How to Frame a Jigsaw Puzzle

The joy of completing a beautiful jigsaw puzzle doesn't need to end when you've placed the last puzzle piece. If you have a favourite puzzle, how about framing it so you can enjoy the artwork forever?

How to frame a jigsaw puzzle

Here are a few tips for framing a completed jigsaw puzzle so that it lasts:
1. Flatten the Puzzle
Place the completed puzzle face up on a large piece of card, or lengths of wax paper (like baking paper). This is to protect your workspace from the glue.

Gently flatten the puzzle so that all the pieces are in place and the surface of your puzzle is smooth. A clean rolling pin can come in handy. This step is important prior to gluing, and ensures there are no raised pieces where glue can collect, or pieces that dry out of place.

Use a dry cloth to remove any dust.

2. Glue your Puzzle
The next step is to glue your jigsaw puzzle pieces together so that the puzzle can be moved as a single piece.

We recommend using puzzle glue which will sometimes come with its own spreader tool, or a clear glue e.g. PVA and a straight edge like a piece of card. Make sure to spread the glue evenly, so that it covers the whole puzzle, and fills the joins between the pieces. Don't use too much glue as this can leave an uneven surface, or cause the puzzle to curl.

We don't recommend using a paint brush when applying glue as it can leave brush strokes on the puzzle surface. 

3. Let it Dry
Make sure you give the puzzle plenty of time to dry before trying to move it. Handling the puzzle too soon could cause it to break apart, or leave fingerprints.

The glue will dry clear like a varnish.

4. Fix any Curling
Even with careful application of glue, the puzzle may curl in places. To fix this, carefully flip the puzzle over once the puzzle is completely dry. Then apply glue to the back, focusing on the areas were the puzzle is starting to curl. As it dries, the puzzle should start to flatten out. As before, wait until the back is completely dry before moving onto the next step.

5. Add a Backing Mount
Once the glue is completely dry, you need to mount the puzzle onto a backing board like a piece of thin card. Measure your backing so that it is slightly smaller than the outside of your puzzle.

To mount the puzzle to the backing, gently flip the puzzle face down. Then apply glue to the back of the puzzle. Carefully lay the backing so that it is centered on the back of the puzzle. Tip: add weights (like heavy books) to keep the backing flat while it dries.

6. Frame your Puzzle
Now it's time to frame your puzzle. Getting your puzzle custom framed at a framing store is the best option if your budget allows. You can choose the size of your mat and frame to suit the exact size of your puzzle.

Alternatively you can achieve great results using a DIY frame, however it can be difficult to find the exact size of frame for your puzzle. Using a frame with a mat is a good idea - the mat will show off your puzzle nicely and can be cut to suit the size of your puzzle. Alternatively you can trim your puzzle to fit a frame if necessary.

Place the frame face down, then using a knife carefully bend up the metal tabs around the inside of the frame so you can remove the backing board and mat. If required, cut the mat approx 5mm smaller than the puzzle so that the mat covers the edge of the puzzle.

Flip the mat face down, then place the puzzle face down so it is centred on the back of the mat. Use tape to fix the puzzle on the mat.

Next, carefully place the mat and puzzle face down onto the glass (make sure you have the orientation correct for hanging). Cover with the backing board and bend down the metal tabs to secure the frame together.

If not already in place, add the supplied string or wire for hanging.

7. Ready to Hang
Once you've finished framing your puzzle, hang it up for all to admire your puzzle artwork!

Framed Jigsaw Puzzle
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Hi Wendy, the top puzzle is Talking Tables Pick Me Up 500 Piece Puzzle Gin and the bottom puzzle is Galison 1000 Piece Jigsaw Puzzle – Desert Avian Friends.


Thank you. That is very helpful. I love the puzzle in your picture. I would love to purchase. Do you know the brand name?

Wendy Roche

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