I have to start this review with a bit of a disclaimer: I hate fiddly paper creations as I usually break them and have a tough time getting them to stay together. In hindsight I probably wasn’t the right person to review the Minnie Mouse 3D Puzzle Boutique from Educa as that is exactly what this is, a huge 3D puzzle and paper creation that demands careful control and assembly. So, is it worth buying as a Christmas gift?
Well, the answer is mixed. My husband hated the Minnie Mouse 3D Puzzle Boutique on sight, he just felt it was a huge waste of precious resources and was way too fiddly for a six year old to do, much less the intended age group of 5+. I have to agree with the fiddly. My daughter is six and she had real trouble inserting the various tags into the various slots. This is the first negative point – while well designed and easy to use, the firm paper/cardboard designs are difficult to fit into their slots and, in some cases, bend and break while you try to do so.
When you have just spent six minutes painstakingly assembling a chair only for the one tag to repeatedly slip out and then break, you get a little, how shall I say, irritated. So the set doesn’t win me over with its basic premise at all. All the elements need to be assembled in this way and because my daughter cannot do it alone, I had to do it and, well, grrr.
That said, the sheer volume of elements, the overall quality of the product and the attention to detail are lovely. Once you have staggered through the creation part, the actual puzzle is beautiful and it has kept my daughter thoroughly entertained every day. She loves playing with the Minnie Mouse, Daisy Duck, and Mickey Mouse characters that come with the set and has added her own toys to the mix. Her imagination has created this incredible world and she absolutely adores this puzzle.
The Minnie Mouse 3D Puzzle Boutique is on sale for around £17.99 on Amazon * which is a fair price for the amount of stuff you get and the time it takes to enjoy it. I would give this 6/10 with points taken off for the easily broken fiddly bits that drove me mad.