Hand-crafted jigsaw puzzles are cut from high quality plywood using a scroll-saw with a very fine blade, necessary to cut with a very fine kerf line, intricately shaped pieces, individually related to the picture being cut, by the puzzle crafter. Some of the pieces can be themed pieces related in shape to the theme of the puzzle picture.
Because the puzzle crafter cuts the pieces individually, with deviously designed cuts, to disguise the relationship between disassembled pieces, a more challenging puzzle is the result for the puzzler. Hand-crafted jigsaws are generally smaller in size and piece count, but the assembly time can still be hours, due to the difficulty involved and the deceptive tricks employed by the puzzle crafter.
Most hand-crafted jigsaw puzzles of this type consist of good quality, satin finish photo prints, adhered to the ply substrate. I have cut several puzzles using this method and they stand up to use pretty well. However tiny edge delaminating on the photo print on some pieces can occur and wishing to avoid this, I now mostly cut puzzles from original small paintings painted directly on the ply surface.
I can do this because I am creating the original art work and hand-crafting the puzzle from it. The gallery shows some of the hand-crafted jigsaw puzzles I have cut. There is also some step-by-step instructional material describing the painting of the puzzle picture on ply.
Painting and Cutting