

Jigsaw Puzzle Images – 24 Aug 2021

Hi there puzzlers, Sarah from Jigthings here. Photo of Blogger Sarah

As mentioned in a previous blog, choosing a jigsaw is invariably decided by the image or subject matter.

It’s an important factor in relation to level of difficulty. Take a look at the three puzzles below to see what I mean.

Straightforward

Jigsaw Puzzle BowlingBowling by the Brook

Tricky

Gradient Jigsaw PuzzleGradient Jigsaw

Nigh-on Impossible

Jigsaw Puzzle of GrassImpuzzible Natural Grass

The first jigsaw puzzle is your ordinary image – lots of colour and variety. This should be easy enough to sort the pieces into using our Jigsafes.

The second image is a little more difficult. There are a limited number of colours and many pieces will be the exact same colour. You’d need to be a serious puzzler to have a go.

The third – gulp! – where on earth do you start? One colour, one design and no wiggle-room.

There is a seemingly never-ending choice when it comes to jigsaw pictures. You can even have your own photograph turned into a jigsaw. Gone are the days of either a motor car or a country cottage. You will even find images of baked beans, sweets and pebbles – although these are not for the casual puzzler.

If you’re stuck-in-the-mud when it comes to your puzzle images, why not branch out and have a go at something slightly crazy? It’ll stretch your brain and make you that bit more intelligent – alternatively you’ll be needing to make an appointment with the optician!

Jigsaw Puzzle of Candy BallsCandy Balls

Happy puzzling everyone.

Gibsons Games Jigsaw Puzzles – 21 Aug 2021

Hi there puzzlers, Sarah from Jigthings here.Photo of Blogger Sarah

If you’re a keen puzzler, you may have a Gibsons jigsaw in your collection already, or at least will have heard of them.

Gibsons Games have been going for over 100 years. They are a family-run business based in Sutton, England. As well as jigsaw puzzles, they also sell games.

I tend to find with Gibsons that their jigsaws are quality and fit snugly in place. This is because the puzzles are made from the thickest board on the market.

What I particularly like about their website is that once you’re on the jigsaw main page, you can filter using these options:

  • Age
  • Number of pieces
  • Theme
  • Artist
  • Availability

Let’s take a look at a few that are available.

As it’s summer I thought I’d choose a holiday theme one. This is Whitby and I’ve spent many a time there exploring the town and eating my Dracula chocolate! This is a 636-piece puzzle and is a snip at £11.00.

Whitby Jigsaw PuzzleWhitby

For a jigsaw to brighten your mood, have a look at this one. Isn’t it lovely? Full of colour and little snippets of wisdom. Shouldn’t be too difficult, although using one of our Jigsafes would be helpful. It’s 1,000 pieces and retails at £14.00 which I think is great value for money.

Jigsaw Puzzle of PositivityPuzzle of Positivity

The next one would make a fabulous birthday or Christmas present for someone who remembers the 1980s. I reckon I’ve eaten every one of them over the years! It comes in a handy tin and is 500 pieces. Again, very reasonably-price at £9.95.

Jigsaw Puzzle of Sweets1980s Sweet Memories

All in all, I reckon you can’t go wrong with Gibsons jigsaw puzzles.

Jigsaw Puzzle Types – 18 Aug 2021

Hi there puzzlers, Sarah from Jigthings here. Photo of Blogger Sarah

When deciding on your next jigsaw puzzle, perhaps have a change from your usual choice. There are a puzzling number of options available (see what I did there?!).

Let’s take a look at what’s available.

Cardboard Jigsaws – New

These constitute the majority of the current jigsaw market. You’ll find this type of puzzle in most shops. With a plethora of sizes, shapes and images, manufacturers and retailers deserve to be complimented on their ability to provide excellent entertainment value.

The jigsaw below is one such example. It’s a 500-piece puzzle and is available at just £5.00 – great value.

london-busLondon Street

Cardboard Jigsaws – Old

Jigsaw puzzles made from cardboard started appearing in the 1930s but these were of low quality. Waddingtons perfected the dye cutting processes in the 1950s and, along with Tower Press, they dominated the market for the next 40 years. You can trust the quality of any puzzle with the Waddington or Tower Press name. However, if you’re buying from a car boot sale what isn’t guaranteed is that the number of pieces inside match the number on the box!

Wooden Jigsaws

The laser cutter speeded up the production process of jigsaws. This meant that top quality wooden puzzles could be made without the need for hours of work by skilled craftsmen. Saying that the machinery required costs anything up to £100,000!

The market for wooden jigsaws cut in the traditional manner is still very much buoyant and numerous skilled cutters are doing well. True jigsaw aficionados always say that puzzles cut by hand fit a bit more snugly together than laser cut ones. There is also the added charm in the knowledge that each puzzle is truly unique – which is greatly appealing to some people.

Here is an example of a wooden puzzle. It’s 191 pieces and compared to cardboard puzzles, it’s pricey at £42.99. However, this is fairly average for a wooden jigsaw.

Jigsaw Puzzle of Marina Creatures The Marina Planet

As you can see from the image below, The Marina Planet is made up of many little whimsies. The whimsies are in the shapes of marina creatures from starfish to hammerhead sharks – delightful!

Jigsaw Pieces of The Marina Planet

Until next time puzzlers…

Flower Frenzy – 15 Aug 2021

Hello puzzlers – Sarah from Jigthings here. Photo of Blogger Sarah

I went to visit my parents over the weekend. My mum is a proud gardener and her little front garden is full of bloom. With that in mind, I thought I’d see what flowery fun can be had with jigsaws.

Let’s start with something soft and gentle. I love the colours in this 1,000-piece jigsaw. Could be a little tricky knowing where those purples go!

Jigsaw Puzzle of Violet FlowersViolet Flowers

One of my favourite flowers is the poppy. The one below is from the Poppy Shop with all profits going to The Royal British Legion. It’s 750 pieces (so not too taxing) and is £19.99. Very pretty.

poppyWild Poppy Fields

Next up is what I’d call a ‘noisy’ jigsaw – full of this ‘n’ that. It’s 1,000 pieces with a lovely mix of colours – perfect for organising in our Jigsafes. And it’s a snip at only £7.00.

Floral Garden Jigsaw PuzzleFloral Garden

Of course, we can’t talk about flowers without mentioning the English rose. There’s nothing quite like the scent of a rose and if you want a smelly jigsaw, just spray some rosewater over this one! It’s 1,000 pieces and is rather pink. Retails for £16.99.

Jigsaw Puzzle of RosesEnglish Roses

So there you have it. A lovely selection of flowery jigsaws to choose from. They will hopefully bring a smile to your face.

JHG Jigsaws – 12 Aug 2021

Hi there puzzlers, Sarah from Jigthings here.Photo of Blogger Sarah

For those of us who like to buy British, you may want to consider JHG Jigsaws.

The company is based in beautiful Dorset, in a converted farm premises. They have been going for 24 years starting in 1997 with only 20 images. These days there are over 400 images to choose from. JHG do puzzles in the following sizes:

  • 500-piece puzzles
  • 1,000-piece puzzles
  • 1,500-piece puzzles

They also do children’s puzzles and personalised puzzles.

If you fancy something a little different, how about a round puzzle? This is a 500-piece and is reasonably priced at £8.00.

Jigsaw Puzzle of Lake Birds Birds of Lake Forest and Field

Alternatively going with the traditional theme, this one is a 1,000-piece puzzle. Bright and cheerful – and lots of yellow! It retails at £13.00 which I think is a good price.

Jigsaw Puzzle of Sunflowers Sunflowers

Here’s one for the younger puzzlers. A 48-piece jigsaw retailing at £7.99. I really like this one – it’s vibrant and eye-catching for the little ones.

Jigsaw Puzzle of Town Square Town Square

What impresses me about JHG Jigsaws is that all their jigsaw puzzles are made in house, using eco-friendly materials and sourcing raw materials in the UK wherever possible.

A personalised puzzle can be of any digital image you want. From a wedding photograph to a birthday party or even your own pet. Jigsaws are made of either 500 or 1,000 pieces – the choice is yours.

For a bit of nostalgia, I love this one. Takes me back to being a young girl – carefree and happy. It’s 1,000 pieces and retails at £13.00. Lovely!

Jigsaw Puzzle of CarouselCarousel

There’s plenty more from JHG Jigsaws – why not take a look and see?

Jigsaw Puzzle Choices – 9 Aug 2021

Hi there puzzlers, Sarah from Jigthings here. Photo of Blogger Sarah

When choosing a jigsaw puzzle, there are a number of factors to consider. These include cost and difficulty.

Prices vary widely from anything under a pound (such as you might find at a local jumble sale or car boot) to thousands of pounds. The higher end tend to be bespoke wooden jigsaws.

This stunning jigsaw is a Wentworth wooden puzzle and the 1,000-piece version would set you back £105.

Jigsaw Puzzle of PuffinsPuffins on Farne Island

According to the Guinness World Records, the most expensive jigsaw puzzle was over £14,589! This was at a charitable art auction.

Of course, the level of difficulty is an important consideration to make. The more pieces, the longer it will take.

Suggestions for different age groups are as follows:

  • 18 months to 2 years old: Less than 15 pieces
  • 2 to 3 years old: 15 to 30 pieces
  • 4 to 5 years old: 30 to 80 pieces
  • 6 to 12 years old: 80 to 1,000 pieces

Big Dinosaurs is a 50-piece puzzle with a recommended age of 4-plus.

Dinosaurs Jigsaw PuzzleOrchard Toys

For adults, especially those who love puzzling, it’s all about enthusiasm.  From traditional 1,500-piece puzzles to 3-D puzzles to the maddeningly infuriating Wasgij range, there’s something to delight everyone.

Jigsaw Puzzle of BingoBingo Blunder

The image itself is also part of the difficulty, Imagine doing a jigsaw all in the same one colour – pretty much impossible and not very exciting in my opinion! I’ll talk more about the subject matter in another blog – look out for it.

Mchezo Jigsaw Puzzles – 6 Aug 2021

Hi there puzzlers, Sarah here from Jigthings. Photo of Blogger Sarah

This week I’ve been looking for unusual, wacky puzzles. I came across a company called Mchezo, who are based in Kentucky.

They have a small, but varied, number of puzzles all of 1,000 pieces. I particularly like these which are called ‘Loops within Loops’ and ‘The Happiest Kid in the World’.

Jigsaw Puzzle of Loops

happy-2

Loops within Loops looks like a real toughie and I can imagine getting googly eyes just by sorting the pieces before even starting to put them together.

I love the look of The Happiest Kid in the World but where on earth to start? I normally separate pieces by colour, but I suspect my blue and purple Jigsafes would be crammed full!

The company is relatively new, having been founded just last year. The word Mchezo is a Swahili word meaning ‘game’ or ‘to play’. Don’t ask me how to pronounce it!

Mchezo have some new puzzles coming very soon, so make sure to check out their website. They have three jigsaws which will be available in August. Their titles are:

  • Screaming Eagles: The Liberation of Carentan 1944
  • Anti-Hate City
  • Gradient Moon

The titles sound intriguing, don’t you think? Here’s a sneak preview of the first one.

screaming-eagles

Well puzzlers, I’m off to be dazzled by Loops within Loops – wish me luck!

It’s Summertime – 3 Aug 2021

Hello puzzlers – Sarah from Jigthings here enjoying the sunshine! Photo of Blogger Sarah

Now that summer is upon us, I thought it would be fab to find some sunshine happy puzzles.

Any caravanners out there? If you’re planning a trip this summer, don’t forget to take a couple of jigsaws (and the Scrabble) in case of our usual British weather.

It is rather unique in that you’re doing a jigsaw of a couple doing a jigsaw!

Jigsaw Puzzle of JigsawThe Missing Piece

For a rather more challenging puzzle, the one below is 1,000 pieces. I love these kind of jigsaws. They’re colourful, loads of fun and there’s always something funny to spot if you look closely enough.

Jigsaw Puzzle of BeachI Love Summer

Of course, summertime is when gardeners are most active. After doing a day’s work in the garden, pour yourself a long, cool drink and have a go at this stunning peaceful jigsaw manufactured by Falcon de Luxe. It’s 1,000 pieces with a lovely mix of colours – perfect for organising in our Jigsafes.

Jigsaw Puzzle of Spring GardenSummer Garden

Who can forget the very English summer fetes in these warm months? Too many cakes, too much sun and going home with jars of jam and chutney. It is a typical scene from a country fair and is another big 500-piece, so not too taxing on those warm, lazy days.

Jigsaw Puzzle of Summer FeteSummer Fete

And for something a little different, how about this butterfly-shaped jigsaw. It’s 1,000 pieces and rather pretty, don’t you agree?

Jigsaw Puzzle of ButterflyButterfly Summer