When Jenny and I decided that we’d be alternating on choosing our puzzles, I knew that I wanted to try to have a custom design made up, so I started shopping around for places that would do custom puzzles and thinking about what design I would want to do.
It didn’t take me long to think about something related to one of my websites. I realized that I had 32 seasons worth of All-Star jersey designs drawn up for the DetroitHockey.Net Fantasy Hockey League, with the 20th anniversary of the league’s first games approaching (simulated fantasy hockey seasons don’t necessarily run concurrently with live hockey seasons), so that seemed appropriate. I drew up a puzzle design using those graphics and decided to give Collage.com’s custom puzzle printing a shot, going with their 1014-piece, 30″ x 20″ option.
The design is somewhat based on the Video Game Collection puzzle we’d previously done, with the jersey graphics placed in a grid pattern and drop-shadowed. Remembering how difficult it was to place all of the plain yellow pieces, I added a gradient to the grey background, then used the FantasyHockeySim.com logo as a watermark. We’ll see if those efforts actually make it any easier.
One incredibly-frustrating thing was that I noticed a mistake in my design almost immediately after placing the order. Oops.
I ordered a matte print but, taking a look at the pieces, they seem pretty glossy to me. I’m not sure it makes that much of a difference but I am curious, now, just how glossy a “glossy” print would have been.
A quick look through the box seems to show that all of the pieces are relatively standard-cut. None of those ridiculously-weird ones we liked so much from the Christmas at Hogwarts puzzle we just finished.
My guess is that we’ll end up putting this together jersey-by-jersey, then putting the border on last. I worry that I designed it to be too easy but still hope it ends up fun so that this will be an option for us in the future.