Putting a jigsaw puzzle in itself is quite interesting, preserving the completed puzzle can give you immense pleasure and bragging rights if you have a group of friends who are into puzzles. The tougher the puzzle, more the pleasure. But how do you go about preserving those masterpieces? You could glue it to a board or a mat, and maybe even frame it.
The idea of preserving a completed puzzle is great but you need the right stuff to preserve it. Puzzle glue can be picked off the shelf of most craft stores or bought online, but to extend the fun of solving a puzzle why not learn how to make puzzle glue yourself? Don’t dread, preparing puzzle glue is easier than you think, there are various ways of preparing glue at home and the simpler the better.
Puzzle glue is essentially Mod Podge, a thinner more spreadable version of the typical Elmer’s White School Glue. To create a high quality puzzle adhesive that is safe to use on the front of the puzzle, mix equal parts white Elmer’s glue and water in a glass container and shake until the consistency is even.
There are other ways to create your own glue, including a flour paste. Just half a cup of flour and enough water to mix into a thick paste is all it takes. Drying time is high compared to commercial products with this mixture, and make sure there are no lumps; adding a bit of sugar and salt makes it more sticky. It is not suggested to use this mixture on the front of the puzzle as it may not dry clear – instead flip the puzzle over and glue the back. The next best homemade glue uses Gum Arabic. Add just enough water to the gum arabic to dissolve it, and you have a strong glue which dries quickly when applied. These types of glue don’t always dry clear, so use it on the back of your puzzle first.
Gelatin based glue is great, as it is clear and waterproof, but it takes a bit more effort and more resources to make. It is well worth it, though, if you plan to stick your puzzle onto glass. There are other ways of preparing glue like using milk and vinegar, but I would suggest against this since it does not have a good shelf life.
Teach your kids how to make puzzle glue and you will have your them stuck to jigsaw puzzles and make a lot of good memories along with it.
*Note: Be careful when gluing puzzles – it not recommended to glue puzzles that have special or high-quality finishing like glitter or matte-finished puzzles. The glue could ruin the quality of the puzzle. In these cases, it’s best to go with something like Puzzle Presto – sticky sheets that you can use on the back of the puzzle that don’t cause damage to the pieces.