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Once upon a time…

Once upon a time…
03/09/2019 Becky Gilbert
In Rumpuspuss News

Once upon a time, there was a tired mum with a baby in a sling and a nearly 3 year old desperate for attention. 

The nearly three year old loved letters, in particular “his” letter: S. He also loved doing jigsaws and puzzles. Most of all, he loved seeing his name on things. 

One day, the nearly three year old drew a lovely picture, the tired mum wrote his name on it in bubble letters, cut them out, and gave them to him to play with. Much to her surprise, this brought tremendous delight, kept him busy for ages, and helped him learn how to spell his name.

Soon the tired mum was cutting bubble letters out of any bit of paper left lying around for too long. 

After a while, the tired mum was a bit less tired, and thought to herself “hang on a minute, I wonder whether other tired mums might like to have a warm cup of tea and a wee in peace whilst teaching their child to spell their name, recognise their letters and simultaneously improving their dexterity, concentration and problem solving skills”. Well, she didn’t think exactly that, but you get the idea. 


And so Rumpuspuss personalised puzzles were born.

The tired mum tried to balance starting a business, going back to work, two small children, and a charity to run… but it quickly became apparent that she isn’t a wizard and can’t do all of the things. So after 13 years as an epidemiologist, she handed in her notice to give Rumpuspuss the best possible chance of success. 

Fast forward a few years, and here we are. Rumpuspuss is out in the wild.


Why “Rumpuspuss”?

We love books and particularly Where the Wild Things are in our house. It was one of my favourite books as a child, so it was the obvious choice when it came to picking a theme for the first born’s bedroom. Who doesn’t love a wild rumpus?

A few years later, I needed a business name. I checked the Roald Dahl Dictionary out of the library, poured myself a healthy sized G&T, and set to reading it cover to cover. Roald Dahl has many splendiferous words. It was tough. But when I saw “rumpus”, it was the phizz-whizzing obvious choice. 

And “puss” – we have cats. Too many cats. Actually, two cats and a small lion. One is missing a leg though, so 1¾ cats and a small lion? Lots of cats. 

Put the words together and “Rumpuspuss” – personalised wooden jigsaws where the child’s name features in both the illustrations and the shape of the pieces and so helps to solve the puzzle. Printed and cut on demand, by me, in Bristol.


One-of-a-kind puzzles for one-of-a-kind kids

Personalise your jigsaw here. Just type your name into the box and see how your puzzle would look. 

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Comments (3)

  1. Joan Kay 4 months ago

    Lovely to read your first blog. I hope many more follow. It is interesting to learn what inspires people.
    Best wishes for building your business. The jigsaws are beautiful.

  2. Annie McQuillan 4 months ago

    A great blog Becky, packed with information. Your jigsaws are very special and beautifully made, well done!

  3. Cherry Baker 3 months ago

    What a lovely and unique puzzle! I ordered one for my grandson who at two and a half loves making puzzles again and again. This one has 32 jigsaw pieces and each letter of his name is inserted into 6 of the pieces. You can take them out, muddle them up, rebuild your name, use the empty inserts as a template……the jigsaw becomes multipurpose.
    Each piece interlocks beautifully, the finish is high gloss and durable with a deep blue background, and the animal illustrations are both fun and unusual. The puzzle comes carefully tissue wrapped with a cotton bag complete with gift tag to store it in and small picture of the jigsaw . Once he has grown out of his personalised jigsaw we will put it in a frame as jig-pic for his bedroom. Highly recommended as a personal and special present.

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