Sedum Cottage and Puzzle Handy – Review

Sedum Cottage is number 10 in the Ravensburger series of 1,000 piece Country Cottage Collection.. Suitable for ages 10+ with RRP £11.99.  Puzzle Handy is a new foldable storage puzzle solution available for 1,000 piece or smaller puzzles RRP £9.99.

puzzle-handy

I loved the previous puzzles in the Country Cottage Collection, and the Sedum cottage didn’t disappoint. I love the bright traditional style of this illustrative puzzle. Having a dedicated puzzle board is something that I had been considering. Even with a large dining table it can be a problem moving my puzzle to make space to eat. Puzzle Handy is great as it is sturdy enough to move out-of-the-way. It stores in its own box, when folded and is the perfect puzzle surface.

puzzle-handy-board

The Puzzle Handy is made from the same good quality Ravensburger puzzle board. With 4 slide on edge clips which give it rigidity. I found the surface lovely to puzzle on, and the edge guides are very useful when starting. I started the Sedum Cottage puzzle with the edges and the reds and oranges which stand out from the picture. Using the dotted lines to guide me as to the finished size of the puzzle.

sedum-cottage-and-puzzle-handy

The birds were also easy to complete and the last parts were the roof and sky. I loved the whole Sedum Cottage puzzle, especially the flowers. While I have many of them in my cottage garden. I just wish my garden was as weed free as the illustration. The added border with the plant names makes the Country Cottage collection puzzles stand out and a joy to complete.

If you would like to buy the Sedum Cottage, or Puzzle Handy have a look at my affiliate links below.

Disclaimer I was sent this item in return for a review, the words remain my own and have not been altered.

Blackpool Happy Days – Review

Blackpool is the eleventh of the Happy Days series of 1,000 piece puzzles from Ravensburger. Available for £11.99 and suited to ages 10+.blackpool-ravensburger

I have now done a few of the Happy days puzzles from Ravensburger and I think this one is my new favourite. I have many happy memories of days spent in this historic seaside town. The Happy Days Blackpool puzzle has a sense of nostalgia as well as depicting all the classic parts of Blackpool. From the tower, trams and donkeys and of course the lights this picture has it all.

blackpool-happy-days

 

Happy Days Blackpool was a pleasure to complete, and I had no problems with any large areas of colour. I completed this puzzle in my usual 4/5 hours. The colours are bright so I started with the blues and yellows. The pavement was also easy to complete and helped shape the Blackpool picture. The illustration from Kevin Walsh has some lovely characters and these were next to be completed.

blackpool-puzzles-ravensburger

 

The sky was the last part I finished on this puzzle and finished the Blackpool scene. The Happy days series have a nostalgic feel, while still remaining bright and interesting puzzles. I think this is one that Bingo Granny will also enjoy completing. Despite the fact she has never visited this British holiday destination.

blackpool-ravensburger-puzzles

 

Blackpool happy days puzzle is available now from retailers including Amazon and my affiliate link to purchase is below. Visit the Ravensburger website for more puzzles in the Happy Days Series.

 

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

The Wedding – What if? – Review

The Wedding is Number 16 in the series of What If puzzles. This 1,000 piece puzzle is available from Ravensburger for RRP £11.99.

The weeding is a fun illustrative puzzle where the picture on the box is not the finished puzzle picture. Some of the elements remain the same but others change and until the puzzle is finished you wont see the full picture. This is the second What if? puzzle that I have completed and I do find them more of a challenge than a standard picture puzzle. The boy likes these puzzles too as he likes the sense of humour and spends time spotting all the jokes.

wedding

The wedding as you might have guessed shows a wedding party, but not as the bride had hoped. The puzzle picture is what might happen if the groom was in charge of sorting out the wedding reception. I found this puzzle tricky to complete and took me a little longer than I normally would spend on a 1,000 piece Ravensburger puzzle. The picture is bright and engaging and despite not having a full picture to work from was not hard to complete.

the wedding what if

I started with the edges, followed by the block colours. The speech bubbles are also easy to pick out, and from then on you have an idea of where the picture is going. The finished picture has some funny touches, but I wont spoil it for you by showing you the completed puzzle as you will have to try it for yourself. I think this puzzle would make a fun gift for a friend who is getting married, or simply if you like a puzzle that is a little more challenging.

Ravensburger puzzles are available from toy and game retailers as well as online from Amazon and other online sites.

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

Happy Days Edinburgh – Review

Happy Days Edinburgh is a great illustrative puzzle from Ravensburger which is part of a series of puzzle with a retro feel. This 1,000 piece puzzle is available from retailers and online from Amazon, RRP £11.99 suited to ages 10+.

This is the second puzzle I have completed in the Happy Days series from Ravensburger. Happy Days Tenby is one of my favourites so I was looking forward to the bright inviting illustration of this puzzle. This puzzle depicts Edinburgh town and is the 12th puzzle in the series. Happy Days Edinburgh is illustrated by Kevin Walsh, a well-known artist of historic and retro prints The illustration for this puzzle has a lovely nostalgic feel, and with bright colours which made it great to complete.

Happy Days Edinburgh

I found this puzzle easy to complete as there are plenty of starting points. Starting with the edges. I then picked out the red of the cars and the yellow and blue of the little girls dress. The figures were easy to pick out too. The bus signs and flags next ant then the background and road were soon filled. The boy helped with this puzzle and enjoyed the little details on the bus and van.

happy days puzzle

I have not had the chance to visit Edinburgh, and this puzzle certainly gave me a feel for the city. With the hustle and bustle and classic kilts which you would expect. I love the Illustrative details on Happy Days Edinburgh and am looking forward to doing some of the other puzzles in this series soon. I had no problem completing this puzzle in around 4/5 hours, and as the boy joined in a little less. If the family join me for a puzzle I know its a good one, giving Happy Days Edinburgh the thumbs up!

happy days edinburgh puzzle

You can click on my Amazon link below for the best price on the Happy Days Edinburgh Puzzle. Visit the Ravensburger website for details of this and other puzzles in the Happy Days series.

 

Disclaimer I was sent this puzzle in exchange 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.

Tower of London – Ravensburger Puzzle Review

Tower of London is a new puzzle from Ravensburger which is part of the Historic Royal Palaces series. Tower of London is a 1,000 piece puzzle suitable for ages 10+ RRP £11.99.

I completed the Hampton Court Puzzle earlier in the year, and the Tower of London is a great addition to this series. The puzzle comes with a picture fact sheet, and I find these sheets a great addition to the puzzling experience. Its so much easier to refer to the picture sheet rather than the lid of the box.

tower of london

I sometimes feel that photographic puzzles like the tower of London will somehow not keep my attention and be as interesting, but didn’t find this the case with this puzzle. There at first glance seemed to be a sea of blue, and after my initial sorting of the edges I found the red was the colour that stood out. There also appeared to be lots of brick, but again once you have been through the pieces you find the quality of the picture allows you to separate each of the different tones of building.

tower of london puzzle

The Tower of London was not a tricky puzzle, and once the figures of the guardsman and the Beefeater were complete, it was easy to find the ER wording. The crown and the darker blue of the sky were easy to sort. Traitors gate was the next part completed and finally the historic tower of London itself.

tower of london review

The Tower of London is a great puzzle and one which I enjoyed especially the details on the crowns. I certainly need to think about going to the tower one day as its a place I have never been to. Visit the Ravensburger website for more great puzzles.

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

An Evening Walk – Review

An evening walk is a new 500 piece puzzle from Ravensburger RRP £7.99 suitable for ages 12+.

an evening walk

An evening walk is a beautiful illustration with a vintage Parisian feel. As you would expect from Ravensburger this puzzle has a great fit, bright colours and is a pleasure to piece together. I was interested to see how long this puzzle would take me to complete as I tend to stop and start and place a few pieces while cooking. So I set myself a target and borrowed the boys stopwatch and got started.

an evening walk puzzle

An evening walk has some great colours to get you started and I found after the edges were complete the sky was next as well as the fruit and flowers which were easy to spot. Next I completed the paving and the blues and purple of the citron. The Eifel tower was also easy to find the pieces for and finally the building to finish. I loved that this puzzle was much easier to finish than my usual 1,000 piece puzzles and took up hardly any room on the dining table, so the family didn’t have to eat around it!

evening walk

I loved the details in an evening walk, there is a nice balance of detail and open spaces. the sky makes a great atmosphere on this puzzle, and I think young adult puzzlers would also enjoy this puzzle. Have a look on the Ravensburger website for lots more 500 piece puzzles perfect for those with less space, or want to finish at speed like I did. I completed this puzzle in 1 hour and 40 minutes, not bad I thought!

My affiliate link is below if you would like to buy this puzzle.

World Wonders Ravensburger Puzzle – Review

World Wonders is a 2,000 piece Ravensburger puzzle which is part of the Panorama collection of puzzles. Suitable for 14+ and RRP £20.99 this puzzle measures 132 x 61cm when complete.

world wonders

World Wonders is an illustrated puzzle by Maria Rabinky and with 2,000 was going to be my Christmas challenge. Like other Ravensburger puzzles, World wonders has the same well made pieces with the soft click technology which means they fit together perfectly. I did feel daunted when I first opened the box but with a little help from the boy soon got started. I find I only use the box for my sorting pieces, but with this puzzle decided I needed a couple of trays. as I sorted and looked for the edges, I also decided to separate all the blue coloured pieces. Strangely I found it easier to complete the penguins and blue seas first.

world wonders puzzle

Sorting through the 2,000 pieces of the World wonders puzzle took some time, and completing the edges took more than an hour. It was interesting to see how much of my table this puzzle took up. I thought the boy might enjoy helping with this puzzle, but in-fact he found it a little daunting, and helped towards the end when he could see that we were getting close to completion.

world wonders 2000

I love the details on the World Wonders puzzle, there is some poetic licence with the placement of some of the images, and the boy enjoyed finding these. With two Sydney opera houses, floating kiwis, and some strange islands off the Cornish coast. The details of animals and famous landmarks is lovely on this puzzle, but don’t be fouled to thinking that you will know the location of every piece. The pieces are smaller than the illustration on the box subjects so the World Wonders puzzle is still a challenge.

world wonders finished

I loved the Panorama puzzle size which makes a change from the standard rectangle and this fitted the map view of the puzzle well. With the addition of the fish and dolphins, boats and islands there are no large coloured spaces so your interest is kept right up to the last piece. World Wonders I think took me around 8 hours in total to complete, although I do get carried away and still finished this puzzle within 2 days of staring it. I love the bright colourful details of the World wonders puzzle, and think that puzzle fans will enjoy the challenge of this larger puzzle.

Have a look at Ravensburger for other puzzles in the Panorama series like the one I completed of London at Night as well as lots of fun puzzles for the kids.

 

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

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.