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I spent many hours surfing the net trying to find the best and most creative gift for my girlfriend for Valentines day, and came up short. I tried thinking of what she really liked and that's when it hit me, a puzzle. This is a quick and relatively inexpensive Valentines day gift that can be made in a little under 2 hours, and its something that she will love, whether she is into puzzles or not. Its the thought that counts anyway.....right?


Step 1: Materials Needed

1 Altoids tin (Empty...eat the mints first :P )
1 set of scrap book lettering stickers (dollar store....woot)
1 image of you and your sweetheart (any size)
1 sheet of red paper
1 outline of a puzzle
scissors
glue
xacto knife
tape
pen


** For this little project I made my image into an 8x10 but any image size will do.

Step 2: Trace and Cut

Next, trace around your Altoids tin on the red paper and begin cutting it out. What i did was first cut out the traced square, and then cut about an 1/8th of an inch in from the edge to make it just a little smaller then the lid of the altoids tin.

Step 3: Coverup!

This step is simple, once you have your red square cut to size, just tape it (or glue it) to the lid. Fairly simple.

Step 4: Write You Message(s)!

At this point you can write whatever you want really, using your scrap book lettering. Unfortunately the phrase, "Happy Valentines day" didn't fit across the length of the tin, so as a side note, maybe smaller lettering would work better. But i think i got my message across. I also wrote a personal message on the inside of the tin lid.

Step 5: The Easy Part.

Now its time to get your puzzle outline. I found mine while surfing the net, but you can  make up your own outline if you really wanted to. I brought my outline into Photoshop and just made it 8x10 (the same size as my image). Once your image is the correct size, just print it out and glue it to the back of your image. See i told you it was easy!

Step 6: The Hard Part...

Now this is the part where it gets tedious. You need to painstakingly cut out each puzzle piece. I found the best way was to use your scissors for the most part, and use your xacto knife on the hard parts. It only took me about 45 minutes to cut everything out. Not so bad, but i have a cramp in my hand now.

Step 7: Finishing It All Up!

Good news, your done! All you have to do now is give it to her in some loving way. I took the liberty of getting a stuffed bear from the dollar store and putting the tin in its lap, with a card behind it. I'm pretty sure this will be a hit for any girl on Valentines day. Anyways, good luck to all you guys out there and I hope this make a great impression on your girlfriend ;).

So guys this was my first ible, and i hope you enjoyed it. Let me know what you think.
Happy Valentines Day!
I have one suggestion that might make this a bit nicer, a thin piece of foam (obviously some sort of firm foam) from dollar store or even walmart craft department in between your picture and your puzzle outline.. That way the pieces lock together and wont fold over/bend/get destroyed.
I was actually thinking of something like that. Something to make it more rigid, but then that posed a problem for my case. I had also bought an 8x10 picture frame so that when the puzzle was done, she could frame it and hang it up. But i agree, adding something to make it more rigid is a good idea.
That is a really sweet gift!
Thanks. I'm glad you liked it. :)

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Bio: Hey everyone, thanks for visiting my page. My name is Franco and i'm a graphic designer from Toronto Ontario, Canada. I also like to ... More »
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