Welcome to our new blog series, featuring the journey of one of our Puzzled Artist team going from a ‘social puzzler’ to a solo puzzler.…who now has the puzzle bug!
She has been part of the team since day one but has never had the confidence to go out there and conquer all the puzzles. Follow her on her hilarious, somewhat kooky, journey through all of our collections. She will give you her honest experience through the ups and downs of each puzzle, sharing her insights and ‘tips’ where she can.
Introduction to the Extra-Puzzled Artist
I am Cordelia, and I am what some may call a Social Puzzler, some people social drink or smoke… I Social Puzzle!
Puzzling to me is sitting down, maybe by a fire on a rainy day, with your loved ones and friends, sharing stories whilst challenging yourself to tease your brain and solve this mystical beauty in front of you. You share laughter, frustration, elation (that feeling when you get the right piece or are in ‘the flow’ is euphoric) and most importantly the workload!
There are people who are natural at this, born to be puzzle deities, born to look at the scattered pieces and just know which form should go into the next. I am not that person! There are two Puzzle Queens in the The Puzzled Artist team and I am not only not one of them but look upon them with awe and wonder. They completed one of our hardest puzzles in an afternoon! Now they are humble and will disagree with me but I’m telling you, they are pretty epic puzzlers.
Not going to lie, because of this, I was so comfortable in my little Social Puzzler bubble. I would enjoy a tea or a wine, depending on the time of day, and enjoy the incredible experience. But the time has come for me to jump out of my comfort zone and take on the challenge of the Pix ‘n’ Mix Collection solo. Six Puzzles…. six different difficulty levels…. and a whole lot of passion.
A Flamin’ Good Time
There was no way I was starting with anything but Flamin’, I needed to ensure I could prove to myself that I could actually do a puzzle solo. Everyone on the team assured me that this puzzle was going to be a piece of cake. That I was going to love it and that I was going to finish it before I knew it. But as I poured out the 500 pieces I couldn’t work out if I was jittering with excitement or fear (what if I had challenged myself to all this and couldn’t even complete one puzzle!? And our easiest!).
With the table set up, the TV on in the background, the rain pounding on the windows (as apparently bank holiday weekends here in Cornwall are code for monsoon season), tea in hand ...I began.
I don’t know about you but I am a border first kinda gal, getting that sorted is a quick win for me. Especially with these 500 piece puzzles, man having that rectangle looking deceptively small was such a confidence boost. The elation and satisfaction of putting that final border piece in - I screamed and danced around the sitting room! I had reached my first goal post and man did it feel good. Naturally I had to celebrate this milestone with a fresh cup of tea and a piece of cake!
As I went through this puzzle I found I couldn’t step away. The puzzle pieces had the brush strokes looking like sherbert mapped lines for me to follow. I didn’t even need to look at the box nor sort the puzzle pieces into their colours. No the brush strokes and colours led the way. Hours went by and I didn’t even notice, I was in the zone and loving every second of it. It felt like what everyone talks about with meditation (which as I am sure you can imagine, I don’t have the quietest of minds and struggle with immensely). But here I was, barely paying attention to the TV, not aware of the time and fully focussed on the task at hand. My thoughts were quiet, calm (most of the time) and happy.
After stopping to walk the dog, pick up supplies of chocolate and wine, I couldn’t resist going back to it. I had a list of jobs a million miles long - I was meant to be sorting out my veg patch, I was meant to be answering emails and finally catching up with the friends who I had been meaning to message back for what felt like forever. But none of that could hold my attention. I just wanted to solve one more piece….and just another after that… and another. And well as you can imagine I just couldn’t walk away.
I finally dragged myself to bed but come the morning, as soon as I had sorted the dog out with his morning walk and breakfast I found myself back at it. I only had two colours left - I was two thirds of my way through. I was marvelling in utter disbelief that I could complete something so quickly, that I could do this solo. Puzzling has always been fun but man this was so fulfilling. I had to be patient but also persistent to break through those moments of blockages and was that pay off good when you heard that click of the piece slotting into its rightful place.
I appreciate that we create these puzzles and so therefore I am already a fan of our products but if you are looking for something to do, something that you can truly get lost in and won’t tease your brain too much, but will bring you buckets of satisfaction, this is the puzzle for you. This sherbet gradient beauty really did bring some much needed sunshine and joy into my rainy bank holiday weekend.
With the last puzzle piece in place, I am sitting here gloating - I did it! I loved it! I am framing it! And man is it going to look good on my wall!
Onto the next…. I think I will try Electric Squid, which I have been warned is a real brain teaser!
I hope you will join me next time to hear how I get on.