Below you will see Tropical Punch, Stave’s #1 bestselling puzzle. Look carefully at this photo and you’ll see why this is so popular. For a small number of pieces you get a super challenging wooden jigsaw puzzle. Notice how the interior fish pieces are nested together with color-line cutting between them. It takes a lot of head scratching to figure out which fish goes where.
Below are two(2) more examples of the wild and crazy things we do to your/our puzzles. The top puzzle is called "Flap Jack". I love the left-hand corner and window treatments, total surprises for the unsuspecting puzzler. Note how the fork-shaped puzzle piece is resting in the bowl and how the milk jug is placed on white, cleverness for which we are famous.
The second puzzle shown is "Party Animals". Here’s where Melody, our ace digital artist, decided to expand the edge digitally with the rainbow of colors. She then suggested to the cutter that a swirly design might work great…. and it certainly did!
More and more we are digitally expanding the edges of print images so we can add the devilish touches you see in this image.
When we sculpt a design or create a ‘window treatment’ in the face of a puzzle we are basically creating negative space by removing slivers and chunks of wood which we throw away. This is a dangerous gambit because one false move by the crafter and the puzzle is done for. Sculpts and windows work best in plain areas of the image so they clearly show what’s happening. Not only are they beautiful but they are dastardly difficult for the puzzler to deal with. That unexpected negative space messes with the mind…. heh, heh! Below is shown a spectacular ‘window treatment’ in the shape of a bottle we did last month.
The title of the puzzle is Crabernet… the wine bottle is filled with little crabs. Note the jumbo crab holding the wine glass! Also note the small sculpts in the blue table cloth which are meant to look like water. I love this design!
One of the things we are most famous for are our spectacular edge treatments. For instance take a look at “Twilight in the Park” and those yellow cabs at the bottom.
Welcome to my blog, Steve’s blog. I am Steve Richardson, Chief Tormentor of Stave Puzzles since 1974. We’re located outside Norwich, Vermont just north of White River Junction on the Connecticut River…. 2 hours from Boston.
I love to drive people crazy with our beautifully, hand-crafted wooden (cherry-backed) jigsaw puzzles. Here’s an example…. in, about, around 1984 (yes, last century) I invented the TRICK jigsaw puzzle, one that goes together many different ways BUT with only one correct configuration.
One of my favorite TRICK puzzle designs is CHAMP (see photo) with 44 pieces…. it has 32 ways to arrange the pieces with only one correct way for the mouth to bite the tail… rather diabolical, I must admit.
Over the years we have sold hundreds of CHAMPs and, I’m proud to say, most buyers have had a TERRIBLE time with their 44 pieces. Many have regaled me with their tales of woe, some even begging for HINTS.. can you imagine?… I love it!