365 Little Things Ravensburger Puzzle – Review

365 Little Things is a 500 piece puzzle from Ravensburger RRP £7.99 suitable for ages 10+.

This is my first puzzle for 2017 and it was nice to start with a fun smaller puzzle. The 365 Little things are an interesting and eclectic mix of the familiar and unusual objects you might find in the bottom of a draw. From the box the picture looks photographic. On closer inspection of the pieces you realise that in fact the 365 Little Things are illustrated. The artist Mike Spike, is famous for his photographic illustrative style.

365 Little things was both a challenge and enjoyable as you discover the little treasures illustrated on the puzzle. there are coins, and trinkets that somehow look all familiar and I particularly liked the little spotty pig which I’m sure was something my Nan owned.

This puzzle has been a complete treasure and I’m sure will be on that I will enjoy completing again. It took some time to complete as there are no particularly blocks of colour to follow. I found the best way was to identify pieces from the individual items like all the coins and shells. completing it this way didn’t make it any less enjoyable.

Completing the 365 Little things puzzle was an achievement as I found it pretty tricky for a 500 piece puzzle. I loved the challenge and the style of the illustration as it is different to doing a photograph or painted picture.

Have a look below for my Amazon link to the 365 Little Things puzzle, or look for more of Mike Spikes puzzles on the Ravensburger website.

 

Disclaimer I was sent this puzzle in return for an honest review.

The Supermarket -Review

The Supermarket is a 1,000 piece puzzle, number 15 in the Best of British series from Ravensburger RRP £11.99.

The Supermarket is the first puzzle in the Best of British series that I have completed and I was surprised how much I enjoyed both the illustrative style and humour from the artist Geoff Tristram. He has produced a few other puzzles with Ravensburger including Number 14 in the series titled Fit 4 nothing Gym. There is certainly plenty to look at in this puzzle, and the boy enjoyed working out some of the supermarket puns and jokes on the signs contained within the CheapoSave store. I even managed to convince Dad Dragon to help me out with this one.

the supermarket

I found this puzzle was straight forward to complete in the traditional way of edges first. With the logos and signs being the next thing I completed. There are lots of bright colours to pick out and complete. With so much detail in the supermarket puzzle you will continue to notice new things even after some time completing the puzzle. There are details on the shelves, packets and puns everywhere you look. Our favourite was the Diet coke bottle ” contains nothing beneficial” This puzzle has been such fun not just to complete but to look at afterwards as some of the details too small on the box come to life in the puzzle itself.

supermarket puzzle

Bingo granny is also looking forward to completing this puzzle, as she worked in a large supermarket for many years so the jokes will be even more relevant to her. The Supermarket I am sure will be much-loved by the Best of British fans and shoppers alike!

supermarket from ravensburger

Visit the Ravensburger website for the rest of the puzzles in the series of click my affiliate link below to buy this puzzle online.

Disclaimer I was sent this puzzle in return for an honest review.

The Safari Park What If? – Ravensburger Puzzle Review

The Safari Park is the 13th puzzle in the series of What if? puzzles from Ravensburger. This 1,000 piece mystery puzzle is suitable for ages 14+ RRP £11.99.

This is the first time I have done one of the What if? illustrative puzzles from Ravensburger and I wasn’t sure if I would like not having a picture to follow. I also wasn’t sure how much the finished puzzle picture would deviate for the illustration on the box lid. The box gives you a question. “What if?…animals were more enterprising than we realised?” The picture is perhaps what you would expect to happen to visitors in a safari park. I still wasn’t sure if the completed Safari park would be a before or after picture, and set about my usual edges sort.

safari park

The illustrative style of the safari park means there is plenty to see on each piece and with a rough idea of what the puzzle might contain I set about finding a place to start. It turned out that there were lots of pieces with writing, like the safari park sign. I was able to fit some of these in but others I had no idea where they might end up in the finished puzzle. This certainly was a different challenge to a standard puzzle and one I was rather enjoying. The picture on the box gives you an idea of what animals are in the finished puzzle, but they had all moved about a bit, so starting with the buildings which stay in the same place was a good starting point.

safari park review

The boy liked the animals on my puzzle, and wanted to help, but couldn’t understand that the picture was not the same as the one on the box lid. It’s a good job he had the African Friends puzzle of his own to complete. Bingo granny on the other hand was not going to leave me alone to complete the puzzle, and was completely hooked within minutes. This was certainly a great family puzzle, and was a talking point during our usual Sunday morning coffee and cake.

what if safari park

The Safari Park is a great puzzle and I wont spoil the solution by showing you the full finished puzzle, but the cheeky little animals have certainly turned out to be very enterprising. I loved this style of mystery puzzle and look forward to completing some of the others in the series.  For more puzzles from Ravensburger What if? series visit the website.

Disclaimer I was sent this puzzle for review the opinions remain my own and have not been altered.

African Friends – Ravensburger Puzzle Review

African Friends is a 300 piece XXL puzzle suitable for ages 9+ RRP £7.99, and has a finished size of 49cm x 36cm.

The boy was quite excited to have a puzzle all to himself, and I was immediately banned from helping! he has helped me with my puzzles, but has never wanted to do a whole one so I was thrilled that he was willing to give this colourful 300 piece puzzle a try. African Friends has a very cute picture of a group of wild animals, and the boy enjoyed trying to name them all. I think he managed all the animals, and it was just the birds we didn’t know.

african friends

The boy started by piecing the edges of the African friends puzzle together, and found this fairly easy to do despite the amount of blue pieces. I was allowed to turn the pieces the right way up for him, but my help had to stop there. As a puzzle addict this was torture! I found it interesting how the boy wanted to work through colours and animals, quite often choosing the tricky colours first.

african friends puzzle

The boy had no problem completing the puzzle, and took a few evenings to complete the full puzzle. He says he doesn’t like puzzles, but was happy to sit for some time after dinner adding pieces, and was very pleased with himself when he had completed the picture. African friends is a very cute puzzle, and one we have all enjoyed looking at. The pieces are larger than an adult puzzle, but the boy didn’t feel that this puzzle was any easier than the ones I complete. I love the size of this puzzle, and Ravensburger have a great range of different sized puzzles suitable for different ages and abilities from the 100xxl for ages 6+ to this one the boy completed 300xxl age 9+.Visit the Ravensburger website for more great kids and adult puzzles, or click my affiliate link below to buy African Friends.

african friends ravensburger puzzle

Disclaimer I was sent this puzzle in return for an honest review, our words have not been altered.

The Craft Shed – Ravensburger puzzle review

The Craft Shed is the first in a new series of havens from Ravensburger puzzles. This 1,000 piece puzzle is available for RRP £11.99 and suitable for ages 10+.

craft shed

The craft shed is an illustrative puzzle and has everything I would expect from a high quality traditional Ravensburger puzzle. Steve Read who illustrated the puzzle is from the East coast, and has been a self-taught artist for many years. The craft haven is the first in the series depicting sanctuaries and retreats, and certainly depicts a place I would love to retreat to at the end of the day.

craft shed puzzle

I was interested to see exactly how long it takes me to complete a 1,000 piece puzzle so timed myself while completing the craft shed. I started with the edges, then found the flowers and blue of the window stood out. This process took about an hour, and was followed by picking out the dominant colours from the illustration. The craft shed has some great detail, cute creatures and all fits beautifully together with the Ravensburger soft click system. I found interesting parts of the puzzle from the start, and enjoyed the different textured and coloured areas of this puzzle.

craft shed haven puzzle

I think it took me about five and a half hours to complete the craft haven. I don’t know if this is fast or slow, but I know I get quite addicted to puzzling and find I have to complete them in one go. I think the haven series of puzzles will be very popular with puzzle fans as it has a lovely traditional feel to the completed picture. I love the addition of the fact and picture sheet that you get in these puzzle boxes. I find it much easier to use the sheet than the lid for a guide to completing the picture.

craft shed haven

Have a look at my amazon affiliate link below for the current price, and offers

Disclaimer I was sent this puzzle to review the words remain my own and have not been changed.

The Christmas Cupboard Ravensburger Puzzle – Review

The Christmas Cupboard is the 4th puzzle in the Curious cupboards series by Colin Thompson. This Ravensburger 1,000 piece Puzzle is RRP £12.99 suitable for ages 10+, this festive edition is a fun bright puzzle for fans of Colin’s quirky illustrate puzzles.

christmas cupboard

The Christmas Cupboard like Colin’s other Curious Cupboard puzzles are a mix of illustrations and photographs. Ever since I completed the Bizarre town 5,000 piece puzzle I have been hooked on this eclectic picture puzzle. I love all the tiny details and completing the puzzle is like meeting up with an old friend. The Christmas Cupboard is a good mix of previous illustrations from the other puzzles, with a mix of new and a hint of Christmas cheer. I have always enjoyed seeking out the odd tiny characters in the curious cupboard puzzles. From the strange pink creatures, walking books, and the little bowler hatted men.

christmas cupboard colin thompson

The Christmas Cupboard was fun to complete and took me between 4/5 hours. I found it easy to check the enclosed picture sheet and find this more useful than the box lid when completing the puzzle. I liked the mix of colours as there wasn’t too much red which I noticed with other Christmas puzzles. The quirky feel of the Christmas Cupboard transports you to a different world and my favourite part was the corner of vintage style wrapping paper, something I’m sure my Nan used to buy from the market.

christmas cupboar ravensburger

The Christmas Cupboard has to be one of my favourite puzzles from this year, and along with the other curious cupboard puzzles I’m sure will be popular with puzzlers across the world. For more great puzzles visit the Ravensburger website, or click on my Amazon affiliate link below

 

Disclaimer I was sent this puzzle the words remain my own and have not been altered.

Neuschwanstein Castle 3d puzzle from Ravensburger – Review

Neuschwanstein castle is one of the 3D puzzles available from Ravensburger RRP £34.99 for ages 12+.

From the moment I knew I was getting this puzzle to try I was excited, just like I was many years ago when I first discovered that Walt Disney had based his fairy-tale castle on this famous German castle. I hoped that this Ravensburger 3D puzzle would transport me back to my childhood obsession of having everything with Neuschwanstein castle on it. Postcards, posters, and even a very early foam style jigsaw puzzle.

Neuschwanstein

Neuschwanstein castle is so well know now that this puzzle would have to be pretty impressive to live up to the real castle. The puzzle box says that there are 216 pieces to this puzzle, but it is worth noting that this  number is just the jigsaw pieces that make up the square part of the castle. In addition to this there is a base, towers gates, gable ends, turrets and lots of connecting pieces. The box also contains a detailed instruction booklet in full colour to guide you through the assembly process.

Neuschwanstein castle

Starting by sorting and assembling the jigsaw pieces. I did this by number with help from the boy, we soon had walls. this didn’t take long at all, and it was by far more complicated putting all the different parts together. If you want you can assemble the puzzle pieces by picture, but this would be far more difficult as they look very similar. We have assembled other 3D models before and Neuschwanstein followed the same principles of small teeth at the bottom which locate into groves in the base shape. What makes the Neuschwanstein castle puzzle different is that the base is not a true oblong, and has infact a slight turn to it. This was very cleverly done with one edge being slightly shorter and when fitted into the base kinked the shape slightly.

Neuschwanstein acastle construction

By far the trickiest part of the build is the top roof support and roof itself. The boy made a few attempts to complete this part of the construction before handing over to me. I too found this very difficult to assemble as you have to remember the walls are made from puzzle pieces, and prone to fall out if pushed too hard. You also have to be careful not to dislodge the two front towers as these have to be added before the roof, as I found out.

pieces

The remaining small buildings, towers and turrets all slotted together easily, and although these parts are not numbered it was pretty easy to work out which ones belonged together. The only disappointment we had with this puzzle was some of the L-shaped locking clips on the front part of the puzzle had already broken off in the box. Some were also very fragile and broke off in construction. This didn’t seem to affect the final construction as there are roof parts which hold the walls together.

Neuschwanstein model

The finished model is magnificent and certainly does the Neuschwanstein castle justice. The finished castle measures 39 x 23 x 38cm and is the largest 3d puzzle we have completed. The details on the pieces for the building are beautifully coloured and shaded giving the model a realistic feel. It looks true to the original castle with the shape and colours including the pink brick entrance. The boy was a little disappointed that there weren’t more puzzle type pieces, and we think the front gable and even the gate could have been constructed this way.

The Neuschwanstein castle would make a fantastic gift for any puzzle fan and even the ones like me who collect everything Disney! Have a look at my Amazon affiliate link below for more technical specifications.

 

 

Happy Days Tenby Ravensburger puzzle – review

Happy Days Tenby Ravensburger puzzle is the latest town to be made into a 1,000 piece puzzle form in the happy days series. Happy Days Tenby is available now RRP £11.99 and I would recommend this puzzle for ages 10+

Happy Days Tenby was a puzzle that caught the boy’s eye, when the postman delivered the latest batch. I think it was the bright colours and fun seaside picture, that made the boy want to help me with this puzzle. Happy Days Tenby has been a complete joy, and its been great to complete this puzzle with the boys help. We started sorting the pieces and the all important edges, the boy very quickly had the outside completed, and we moved onto filling in.

happy days tenby

The boy wanted to start on the boats, but soon realised it was easier to start with the brightly coloured houses. I picked out and sorted the colours for him and he was soon completing portions of the puzzle easily on his own. Each Sunday bingo granny comes to visit, and it wasn’t long before we had her joining in with our Happy Days Tenby puzzle. It was lovely to see three generations engaged in a puzzle and all enjoying the satisfaction on completing their part.

happy days tenby puzzle

I have found the Happy Days Tenby puzzle to be engrossing, colourful and a joy to complete. There werent any particularly tedious parts to the puzzle as there was plenty of interest. I think this puzzle would take about 4-5 hours to complete in one sitting. Happy Days Tenby is and illustration by Kevin Walsh, a Yorkshire born artist, and a magical picture that has brought Tenby to life for us. I think we have inspired bingo granny to start puzzling again as I think she had forgotten what an enjoyable pastime jigsaws can be. The boy has enjoyed putting the Happy Days Tenby puzzle together, and even Dad was pleased when he found a few pieces that fitted!

tenby happy days

I have loved Happy Days Tenby as much as everyone else, and think this has been my favourite puzzle of all the ones I have completed this month. I would certainly look at other puzzles in the Happy Days series, which are all done by different artists. Each one has a different feel and I think this helps to show the difference in the city’s and towns of Great Britain.

Happy Days Tenby is available to buy with my affiliate link, or visit the Ravensburger website for more puzzle in the Happy Days series. Mary Over at Over 40 and a Mum to one also reviewed this puzzle pop over to see what she thought.

Disclaimer we were sent this puzzle to review the opinions remain our own and have not been altered.

The Gardeners Cupboard – Review

This month I had the opportunity to review The 1,000 piece Gardeners Cupboard another great Colin Thompson Puzzle from Ravensburger. The Gardeners Cupboard is Number three in the curious cupboards series of puzzles from Colin Thompson, and although there are small repeats in the picture this only added to my enjoyment of completing this puzzle. As I have come to expect from these Ravensburger puzzles they are beautifully coloured and the pieces fit effortlessly together, using the soft click technology.

gardeners cupboard

I love the tiny little details, and even the boy enjoyed looking for all the little hidden creatures. There are lots of small elf like creatures in Colin’s puzzles as well as eyes, and faces in dark places. The mix of photos and illustrations adds a different depth to the puzzle, and for me makes it a pleasure to complete. So much so that on a rainy Sunday between the washing, cooking and cleaning I soon finished the Gardeners Cupboard. In fact I have become so addicted to the series of Colin Thompson puzzles that the Gardeners Cupboard took me around 5 hours in total to complete.

gardeners cupboard puzzle

The Gardeners Delight puzzle has a recommended age of 12+ and although the boy wouldn’t attempt a jigsaw of this size on his own certainly enjoyed helping me with pieces. He loved finding the little man hiding behind the tree, and I love the pine cone full of little eyes! The Gardeners Cupboard has a finished size of 70cm by 50cm, and seemed small in comparison to the Bizarre Town, 5,000 pieces of the last Colin Thompson jigsaw that I completed. The Gardeners Cupboard was certainly more manageable, and just as enjoyable.

the gardeners cupboard

The Gardeners Delight jigsaw is available now from retailers for RRP £11.99 or buy online below with my Amazon affiliate link:

 

Disclaimer I was sent this puzzle to review and keep the opinions remain my own and have not been altered.

Bizarre Town a Ravensburger puzzle – Review

Bizarre Town is a new 5,000 piece Colin Thompson illustration puzzle from Ravensburger, and certainly proved a challenge. One that I bizarrely enjoyed! I love jigsaws, but have only recently found the time and space to take it up again. I loved the Ludicrous Library by Colin Thompson puzzle that I completed recently, so the chance to do my first ever 5,000 piece puzzle was too good to miss.

Ok so next, you will need a big space to complete the Bizarre Town puzzle as it measures 153cm x 101cm, you will also need time, as it is supposed to take an average of a month to complete. I measured my table and thought I would have lots of room, but to start with it was a big problem storing the loose pieces, as I somehow I didn’t realise just how big this puzzle was going to be.

bizarre town by colin thompson

Starting by sorting the edges, and this itself took some time, I think about 2/3 hours in total. While I went through the bag I decided I might as well pull out some of the bolder colours and sort as I went. Trays were the only thing I could think of to store all the pieces, with a combination of 5 needed including the box and lid.

ravensburger colin thompson puzzle

I have to say that the illustration from Colin Thompson is amazing and the detail in the picture was enough to keep me hooked for hours. Its hard to believe that this artist is colour-blind, as the detail and colours are fantastic. I was determined to reclaim my dinner table before the boy went back to school, so powered on through the night. The boy and Dad did a little bit, but seeing the size and amount of pieces I think put them off a little. The Bizarre Town puzzle is as it name suggests “Bizarre” but the tiny details which you can’t see clearly on the box lid are enough to make this puzzle fun to complete. I think it took about 20 hours to complete the puzzle, and somehow I squeezed this into just over a week. The illustrations have some cute hidden characters, and household items inc Lego! With different areas of the puzzle picture almost making up smaller puzzles. Having these smaller chunks to tackle kept the puzzle interesting, and the colours helped separate the areas.

colin thompson bizarre town puzzle

Bizarre Town by Colin Thompson will be available shortly from Amazon and other Ravensburger retailers for RRP £49.99, and if big puzzles are your thing then this should be added as a must! It was great fun, and not too hard to complete or lose interest in. The boy says I should have a 5,000 piece puzzle medal, which would be fun, and for now I think I might stick to puzzles that don’t take up the whole dinner table!

If you would like the challenge of a smaller 1,000 Ravensburger puzzle then why not look at the Jigsaw Puzzle Factory, completed by Mary at Over40 and a Mum to One.

Disclaimer, I was sent this puzzle for the purpose of review the opinions remain my own and have not been altered.