10 Best Puzzles For Adults | March 2017
- pieces won't fade or peel
- great gift for a budding artist
- pieces don't lock together well
|Brand||Melissa & Doug|
- no two pieces are alike
- satisfyingly challenging
- finished picture is very busy
- resembles an 18th century sailor's map
- letters are clearly printed
- not very large once completed
- colors are bright and vibrant
- includes a bonus poster
- puzzle cut is very poor
- large pieces for easy handling
- clear lines frame the completed images
- depicts the '90s triumphs and tragedies
|Brand||White Mountain Puzzles|
- non-toxic soy-based inks
- lots of details and cute features
- hours of entertainment for under $12
- optimal interlocking fit
- fine linen-structured paper coating
- extra thick cardboard pieces
Several Tips For Putting Together a Jigsaw Puzzle
When working on a jigsaw puzzle, the most logical place to begin is around the border. A puzzle's border features pieces with straight edges, and its four corner pieces are all comprised of right angles. The color and direction of every corner piece should tell you where that piece belongs.
Once you've constructed the framework, you can begin to move inward, while also connecting individual pieces that fit somewhere in between. You should be able to identify where certain pieces belong based on matching the colors of those pieces against the picture on the puzzle's box. Certain puzzle boxes have been designed to scale, which means you can complete the puzzle, piece-by-piece, by using the box much like a paint by number. Keep an eye out for any pieces that are uniquely shaped, as it's much easier to locate a companion piece for these.
As you're sifting through pieces, you'll want to sort similar-looking pieces into separate piles (This will allow you to work on consolidated sections of the puzzle, one-by-one). Do you notice any distinctive objects in the puzzle? How about any letters, numbers, or other characters? If you can spot these, you'll have a good idea of where to place any of the corresponding pieces.
Once you've interlocked a few pieces, you can place them in the puzzle's frame according to where they should fit. This way you'll have fewer pieces outside of the puzzle, and a clearer sense of what's still missing within. Down the stretch, the remaining pieces should make sense based on a process of elimination. Mix and match those final tiles and even the most intricate puzzle will be complete.
When, Where, & Why a Puzzle Makes Great Sense
Everybody knows that a puzzle seems custom-made for a rainy day, but a puzzle can also be used as a healthy distraction, a mid-day diversion, or a pleasant way to end each night. A puzzle is superb for keeping both children and adults entertained, and it can be completed in almost any setting, whether it be on an outdoor porch or an indoor couch.
Puzzles don't only pass the time, they exercise the brain. By definition, any puzzle is meant to test a person's problem-solving skills. Children can use puzzles to learn about shapes and spatial relations, for example, whereas adults can use puzzles to sharpen their focus, logic, and analytical skills.
Jigsaw puzzles are a lot like crossword puzzles in that they can be designed with several layers of complexity. Most newspapers make their crossword puzzles more difficult as the week progresses, with certain publications, including the New York Times publishing an expert-level puzzle every Sunday. Jigsaw puzzles are similar in that you can purchase them based on the number of pieces, the size of those pieces, the size of the puzzle, or the intricacy of the design.
In a culture that is essentially dominated by smartphones, social media, and several other weak diversions, the puzzle remains a simple way to disconnect and decompress, while simultaneously dedicating your mind to making connections, almost all of which will help you to clarify the big picture.
A Brief History of The Puzzle
Early puzzles, which were known as dissections, were originally used to teach geography during 18th Century England. These puzzles usually featured a map of either a country or a continent, with wooden pieces cut out to represent the borders of each land.
The pieces of these wooden dissections were individually cut by a fretsaw. Both the jigsaw and the jigsaw puzzle were already in existence at this point, but manufacturers largely shunned the jigsaw method because it demanded creating puzzles out of cardboard, which was considered low-grade.
Cardboard puzzles began to catch on during The Great Depression in America, as people with suffering incomes came to appreciate a puzzle's affordable cost, and manufacturers came to appreciate the inexpensive means of production.
Jigsaw puzzles became even more popular throughout World War II, with devotees competing to see who could solve a complicated puzzle the fastest. Soon after, large companies began to use jigsaw puzzles as a promotional tool. These puzzles, which were often given away for free, featured images of a company's logo (either that or some product that the company was promoting).
Today, there are traditional jigsaw puzzles and there are progressive jigsaw puzzles (e.g., 3-D puzzles, puzzles with oddly-shaped pieces, digital puzzles, or puzzles that are built around an optical illusion, etc.) The world's largest jigsaw puzzle is comprised of 551,232 pieces, and it runs 76 feet wide. By and large, most puzzles remain in production because they represent a simple and entertaining way to occupy one's mind.