Tips for Putting Together a Jigsaw Puzzle

Let's be real — no one wants to be stuck on a jigsaw puzzle. This blog shares some suggestions for assembling a jigsaw puzzle as fast as possible, while making it an enjoyable experience.

Selecting a puzzle

First, find a puzzle that you like. If you are fond of dogs, then maybe a puzzle with puppies works. If you love outdoors, then a puzzle of the seashore or mountains might be a good fit. It is also important to select a puzzle that you can complete without too much difficulty. So, consider the number of pieces before making a purchase. You can always work on puzzles with more pieces later.

Determining a workspace

You might want a place to do the puzzle from start to end so you don’t need to move it. This will help you to not misplace or lose pieces along the way. Make sure the workspace is also large enough for the size of your puzzle. (The size is usually indicated on the box.) Plan for additional space outside the perimeter of the puzzle to organize and build smaller parts.

Flipping up the pieces and turning them the same way

The extra time it takes to turn your pieces over and have them face the same direction will save you so much time in the long run. This makes it easier to see the colors, patterns, and special relationships of the pieces.

Finding the edge pieces

Building your border first will give you a space to build inside. Look for all the flat-sided pieces and connect those before constructing the inner parts of the puzzle.

Sorting by color and special features to do smaller portions

Separate the pieces by color and shades so you can build certain sections of the puzzle. If there are pieces with no dominant color, put these in a pile. In most puzzles, there are some distinguishing features of the various pieces. Look for written text, a certain coloring in one spot, stripes or spots, people or animals, etc. and put those pieces together, too. Work on these sections outside of the frame. If you can determine where they go, put them inside the puzzle in the estimated spot.

Taking a break

Sometimes, just getting away from the puzzle for a short time is helpful. The added rest and focus will help you to take a new look when you return. You will undoubtedly make more progress which will fuel your motivation.                                                                                           

After you have finished the puzzle, don’t forget to pat yourself on the back. Then, it’s off to a new puzzle! You might want to work on a similar puzzle, pick out one that is harder, or invite others to join in.  With practice, you will develop your puzzle-making skills. Your brain will be able to better recognize the differences in shades, colors, and patterns, and also determine the similarities and differences in the various shapes.