My last puzzle in Dortmund for a long while, I’m now in Helsinki, and will stay here for a few months. The puzzle is part of the Trefl Crazy Shapes series, and it was a lot of fun, probably the best of the images I’ve done. Loved it!
I haven’t been puzzling much lately, but I’ve managed to finish a few puzzles. I’ve been back in Dortmund for a week, but I did this puzzle before I left Helsinki.
Colourful Balloons, Trefl, 600 pieces. Completed on October 19, 2022.
It’s part of the Trefl Crazy Shapes series, and I really enjoy these puzzles. The wild cut makes them a bit more difficult than a grid cut would be, but now that I’ve done a few, I find that I can even identify some of the edge pieces.
This was so much fun! Another Hidden Shapes puzzle from Trefl, but this was much easier than my first one. While I enjoy having strangely shaped pieces, I felt that this image was so easy that I really didn’t pay much attention to piece shape, the colours and patterns were enough.
After I finished, I pulled out the 10 shapes:
Given the subject, I’m sure the UFO on the bottom should really be a mushroom, but a UFO is more entertaining 🙂
Another novelty Trefl, this time with the pieces arranged in a spiral, as if the puzzle were round. I liked it, although it was quite difficult to make my brain understand how smaller, completed sections aligned in the puzzle. I kept trying to put them in as if it were a grid cut 🙂 All in all, very enjoyable.
I previously wrote about Trefl’s series of cardboard puzzles with whimsies, and claimed I had one. Well, it turned out I was mistaken, but that was easily fixed, of course. There are four puzzles in the Hidden Shapes series, with piece count ranging from 1003 to 1060. The actual piece counts are on the box instead of the usual “1000”.
There are 10 whimsies, all of them composite, so that they take up a large part of the puzzle:
The whimsies seem to be sea-related, although I’m not sure what the bottom two are supposed to be:
The overall quality of the puzzle is the same as normal Trefl puzzles, that is to say good, but not exceptional. Obviously, there are quite a few pieces that are not fully interlocking, and I was wondering if that would be more annoying with a cardboard puzzle than with a wooden one since the pieces are lighter. I didn’t really feel there was any difference in that regard. Of course, you spend some time pushing pieces back together, but you do that with wooden puzzles as well. Based on this experience, I see no reason why whimsies should be exclusive to wooden puzzles, they work just as well with cardboard, and it is fun working with non-standard piece shapes.
Trefl is a Polish brand that is currently trying out some new things.They now have wooden puzzles, as well as cardboard puzzles with whimsies. This is a puzzle with a fairly wild random cut and no straight edges. It was definitely more challenging than a normal puzzle with the same piece count, but I liked it. The finished puzzle is as big as a usual 1000-piece puzzle.
Polish brand Trefl is mostly known for traditional cardboard puzzles, but they’ve now decided to get in on the growing wooden puzzle boom. As far as I know, producers of wooden puzzles are usually separate firms, and I’m not aware of another producer that does both. The overall quality was very similar to the two Unidragon puzzles I’ve done, which is to say good, but the pieces are quite thin, and also very small.
One thing that is different from Unidragon is that the whimsies have nothing to do with the image, there are all kind of whimsies, and I think they will probably be the same in many puzzles. Here are some examples (I was too lazy to pull out them all):
On the reverse side the pieces have a floral pattern. I suppose you could do the other side as a separate, really difficult puzzle, but I don’t feel like it.
I absolutely love the image of this puzzle (not the floral pattern), and I would be happy to do it again as a cardboard puzzle in any piece count. In fact, while it’s nice to do a wooden puzzle every now and again, I’ve come to realize, I actually prefer (interlocking) cardboard puzzles. The whimsies are fun, and I enjoy finding funnily shaped pieces, but in the end, it also means you have to place the pieces more carefully, and it can’t be 100 % interlocking, and that’s what I really prefer.
This puzzles is part of the Trefl Golden Cities series. I bought it used, but apparently, when new, these puzzles include some gold paint and a brush that you can use to put some finishing touches on the puzzle. This has not been painted on, the text “Rome” and the helmet doodle are part of the original puzzle, but there was no paint or brush. Fine by me, I only want the puzzle anyway 🙂 It was a nice and very enjoyable puzzle, even though the image is very traditional.
Beautiful Indian beach scene. I seem to enjoy doing puzzles with water lately.
Trefl puzzles are quite cheap, and I’ve usually found them to be good value, but this time there were quite a few tabs where the top layer had separated. There are two on this photo:
Anyway, still an enjoyable puzzle.
Not a great photo, but it was a lovely puzzle.
This puzzle was part of a series called Orient, and I completed one other from the series, called Touring Egypt – The Temple of Karnak at Luxor, in April 2008, but unfortunately no photo of that one.