Crocheting For Beginners

Making sense of the jigsaw craze

A child's brain is an amazing thing, expanding its intelligence to meet each new challenge, and for hundreds of years parents have been devising new ways to entertain their little ones and help them to fulfill their potential. Jigsaw puzzles were invented back in 18th century Europe in pursuit of this goal. Back then, mapmakers pasted maps onto flat wooden planks, cutting creative shapes with a tool called - you guessed it - a jigsaw. Children were challenged to learn geography in this way, with many parents augmenting their knowledge as well.

Today's jigsaws have evolved to feature a wide range of designs never envisioned by the early mapmakers, with animals, numbers, rhymes and even superheros leading the charge. Despite - or perhaps because of - the rapid pace of contemporary life and the changing form of even today's puzzles, many parents still adore the earthy environmentalism offered by wholesale wooden jigsaws. Wooden jigsaws offer kids an eco-friendly and fun route into education, taking parents back to a time that seemed, for many, more simple and more safe.

If you secretly enjoy the quiet satisfaction of locking the pieces of your toddler's wooden farm puzzle into place, it's nothing to feel sheepish about. In fact, puzzles of all stripes have played a popular part in adult pastimes since the movie stars, industrialists and eventually royalty of the 1930s caught the bug.

Now, many adults - from stay at home parents to professionals looking to make an extra income outside of work hours - are returning to the joys of childhood and the satisfying thrill of solving a unique brain teaser by purchasing wholesale wooden jigsaws and retailing them at local markets and online. While many of these entrepreneurs have carved a unique niche for themselves, all offer an environmentally-friendly substitute to ubiquitous plastic toys.

Today's jigsaws vary widely, from simple puzzles of just a few pieces designed to invoke the pleasures of education and discovery in young children, to creative mind benders that take adults hours, days and sometimes even weeks to solve. More recently, wooden jigsaws have evolved to include designer variations that not only challenge the brain but satisfy the aesthetic senses as well. Wooden jigsaws have become a popular gift, and even a centrepiece employed by interior designers.

In a world that keeps changing at a terrifying pace, in which every individual in the home is tethered to an electronic gadget, wooden jigsaws offer a breath of fresh air, a step back in time and, for today's families, a whole new way to connect. They're a long way from the simple map jigsaws of the 1700's but, somehow, the essence is the same.