A Fun Project: Getting Freaky With A Couple Of Jigsaw Puzzles

These are pictures of how each finished puzzle is supposed to look.

• • •

Jigsaw puzzles are suddenly popular. We have a stash of them so for snorts & giggles we mixed two of them together to create two unique masterpieces. Here’s how we did it.  

• • •

1. Find two puzzles with the same number of pieces that were cut using the same machine. Just because two puzzles are from the same company and have the same number of pieces doesn’t mean they have the same shape pieces. Lesson learned hard way on this point. 

It’s all about the details when you decide how to merge the puzzles.

2. Put together one of the puzzles then put together the other puzzle beside the first puzzle. Stare at the puzzles until your eyes cross you see an interesting way to mix the images in each puzzle. This takes imagination, but you can do it;  time is your friend.

This is an action shot as we began the methodical mixing of the pieces.

3. Carefully begin the process of extracting the pieces that form one image in the first puzzle, setting these pieces aside on a flat surface like a baking sheet, then extract the same area from the second puzzle. This requires patience and a steady hand.

Our first masterpiece called: Hot Air Balloons Landing On Giant Folded Quilts

4. Put pieces from the first puzzle into the empty space created in the second puzzle. Continue this mixing of the pieces until you’ve created your own unique puzzle that makes you smile. If you’re not smiling at this point you’re doing this wrong. 

Our second Masterpiece called: Giant Quilts Covering Hot Air Balloons In Sky

5. Photograph your masterpieces, pat yourself on the back, then deconstruct your puzzles, keeping track of which pieces belong in each box. Congratulations, you’re officially a jigsaw puzzle artist nonpareil.

• • •

Your turn. Whatcha been doing for snorts & giggles? What else should we be doing with all this free time? Please share your ideas in the comments below.

• • •

Published by

Ally Bean

Observant. Humorous. Adaptable. Charmingly cynical. Midwestern by chance. Kindhearted by choice. Fond of words.

160 thoughts on “A Fun Project: Getting Freaky With A Couple Of Jigsaw Puzzles”

  1. What a brilliant idea! You may have given me courage to open a devilish puzzle. The pieces are printed on both sides — two puzzles together. Both pictures are stream engines, bought for grandson David. I must show him your post to give him courage, too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Anne, years ago I saw someone do this mixing of the puzzles and decided that this was the right time for us to try it. It was fun, but takes time. Good luck if you try it.

      Like

  2. That is both entirely bonkers and fabulously creative. Let alone that you must have the patience of all the saints put together and the determination of … nope, got nothing for that one as it’s still pre-coffee:D

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Oh my gosh, I’m the 3rd commenter this time instead of the 103rd. That’s progress! Wow, I had no idea you could do that with puzzles. Not much of a puzzle person myself, but that’s not because I don’t like them – only because I have other things that take precedence. Someday, when I become a puzzle person, I will remember this cool trick!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The Travel Architect, I saw this done by an artist years ago. She was selling her works. I remembered it the other day so off we went with this project.

      [And congrats on being an early commenter. It’s like it was meant to be.]

      Like

  4. In our house, jigsaw puzzles have always been popular. We used to glue and hang them in our garage, sort of a gallery. After a pipe burst and flooded the house and garage, we stopped hanging the puzzles, but we always each have one going at opposite ends of our dining room table. It’s the one thing, besides writing, that can keep me still and focused. On Saturday, our Nextdoor website put a call out for puzzles. I happily gave one woman ten of our worked puzzles and another woman five.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Jill, you had a big stash of puzzles, didn’t you? It was good of you give some of them away at this time. They’re suddenly in demand. I know that once you finish a puzzle you can save it, but we’ve never done that. How do you do that btw?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh yes, we have around 30 puzzles that we haven’t worked. When we used to save them, they were glued with puzzle glue. Now, we immediately disassemble our puzzles, put them in our donation pile and start a new one! When I get stuck with my writing, I find puzzling a way to work through it. We’re addicted! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Fun! I like one of the earlier comments: Bonkers and Brilliant. I don’t have the patience for jigsaw puzzles. I completed one, once, about 41 years ago. A Monet Waterlily Pond puzzle – not easy for the first one. Took me a month, and I was so pleased I took it to a framer. Hung on a wall for several years. Then? That’s a puzzle, indeed. So for snorts and giggles….I read posts like yours. 🙂 Seriously, highly impressed with the puzzle creativity.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Pam, I’m not the best at putting together puzzles, especially ones like these that had 1,000 pieces each. But my husband likes to do that and I like to make things interesting, so this is what we did. I got the idea from an artist years ago. I don’t know that we’ll do this again, or if we do maybe we’ll use puzzles with fewer pieces. 🤔

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Whoa! Cool AB! I’ve never heard of such a thing. We are big puzzlers over here, though we haven’t built one yet. Our basement is freezing cold so I don’t want to do much of anything down there! I did pull out my coloring book and pencils last night. I may have to do a blog post on it. Frustrating at first, then my mind loosens up and it becomes therapeutic.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Pam, I have some coloring books and some Crayolas. I need to follow your lead and try coloring. I doubt that I’ll stay within the lines, but maybe therein will be the charm of it. Thanks for the idea.

      [If you try this puzzle project I cannot over emphasize point #1.]

      Like

  7. I did a thousand piece puzzle on our dining room table one winter over thirty five years ago now, listening to Simon & Garfunkel’s Concert in Central Park cassette over and over. Never finished; Easter came and we needed the table. But I know all the songs by heart and the banter in between. “The guys who are selling loose joints here tonight are donating 10% of their profits to the city.”

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Janet, what a wonderful memory of doing a puzzle. That’s more lasting and meaningful than the puzzle you didn’t finish. Thanks for the laugh and the memory of what it was like to listen to a cassette over and over again. 😎

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Nowhere in the instructions does it talk about the big glass of wine you need to finish this! I never do puzzles on my own but my sis-in-law is a big fan. I’ve occasionally put in a piece or two but that’s about it. This is very clever. In my boredom yesterday I made pizza from scratch. I had yeast in the house which is a miracle. I had bought it for something I was going to make in the fall and never did. Turned out very tasty!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Kate, you’re right about my omission. Being project leader I imbibed my fair share of wine, but my staff, aka Zen-Den, was stone cold sober during all of this. I’m good at dividing the puzzle pieces into like colors, but not so good at putting them together.

      We have some frozen pizza dough and now that you mention it a pizza sound yummy. I’m impressed with your ability to make one from scratch AND that you had having yeast in the house. Just like a pioneer.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. What a terrific project! I’ve never been one for puzzles–that was my little sister’s Thing–but I certainly can appreciate the effort and creativity. So glad you put it on the blog.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. nance, I cannot lie so I’ll admit that puzzles aren’t my thing as much as they are Z-D’s. However considering the times, I got into doing this project. Gotta make your own fun.

      Like

    1. Laura, here’s how you should do it. Put together the first puzzle, find a bunch of pieces that form a corner in the second puzzle. Check to see if those corner pieces can be mixed with the first puzzle corner.

      We made an assumption that same company, same shaped pieces so we put together a second puzzle without double-checking. Come to find out the pieces didn’t fit together, so we scrapped that puzzle and found a third puzzle to put together that had the correct shapes to mix with the first puzzle. Lesson learned.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I’ve never been good at puzzles. No matter what kind, I can never figure them out. And jigsaw…well I guess I don’t have the patience…there’s always one going at our local library though, and I have a friend who loves to do them. I’ll pass your post on to her, I bet she finds it facinating. I love your merged puzzle, it is beautiful!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dawn, I’m not great at putting together jigsaw puzzles either but my husband is. This was a cool project, but requires a lot of flat surface area to make it happen. Not a bad thing, but something I learned in process.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. My hubby is a puzzler. He always has one going in the garage. He has stacks of probably 50-60. He just gave a few to family members who needed something to do. I love the result of your mixing two together! I will pass this on. But it won’t be me trying it. I’m much too impatient. Doing a painting in an afternoon is my thing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Beth, I was more project manager than hands on with this little bit of fun. I’d seen this idea years ago and thought now was the time to do it. It took a lot of square footage to spread out all the pieces, but after that it seemed to go smoothly. If I was an artist this would be a good time to get painting.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. I really like your masterpiece. Far more arty than the originals.

    No puzzles here. House too small for a dedicated puzzle table. Also cat/ dog/ spawn would crash into and destroy. Spending as much time outside as is possible. Only today it is raining again.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. AutumnAshbough, I wouldn’t try this project with any of the *variables* you have in your house. Outside would be/will be great when our weather gets warmer. Sorry to hear about the rain, we’ve had our fair share of it here, too.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Carol, years ago I saw an artist do this and then sell her masterpieces. I thought it’d be fun to try this ourselves, but will admit that should we do this again it’ll be with puzzles with fewer pieces. 2,000 pieces spread out everywhere was a bit much.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Whoaaaaa maaaaan, my mind has been officially blown!
    Of course now that I see it, it makes perfect sense that something like this could be done, but it never actually occurred to me that something like this could be done.
    And you nailed the merge perfectly. Really cool – bravo.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Norm, thanks. I saw someone do this years ago and thought it was way cool. Now that we’re all searching for things to do inside our homes, this seemed like the moment to try this puzzle project. Merging the pieces was a hoot because it’s not like there’s a right or wrong way, there’s just a way. Glad you liked.

      Liked by 2 people

  14. Cool beans!

    My life is much the same ~ a bit of this, a bit of that, a putter here, a putter there. I have stopped playing Bridge, but that only occupied 10-12 hours every week. I am concocting in the kitchen ~ mixing and matching recipes to use what we have on hand. Today, I’m going to make a spanakopita lasagne since I have lasagna noodles (but no ricotta or mozzarella) AND feta, kale, onions, tomatoes (but no phyllo dough).

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Nancy, your recipe sounds delicious to me. Let me just say yum. I, too, am cooking in the kitchen, putting things together in different ways. It’s fun to be creative and who knows some of these recipes may be keepers! Putter on, my friend.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Amazingly creatively!!! I never would’ve thought to do that. I guess I’m not surprised that puzzles are the in thing since we’re all staying in! I’ve been crocheting a lot! And eating Doritos. But not at the same time! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. L. Marie, maybe you could intentionally crochet a Dorito into one of your projects thus creating, like these two merged puzzles, something new and artsy fartsy. If art is a banana duck taped to a wall, why not?

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Wow, I love that but am not spatial, so it would be especially challenging for me. We would have to be quarantined for a year for me to put something like this together! (NOT hoping for that) I didn’t know that about jigsaw puzzles either. I learn something new every day!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Margaret, I’m good with colors, but the connections among the shapes of the pieces often baffle me. Yes we learned about making no assumptions while doing these puzzles. Same company, same number of pieces, different shapes. 😑

      Liked by 2 people

  17. I would say that someone has too much time on their hands but actually I think we all have some extra time now don’t we? Those are beautiful. Thanks for sharing such a great idea. Almost makes me want to get some puzzles…wait, I can’t go out.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. I’m a little ashamed to admit that on-line gaming (Big Fish Games) has begun to take up more time. I do NOT need to be on the computer more, but there you are. I have one unfinished jigsaw waiting, which I need to dig out from under the pile of books living on it, and finish. After that I have about six or seven puzzles that I either bought or that a kind neighbor loaned out. I do crosswords and word puzzles. I cross stitch (electronically), I play Mah-jong and Solitaire. Those are the ‘new’ things that occupy my days now. Plus adult coloring. I have plenty of supplies and several pattern books, so hey! Your idea sounds fun, but I’m too scatter brained to make it work very well I’m afraid to say. Looks interesting though!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Melanie, I play games on my phone, but I don’t know about Big Fish Games per se. I like crosswords, too. I haven’t played Solitaire in a long time. We have a deck of cards around here so I shall do that. Good idea. I’ve got some coloring books that I need to pull out of the drawer and get going on so I’ll soon be coloring right there along with you. Because the time is now.

      Like

          1. Try curbside pick up if you can – we did it first time yesterday – and it was wonderful…especially looking thru the car window at the people neatly spaced in line between ropes outside the store waiting to go in…with management and a cop at the door “one out, then one can go in…”
            No not likin’

            Like

              1. There’s a learning curve for online ordering here. And if you don’t complete your shopping list in a certain amount of time, the selected pick-up slot timed out. So I made a grocery list and save it, then found a pickup slot ( which appear and disappear depending on volume – check frequently) and with on click imported by “list” to cart and bingo -done. Whew.
                It’ll have to do. The designated “seniors” early shipping time was just too crowded and lines lines lines waiting.
                I am grateful we are near a big store that is featuring lots of curbside/.delivery slots (and that store already featured and secured local produce from local farms)…but miss the fresh rosemary multigrain bread their bakery is no longer having time to make.
                The world has really changed

                Liked by 2 people

                1. Thanks for the information. As I type this Z-D is attempting to set up our account, but there is a problem having to do with our loyalty number. Also the nearest Kroger store says there is a 3 day wait for a pick-up time slot so when we get the account going, it’ll still be long time until we see food. We have enough now, no problem, but I want to get this system in place for when we need it. Yes, the world has really changed and it’s making me tired trying to keep up.

                  Liked by 1 person

          2. I went to the grocery store this morning at 8am and I am not normally up at that hour, but couldn’t sleep. The first hour is seniors hour, although I’m not quite a senior yet, and it was fairly quiet. But now I’m wondering if I should have gone as they have just announced today that we have our first five cases locally. Ugggggggghhhh!

            Liked by 1 person

              1. You’re right – we shouldn’t second guess ourselves. I was getting more stuff for my 94 year old mother who still lives in her own home – it’s her I worry about more than me, if I fought off H1N1 I can fight this off. If I hadn’t gone to the store then I’d worry about not having enough!

                Liked by 1 person

  19. Amazingly cool project!! Never heard of it being done before. I think both look frame-worthy.

    Snorts and giggles here? Reading anything but the news, watching silly dogs do their thing, and ….well I need to get creative!! I did a little coloring and started a felt-tip pen drawing, but put the art stuff away for now.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Eilene, this is one of the projects that fills the hours. Like I said above, if we ever do this again I’d choose puzzles with fewer pieces than 1,000 each. It was a lot to look at.

      I’m going to try coloring. I have the supplies and I have the time. I don’t anticipate I’ll be making anything worthy of note, but that’ll be part of the fun.

      Liked by 1 person

  20. I wish I had a safe (free from cats) place to set up a jigsaw puzzle. I have two that a friend sent me that never got put together. Now I’m wondering where I could set up my big folding table and still get around the thing. I enjoy jigsaws and your little Dali-esque creations are very cool. I would need new puzzles to do that but just doing a regular one would be fun.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Zazzy, we never tried doing jigsaw puzzles when we had the cats. I don’t know how you could keep them away, but maybe yours are better behaved than ours were. I hadn’t though of it but you’re right. These masterpieces are Dali-esque, although Z-D doesn’t have a handle-bar mustache. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  21. I was lost right from the directions to find two puzzles cut from the same machine? How to you do that? I l love complicated puzzles so this looks like an interesting challenge. My favorite puzzles are two sided.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Jean, you just have to experiment. It’s all about putting the corner of a puzzle together, then seeing if it matches another puzzle. The first puzzle was one pattern, the second puzzle was a different pattern, the third puzzle matched the first puzzle. Same company, different shapes of puzzle pieces. I’ve never tried a two-sided puzzle. That sounds tricky.

      Like

  22. This is absolutely lovely. However, I have a hard enough time just putting together a regular old jigsaw puzzle, so I will just enjoy your mastery via blog.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Donna, if it weren’t for Z-D this project would not have happened. He’s the *muscle* behind putting puzzles together, I’m the *brains* about finding ways for him to do it.

      Like

  23. Another blogger just said she was puzzling away too as she is on Spring break from teaching. This looks fun and I have a lot of puzzles in the blue bins a/k/a “Retirement Bins” in the basement (that is if I still can retire after listening to what the stock market is doing). My late mother loved doing jigsaw puzzles and we got hard copies of catalogs at the house for years – we would order White Mountain, Ravensburger (her favorites) and got some from “Bits and Pieces” catalog, though they were catering more to wooden and metal puzzles (pub puzzles they call them) and she just loved Hallmark’s Springbok puzzles. A treasure trove that she sadly never got to do a large collection of them – we always made sure there were puzzles so she didn’t run out. It is a challenge for the brain, especially when you do it this way and it is guaranteed to erase the angst from listening or reading the news. Happy puzzling Ally!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Linda, you sound like you have a stash of jigsaw puzzles, too. We’ve had a few Ravensburger ones, but most of ours are from Cobble Hill. I’ve never heard of White Mountain or Springbok. Zen-Den is more into puzzles than I am and he does the 1,000 piece ones while I tend to the 350 piece ones. But we do goof around with them which helps our brains regardless of the number of pieces. We usually have music going while we work them so that also helps reduce anxiety about current events. Doing what we can to stay sane.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. They await me when I’m retired and have more room in the kitchen Ally. My mom loved doing puzzles and they are in Rubbermaid Totes and also under the bed – I have a small house, so I have run out of hidey holes. They are brand-new and are wrapped in plastic and safe under there for when I do them. Springbok is made by Hallmark and we used to get them at the Hallmark stores and White Mountain from puzzle catalogs. I won’t leap right to 1,000-piece either. You have to have much patience for some of them. It is too bad this did not happen in Winter when we are not out as much, not now which we looked forward to.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Nanchi.blog, I wish I could agree with you, but my husband is the one who has lots of patience to put puzzles together. I’m more of a project manager when it comes to projects like these. I don’t have an eye for putting pieces together although I’m good at getting all the pieces of the same color together and he tells me that helps. I like to believe him.

      Liked by 1 person

  24. Looks like fun to try it out! And like the result you show us. Am on a more mundane experiment – to learn how to knit socks (since I initially thought we would have 6 months time. But today I heard, they want the businesses closed be over around Easter. I gladly give up socks knitting then!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. DrJunieper, I cannot knit. Of this I am sure, so I think it’s wonderful and amazing that you’re trying to knit a pair of socks. In my opinion it doesn’t matter if you succeed because it’s the process of trying that is important right about now. Just keep busy doing things that keep your brain engaged in life, even if you drop a few stitches along the way. 😉

      Like

      1. You make me smile, because I have the other problems. Meaning, every time I end up with too many stitches, lol! You are so wise, the process of trying and not giving up is more important in the beginning. Also, do you know that cancer patients are advised doing puzxles for the very reason: to keep your brain engaged?

        Liked by 1 person

  25. My parents are almost done with the first puzzle they started since being on the inside. I know because they are sending me pictures. I just wanted to clarify that we are not comingling.
    I don’t have the attention span for a puzzle but I so wish I did because all of the puzzle pictures in my social media feeds are making me feel like I am missing out.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Writer McWriterson, I’m not naturally a person who is drawn to jigsaw puzzles, but my husband is. He put together most of the pieces in these puzzles, but I had the idea to merge them. I saw it somewhere else so I’m copying.

      Now that you mention it I’m seeing many puzzle pics, too. I hadn’t thought of that when I posted this, but I’m part of a trend. Me? So unlike me.

      Liked by 1 person

  26. It has taken me quite a while to scroll down to the comment box to post my comment and no wonder Asher are loads of comments, as this is a great idea. Jigsaws always draw me in – only a slight obsession though….
    And,
    How ironic that we often crave more free time and holidays from work and now we have it, we have to search for fun things, like this, to do. Despite many bloggers being introverts, social contact must constitute a large portion of our free time. Replacing that inside is a challenge.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Amanda, I’m amazed by how many people commented on this idea. I almost didn’t post it because I thought it might be too silly. For me the lesson here might be that I shouldn’t overthink things.

      You make a great point about wanting more free time then not knowing what to do with it. I’m an introvert but I’ve noticed what you mentioned. I can entertain myself without whining, but I’ve only recently come to realize that even I spend more time socializing than I realized.

      Like

    1. Laurie, I’m rather amazed by our masterpieces, truth be known. We had a good time doing this project, but I’m not sure we’ll do it again. It made my eyes cross.

      Like

  27. This really is genius. (Who knew isolation make people more brilliant?)
    I do have a puzzle in the back room (along with a coloring book and pencils, and an origami kit – all gathered for possible gifts for people, but they never got sent or I found something else).
    I don’t get it but now that we’re locked down I have more to do/more distractions than I did before…rather annoying when it should be nap time and time to chill, right?
    Really do love the puzzle idea – you should send it to some craft magazines and get published….hmmm, there are some magazines left aren’t there?
    Very cool idea and very cool images

    Liked by 1 person

    1. philmouse, I copied this idea from an artist who I saw selling mixed puzzles like these. That was years ago, but I remembered her art so I convinced Z-D to try it. He was all about this project considering we have the puzzles and the table and the time.

      I used to have an origami book around here now that you mention it. I was going to learn how to make swans, but I never did. That’s something for me to mess around with now that we’re living a sequestered life. Thanks for reminding me of that.

      Liked by 1 person

  28. Wow, it would never occur to me that puzzles might have the same shapes to fit together, and if so, how would I find out? Crazy.

    I’m working from home, the extra time I have is that I generally like to go to the grocery store every day, and currently I am cutting it back to 1 or 2 days a week. On my lunch break, I take a walk or a nap, depending on whether I took a walk before work in the morning.

    Like

    1. J, the puzzle project was a goof. Pure and simple.

      Your days sound like they’re filled in a way that works for you. I like shopping in the grocery so I’m kind of at loose ends about that. I’m getting out the door for more walks, but the weather hasn’t been all that great yet.

      Like

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