30 August, 2013

Simple DIY Mosaic Bowl - An easy way to reuse broken dishes

I'm a bit of a clutz in the kitchen, and often my favorite dishes end up in pieces on the floor. When they can't be replaced, this is especially sad. I've been hanging onto the broken pieces, with  the vague idea of making them into a mosaic of some kind. This week, while on holidays at my parents in Victoria, I decided to finally take the plunge and make a mosaic!

Here's my simple and easy instructions!

What I used:

-Broken cups and plates
-Reusuable grocery bag
-Lots of plastic containers
-Paper towel
-Plastic grout spreaders
-Ceramic tile adhesive
-Grout (premixed)
-Popsicle sticks

Placed the plates and mugs into the re-useable grocery bag (it's sturdy and won't tear from jagged pieces, but you can also use a pillow case) and then broke it up even more! Tried to break the "lip" of each piece, so that the broken pieces were flat.

1) Attach broken pieces to the terra-cotta dish. (A large plant saucer) I used the ceramic tile adhesive, laying down a thick layer of it and then pressing the broken tile into it. (Some of the pieces actually came off during the grout stage, which reinforces the idea that you can't use enough of the adhesive!) 

This is what it looked like after the adhesive had dried over night.

Then came the grout. It was tricky because the grout is a really weird consistency. It squishes, but is also a bit firm. You have to really get it in between the cracks and squish it around, but at the same time keep it even. I wasn't sure how easy it would be to get off tiles once it had dried, so I was also trying to keep the tiles somewhat clear. (This didn't work great. Luckily it is really easy to get off the tiles even after it dries all night).

Then came the polishing!! This takes forever!! You have to use a damp cloth to wipe down all the tiles, getting off the dried grout. As well, a popsicle stick will help chip off thicker grout. The sides and outside of the dish were the hardest to do. 

It turned out really neat! The peacock character was from a cool mug I broke, and then I dropped a mug that was green and blue, which matched perfectly. I also added in some matching glass beads around the rim. For these I just pressed them into the grout.

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