Friday, May 23, 2008

Mosaic Project WIP

I have finally gotten in the mode to do some more mosaic projects, with the Terra cotta flower pot challenge in AMVS group on eBay I have been working on two flower pots , a large lamp base and a small turtle. the lamp base and turtle are ready to grout. I have noticed lots of folks dread doing the grouting, but let me tell you it is really nothing to fear.

Just make sure you have plenty of working space, lay down some layers of newspaper, or a old vinyl table cloth, if your working outside on a porch, or deck all the better. But I tend to do it on my kitchen island.. I like to be cool while I grout.. No sweating here.

I do all the above and lay out my pieces. I normally only have one or two pieces to grout at one time, since I spend most of my time making those mosaic tiles for other artists to use.

Things have been a little slow right now and I have had spring fever, been working out in my flower beds pulling up weeds, and planting lots of blooming flowers, not to mention my large tomato plants, I picked a ripe tomato yesterday.

Back to the grouting. I tend to mix about a cup of grout really thick and let it slack , or sit for around 10 minutes, leave it and about my business, but yikes if you forget your grouting, time it. come back in and spread it with a gloved hand and press it into the spaces between the tiles..

I tend to wipe some of that off and keep spreading it around until i know I have all the spaces filled in really good..

I let that sit around 10 minutes or so depending on how small or large a project it is.. come back in and wipe off with a gloved hand again, making sure i am not taking out any grout .

Take a damp, really damp heavy duty paper towel and wipe the tiles off , rinse and wipe off until I am happy with the way it looks. No grout on the tiles or on the back of the project.

Then I put the piece up and let it stay there for a week to dry, come back in and use a grout sealer called Tile Lab. wipe off in between and do this 2 to 3 times until I do a water drop test , if it beads up it is sealed if the water drops soak in, I put on more grout sealer.

The piece is set aside again to dry, I give it a week to dry.

Once dry I come in with some vinegar on a paper towel and wipe off the tiles to give them shine. it takes off the haze left behind from the tile lab.

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