Handcrafting the world's finest wooden jigsaw puzzles since 1974

The Chief Tormentor

The Deliciously Devilish Blog of Puzzling News From Staveland

Stave’s Amazing Flying Machine

Here’s a sneak peek at Steve’s latest 2-way Trick puzzle.
Artwork by Molly Delaney

Up, Up, and Away!

After 26 years at Stave you would think I’d have Steve figured out. It’s taken me a while but I’m finally catching on. Do you remember a few years ago when we debuted Steve’s sensational 2-way Trick puzzle, Atlantis? He spent forever developing the trick, cutting and working through the various prototypes and directing the artwork. Just when we reached the final stage and began crafting all the orders for this monster of a puzzle, he left town! I thought I was going to go around the bend trying to master that beast! Thankfully, just when I was about to throw up my hands in despair, it all came together. Well, he’s gone and done it again!

Steve ’s been deviously designing another new 2-way Trick puzzle and it’s great! The puzzle is based on an ingenious group of kids who kludge together their own soap box derby-type cars. They’ve nabbed parts from their dads’ garages, their neighbors’ basements and maybe even a few things from the dump! But as we know, when someone pours their heart and soul into creating something the result can be magical. And it is!

After constructing the four individual car s, they joi n together to create an amazing flying machine. It will be a really fun puzzle. But back to the boss. Here we are with a deadline to get this puzzle crafted and photographed so we can spread the news and he and Martha are headed to Maine! Guess who that leaves to pull a rabbit out of the hat? ME! I’ve had the opportunity to cut a few of the prototypes this time so it won’t be so bad. It’s a fun and entertaining puzzle and I know our Trick puzzlers are going to love it! Stay tuned…its debut is coming soon!

Jennifer-
Always up for a new challenge!

 

We are in M&M Heaven

Following is my email today to John P., an actor, who sends us goodies each year in exchange for a Stave tree ornament. “HEY! I pick up the Stave mail each day and today I felt like Santa Claus lugging my big heavy sack of your goodies to the shop. Egads, that huge box of M&M’s weighs a lot. Mind you, my gang is not complaining. If fact, when they heard that the big box was from you they pushed me aside and dove into it, Princess Paula getting the top bag.”


Thankful Hearts

Giving Thanks

As sad as I am to see summer fading away, I am also feeling the excitement of the coming seasons, especially Thanksgiving. This holiday brings a warmth to my heart that is sometimes forgotten in the day to day minutiae. It’s the time of year when families get together and we’re reminded of what’s good and right in our worlds.

We have much to be thankful for here at Stave Puzzles. We’ve been driving our puzzlers crazy for over 35 years and we’re still loving every minute of it! Our loyal and crazy followers have called upon us to puzzle them and their families in times of trouble and in times of celebration. We’ve been asked to send puzzles to folks who are feeling under the weather, those who are celebrating great things, and many puzzlers who truly enjoy making order out of chaos and want to be mentally challenged. We appreciate you all so much that we vow to continue to challenge you to your hearts’ content and we promise to keep coming up with loads of new ways to do it!

Normal. Really?!

We’re also thankful for the great people we’re surrounded by each and every workday. It’s an amazing thing to enjoy the work you do but to really like the people you do it with is an even bigger bonus! What is really amazing is how normal we all seem. I mean really, how can we all seem so normal on the outside when on the inside we’re dreaming up new ways to puzzle you?!

 

Bigger Can Be Better

 

 

 

Some of you already know this but while we’re working on the snazzy mailing piece to share with everyone, I’ll let the rest of you in on a little secret. YES, we cut puzzles with larger pieces! If you have young kids who are itching to get their hands on your Stave or someone in your life who’s eyesight isn’t quite what it used to be, we can cut almost anything with large pieces. Just ask and we’ll do it! Give us a call and we’ll help you figure out just how large you need the pieces and the rest of the details. We’ll get the official word out eventually, but for those of you who have been wondering- now you know!

I probably should have put one of our regular puzzle pieces next to one of the larger pieces but I didn’t think of it at the time. But hopefully, this is good enough to give you an idea of what we can do!

 

 

BECKY gets Creative

Becky, one of our Super-Duper crafters, waltzed into my office showing off her latest creations… a one-of-a-kind Stave Puzzles shirt. She cut out the plastic pieces, stuck them on the green shirt, and then lightly sprayed the shirt with bleach. How creative is that!

 

Angels Gather Here

Check out Wanita’s awesome work! Last year she presented our Chief-Tormentor, Steve, with this cute little jester. Appropriate for him, don’t you think?! He’s made of Polymer clay which she shaped into the various parts, put together and then baked in the oven. I’m amazed at how she managed to get his hat just so. From the silly expression on the face down to the purple and red shoes and the Jack-in-the-box he’s holding- he’s the perfect little jester!

 

Wanita’s most recent project is this beautiful angel. She saw a photo of something similar and thought, “I bet I can do that.” And did she!

It took several weeks to get things just how she wanted them and she ended up making the dress 3 times. After struggling with getting the folds in the dress just right, it occurred to Wanita that she could use her daughter’s wedding dress to help her. Wanita’s youngest daughter, Gail, was recently married so the dress came in handy for reference.

The Polymer clay comes in many different colors so Wanita didn’t have to add any paint to it. However, she did have to paint the eyelashes and add a bit of color to the cheekbones. The brush she used must have been tiny!

Here’s what Wanita has to say about her angel:

I love the wings! The smallest breath of air will make them move. I also liked using the different textures. The warmth of the grain in the wood, the smoothness of the clay, and of course, the softness of the wings.

I did have a picture to reference as I worked and I try to get the figures to look sort of like it, but at some point it just becomes your own and you change things, like the dress. As much as I loved the image on the page I liked the freedom of being able to adapt it to my liking.

I have lots of other pieces I would like to make, but geez, there are soooo many other projects to get done, as well. Like creating another puzzle for you all!

Check out Monica’s Coat of Arms!

 

As one might expect from a company that creates handcrafted wooden jigsaw puzzles, Stave is filled with people who are overflowing with creativity. They just have to be doing something with their hands at all times. So in addition to the wonderful work they do here at Stave, they draw and paint, make pottery and quilts, and make wood carvings and chainsaw creations, to name just a few!

Monica, an accomplished seamstress and puzzle cutter extraordinaire, is just one of our crafty people. She’s headed to a wedding this weekend in Philadelphia and she’s made the neatest gift to present to the bride and groom. Monnie has created the Gieg-Wright Family coat of arms!

After creating the shield from the same wood we use to craft our puzzles, Monnie had to decide how to adorn it. She chose a fox to represent the bride, Daylen, because she’s ‘one foxy lady’. Jason, a loving owner of fat cats throughout life, is represented by this prime example of a plump feline.

Jason, a 3D animator and general computer geek is also represented by the motherboards, fashioned into the smaller shield between the fox and cat. Daylen, a Steampunk fashion enthusiast, is represented by the gears. For those of you unfamiliar with the term, Steam punk is a genre that originated during the 1980s and early 1990s and incorporates elements of science fiction, fantasy, alternative history and speculative fiction. It involves a setting where steam power is widely used. (There’s you’re Learned Something New for today!) Daylen loves Chrysanthemums, so Monnie designed a big Mum for the top of the shield and Jason is into Ninjas so he’s represented by a throwing star at the base of the shilled.

When Monnie asked the bride what their motto would be, she exclaimed, “Your Face!” (you gotta say it with some sass and attitude). This (or thine features) is loosely translated in Latin to Taum Faciem.

Isn’t this just amazing?!! The pot of creativity is overflowing here at Stave and I’m determined to share more faces and talents with you in the near future.

Are They Crazy Stave Puzzlernuts or What?

Below are shown the before/after of true puzzle craziness. B&L thought it would be fun to dump all 46 of their mini Stave Puzzles (they have over 100 bigger ones) into one box, mix the pieces, and start puzzling. They said ” It was a *wonderful* exercise. We got to enjoy all the puzzles again, and admire their beauty [and your cleverness/sneakiness].”

Stave’s Amazing Flying Machine

Here’s a sneak peek at Steve’s latest 2-way Trick puzzle.
Artwork by Molly Delaney

Up, Up, and Away!

After 26 years at Stave you would think I’d have Steve figured out. It’s taken me a while but I’m finally catching on. Do you remember a few years ago when we debuted Steve’s sensational 2-way Trick puzzle, Atlantis? He spent forever developing the trick, cutting and working through the various prototypes and directing the artwork. Just when we reached the final stage and began crafting all the orders for this monster of a puzzle, he left town! I thought I was going to go around the bend trying to master that beast! Thankfully, just when I was about to throw up my hands in despair, it all came together. Well, he’s gone and done it again!

Steve ’s been deviously designing another new 2-way Trick puzzle and it’s great! The puzzle is based on an ingenious group of kids who kludge together their own soap box derby-type cars. They’ve nabbed parts from their dads’ garages, their neighbors’ basements and maybe even a few things from the dump! But as we know, when someone pours their heart and soul into creating something the result can be magical. And it is!

After constructing the four individual car s, they joi n together to create an amazing flying machine. It will be a really fun puzzle. But back to the boss. Here we are with a deadline to get this puzzle crafted and photographed so we can spread the news and he and Martha are headed to Maine! Guess who that leaves to pull a rabbit out of the hat? ME! I’ve had the opportunity to cut a few of the prototypes this time so it won’t be so bad. It’s a fun and entertaining puzzle and I know our Trick puzzlers are going to love it! Stay tuned…its debut is coming soon!

Jennifer-
Always up for a new challenge!

 

We are in M&M Heaven

Following is my email today to John P., an actor, who sends us goodies each year in exchange for a Stave tree ornament. “HEY! I pick up the Stave mail each day and today I felt like Santa Claus lugging my big heavy sack of your goodies to the shop. Egads, that huge box of M&M’s weighs a lot. Mind you, my gang is not complaining. If fact, when they heard that the big box was from you they pushed me aside and dove into it, Princess Paula getting the top bag.”


Thankful Hearts

Giving Thanks

As sad as I am to see summer fading away, I am also feeling the excitement of the coming seasons, especially Thanksgiving. This holiday brings a warmth to my heart that is sometimes forgotten in the day to day minutiae. It’s the time of year when families get together and we’re reminded of what’s good and right in our worlds.

We have much to be thankful for here at Stave Puzzles. We’ve been driving our puzzlers crazy for over 35 years and we’re still loving every minute of it! Our loyal and crazy followers have called upon us to puzzle them and their families in times of trouble and in times of celebration. We’ve been asked to send puzzles to folks who are feeling under the weather, those who are celebrating great things, and many puzzlers who truly enjoy making order out of chaos and want to be mentally challenged. We appreciate you all so much that we vow to continue to challenge you to your hearts’ content and we promise to keep coming up with loads of new ways to do it!

Normal. Really?!

We’re also thankful for the great people we’re surrounded by each and every workday. It’s an amazing thing to enjoy the work you do but to really like the people you do it with is an even bigger bonus! What is really amazing is how normal we all seem. I mean really, how can we all seem so normal on the outside when on the inside we’re dreaming up new ways to puzzle you?!

 

Bigger Can Be Better

 

 

 

Some of you already know this but while we’re working on the snazzy mailing piece to share with everyone, I’ll let the rest of you in on a little secret. YES, we cut puzzles with larger pieces! If you have young kids who are itching to get their hands on your Stave or someone in your life who’s eyesight isn’t quite what it used to be, we can cut almost anything with large pieces. Just ask and we’ll do it! Give us a call and we’ll help you figure out just how large you need the pieces and the rest of the details. We’ll get the official word out eventually, but for those of you who have been wondering- now you know!

I probably should have put one of our regular puzzle pieces next to one of the larger pieces but I didn’t think of it at the time. But hopefully, this is good enough to give you an idea of what we can do!

 

 

BECKY gets Creative

Becky, one of our Super-Duper crafters, waltzed into my office showing off her latest creations… a one-of-a-kind Stave Puzzles shirt. She cut out the plastic pieces, stuck them on the green shirt, and then lightly sprayed the shirt with bleach. How creative is that!

 

Angels Gather Here

Check out Wanita’s awesome work! Last year she presented our Chief-Tormentor, Steve, with this cute little jester. Appropriate for him, don’t you think?! He’s made of Polymer clay which she shaped into the various parts, put together and then baked in the oven. I’m amazed at how she managed to get his hat just so. From the silly expression on the face down to the purple and red shoes and the Jack-in-the-box he’s holding- he’s the perfect little jester!

 

Wanita’s most recent project is this beautiful angel. She saw a photo of something similar and thought, “I bet I can do that.” And did she!

It took several weeks to get things just how she wanted them and she ended up making the dress 3 times. After struggling with getting the folds in the dress just right, it occurred to Wanita that she could use her daughter’s wedding dress to help her. Wanita’s youngest daughter, Gail, was recently married so the dress came in handy for reference.

The Polymer clay comes in many different colors so Wanita didn’t have to add any paint to it. However, she did have to paint the eyelashes and add a bit of color to the cheekbones. The brush she used must have been tiny!

Here’s what Wanita has to say about her angel:

I love the wings! The smallest breath of air will make them move. I also liked using the different textures. The warmth of the grain in the wood, the smoothness of the clay, and of course, the softness of the wings.

I did have a picture to reference as I worked and I try to get the figures to look sort of like it, but at some point it just becomes your own and you change things, like the dress. As much as I loved the image on the page I liked the freedom of being able to adapt it to my liking.

I have lots of other pieces I would like to make, but geez, there are soooo many other projects to get done, as well. Like creating another puzzle for you all!

Check out Monica’s Coat of Arms!

 

As one might expect from a company that creates handcrafted wooden jigsaw puzzles, Stave is filled with people who are overflowing with creativity. They just have to be doing something with their hands at all times. So in addition to the wonderful work they do here at Stave, they draw and paint, make pottery and quilts, and make wood carvings and chainsaw creations, to name just a few!

Monica, an accomplished seamstress and puzzle cutter extraordinaire, is just one of our crafty people. She’s headed to a wedding this weekend in Philadelphia and she’s made the neatest gift to present to the bride and groom. Monnie has created the Gieg-Wright Family coat of arms!

After creating the shield from the same wood we use to craft our puzzles, Monnie had to decide how to adorn it. She chose a fox to represent the bride, Daylen, because she’s ‘one foxy lady’. Jason, a loving owner of fat cats throughout life, is represented by this prime example of a plump feline.

Jason, a 3D animator and general computer geek is also represented by the motherboards, fashioned into the smaller shield between the fox and cat. Daylen, a Steampunk fashion enthusiast, is represented by the gears. For those of you unfamiliar with the term, Steam punk is a genre that originated during the 1980s and early 1990s and incorporates elements of science fiction, fantasy, alternative history and speculative fiction. It involves a setting where steam power is widely used. (There’s you’re Learned Something New for today!) Daylen loves Chrysanthemums, so Monnie designed a big Mum for the top of the shield and Jason is into Ninjas so he’s represented by a throwing star at the base of the shilled.

When Monnie asked the bride what their motto would be, she exclaimed, “Your Face!” (you gotta say it with some sass and attitude). This (or thine features) is loosely translated in Latin to Taum Faciem.

Isn’t this just amazing?!! The pot of creativity is overflowing here at Stave and I’m determined to share more faces and talents with you in the near future.

Are They Crazy Stave Puzzlernuts or What?

Below are shown the before/after of true puzzle craziness. B&L thought it would be fun to dump all 46 of their mini Stave Puzzles (they have over 100 bigger ones) into one box, mix the pieces, and start puzzling. They said ” It was a *wonderful* exercise. We got to enjoy all the puzzles again, and admire their beauty [and your cleverness/sneakiness].”