Ice Cream Pops

Ice Cream Pops
Ice Cream Pops – Eurographics – 100 pieces

What a fun puzzle! It’s perfect for both kids and adults, it isn’t an easy one so it’s a good puzzle for more than one generation to work on together, and it’s full of ice cream – who doesn’t love ice cream pops?

This puzzle had very good quality even though it’s Eurographics; large, thick pieces, lots of variety in piece shape, and nice fit. From the last four or five Eurographics puzzles that I’ve assembled, I have noticed that their puzzles for children are very good quality, but their new adult puzzles are quite poor quality indeed. Luckily I enjoy a good puzzle for children. (If you only assemble adult puzzles, I would recommend skipping this brand unless you know that it is a much older copy. Their puzzle quality has gone downhill in the past several years.)

Ice Cream Pops 1

This ice cream pop is not only kinda pretty, but there’s a recipe for it on the back of the box! So if a yogurt berry ice cream pop sounds good to you, you’re in luck!

Ice Cream Pops 2

Here’s the recipe for anyone who might want to make some, and if you do – please let me know how they turn out. I’d love to hear from you.

I haven’t been making any ice cream pops, but I have been making ice cream. I have an ice cream maker that churns and stirs the “slurry” as my husband calls it, and we’ve been enjoying all sorts of different flavors of ice cream. Our favorite so far is raspberry, but the mixed berry has been great too, as well as chocolate pecan, pistachio, and maple nut. With all this time at home I have plenty of help in the kitchen, and making ice cream has been a favorite activity for us all.

The Human Body

The Human Body
The Human Body – Eurographics – 200 pieces

This puzzle was very good quality, which is unfortunately NOT something I have said about the last few Eurographics puzzles I’ve assembled. Unlike those, this puzzle had thick pieces, many shapes, and a good fit. I love to be happily surprised by a brand that I’ve had issues with before!

Eurographics quality has gone down in my opinion, but this puzzle has bucked that trend and I’m happy that at least their children’s puzzles seem to have been made with a little more effort. I still wouldn’t buy an adult jigsaw puzzle from this brand for myself, but I’m happy that this one was much better quality than I expected. 🙂

Educational puzzles are so entertaining for me to put together, even if they’re made for young children. Sometimes I get to re-learn something I already knew, and sometimes I get to find out something new and interesting – and I LOVE THAT!

The smaller colored areas were easy to assemble, but the two human figures in the center were much more difficult…

The Human Body 3

Bones and muscle on both sides, looking very much the same, made it more difficult to assemble this part; and it was the last thing I put together. But I think that’s a very good thing; if a puzzle is too easy it becomes boring, and we don’t want our kids to be bored with puzzles we want them to be engaged and excited by assembling them. All the health and intellectual benefits of puzzling are even more pronounced for children; it helps their developing brains and they become better learners. I’m a huge proponent of puzzles for kids!

The Human Body 1

I enjoyed reading each of smaller sections on the different systems of the human body. It’s aimed at children, but it’s always good to give yourself a little basic refresher course. The circulatory system was the first section I assembled after completing the edge.

The Human Body 2

I find the spine fascinating, so I definitely enjoyed this small section – besides it was very colorful, which is always a plus.

Each section of this puzzle was bright and colorful, entertaining, and educational. In short… what a great puzzle!

Review: Butterflies * Vintage Stamps

Butterflies
Butterflies * Vintage Stamps – Eurograhics – 500 pieces

This is where I would usually show you a picture of the completed puzzle, but as you can see I’ve taken a picture of the box instead. Why? Because this puzzle had terrible quality, and once I’d put together six pieces of the edge that was all I needed. Life is too short to waste on crappy puzzles.

The entire time I was sorting my brain was telling me to really think about whether or not this was a puzzle I wanted to assemble. There were MANY pieces still attached, not because they just didn’t get broken up, but because they weren’t cut all the way through – not even close to all the way through. There were groups of 2, 3, and even 4 pieces still together, and to separate them without damaging them would have required a sharp craft knife and lots of time. 😐

The thinness of the pieces was a concern as well, I don’t ever remember a Eurographics puzzle having such thin, bendable pieces before – and there have been many a puzzle from this brand on my table through the years. If I hadn’t purchased it new myself, the quality would lead me to believe this was a dollar store puzzle.

Once I started putting the edge together I knew this puzzle was going to be horrid to assemble and that it just wasn’t worth it. The looseness of the fit was crazy, there was way too much play in the pieces.

Butterflies 1

This is the pieces pushed together tightly.

Butterflies 2

This is how much play there is within the fit. You couldn’t lift two assembled pieces.

I’m not sure exactly when Eurographics quality went downhill, but the last few puzzles of theirs that I’ve assembled have been quite disappointing. They used to have nice, thick pieces with a random cut that made for an interesting assembly. The newer puzzles I’ve assembled have had thinner pieces with only one piece shape. This puzzle just put them on my naughty list, because I absolutely cannot recommend this brand anymore.

It may seem odd to review a puzzle I haven’t completely assembled, but there were so many quality issues that I felt a responsibility to let my readers know – a review seemed to be the best way to do that. It isn’t coming as a shock, I’ve expressed disappointment with the last few Eurographics puzzles that I’ve assembled; but this was by far the worst quality puzzle of theirs I’ve ever seen.

Once I decided to review this puzzle I gathered the pieces for the two yellow butterflies and put them together to be sure about the quality of the whole puzzle. Absolutely awful. Perhaps my puzzle was just one from the very end of the run when the die is dullest, but when you put this disappointing quality together with the problems of the previous ones it all adds up to a brand that has major problems, in my opinion.

Please remember, all reviews are only one person’s opinion. I do my best to be objective, but in the end this review is only about my puzzle and my experience; take it with a grain of salt. Far be it from me to tell you what to buy or not to buy; but for myself I know there won’t be any more Eurographics puzzles in my shopping cart anytime soon. It’s such a shame too, they used to be such nice puzzles. 😥

Details:

  • Title:                  Butterflies * Vintage Stamps
  • Artist:                Unknown
  • Brand:               Eurographics
  • Piece count:     500 pieces
  • Size:                  Approx. 19 x 13 in. (48 x 33 cm)
  • Purchased:      New

Quality:

  • Board:                Poor, very thin
  • Cutting:             Poor
  • Image:               Very good
  • Box:                   Average
  • Fit:                     Poor, very loose
  • Puzzle Dust:     Moderate amount
  • Piece cut:          Grid cut
  • Piece shapes:   No variety, all one shape
  • Finish:               Slightly shiny finish

Overall Rating:      Poor quality, not recommended

Dog’s Life

Dog's Life
Dog’s Life by Gary Patterson – Eurographics – 500 pieces

Is that not the cutest puzzle? It’s so adorable!!! My darlin daughter gave me this one for Christmas, and I couldn’t wait to get at it. It’s truly a dog’s life in this puzzle, and if you have dogs or have had them in the past you will relate.

It’s not the best quality, and if you ask me Eurographics is backsliding in the quality department. They used to be very good quality randomly cut puzzles, but this one piece shape with terrible cutting leaves a lot to be desired. The finish is super shiny and there is glare no matter if you’re working with dark pieces or light.

Dog's Life 1

This is basically dog ownership in a nutshell. Always looking at you for food as if they’ve never eaten a meal in their lives; that’s how Buddy looks at us anyway.

We only have one dog, just Buddy, but he certainly enjoys a ride in the car, and there is plenty of hanging out the window going on! And more than any other little vignette in this puzzle, the one on the right definitely shows how Buddy gets comfy in bed with my husband and me. He takes the middle – all of the middle!

My youngest son surprised me by coming in at the end of this puzzle when I was finishing the middle, there were about 7 or 8 pieces left, and he just grabbed one and put it in. He NEVER wants to do puzzles with me, so it was a bit of a shock, but a very happy one. He kept on going and I let him place all of the final pieces. He stopped at the last one and looked to me, knowing that putting in the very last piece makes a hard-core puzzler like me very happy, but I told him to go ahead and finish it. It was so lovely and I was truly pleased that he came in and wanted to be with me in my puzzle room working on one of my puzzles – even if it was only for a couple of minutes! He’s so sweet, and I love that he helped me put in the last few pieces. 💖

50 Scents of Grey

50 Scents
50 Scents of Grey by Lucia Heffernan – Eurographics – 500 pieces

My daughter fell in love with this image when we were shopping, so obviously I had to get it. (I wanted to interject here to tell you what a good mom I am for purchasing this puzzle to make my daughter happy, but the truth is I probably would have gotten it anyway. I am afflicted with a severe and non-treatable case of PADS. 😎)

It was fun to assemble, and I was thrilled to see that there was more than one piece shape. The previous Eurographics puzzle that I assembled only had the one shape, luckily this one had some variation. The box says it’s a “family puzzle”, which I thought meant several different sizes of the pieces, but that wasn’t the case. I’m not certain what makes it a family puzzle, but I’m pretty sure it isn’t the image.

My daughter says I should frame this puzzle, she tells me she would love to hang it in her house – it makes her laugh.  Unfortunately I had already disassembled it by the time she replied to my text, so it looks like I’ll be putting it together one more time for my baby girl. I hope she likes it.

50 Scents 1

After the “easy” parts, all that was left was all blue and all red pieces. Thankfully there were several piece shapes and shades of color to help put these sections together.

50 Scents 2The scratch and sniff part was my favorite – how silly and cute/gross is that? This is a great little puzzle with interesting shapes and very good quality; it’s fairly easy and quick to put together, but still enjoyable.

I’ll be reassembling this puzzle for my beautiful daughter so she can display it in her house. I hope it makes her smile and think of me whenever she looks at it; and I hope it doesn’t get her dogs too worked up. 😉