A jigsaw puzzle is simply a game involving numerous small, often oddly shaped interlocking tiled pieces that require assembly to create a singular picture. Each piece has a small part of the picture on it and when completed, forms the complete picture.
There are many types of jigsaw puzzles from simple flat cardboard or wooden pieces to high-end 3 dimensional lazer cut pieces. Some puzzles even have printed imagery that can be solved from either side! The jigsaw puzzle comes in 300, 500, 750 or 1,000 pieces to a set, although this can vary.
No matter how simple or complex the jigsaw puzzle is, the idea is still the same. Here are some tips to help you solve your next jigsaw puzzle challenge:
1. The most common approach is to separate all the end pieces from the inside pieces. Once all the pieces around the edge are connected, it is easier to solve the puzzle going inwards. This is recommended when there are multiple areas of contrasting designs and colours. This will also narrow down the potential portions of a puzzle where particular pieces can fit.
2. Use the box as a guide to see where the pieces should roughly be. Pieces should be placed approximately where they should be located. Then interlocking pieces will start to fit together.
3. Another approach is to sort the pieces by colour or image and work on one section at a time. When large areas have the same colour, the shape may be important. All the pieces of a particular colour or type can be laid in a grid and tested against all the other pieces in the grid.
4. Lots of jigsaw puzzles will have a redundant pattern in their cut pieces. For example, puzzles of 1,000 or more usually have a cut pattern that is repeated 4 to 6 times in the complete set and those pieces can also be rotated so that the same shape will be used 8 to 12 times in a puzzle, minus the pieces used on the edge. People have noted that it is possible to identify the repetitions in the puzzle to complete the puzzle systematically.
No matter how you choose to complete your puzzle, this is a game that can be repeated again and again. The only different is how fast you put together the puzzle next time!