Our custom wooden name puzzles have been such a hit lately, so we wanted to give you an inside look behind the scenes at the process behind our puzzles. Being mums ourselves, we’re always thinking of ways we can help make learning for our kids fun and entertaining.
My three year old son Bailey started learning about puzzles at child care and I thought, what better way to help him learn his name, the letters, colours as well as improve his hand and eye coordination, dexterity and spatial awareness. See our post on How Puzzles Help Child Development.
We went through a couple of prototypes and decided that the board and puzzle pieces needed to be chunky to make it easier for a child to pick up and manoeuvre the pieces onto the board. The boards are made from 12mm Birch Plywood, and the pieces are 12mm MDF. Our CNC machine cuts out the holes where the pieces will sit into, as well as cutting all the individual pieces for the puzzle.
Once all the pieces are cut, we spend time sanding the pieces to ensure they are super smooth and ready to paint. The first coat is an undercoat which helps the coloured paint stick to the wood. It is gently sanded again and then two coats of colour are applied. This ensures a solid, non-streaky colour finish to the pieces. Once the colour coats are dry, we apply a coat of clear varnish to give it a beautiful finish and durability. Oh, and we do this to the front, back and sides of each piece. This painting process takes about 3 days as each coat of undercoat, colour and varnish needs time to dry. Phew!
For the puzzles that have a detailed puzzle piece, each little piece is individually cut, sanded, undercoated, sanded, then two coats of colour and varnish and then we glue the pieces together. Here is a fast forward version of glueing one of our dump truck puzzle pieces together (I wish it was this fast!).
And your puzzle is completed…It’s not a fast or simple process, but the end result is something we are so proud to deliver to you and we know your little ones will enjoy endless hours of fun with it.
We can customise your puzzle with your child’s name and a puzzle shape of your choice. We have lots of different shapes to choose from but if you’d like a custom piece that has special meaning to your child, contact us and we can create it for you. We can also paint all the pieces in your choice of colours – or your child’s favourite colours! A completely custom puzzle for your child that they will treasure for a lifetime.
For all our available puzzles, please see our puzzles page.
And here’s a video of one of our gorgeous finished puzzles so you can see all the details up close and personal. I hope you’ve enjoyed this sneak peak behind our process!
Thanks for reading!