Homemade Jigsaw Puzzles

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Jigsaw puzzles are a type of game used to provide entertainment. For the jigsaw puzzle enthusiast, puzzles can be more challenging, while less challenging ones are created for children. You can make your own jigsaw puzzles using images or patterns. Build a jigsaw puzzle for your children as a recreational and educational activity or make a puzzle to give as a personalized gift for someone.

Use a digital image to create a jigsaw puzzle.
baby image by Yvonne Bogdanski from Fotolia.com

Things You'll Need

  • Acrylic Spray
  • White Glue
  • Ruler
  • Picture
  • Plastic Bag Or Box
  • Cardboard
  • Scissors Or X-Acto Knife

Determine the size of the jigsaw puzzle desired. Select a picture based on the size required. This picture can be one found in magazines, calendars or an enlarged digital photo. If you have children, use one of their drawings for a more personalized jigsaw puzzle.

Use white glue to affix the picture to a piece of cardboard. Cut the cardboard with scissors or an X-Acto knife to the picture’s size.

Allow a minimum of 24 hours for the white glue to dry fully before proceeding.

Use the acrylic spray to apply a protective coat on the top side of the picture. This is to prevent tears and wear.

Allow enough time for the acrylic spray to dry. Read the label on the spray to determine the drying time. This time will vary with different acrylic spray brands.

Turn the picture over so the backside is now visible. Use the ruler and pencil to draw a grid of squares on the backside of the cardboard. Do not to make the pieces too small because smaller pieces are often harder to work with.

Make interlocking shapes between each piece of various sizes. For a less challenging puzzle, use an existing jigsaw puzzle piece to outline the interlocking shapes.

Use scissors or an X-Acto knife to cut the puzzle pieces along the pencil lines drawn.

Store the pieces in a plastic bag or small box after usage to avoid losing pieces.

Paste a copy of the puzzle’s image on the front of the plastic bag or top of the box to use as reference when solving the puzzle.


  • Use a digital montage of several shots blended together to increase the difficulty of the jigsaw puzzle. Use a poster board of various colors instead of cardboard for a more creative and colorful look.