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Jigsaw Puzzle Tips and Tricks

Category Games
Whatever your plans are for your completed puzzle, they usually take up some space and time before they are finished. This guide contains jigsaw puzzle tips and tricks.
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By 3 found this helpful
July 16, 2015

Take a picture of the puzzle while it is whole on the cardboard. This way, you'll be able to look at it to help you.

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By 6 found this helpful
June 8, 2009

Empty cardboard pizza boxes make great storage for a jigsaw puzzle in progress. They can easily save a long evenings work without taking up table space. Can be slid under a couch or bed until there is time to again tackle the puzzle.

By Barbara from Wisconsin

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March 12, 2015

My daughter loves puzzles. I usually pick one up each time I go to the dollar store. In order to keep the puzzle pieces together, I mark the backs with different shapes, stamps, dots, etc. I mark each piece to a puzzle with it's own distinct marking. Then, I put the same mark on the back of the picture, as well as the amount of pieces to the puzzle. (Because we have so many puzzles, I cut out the picture and put it in a baggie with all the pieces, to save room). When you find a random puzzle piece that has fallen under the couch (or wherever!), just find the matching bag or box. This has saved me a lot of time when I need to find what puzzle the piece belongs to. On this puzzle, I drew a stethoscope for Doc McStuffins.

Source: My friend, Arlyn, who marks her puzzles with letters.

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By 2 found this helpful
June 5, 2012

As you may already know, the first thing you do when putting together a jigsaw puzzle is to go through and sort out all the flat border pieces by putting them in a separate box.

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By 0 found this helpful
July 10, 2007

Toddlers love to play with puzzles and of course they will always mix the pieces in the same box. I have a three year old boy that just started with the 24 pieces and he will put the pieces together and want someone to sort the puzzle.

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By 1 found this helpful
March 20, 2017

Many people would like to work jigsaw puzzles but are not sure what to do once the pieces are all in a pile in front of them. The key is to sort out the straight-edged pieces, which form the border first.

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I like to keep these straight pieces apart from the others.

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By 1 found this helpful
March 16, 2017

I like to work jigsaw puzzles while sitting on a bed, with my children. In order to avoid frustration, we use Scotch Magic tape to tape each piece together. This ensures that we will always be able to put it away unfinished and yet start on it again the next time, right where we left off.

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By 0 found this helpful
September 5, 2007

My daughter has TONS of puzzles and at the end of the day, it'd take me a half hour to find all of the pieces. So I attached small Velcro circles onto the back of every piece along with their matching space on the puzzle board.

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Questions

Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

By 0 found this helpful
February 11, 2009

I have trouble opening puzzle boxes neatly. Jigsaw puzzles come in boxes which are sealed under on all four sides. After I open it the ends are jagged and the box is not neat on the bottom anymore. Does anybody have tips for opening the seal of jigsaw puzzle boxes?

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Lakshmi

Answers

By Harry (Guest Post)
February 11, 20090 found this helpful

I use a small jack knife to open boxed such as you describe.

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February 11, 20090 found this helpful

You can use a knife or razor to cut through the paper by running the knife or razor along the paper seam that runs between the bottom of the box and the rim of the top of the box.

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February 11, 20090 found this helpful

Letter opener.

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By chris t. (Guest Post)
February 12, 20090 found this helpful

I use one of those razor cutters that they sell in the stationary depts of stores. They have a blade that can be broken off when the front edge gets dull & a clicker on the handle that clicks & locks.

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You click out less than 1/8 inch on the blade tip. Go slowly & only cut the paper around the edge. These cutters are handy for so many things. I keep one on my coffee table to open boxes of things that UPS delivers.

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February 12, 20090 found this helpful

I use a sraight edge razor to open up the boxes. ~Janette~

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By soyzicks (Guest Post)
February 12, 20090 found this helpful

I do not care how the box gets open as long as the pix stays intact. Then I cut out the pix and tape it onto a plastic type of storage box.
** this will save you on trying to keep the cheap cardboard box from breaking down eventually.
** it is also waterproof in case of water damage, then I recycle the cheap cardboard box.

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March 13, 20090 found this helpful

A simple kitchen knife always did the trick for me.

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February 19, 20140 found this helpful

I just did a 1000 piece puzzle on a roll up mat. How do I get it off the mat to my board to frame it?

By Lois K.

Answers

February 21, 20140 found this helpful

You can do it two ways. Your mat rolls up to keep the puzzle inside right? Lay it backwards on a large flat surface and unroll it so it's upside down when it's on the table.

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Then duct tape the back and you will be ready to frame it. The other is to get some puzzle glue and secure the puzzle with the glue before you try and move it. This is the best answer I found.

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February 21, 20140 found this helpful

I did this with a puzzle that I made for my granddaughter. Go to a hobby store and get some mod-podge. It's a type of glue. Brush it all over the top of your puzzle and it not only glues the pieces together, it gives the puzzle a nice, protective shine. If you don't want to spend the money on mod-podge, you can also do this with Elmer's Glue or any kind of white glue that dries clear. Just mix it with water to thin it out and brush over the puzzle.

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January 13, 20170 found this helpful

Glue the front, then slide it over after it is dry.

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February 23, 20170 found this helpful

I came here to find an answer to the same question, but m concerned that the puzzle glue would get in between the puzzle pieces and stain the roll up mat. Any other ideas?

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February 23, 20170 found this helpful

If the mat is plastic or silicone, the puzzle glue should just pull up off of it. If you are still concerned, maybe you could cover it with plastic wrap before starting the puzzle.

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January 20, 20150 found this helpful

We just assembled a 9000 piece puzzle (140x190cm) and are wondering how to protect it. We put it into 4 pieces and will glue it on a foamboard (Alufix) and frame it. I would prefer not putting on protective glass because of its weight. I was thinking of some sort of liquid plastification. Does anyone have experience with something like this?

By Igor S

Answers

January 21, 20150 found this helpful

Mod Podge! It's an all-in-one glue, sealer and finish with easy clean-up! I've used it for puzzles, sealing pictures on wood, etc. Available at Walmart, Michaels, and Jo Ann's.

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January 21, 20150 found this helpful

I agree that Mod-podge is the product to use. Go to a local craft store or even a dollar store; they will likely have this product. Some craft stores sell a product for preserving puzzles, that is likely the same as Mod-podge, but under a different name. Just ask at those sorts of stores.

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January 21, 20150 found this helpful

Wow, 9000 pieces! That is really an accomplishment! My mother seals all her puzzles with Mod Podge to save them. She then mounts them to a thin sheet of paneling or plywood which my father custom cuts for her (she does "shaped" puzzles). I don't know how a puzzle would turn out that isn't mounted on a board or something to keep it flat. The Mod Podge makes an attractive finish and her puzzles have looked great for many years.

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October 10, 20160 found this helpful

I have tried Mod Podge & you can see where glue has been applied. I have used Ravensberger glue & after 4 coats it still hadn't glued the puzzles properly. I was not happy with either (expensive) result. I was REALLY happy with just spraying a clear lacquer over a puzzle I did almost 20yrs ago & still looks good (2 coats) this would work perfectly since you are sticking it to the foam backing. Good Luck. What is the picture of, by the way?

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By 0 found this helpful
January 13, 2017

Can you shellac the front of a glow in the dark puzzle without damaging the effect? If not, what can be used to protect the front side?

Answers

January 13, 20170 found this helpful

Even shiny glosses can distort the finish. Glue the back only. Maybe you can use a frame with a glass front to protect the puzzle.

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January 13, 20170 found this helpful

I think shellac would probably ruin it.

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