A jigsaw puzzle can be defined as an array of differently shaped pieces which, when fitted together, form a picture of some sort. Jigsaw puzzles have been around since the eighteenth century, but they became very popular during the Great Depression because they were an affordable method of entertainment. You can make your own jigsaw puzzle by following these simple steps:
Step 1-Choose the picture you want to display on your finished puzzle. The picture can be an enlarged photograph or a picture from a calendar, or something similar. Do not try to use magazine pages as the paper is too thin and it tears too easily. Do not try to use thick posters either as the paper they are printed on is too thick and tends to become fuzzy around the edges.
Step 2– Decide what kind of backing you want for your puzzle. You can use a heavy cardboard backing, foam, or even wood. If you choose to use foam, you will need a large, flat sheet of the material. If you choose to use wood for your backing, you will need a thin piece of plywood that is big enough to put the chosen picture on. Note: If you do not have a saw, you can ask someone to cut it out for you.
Step 3– Next, you will need to m ount the picture onto the backing. You can use white glue, but it is not recommended because it it hard to work with. Plus, it takes quite awhile for the glue to dry before you can move onto the next step. Glue sticks are not good to use either because they do not stick as well , and sometimes they tend to come off of the stick in messy globs. Your best bet is a dry mounting spray which is available at your local craft or hobby store.
Step 4– Use the mounting spray by following the manufacturer’s directions. Make sure that you mount the picture onto the backing properly. Lay the picture onto the backing perfectly flat with no air bubbles left in between the picture and the backing.
Step 5– Depending on the backing you chose, you will now need to cut the puzzle apart into irregularly-shaped pieces. If you are using cardboard, you may either cut it apart with a utility knife or, if it is very heavy, you can use a scroll saw with a very thin blade. For a foam backed puzzle, you can simply cut it apart with a utility knife. And, with a wood-backed puzzle, you will have to use a scroll saw with a thin blade, of course. Do not push the wood through the saw too fast or you will break your blade.
Cut out the pieces slowly and carefully. Do not make the pieces with tiny ends or obtrusions on them as these are likely to break off easily. With a wooden-backed puzzle, you will need to sand the pieces in order to remove the rough edges and splinter off of them. If you are making a puzzle for a child, especially a young one, you might want to paint the underside of the puzzle along with the edges of the puzzle pieces. This will make them smoother for little hands.
Step 6– Finally, after you have cut apart the entire picture, put the puzzle together to make sure that all of the pieces fit together properly.