There are a dozen popular artists whose artwork is used for puzzles. I’m fond of Nene Thomas and Chris Ortega, not so much Thomas Kinkaid. Of the more recent artists, I’ve been avoiding Aimee Stewart. It isn’t that I don’t like her style, rather, I found myself intimidated. Aimee’s art is very reminiscent of Lisa Frank, all bright colors and happiness.
While at Toy Fair, I spoke at length with one of Buffalo’s representative about their new puzzle lines and some of the art styles. When I mentioned how popular Aimee Stewart’s puzzles seemed amongst my puzzling groups, but that I was not sure I could handle the visual busyness; it was suggested I try the 300 Large Pieces version. I chose the Sweet Shop, as it reminds me of the old-fashioned candy store I went to as a girl in Cape Cod.
The 300 Large Pieces are designed to be 67% larger than Buffalo’s normal puzzle pieces. I found them to be wonderful for gripping on a bad hand day, and they still had the Perfect Snap™!
My fear of being overwhelmed by the bright colors and busy design proved to be moot. Instead, the cheerful, bright colors made assembly a joy! This puzzle was moderately challenging, but not so much as to need a break. With the tight fit between pieces, it is easy to move whole sections of pieces.
I might be hooked on these, not that I NEED more puzzles. One of the joys of being a reviewer is also the bane of my productivity. There are always new products to try, and very little time to go back and enjoy something I’ve already done. Then again, I might have to make sure an Aimee Stewart is set aside for the 2020 World Puzzle Days.
- Company: Buffalo Games
- Title: Sweet Shop
- Artist: Aimee Stewart
- Year released: 2016
- Pieces: 300 Large
- Cut-Style: Steel-cut Die
- Finished size: 21.25 x 15 inches
- Bonus poster: Yes
- Made in USA
- Box: Thin cardboard, sturdy, 8 x 8 x 1.5 inches
- Board: Medium weight chipboard, sturdy pieces
- Cut: Ribbon Cut
- Image Quality: Excellent
- Finish: Semi-Gloss
- Puzzle Dust: Minimal
- Piece shapes: Standard 2-knob and some star-shaped pieces
- Piece Fit: Excellent
Disability Notes: As I noted, the large pieces of this puzzle are easy to handle, which is great for those of us with arthritis or other hand mobility issues. I know that several of my readers have puzzlers in the younger generations of their families, and think this would make a great family project.
Where to buy: Sweet Shop is available on the Buffalo Games website for $10.95 USD. Buffalo Games also has displays at local Walmarts and Targets, but their selections will vary.
Disclosure: I received a complimentary puzzle from the manufacturer in exchange for a review. The opinions are my own.
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