January 12, 2007, Newsletter Issue #47: Making Mosaics with Ceramic Tiles

Tip of the Week

Want to know one of the little-known ceramic til tips? Anyone with a hammer and some glue can use ceramic tiles to make beautiful mosaics as a fun project. Here are a few steps to making a great project for any classroom or weekend with the kids. First, get a few pieces of plywood from a local store. Plywood is great to adhere to and is easy to cut into any shape or size with the right saw. Determine the shape of your mosaic and cut the pattern out of the plywood. Next, find low priced ceramic tiles from the clearance shelf at a floor outlet. You can even use scrap tile from an old project. Choose the colors you will want in your design and start hammering. Try to shatter the tile cleanly to give yourself good pieces to work with. You can buy a pair of tile cutters to make more precise shapes out of your pieces of ceramic tile. Now, draw your design on the piece of plywood, with a pencil. Once your pattern is in place, you can start cutting and placing the right pieces of tile on the pattern. Remember to leave gaps for grout. After you have the layout complete, lift one piece at a time and use a strong glue to adhere each piece in place. Allow the finished design to dry for a few hours before returning to apply the grout. First scrape excess glue away. Then, using a flat but flexible edge, begin filling your grout into the cracks between the pieces of ceramic tile. When you are done, let dry for the recommended time on the grout container. In just a day or two's time, you can have fun creating a new piece of artwork made with your own hands.

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