I've always loved puzzles. I used to do them all the time, but I got so busy with, well, everything that eventually I just stopped doing them. I didn't think I had the time.
Until last year when I ended up buying two great puzzles during the year. I couldn't keep buying puzzles if I wasn't going to put them together, so I started a new tradition - puzzles for the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays!
It's great having the puzzles to do during the low-key holiday vacations. Just one more thing I can do to slow down and enjoy the time I get to spend at home.
This year, Andrew surprised me with a crazy-difficult puzzle
that I did during Thanksgiving ... and the week after!
Since my Christmas vacation puzzle
(see above) is 1500 pieces (as opposed to the 1000 of the puzzle for Thanksgiving) aaaAAaaand it's basically blue and white and green, I decided I better get a head start unless I still wanted to be putting it together in February. Ha!
So I pulled out the puzzle and sorted out the edge pieces. Ack!
Not only is the puzzle bigger than the piece of poster board I use as a puzzle base (so I can move the puzzle around to get at the far side), but the puzzle is bigger than my craft table. Oh, crap.
I bought the puzzle a couple of months ago because I found it in the bargin bin at Gamescape for half-price. I thought the winter scene would be fun because we don't get snow out here. I hadn't even looked at the finished dimensions.
Crafty skillz to the rescue! There's a fantastic arts and crafts store
downtown that I like to buy from (it's worker-owned ... as opposed to a big box chain). There I found two big pieces of cardboard for about $5 total.
I used the full depth of the boards and trimmed the right edge of one of the boards to make them the final width I wanted.
On the right, I left a tiny overhang so I could press pieces into place without bending the cardboard and ruining my temporary table top. There's a bigger overhang on the left because I'll only be sorting pieces there and won't be pressing any pieces together over there.
I taped the seam between the two pieces of board. I lined up the front edge of the board with the front edge of the table and taped the boards to the table ...
... in two places. I needed the fronts lined up because I know I put my hand and elbow on the table as I, um, puzzle, so I couldn't leave an overhang there.
After taking this photo, I saw the extra cardboard that I hid back there against the wall. I turned it on it's other end and it was the perfect height on which to rest the back overhang of the table top. The back overhang is now very stable and I will be able to put the sky together without borking the cardboard.
And now, if I needed to make another table top like this, I know I can make a "V" or " ]" shape of cardboard to put under an overhang to make it more stable.
Woohoo! I've been working on this for a couple weeks now. If you're interested in watching me finish it, you can follow along on my futuregirl tumblr