Making a Jigsaw Puzzle Mat

February 10, 2015

A cheap homemade puzzle caddy.I decided that packing a puzzle up for transport couldn't possibly be very difficult, so I made a jigsaw puzzle caddy dirt cheap. You need:


  • Cheap tube: I used 3 Walmart paper towel rolls end to end wrapped in poster paper. Secure with packing tape.
  • Cheap fabric: A yard of 66 inch wide fleece. Fleece is a lot more fun to deal with than felt, however, felt will work also.
  • You can use pony tail holders end to end with a paper clip to keep it wound.

In this case, the total cost was $7.00.

Rubber bands to hold together the puzzle caddy
Read More Comments

More Solutions

This page contains the following solutions.

Silver Post Medal for All Time! 418 Posts
January 6, 2020

This old Carrom Game board, which has been stored in the attic for probably 40 years, sure did come in handy for putting this puzzle together. We needed a solid background so I took 6 pieces of computer printing paper and taped it to the board.

A game board being used to assemble a puzzle.


6 Questions

Here are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community.

March 20, 2020

I was wondering if anyone has an idea of how to make a puzzle keeper. You roll out the cloth and put together a puzzle on it. You can "roll up" the puzzle and store it to roll it out again later when you want to work on the puzzle at another time. This way, a table or other popular surface isn't taken up and space and be saved.

Here is an example of the puzzle keeper from Amazon so you can get some ideas. Why should we pay lots of $ for it when we can make a cheaper version, right? Thanks in advance for your clever ideas!


Gold Feedback Medal for All Time! 949 Feedbacks
March 20, 20200 found this helpful
Best Answer

Puzzles are nice but they do require table space and if you have a cat they always seem to know where they should not jump.
We made one similar to this video years ago and it still works great.


There are several ways to do this and some people use a yoga mat or other flat mat that can be rolled up. If you do not have a piece of PVC pipe handy for the center you can actually make a roll out of a large towel (but something sturdy works best).

Maybe these will give you some ideas.

Answer this Question

April 12, 2022

Which is easier and cheaper to make: the puzzle board or the puzzle mat?


Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 140 Posts
April 12, 20220 found this helpful

That depends on if you are displaying or storing. For display the board works better when moving from table to table and used to admire. Using a mate ,works when the puzzle is put together and stored for a later date , this preserves and stores.


They can run around the same price depending on size of puzzle.


Gold Post Medal for All Time! 677 Posts
April 12, 20220 found this helpful

I think it would be easier cutting material for a mat than a board. It is softer.


Gold Feedback Medal for All Time! 949 Feedbacks
April 13, 20220 found this helpful

The puzzle board and puzzle mat are made for two different purposes.
Usually, the puzzle mat is used to store smaller puzzles (but can be made/used for larger sizes also) as it is flexible so it can be rolled up and placed into some sort of 'tubing'. This means you can store it or carry it to another location.


The puzzle board is made to work on a table or floor and can be moved to different locations within the house. The board does not usually have a cover (unless you cover it with something; newspaper, linens/towels, etc) so it is not made for traveling.
The board can also be used for holding games like monopoly, etc.
Boards can be made out of wood, cardboard, etc. but each type takes a different level of skill to build and can cost (money).

I would say the puzzle mat is definitely easier to make but is not as substantial as the board.

Maybe you should decide how you wish to use this and then check out instructions online for both versions.

Puzzle boards can also be bought/made with a hardcover so it can also be moved to another location outside of the home.


Bronze Tip Medal for All Time! 59 Tips
April 16, 20220 found this helpful

Lots of great ideas/info right here on Thrifty Fun:
Puzzle Mats:
Puzzle Boards:

May 8, 20220 found this helpful

Since Joseph B. asks which of these two items is easier and cheaper to make, it is easier to make a puzzle mat, for example from a Craft Felt Sheet. 


Read how to make a puzzle mat on this site:

I found a great instruction on how to make a puzzle board:

October 31, 20230 found this helpful

I made a puzzle board out of my flat screen tv box. When you open the box at the staples it comes apart in two halves. One of the halves has an edge all the way around it and keeps the pieces from hitting the floor. I have a cat who likes to push pieces to the floor.

Answer this Question

July 22, 2010

Does anyone have an idea on how to make a puzzle caddy, the kind that rolls the puzzle up? Thank you.

By karen from Charleston, SC


July 22, 20100 found this helpful

When I first found these instructions (probably over 5 years ago), there were pictures. But now they're just written instructions. Maybe if you search on the internet, you'll find photos (if that's important to you).


July 24, 20100 found this helpful

Measure a piece of felt so that it is 4 - 6" larger than the completed puzzle plus a little extra on one side. Then take a cardboard tube left over from your giftwrap paper (the heavier the better) and wrap & glue (or sew) the longer end around the tube. Once dry roll up around tube and secure with rubber bands. has some nice instructions with pics.

Answer this Question


ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.

July 22, 2010

I am wondering if anybody knows how to make a jigsaw puzzle mat? Please give any feedback or ideas! Thank you! Ericka, North Carolina

Crafts MiscellaneousJune 7, 2012
Valentine's Ideas!
Birthday Ideas!
St. Patrick's Ideas!
Better LivingBudget & FinanceBusiness and LegalComputersConsumer AdviceCoronavirusCraftsEducationEntertainmentFood and RecipesHealth & BeautyHolidays and PartiesHome and GardenMake Your OwnOrganizingParentingPetsPhotosTravel and RecreationWeddings
Published by ThriftyFun.
Desktop Page | View Mobile
Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Contact Us
Generated 2024-02-07 12:25:09 in 19 secs. ⛅️️
© 1997-2024 by Cumuli, Inc. All Rights Reserved.