Lately, when I been deciding what puzzles to write about for this blog, I find myself choosing new brands or at least puzzle styles that I haven’t done before. Today, that brand is Trefl, and more specifically, their crazy shapes collection. Trefl is a toy company based in Poland that was started in 1985. It is the one of the largest jigsaw companies in Europe and the leading producer of board games in Poland. If you are interested in reading a review about their standard puzzles, check out this article from 2016! If not, let’s get started on our crazy shaped adventure!
The crazy shape puzzle that I chose (coincidentally, also my Puzzle of the Month pick), is “Aurora over Iceland”. I’m usually not a scenery person, but I could not resist those gorgeous colors in the sky. One of the things on my bucket list is to see the aurora borealis in Iceland. I mean, I’ll settle for seeing them anywhere, but I’ve heard so many amazing things about Iceland. Hopefully I’ll make it there someday. Unfortunately, this particular puzzle is out of stock, but if you’re drawn to it because of the beautiful use of colors, check out this equally fantastic puzzle from the collection, “Sky over Paris“.
I’m also a huge fan of this in-stock puzzle aptly named “Colourful Balloons“
The box is about the size of a Ravensburger box. On the front is a large, full size image of the puzzle. There are some circles on the side of the image that advertise the crazy shapes that cover up a small portion of the image. It’s not too much, but I dislike when puzzle companies do that. I know some people puzzle without images, but I like to refer to either the box cover or a poster if one is included. Anything covering up the image is slightly annoying to me, but I think we have all established that I have early onset grump. However, Iike I stated before, it only covers up a VERY small amount, such as can be seen in this puzzle that is also available, “Facing a Tiger“.
The back of the box has some information about the company. The puzzle is in a non resealable bag and there is no poster included. I feel like the box could have been a tad smaller. The puzzles are only 600 pieces, and even with the slightly larger pieces, the amount of empty space in the box was kind of glaringly obvious. These are only my nitpicks though and did not effect the assembly or my extreme enjoyment of the puzzle.
Love underwater scenes? Check out “Tropical Island“
One thing you should know about me is that I love random shaped puzzles (I think that I may have mentioned that fact before, but I feel like I’m becoming more and more like Sam on Quantum Leap and my brain is slowly becoming Swiss cheesy, so you might have to bear with me sometimes). at any rate, random shapes, I love them. I tend to find ribbon cut puzzles to be slightly boring. There’s something exciting to be had with the swoops and curves of a random piece! And these pieces, they do be random shaped! I’d definitely call them even more random shaped than a Springbok! I really enjoyed the construction of the pieces. They are nice and sturdy, with a matte finish and a very subtle linen texture (so subtle that it’s actually hard to notice). The pieces measures 1.9mm thick and because this puzzle is only 600 pieces, so they are nice and chonky too. For scale, I included a Ravensburger piece.
Now, the only sorting that I ever do is border pieces, but because the border was as wonky as the rest of the piece shapes, there were no straight sides to be found! I decided to pick a color and start there. I started on the gorgeous pinks, purples and greens of the horizontal part of the aurora. After I finished that section, I put together the blue white glacier along the bottom. I then moved on the waterfalls and the land portions. Tackling the sky was a little spicy. I put together the stars/galaxy on the top left first and then went by color for the other sections. The end result was a breathtaking image and a wonderfully fun build!
Any horse fans out there? Look at the amazing colors in the clouds and surf in “Galloping Among the Waves“!
I have to say, I did not expect to love doing this puzzle so much, but it was such a great time! The image was gorgeous and crisp, the colors were so bright and those pieces were just so fun to work with. The fit left a little to be desired, but with piece shapes such as these, it’s almost impossible for them to lock together. Even so, I actually didn’t even care about that. The puzzle actually reminded me of a wooden puzzle with it’s wonky pieces. It totally made me have to use my brain differently and come at it with a different strategy. If you want to work on your shape recognition, this is absolutely the puzzle for you.
Hope you have fun puzzling this month and remember to try a new type of puzzle every now and then!
-Gaby @puzzlepastime on IG