Turn a message or a drawing into a jigsaw puzzle!
These secret message puzzles are super fun and easy to make, and lots of fun to send as gifts.
This project is a collaboration with Cricut – I was gifted a Cricut Maker and accessories to try out.
This post contains affiliate links.
If you can’t go and see your friend or family member to celebrate with them, the next best thing is to send them something special in the mail, right?
These secret message puzzles are an easy to turn any drawing or image into a really special gift that you can send to anyone. They are easy to post, and they are lots of fun to make!
The first thing you need to do to make your secret message puzzle is to make or find an image.
You can make these puzzle messages from any drawing, or printed image. If you can put it on a piece of paper or card stock, you can turn it into a puzzle.
My kids had lots of fun drawing pictures and writing fancy birthday greetings with markers, but you could also use pencils, or paint, or print an image.
Big bold written messages work really well for turning into puzzles, as do drawings with lots of colour.
We made our puzzles 19x19cms in size. It’s easier for little kids (and big ones!) if you draw a 19x19cm square on the pieces of paper so they know where to draw. It works best if your designs go all the way to the edge of the square, but don’t put anything important (like parts of a word) close to the edge incase the alignment is a little off and it gets chopped off.
You can use regular printer paper for this project, but light card stock is even better as the cut puzzle pieces sit flatter and are easier to put together. Whatever you use, keep it light so that you can easily pop the pieces into a regular envelope to mail.
Make a Secret Message Puzzle with the Cricut Maker.
Cricut sent me a brand new, shiney, Cricut Maker machine to try out! I’ve never owned a cutting machine before and I am so excited to try it out!
The Cricut Maker cuts all kinds of things such as fabric, leather, paper, and balsa wood, as well as all kinds of vinyl, sticker paper and more.
You can use the Cricut Maker to make this puzzle project with balsa wood for a more hard wearing version, but since I am just a beginner, and we wanted to mail these puzzles, I stuck with plain old paper and card stock.
If you don’t have a Cricut machine, you can simply draw the puzzle piece shapes on the back of the picture and cut it out, but using a cutting machine makes it so much quicker and easier! We made four hidden message puzzles in around 5 minutes with the Cricut Maker, and they were all perfectly cut and ready to pop in an envelope to send.
How to Cut out the Secret Message Puzzle.
These hidden message puzzles are a fun and easy to way to turn your kids art into a fun gift.
- Paper or light cardstock
- Markers, pencils or paint
- Cricut Maker (or other Cricut cutting machine)
- Cricut light grip mat.
- Cricut Design Space account (free to sign up) and computer, ipad or smartphone
Draw a 19x19cm square onto some paper or light cardstock and get the kids to draw a picture or write a message.
While they kids are creating their images, set up the project in Cricut Design Space.
Open a blank canvas in Design SPace and click on ‘insert image’. Search for puzzle and find the 8×8 Square Puzzle (#M5748075) from the Puzzle Me This Puzzle Me That Set and add it to your canvas.
Resize the puzzle image to fit your paper if needed (we kept it the same size and it cuts a roughly 19x19cms square puzzle which fits nicely on regular printer paper.)
Go to layers and deselect or ‘turn off’ the bottom layer. (This layer would normally cut the base of your jigsaw if you were making it out of wood, but you don’t need that for this project.)
Click on ‘Make it’ and select the material size, select continue, and then select the material type.
Discard the outside cut and carefully peel your puzzle pieces off the mat. If you’ve used regular printer paper the puzzle pieces may curl slightly, pop them on a flat surface with something heavy on top for a day or so to flatten them out and then you are ready to post them.
Pop the puzzle pieces in an envelope with a message telling the recipient to put the puzzle together to reveal the secret message!
This is such a fun way to let someone know you are thinking of them, especially if you can’t be with them to celebrate. The kids will have a blast making these secret message puzzles, and whoever you send them to will feel extra special!
What will you put on your puzzle messages and who will you send them to?
Read the comments or scroll down to add your own:
Lloyd Kate says
This looks like so much fun and the possibilities would be endless!