Hi there puzzlers, Sarah from Jigthings here.
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.
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!
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.
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!
Until next time puzzlers…