Patience games come in both card and board versions. In this project, you will make a simple game board for the French version of board solitaire, sometimes called patience. You can make a quick and easy print, cut, and play game board or see the English Board Solitaire craft project for making more durable game boards with optional materials. Also, see the Triangle Board Solitaire craft project for how to make a game board that uses marbles as game pieces using the Marble Tiles pattern. The rules for playing French board solitaire are at the end of the project.
Related crafts: For other versions of board solitaire and to learn more about the history of board solitaire, see the English Board Solitaire craft project.
Choose a game board to make. Download and print the pattern.
Choose a design that prints in color or select the black & white pattern and use your creativity to add color and designs. There is also a printable that shows one possible perfect win for French board solitaire. The Marble Tiles pattern is used to make the game board suitable for marble playing pieces following instructions in the Triangle Board Solitaire project.
Use the Perfect French Solution as a reference. Start with the piece on the space marked number 1. Jump over the piece pointed to by the arrow to the space beyond. Remove the jumped piece from the board. Continue making jumps in numerical order. The last piece will be in the square marked with the star.
Tip: Make a longer lasting game board with cardstock or computer paper glued to cardboard. If you can feed cardstock through your printer, print directly on it. Otherwise, print on computer paper.
Patterns are Adobe PDF files. The Adobe Reader is available for free.
All of Aunt Annie's project patterns are designed to be printed on standard letter-size paper (8.5"x11" or A4). When printing from Adobe Reader, you may need to select Auto-Rotate and Center or Choose paper source by PDF page size to ensure the best fit.
Color the game board with any colors you like. On the black & white pattern, you could color the squares like a checkerboard with two contrasting colors or leave half the squares white. If you printed the colored version of the game board, you can add a personal touch by decorating the border around it.
If you like, trim the printed pattern to a square shape with equal borders on all sides of the game board. For details on how to make a more durable game board with cardboard or clear contact paper, see the step by step instructions in the English Board Solitaire craft project.
You need 36 playing pieces for the French version of board solitaire. Use pieces from other games, pennies, marshmallows, or cereal (Cheerios, Kix, Trix). You can even make your own game pieces from homemade modeling dough.
The object of the game is to remove as many pieces as you can from the board. A big win is to remove all the pieces except one.
How many pieces do you have left? Play again to see if you can do better. Take turns playing with a friend, and see who can do best.
Perfect win in French board solitaire: In French board solitaire, it is said to be impossible to leave the last piece in the space that was initially empty, like in English Board Solitaire. So, a perfect game in French board solitaire is to leave the last piece in the square on the opposite side of the board from the space that was initially empty. That is, the middle space of the second row from the top. To see a set of moves that results in a perfect game, use the perfect solution printable as a reference. Start with the piece on the space marked number 1. Jump over the piece pointed to by the arrow to the space beyond. Remove the jumped piece from the board. Continue making jumps in numerical order. The last piece will be in the square marked with the star.
That's it! You are ready to play
a game of French board solitaire!