Ravensburger The Puzzler's Desk 1000pc Jigsaw Puzzle Review

What's a winning combination for so many of us who love this puzzling hobby? Why jigsaw puzzles and cats of course. The artist, Steve Read, has captured this duo with The Puzzler's Desk which has a wonderful scene of an incomplete jigsaw puzzle and kittens.

The Puzzler's Desk is a 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle by Ravensburger that many dissectologists (puzzlers) will simply love. As soon as I saw it, I simply had to get a copy. Cats and jigsaws, what's not to like!

Steve Read has captured a rather familiar scene of a jigsaw puzzle in progress and our furry feline friends who are fascinated with it. If you have cats yourself, or browse through puzzle groups online, you'll often see photos of cats and jigsaws.

Ravensburger The Puzzler's Desk Jigsaw Puzzle Review

Ravensburger The Puzzler's Desk 1000pc Jigsaw Puzzle Review Steve Read Cats Kittens Jigsaws Puzzles 1000 pieces

Title: The Puzzler's Desk

Publisher: Ravensburger

Release date: 2018

Artist: Steve Read

Cutting style: Grid cut

Number of puzzle pieces: 1000

Finished size approx: 70 x 50 cm / 27 x 20 inches

I love how the artist of this 1000 piece Ravensburger design has picked up on the winning combination of jigsaws and cats in The Puzzler's Desk. A puzzle in progress is laid out on a table in a room with a pleasing seaside view, three gorgeous kittens, red wine and food.

One look at this design online was all it took for me to make a few clicks and buy myself a copy. The scene may be nothing like what my own jigsaw setup looks like, sadly I don't have a wonderful sea view to enjoy. But this design really taps into the feeling of absolute joy I get sitting down to relax with a jigsaw.

Steve Read has a lot of wonderful jigsaw designs, many of which also feature cats. If you're really into cat themed jigsaw puzzles, as I am, you'll want to look for more of his designs.

Puzzle Quality Notes

Loose fitting Ravensburger jigsaw puzzle pieces do not fit well together

Showing an example of how loose fitting some of the pieces were on this jigsaw. That gap is way too large and too many pieces cut like that one, for me, spoiled my enjoyment of this wonderful design.

I was really, really looking forward to doing this jigsaw. There's no doubting that Ravensburger is one of the very best when it comes to the quality of each individual jigsaw piece.

I don't recall ever having issues with bent tabs, lifting designs, tears, rips or any quality issues with the actual individual Ravensburger pieces - not even on old and even vintage Ravensburger designs.

However, I do have issues sometimes with the fit of Ravensburger jigsaws being too much on the loose side. Unfortunately this particular design was one of the worst in that regard. The fit was horribly loose on this one and it spoiled my enjoyment of this particular puzzle.

Perhaps I was just very unlucky to get one in a loose batch. I don't know, but if the pieces slot together too loosely, it makes it very hard for me to assemble sections together and then move them around without these areas falling apart.

Jigsaw puzzle pieces loose fitting large gaps Ravensburger

Perhaps other puzzlers don't mind them, but I really dislike large gaps between the pieces. For me it spoils the finished jigsaw when I am focusing more on the gaps rather than the finished artwork.

I also have a rather huge dislike of large gaps between the pieces which can (for me) spoil the overall design of the jigsaw artwork once the puzzle is complete. For another puzzler, these facts may not be an issue at all since we all have different preferences.

So, I have to be totally honest or what's the point of me doing a review if I don't point out my actual thoughts. But I do understand that what I dislike may be no big deal to someone else.

In fact, some people love loose fitting jigsaws because they pull apart easily if you make mistakes and also when you dismantle them once done.

So does loose fit mean bad quality? Well it does to me, but not necessarily to anyone else.

Ravensburger provide a nice little fact sheet about the artist with a small poster inside the box. Note that the included poster is smaller than the design on the box. So you may not choose to work from it but it is a nice extra feature.

Jigsaw Puzzle Construction Order and Tips

On The Puzzler's Desk, I started where I normally start, which is with the edge. It wasn't too hard to assemble the edge together, it took a little longer with the bottom edge but the rest was straightforward enough.

Once the edge was done, I worked on the three kittens, pulling out any pieces that looked like they may be fur to put each cat together. Luckily Steve was kind and gave us three different looking cats. I have done jigsaws with multiple cats, such as this Christmas cats design, where the fur could easily belong to more than one feline companion.

When I had each kitten completed, I more or less worked around each one until I had assembled all of the design except for the jigsaw puzzle section at the bottom.

Wow, the jigsaw section was hard. Trying to work out how to fit together a jigsaw puzzle of an incomplete jigsaw puzzle that just looked like rather random shapes, squiggles and the like was hard. It was actually a bit frustrating and I really didn't enjoy that last part very much. The rest of the design was great but not that bit.

What to Look for on Completing This Jigsaw Puzzle

Ravensburger jigsaw puzzle the puzzlers desk 1000 pieces Steve Read artist cats kittens desk seaside view

Most of the jigsaws I do are very busy designs with a ton of detail. This one is a little calmer. I enjoyed the overall scene and it recreated that feeling of happiness and contentment I get when doing jigsaws myself.

A view like that with the seaside and sailing boats may be beautiful to look at but perhaps in real life it might distract a little too much from doing a jigsaw. I'd be tempted to look out of the window too often.

I'm not much of a drinker but I like the occasional glass of red wine. I can see how many people would enjoy kicking back with a puzzle and a glass of their favourite tipple. That would be coffee for me. Food, oh yes snacks are essential aren't they while puzzling.

While I love the scene, I don't let my cat anywhere near my jigsaws. I know loads of pet owners are happy to let their darlings walk over and sit on top of the puzzles, lay down in the boxes even, but this would be a massive no, no for me.

I enjoy how the kittens can look out at the man walking a dog outside. Up on the shelf is a Ravensburger box and there are cats in the incomplete jigsaw if you look carefully.

Overall Experience With The Puzzler's Desk

The Puzzler's Desk jigsaw puzzle fact sheet on the artist Ravensburger

Ravensburger provide a nice little fact sheet about the artist with a small poster inside the box. Note that the included poster is smaller than the design on the box.

The artwork by Steve Read for this one is superb. I loved it enough to have to grab it when I saw it. But the loose fit on my particular edition did spoil my enjoyment of assembling it and also my enjoyment of the finished design.

All I could focus on when The Puzzler's Desk was complete were the annoying puzzle lines. The gaps between the pieces overshadowed the artwork for me. Before assembly, I had ideas about framing it for my office, but I didn't think it looked good enough due to the loose fit once finished.

Loose fit aside, the puzzle was a fun design although I do wish I hadn't left the jigsaw area in the design until last as that was the most challenging part and I got a little frustrated with that section.

The artist is one of my favourites, the design is great but the actual puzzle was not as good as it could have been, keeping in mind my particular preference with jigsaws.

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