Homemade Jigsaw Puzzles

Making a custom jigsaw puzzle is easy and affordable. With a few simple supplies and some common household tools, you can create your very own jigsaw puzzle.

For materials, you'll need some balsa wood, poster board, or thick cardboard that can be found at hobby stores for the back of the puzzle. Select a picture you would like to solve. Home photo and magazine covers work well. If you want to use a picture that has special value to you, make a copy of it and use the copy for the puzzle. You won't want to cut up your favorite photo. You can even create your own picture by painting one on the puzzle backing directly. You'll need some rubber cement and sharp scissors to cut out the pieces or a pen knife. Dull scissors won't cut well and will make your puzzle look sloppy. If you are using balsa wood, you may need a saw.

Now that you've gathered your materials, you can now make your puzzle. Think about what shape you would like you puzzle to be. Do you prefer a rectangle, square, circle or abstract shape? Cut your image to fit the piece of backing and in the shape you want. Paste your picture to the backing by applying an even layer of glue to the backing. Carefully place the image on top and smooth out the wrinkles. Let the glue dry for at least one hour before cutting out the pieces. Next, think about what you want the puzzle pieces to look like. Lightly draw your pieces over the dried image then carefully cut out the pieces using the scissors or pen knife.

Once all of your pieces are cut out you can now solve your homemade jigsaw puzzle! If your puzzle didn't turn out the way you wanted or if you aren't crafty, you can buy blank puzzles from Cobble Hill here.

Happy puzzling!

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