Button, Button

Button, Button – Springbok (Hallmark) – 500+ pieces

This puzzle scared me a bit, it seemed as though it would be super difficult; it wasn’t easy, that’s true, but it was really fun too! This is an old Springbok, from back when they were a division of Hallmark Cards. From what I can find this is from about the mid 1970s.

The very random cut of the pieces adds to the challenge, but the fit was excellent. I can lift the whole thing up with one hand and nothing comes apart. Unfortunately because it’s octagonal it isn’t conducive to getting the traditional Stacey-loves-standing-them-up picture. Bummer.

There is a bunch of information on the back of the box about buttons. Which, I know, doesn’t sound all that interesting – but it really was! I took my normal amount of pictures of the puzzle, then I read all the information and had to take different pictures to show you the cool buttons I learned about. All off the buttons in this image are from the collection of Marie Bertholet Smith, who was an interior designer, art director, antique store owner, and who also worked at Hallmark for a number of years.

Wanna see some really awesome buttons?

This is an example of a “stud button”, which were sometimes large, hand-painted, and porcelain. They were called studs because of their post-like fasteners and were made to fasten cuffs, to button men’s vests and ladies shirtwaists, and to insert into the lapel. Look at the detail!

When I was putting this particular button together it made me think of how much time and care must have gone into making this one single button. Back in the day everything was constructed with such care; these days we melt blobs of plastic and pour them into molds for cheap, crappy things that constantly break.

See those spherical buttons in the center of the picture? Those are called “paperweight buttons” because of their resemblance to glass desk paperweights. They were most often made by glassblowers forming a mold of glass over a small ceramic object. Imagine the time it must have taken!

This is called a “garter button”, and they were used on fancy garters in the 1920s. They were faces painted on stretched silk or cotton. I love these! There were several examples of them in the image, but I chose this one because it had the ribbon headband.

It’s such a bummer there were two missing pieces, but for a 45 year old puzzle, that’s to be expected I suppose. It was still so much fun to put together, and learning about so many different kinds of buttons was almost as entertaining as the puzzle!


This old Springbok really makes me think of my Grama. In the days before the internet our only source of good quality puzzles was the Hallmark store. It was about 18 miles away from where we lived, and they only had one or two small shelves at the back of the store that had puzzles. I can remember exactly where in the store they were, all these years later. We had such fun walking to the back and wondering what kinds of puzzles would be there; and then finding just the right one or two to take home with us. Springbok puzzles will always remind me of her. 💖

If My People…

If My People
If My People by Jack E. Dawson – Sunsout – 500 pieces

This image is fabulous, but unfortunately the quality of the puzzle didn’t match. This puzzle had the thinnest pieces I’ve ever seen from Sunsout – it almost felt like a Cardinal puzzle from the dollar store. The fit wasn’t great either. In addition, a missing piece and two pieces that had been chewed by a pet or a child. Why would someone donate a puzzle like that? I don’t get it.

The image of hands repairing a battle-worn American flag is absolutely beautiful, and I truly wish it had been licensed to a company with better quality. That seems harsh, and it is; but this is my blog – about the puzzles I do and my opinions about them. That is my opinion.

Even for Sunsout this was terrible quality. Thin, bendable pieces and a bad fit made it less than pleasurable to work with. I finished it because my mom bought it, we both adored the image, and I wanted to see it through for her. If those things weren’t attached to it I’m not sure I would have kept going with such a terrible quality puzzle.

The artwork was painted after the 9-11 attacks and inspired by a Bible verse from 2 Chronicles. It contains hidden images; of the twin towers with rising smoke, of evil, of someone praying, and more. They were hard to find in the reproduced image, and even harder to photograph so that I could show you here. You can see, even without a closeup, the nail imprint on the left hand showing that it is Jesus mending the flag. If you’d like to see all of the hidden images you can check out the artist’s website which shows each hidden image and its meaning. (As a side note, the box this puzzle came in had absolutely no information about this artwork, the hidden images, or the artist).

This was a thrift store purchase, so as happens sometimes my puzzle had a couple of issues – the obvious missing piece in the flag, and the fact that someone or something used a couple of the pieces as a chew toy. Missing pieces happen, it isn’t a big deal to me. The chewed up pieces annoy me though. If you’re donating puzzles and you know a couple of pieces are chewed up – just don’t donate. Again, this is just my opinion.

If My People 1

These two pieces look relatively alright here, but they were mangled and I had to work to get them back in the right shape and fitted together. You can see the creases in the pieces to show how bent they were. Annoying.

Great image, terrible quality – it seems like I say that about Sunsout puzzles quite a bit, doesn’t it? They’ve been added to my boycott list along with Ceaco, it just isn’t worth the frustration for me. I need to be strong and resist the temptation when I see a fabulous image from a company that doesn’t have good quality. Sounds simple, but it’s not always easy for me to resist a beautiful image, I must admit. I’m a bit of a puzzle junkie.

Shocked? I know, right?! 😇