Kumiki Puzzles and Wood Toy Collection
Childhood Memory of Kumiki Puzzles

I remember once spending a weekend at my Grandparents house with several relatives. That night one of my uncles brought out a couple of wooden puzzles. They passed them around and we began to try to take them apart. Neither puzzle seemed to budge at first. Dad pulled out his car keys to push on one of the puzzle’s side and it finally came loose. After a while we got both puzzles completely apart. Now came the hard part, getting them back together. The evening was getting late and everyone was going to bed, except me. I became obsessed trying to put the puzzle back together. My aunt finally convinced me to take one of the puzzles upstairs so I could work on it in bed, before falling to sleep. Through out the night and early the next morning I kept working on that puzzle.

Finally, as the sun was beginning to rise I was able to fit the last two pieces together to complete the puzzle. I rushed downstairs and completed the second puzzle in no time. I couldn’t wait until everyone was awake to show them my accomplishment. They must have noticed my enthusiasm, because less than a week later I received a box in the mail filled with over a dozen wooden puzzles. I was in hog heaven! I quickly dove into the box and pulled out one puzzle after another. I took them apart and put them back together again. As they started becoming easier to solve I started taking them all apart and piled them on my bed and began timing myself to see how long it would take to assemble them all, then repeated the process over and over again.

The puzzles are some of the few childhood items that I’ve kept since moving from home. They sit on a shelf in my design studio and are still a source of inspiration for me.

© Greg Kono 2000-2007 All Rights Reserved.