Dab Hand

Handy Jigsaws is One!

Handy Jigsaws – Kelsall’s completely free jigsaw lending library – is one year old! 

Our loan jigsaws are delivered on foot – we’ve covered 232 miles around the village over the last year!

The library stocks up to 100 jigsaws from quality manufacturers. As well as adding Dab Hand stock, we have received a number of kind donations over the year which has helped us keep the library fresh and updated with new titles.

About 80% of loans were for 1000 piece jigsaws, by far our most popular piece count, although 500 and 636 piece jigsaws were appreciated by borrowers new to puzzling or with limited space. Smaller piece counts (often with extra large pieces) have helped those with sight, handling or cognitive difficulties.

Here are some examples of our most wanted themes and titles from our first year:

We offer a wide variety of images and themes – from toys and trains to Shakespeare and sushi! 

Along with other humorous jigsaws, Wasgijs have proved extremely popular. We have added more of these titles recently and have others waiting in the wings. If you have yet to discover the joys of Wasgijs, see our article here.

Falcon’s Up & Away is our most requested title of the year. 

Gibsons’ Albert Dock, Liverpool and Happy Holidays have also been popular, perhaps reminding us of trips past and to come…

Happy Holidays is also a good example of popular montage style jigsaws – lots of images in one puzzle!

Ravensburger’s Retro Revelry is one of our top titles of the year, ideal for puzzlers who like a challenge. One borrower commented: “Great!! Talk about nostalgia!” 

Nostalgia Toys remains a favourite choice but don’t forget that we add stock frequently – click here to see our latest additions, including The World of Shakespeare, a very striking puzzle.

A few comments from our borrowers: 
“Great library of puzzles”
“Such a kind service to provide in these difficult times. Thank you!”
“This is a great initiative for the village…the puzzles have been a great mental exercise and talking point for my 93 year old mother who has dementia. I would highly recommend!”

Would you like a Handy Jigsaw delivered to your door? Find out more and browse titles.

If you know someone without internet access please ask them to call Delia on 07803 203617 or 01829 458259. We can talk through our range and/or take along a few for them to choose from.

Our Markets & Fairs are Back!

Dab Hand Outlets Markets Fairs logo small

Our real traditional village markets & fairs are back! Jigsaws, jam, cakes, crafts and more – what’s not to like?! Join us on Saturday 17th April 2021 at the Barbour Institute, Tattenhall, for our first post-lockdown village market – click here for full details and future dates.

Join our mailing list or follow us on Facebook or Instagram for updates including (fingers crossed!) news on summer & autumn fetes. If you cannot attend our events we also offer free delivery to your doorstep within 10 miles of our home village Kelsall or we post orders nationwide.

Contact us for orders and enquiries
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Wasgij: Jigsaws with a Twist

Do you already love Wasgij jigsaws or are you yet to try them? Here’s some background on this hugely popular series of puzzles, including a few examples of our recent additions. Wasgij is of course jigsaw spelt backwards and is officially pronounced “Woz-gidge”.

The first Wasgij puzzles came to the market in 1997 with the aim of offering a new challenge – the puzzle you complete is NOT the picture on the box, you need to use your imagination and the clues provided to piece together the solution. Wasgijs grew steadily in popularity over the years and some older titles have been reissued recently in special “Retro” packaging.

Wasgij Original (and Christmas) titles
In the Original Wasgij concept you don’t puzzle what you see on the box, you puzzle what the characters in the scene are looking at. The jigsaw keeps you guessing until the very last minute. It’s usually best to start with the border and then work on larger areas of similar colours or patterns. The cartoon-style images add to the fun!

Wasgij Destiny titles
Puzzle what the future holds….what has changed and have the characters got older and wiser?! The background of the scene is in the same general proportions, giving you a few clues as you start putting the puzzle together.

Wasgij Mystery titles
Puzzle what happens next…the setting remains broadly the same but things have moved on a bit – usually to a scene of utter mayhem!

If you live in our home village Kelsall, we also stock a selection of Wasgijs in our Handy Jigsaws free loan service, including a 500 piece puzzle. A borrower commented: “A good Wasgij if you are looking for a quicker solution than 1000 pieces!”

Be warned – Wasgijs can be highly addictive!

Contact us for orders and enquiries.
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Latest Additions: March 2021

We’ve just added some new jigsaw titles from Falcon plus the latest Jan Van Haasteren cartoon puzzle. There’s something for everyone whether you are a country lady, a polar explorer, a dancer, a juggler, a bingo player or a biker! Or perhaps you are longing for the return of the village car boot sale – who knows what you will find on the toy stall?

We’ve also added new Gibsons and Wasgij titles recently – browse all new jigsaws by date

Contact us for orders and enquiries.
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Mother’s Day 2021

It’s Mother’s Day on Sunday 14th March. We have lots of gift ideas to help make the day special including jigsaws, puzzle accessories and quirky playing cards. We offer free local delivery (within 10 miles of our home village Kelsall) or we can post your present along with your special message.

We have a wide range of jigsaw styles and piece counts to suit all tastes. 1000 piece puzzles are always popular but some new puzzlers or older mums may prefer smaller piece counts. 636 piece panoramic format jigsaws mean less stretching over the table and extra large piece (XL) jigsaws are ideal for those with sight or handling difficulties. See more tips on choosing a jigsaw.

Here’s a small selection or browse all new jigsaws

A jigsaw accessory may help your mother complete her puzzle in comfort.

If your mother is a “sassy woman” she might appreciate our sets of quirky playing cards! We also have a little instruction book to remind her of different card games, including games for one player. Or we have a compact Travel Solitaire to while away the hours and other new and used games.

Let’s hope it is not too long before we can all give our mums a hug again!

Contact us for orders and enquiries.
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Manley Virtual Spring Fair

Happy St David’s Day! We are delighted to take part in the Manley Virtual Spring Fair, running online from 1st – 15th March 2021. There’s a great selection of goodies from small local retailers as well as specialist shops from further afield. As well as Dab Hand’s jigsaws and traditional games, you will find plenty of gift ideas or why not treat yourself? With sections covering accessories, children, food and drink, homeware, gifts and more, there is something to interest everyone.

Click here to browse the full range of products.

The Manley Spring Fair has been running in the village of Manley, Cheshire, for over 25 years. In recent years this traditional village May Fair has had over 1000 people through its gates during a single day. The organisers are running a special virtual fair in March this year, raising funds for Manley & Alvanley Churches. We are delighted to support this online shopping event and of course we hope to join in all the fun of a full May Fair at a future date.

Manley Virtual Spring Fair banner image
Image: Manley Virtual Spring Fair

Latest Additions: February 2021

The new year brings good things – a large delivery of new jigsaws! We have some brand new releases from Gibsons to tickle your fancy, alongside the welcome return of some favourite titles.

Here’s a very small selection of our new titles to whet your appetite or browse all latest additions or browse all new jigsaws.

1000 piece jigsaws

500 piece jigsaws

Contact us for orders and enquiries.
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Handy Jigsaws – new year additions!

Our completely free jigsaw library for Kelsall residents has had a New Year makeover! We’ve added 15 new titles so far in 2021 and more are coming soon. We stock jigsaws in a wide variety of piece counts, piece sizes and styles so there is something to suit all tastes. Of course all our Christmas titles (apart from two lovely snowy ones) are now safely tucked up in storage.

See Handy Jigsaws to access the service and browse all our titles including latest additions. We deliver and collect from your doorstep and we can also talk through our range with those without internet access.

Here’s a small selection of current titles:

Please note that we are only able to offer the Handy Jigsaws free lending library service to Kelsall residents. However, we do deliver purchases nationwide and delivery is free within a 10 mile radius of Kelsall. For full details on local and national purchases click here.

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Puzzling Pastimes: Cooking

The lack of opportunities to dine out in recent times has resulted in a surge in home cooking. While takeaways have remained an option, they were never going to entirely fill the void left by enforced pub and restaurant closures and with supermarkets capitalising on the situation, a recent Tesco survey found that 20% of Brits are cooking all meals from scratch, up from 12% before lockdown. With less time pressure, around 50% of respondents are also experimenting with different ingredients and 35% are making the effort to avoid food waste by thoughtfully using leftovers.

Whether you are an experienced cook or amongst those to have discovered your inner chef or if your culinary limit is cheesy beans, there should still be ample time to indulge in another most satisfying hobby…… puzzling. To whet your appetite before your next creation, we’ve pulled together a smorgasbord of cookery related jigsaws from our range of new, used and free to loan titles.

New Jigsaws – contact us for orders and enquiries

Loan Jigsaws (Kelsall only) – see Handy Jigsaws for more information

Contact us for orders and enquiries.
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