Today I am doing a quick DIY puzzle using craft sticks and a page from a comic book. Yes fellow geeks, I took scissors to a comic book. The horror, the blasphemy, the diabolical laughter….
In all seriousness this is a great way to recycle worn out comics. I used a few that I got from Free comic book day that had been through the pawing hands of 400 school children. Instead of tossing them I made some really easy puzzles that are perfect for ages 3+. I found the idea on Pinterest but was unable to find the original website or directions. I pretty much made this up as I went along. This is a cheap and easy craft that requires very little time or effort. Plus, you are recycling!
What you need:
- Jumbo craft sticks– Walmart for $2.50
- Worn out comics, or pictures from magazines- Free
- Glue, paint brush, tape
- Exact-o Knife or rotary cutter
- Cutting board or self healing mat
- Mod Podge or Acrylic sealer– This varies from $5-10.00
Total cost– Free to a few bucks if you don’t have all the supplies
Difficulty– ** (only because you are using a craft knife for cutting)
Step 2– Once you have a picture lay out the sticks and tape them together. Make sure that they lay flat and are not warped. Taping them makes it easier for you to glue the picture down. Make sure you leave some space above and below the picture. The picture should go all the way to the left and right edges of the sticks.
Step 3– Cover the back of your photo with glue. I used tacky glue. Regular school glue will also work but it can make the page wrinkle. Spread it all over and make sure the edges are well coated. A paint brush is very helpful with this step. Or you can use your finger!
Step 4– Place your picture on the sticks (not over the tape!). Next, put another piece of paper over it and smooth with your fingers or another craft stick. Be really careful or your page will tear. Do not go all Hulk on it! Let it dry for an hour or two.
Step 5– Cut your sticks apart with an exact-o knife or rotary cutter. Trim up any edges that the knife missed. This is also a good time to check if you got glue in all the right places and fix it if you didn’t.
Step 6– Use Mod Podge to seal your puzzle. This protects the paper from water and helps it last a little bit longer. Use a brush to make it smooth and let dry overnight. FYI- If it is a super humid day your sealer might bubble. I did both Mod Podge and an Acrylic sealer to make them extra sturdy. This was a BAD idea. The sealer cracked and the sticks ended up getting stuck to each other. It was a really humid day and nothing wanted to dry right. I placed my second set under a fan and they did way better. Humidity is evil!
Other than an issue with the sealer, this is a very easy craft. You can use pretty much any picture to make them. These are good for the little guys since they don’t have traditional puzzle shapes and they can’t swallow them! If anyone has tips on a better sealer that is kid friendly I would love to hear about it.