“We often say that Maude is Sunday-morning-T-shirt–sex paired with the real times of intimacy that fill up the space in between,” says Éva Goicochea, founder and CEO of intimacy company Maude. Bottoms Up, created in collaboration with puzzle company Piecework, came to be as a result of considering how Maude might look in puzzle form, and, more specifically, how one sets the mood and cultivates intimacy at home with general leisure activities. Ultimately, Goicochea, says, she and the Maude team “liked the idea of a tactile item that could be shared that evoked the mood our products do.”
What those products—including sex toys, lube, bath products, and more—aim to evoke is a heightened sense of intimacy. And if you think a jigsaw puzzle couldn't possibly fit that bill, well, think again.
In deciding on what the completed Maude jigsaw puzzle would depict, the team considered an activity that people could do together to unwind. Fully put together, the limited-edition, 500-piece puzzle is a little bigger than 19 inches by 26 inches, and shows a calming, candlelit tablescape with cups of whiskey and snacks like olives and pistachios. And at $32, working on it is also a relatively affordable way to connect with your partner.
Of course, there’s nothing particularly sexually explicit about the puzzle’s imagery. Instead, “it hints at an allure, a mood," Goicochea says. So, that means setting the scene for any type of intimate activity to unfold. (Read: that can mean a number of things beyond just sex.)
Puzzles can also help cultivate better problem-solving skills, which can translate into a relationship's health and also the bedroom. When you set out to solve a puzzle, if a given piece doesn't fit in a place you thought it would, you try to figure out which one does. Doing this with a partner, then, can help you bond and cultivate a sense of trust through your teamwork. And trust can lead to increased intimacy, beyond that of just the physical sort.
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