Skip to Content

How to Use Puzzle Glue: Mod Podge Puzzle Saver

Learn how to glue a puzzle with puzzle glue! My favorite is Mod Podge Puzzle Saver. I’ll show you my process for preserving your puzzles permanently.

Skills Required: None. Even if you’ve never crafted before, you can seal a jigsaw puzzle with Mod Podge. You’ll get the tips and tricks for success below.

How to glue a puzzle with Mod Podge puzzle saver

Ever since I was little, I’ve been addicted to puzzles. They are one of my favorite crafts to do at home!

My favorite puzzle when I was young was a white cat. We didn’t even have cats because my dad and one of my brothers were allergic, but that’s what I had.

I liked that puzzle because the large amount of white area made it a challenge to put together. Some of my favorites were mounted on my wall, and the way I got the pieces to stick together was puzzle glue.

Puzzle Glue

If you’re wondering how to glue a puzzle, it’s REALLY easy to do. My favorite high quality adhesive is Mod Podge Puzzle Saver. It’s a water based glue, sealer, and finish. This Mod Podge formula comes in two sizes:

Mod Podge Puzzle Saver

The 8-ounce Puzzle Saver on the left is for the serious “puzzle aficionado.” You can do a LOT of puzzles with this bottle, so purchase it if you or your family do them all the time.

The Puzzle Saver package on the right is nice because it comes with a brush. Depending on the size of the puzzle, you can do at least 2 – 3 with this decoupage glue package.

Why Use Puzzle Glue

I’ve been asked this question before since a lot of people break up their puzzles and put them back in the box when they are done – looking forward to getting them out and doing them again.

Of course you can do that, but some people want to preserve their puzzles permanently, typically to hang on the wall.

Once your creation is glued, you can stick it in a frame with or without glass. The puzzle glue makes it so that it will stick together even without glass holding it in.

Another option for mounting your puzzle is on a canvas. I’ve seen people complete a puzzle, use glue to seal it, and then attach it to the canvas and hang.

Pile of puzzle pieces

Do you glue a puzzle on the front or back?

I always glue them on the front only and they stay together. I’ve never had any problems if I do a few coats. Having said that, if you want to make it extra secure, simple flip the puzzle over and do the back as well. Let dry completely.

Framing a Jigsaw Puzzle

If you’re going to frame the puzzle after gluing, I want to give you a few tips. Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Buy a piece of foam core larger than the puzzle.
  2. Mount the puzzle to foam core using the Mod Podge. Add a relatively thick layer of Podge to the core and place the puzzle on top. Wipe away any glue that comes out the sides and let dry.
  3. Once dry, trim away the excess foam core. You can trim exactly to the edge of the puzzle or leave room for a mat.
  4. Place a mat (if desired) around the edge of the puzzle and frame.
  5. You can have your piece professionally framed, or buy a frame from the craft store. Add the puzzle to the frame.

Are you ready to learn how to glue a puzzle together using Mod Podge? Keep reading!

Gather These Supplies

Complete the Puzzle

Cesco collage bottle cap puzzle

Here’s the puzzle I did for my demonstration. I pretty much love the bottlecaps and colorful nature of this puzzle!

Place your puzzle into a roll up mat

Your first step is to transport your puzzle to an area that you know your work surface is safe. This means you might want to start by doing your puzzle on wax paper in the first place.

I actually use a puzzle roll up mat that is made of felt. This is because I can’t leave my puzzles out all the time – I don’t have a place – so the wax paper isn’t going to work for me.

So when it’s time to preserve a puzzle, I have to be really careful about how I do it! I don’t want to ruin the puzzle mat below when I apply the glue. I’ll show you what I mean.

Add the First Layer

how to glue a puzzle together with puzzle glue

So for my first layer of Mod Podge Puzzle Saver, I do a VERY light layer on top of the puzzle. My goal is to get the pieces secure so that I can move the puzzle safely off of the mat without messing it up. I let it dry for about 15 – 20 minutes.

how to glue a puzzle

Once the glue dries, I move it off of the mat onto a surface. If I see any excess that got on my mat, I wipe away . . . or just let it dry. There might be a few dots, but because my first layer of puzzle glue was so light, it’s never that much.

Apply a Second Coat

Once you’ve got it onto a better surface, coat with a medium layer of Mod Podge Puzzle Saver. Let dry.

Applying Mod Podge Puzzle Saver to a puzzle

You might have a few pieces that are loose that you didn’t get. You might need to give the edges of the puzzle a little extra too.

how to mod podge a puzzle

Simply secure everything into place with more puzzle glue.

Puzzle preserved with puzzle glue

Once your glued puzzle is done and dry, you can place it in a frame or otherwise display it any way you like! You can pick up the puzzle easily when it’s dry and move it – the pieces are secure.

Don’t forget to wash and dry your brushes after use. Preserve them for the next project!

Optional: the Mod Podge Puzzle Saver – depending on the brush you use – might have some brush strokes in it. To minimize, use a piece of #0000 steel wool over the top. It really helps!

Yield: 1 puzzle

Glue a Puzzle

how to glue a puzzle

Learn how to glue a puzzle together! My favorite glue to use is Mod Podge Puzzle Saver. I'll show you my process for preserving your puzzles permanently.

Active Time 5 minutes
Dry Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Difficulty Easy
Estimated Cost $2

Materials

  • Finished puzzle
  • Mod Podge Puzzle Saver
  • Wax paper

Tools

  • Paintbrush
  • #0000 steel wool (optional)

Instructions

  1. Transport the puzzle to an area where you know it will be safe (like on top of wax paper).
  2. Apply a medium layer of Mod Podge Puzzle Saver, being sure to get all of the corners. Let dry.
  3. Look for any loose pieces and secure them with more glue. Let dry.
  4. Give the entire puzzle one more coat of Puzzle Saver. Let dry for 24 hours before hanging.

Did You Make This Project?

Please leave a rating or share a photo on Pinterest!


Now that you know how to glue a puzzle together, would you try it? Let me know your process and tips in the comments! I’d also love for you to check out the following formula guides:


Oh, and if you’d like to learn how to make a puzzle of your very own – check out our photo puzzle tutorial! It’s really easy.

Liborio

Saturday 2nd of April 2022

I glued a 9000pc puzzle but in halves. Now i tried putting the two halves together and the pieces are fitting properly because of the excess dried glue. do you have any recommendation on how to go about this?t thanks

Amy

Saturday 2nd of April 2022

Hi Liborio! You can sand those areas. If you have sandpaper, use that, but an emery board works too. Sand and try to fit it and keep going until the excess glue areas are sanded off and the pieces fit. Don't sand too aggressively or you'll sand the design off and not just the glue.

Carrie

Friday 4th of March 2022

Do you use the modpodge on the face of the puzzle ? Or on the backside of the puzzle?

Amy

Friday 4th of March 2022

On the front!

Michelle

Sunday 26th of December 2021

We have done this on many puzzles, however this year for New Years we will be making a hologram puzzle (flat 3D) to hang. Which modge podge will retain that hologram shift of the puzzle for us? We are afraid to loose the 2 dimension upon applying modge podge to the top, not sure the puzzle one is the one to be using this time??!

Amy

Friday 31st of December 2021

Hi Michelle! I wouldn't use any acrylic medium on the front of the puzzle. I worry that it would dull it - since it dulls glitter. Honestly I'd probably Mod Podge the back, though Mod Podge could seep through. You could also use packing tape across the back!

Wendy Beaton

Monday 20th of September 2021

I didn't know what I was doing, but I put my puzzle together on a large piece of oak tag, now called poster board, from Dollar Tree. That way, if the Mod Podge seeps down, you don't ruin your table, and your puzzle can be easily moved without it breaking apart. After your puzzle is finished, and Mod Podged, just cut down the poster board to size, and frame it. Simple & easy. Mine came out great.

Laurie

Friday 17th of September 2021

Hello, does anyone know how to make the lines of each puzzle piece less noticeable? I love framing mine but seeing all the lines from the piece doesn’t look to good. Thank you

Amy

Saturday 18th of September 2021

Hi Laurie! I don't think there would be any way to do that from the front but let's see if you get any responses!

Skip to Instructions