How to Put together a Jigsaw Puzzle

The most efficient way to build a puzzle is to separate all of the end pieces first. Once you have the end pieces together you can see the outline of the puzzle and go from there. As you do this don’t just throw the other pieces back in the box. Leave them right side up on the table so you can see them easily.

Another trick is to casually color coordinate the inside pieces so you can start seeing pieces that will go together. As you get the outside put together, you can start planning how to attack the rest of the puzzle. Usually a puzzle will have a significant portion of it in a very distinct color. That should be where you start. The pieces will stand out and be very easy to spot.

Keep moving along while you pick different parts of the puzzle. As you try different pieces, try to make piles for pieces that are similar (all water pieces with no prongs, one prong, two prongs, etc.). That way when you get to the harder part of the puzzle and know what you are looking for, you can easily spot it.

Another trick is to look at detail on the puzzle piece and see if you can decide which way for sure it will be facing in the puzzle. Once you have that established, never put the piece back down the wrong way. That will save you wasted time from trying the piece in obviously wrong places.    

The hardest part of any puzzle is usually the biggest part and has the most pieces that look similar and are exactly the same color. Some examples would be trees, water, building sides etc. When you get to this portion of the puzzle you need to pay close attention to detail.

To a grazing eye every piece might look the same, but to a trained eye you should start seeing different shades and patterns in pieces that are still only one color. Once you notice the shades or any difference, the rest is just finding matches. If it is impossible to tell shades apart, like a night sky, then sometimes your best bet might be to do some trial and error and make sure you place pieces you have tried on the side.

Most of the time wasted on a puzzle will be trying the same piece in the same spot multiple times. Remember the definition of insanity is trying the same thing more than once and expecting different results! Be methodical in your puzzle assembly and you will have it complete in no time.