Posted by: illinigirl | May 27, 2008

A Mosaic, Mom, and Me

So. . . from this link on my blogroll. . .

I found this link on how to make mosaic tables. . .

My mom came flew in town for the long weekend. . . to work on my patio, shop, eat, and make a mosaic table. . . however, the mosaic table was touch and go until Sunday night.

Here’s the thing. . . mosaic tables are CHEAP these days to buy.  It’s basically a ridiculous investment unless you are creative, looking for adventure, and have money to throw down the drain.

Here are the general expenses:

  • A Table (shew, already had one of those)
  • Primer (luckily, I had that and painting supplies of all kinds. . . shew)
  • Tile (YIKES, this was expensive)
  • Tile nippers (no, not Knipper’s. . . I ultimately didn’t use these, but still kept them for future projects)
  • Adhesive and grout (The problem here is that you pretty much have to buy a large quantity. . . as the craft grade is small. . . and not meant for outdoor projects)
  • A Trowel. .  (cheap–$2.47 to be exact)
  • A bucket that can be thrown away
  • Safety equipment. . . (Yes folks, mixing grout is bad for the eyes and lungs. . . and not nice for the skin)

So, here’s the story with the tile. . . There is this Mexican ceramic store nearby, and I LOVE it.  I love all the bright colors, and have made several purchases there. . . including this pot:

And this frog and caterpillar:

I also have a sun. . . but I will have to show you a picture another time. . . because I guess I failed to get a picture.

Anyways, I love this ceramic place.  They have TONS of stuff. . . including TONS of tile.  I can’t even explain this to you.  I should have taken pictures.  Anyways, despite that they have piles and piles and piles of these tiles just laying around outside.  They are still a million dollars (slight exaggeration, perhaps). . . and the reason they are a million dollars?  Because suckers like me will buy them, that’s why.  Anyways, I love them, and that is a huge reason for the expense.

Here is what my table started out like:

Yes, sad, sad. . . I know.

First, we started by priming a piece of wood and mounting it on top of the existing table:

Then, as you can see. . . the breaking of tile began.

The next step was to apply the adhesive and lay the tile.  Here were our two rookie mistakes. . . don’t put down all the adhesive and then lay ALL the tiles.  The adhesive dries pretty darn quickly.  Also, you don’t want it super-super thick. . . but we went slightly too thin with the adhesive.  Basically, we had to go back and reposition half of the table with dabbing adhesive on the back of each piece of ceramic.  That was all for Sunday night. . . now it was time to wait for the tile to set.

On Monday night. . . was the grouting. . . and this was pretty nerve-wracking, folks.  Mom and I wore some safety goggles, and we laughed and laughed about this.  This is very possibly the scariest picture of me known to man, and Mom suggested that I NOT post this on my blog. . . but in the interest of full-disclosure. . . Here’s a picture of a scary grout mixin’ bada$$:

Why I can’t find a boyfriend is a complete mystery to me. . .

Here’s my mom. . . mixin’ it up!

Here’s the thing. . . we couldn’t decide what grout color to use, and I found an article about coloring grout. . . so we made out own grout color by mixing in paint.  We were hoping for a “clay”. . .but it’s pretty “pinkish”. . . the thing is.  I think I still love it.

A)  It’s unique, bright, and bold.
B)  It’s a “Hannah and her mom” original. . . not found in stores!
C)  It was an interesting and creative process, which I’d like to try again with something more intricate and with more consideration into the pattern. . . this time, I completely winged it!

I will post pictures of it in my new, pimped-out and less sad looking patio once the table is completely cured and sealed. . .




  1. Hannah, it looks amazing! You’re hired. Have you seen our backyard? Yuck.

  2. Hannah (and Cheryl), it turned out great! When I started reading, I wasn’t sure what it would look like. Think we could all go for some good old hot weather here; it’s been miserable! But don’t like the humidity either, no matter where I am. Keep up the great work and really enjoy reading all of this.

  3. clearly this is AWESOME!

    also there is totally a picture of a sun behind you in the picture of you with the safety goggles. i dont know if that is the aforementioned sun, but it is a sun nonetheless.

    somehow we need to get justin to post his picture of himself wearing safety goggles. you will pee.

  4. i’m impressed. i wouldn’t have the patience. it turned out really well.

  5. Brilliant observation, queenlizzle. Yes, yes. . . the aforementioned sun is in the scary goggles picture. I will have to take a better picture in the future.

    Thank you all for the nice comments. I would say that this could be a back-up career, but unless I find a way to beat the store prices of $20, I think this is not a lucrative option.


  6. Priceless…I think your table is great! But I haven’t stopped laughing at your goggle picture, or for that matter, the whole adventure! It made my day. And thank God I don’t have a tile dohicky named after me.

  7. OMG so pretty!!!! I want you to make me one, but shipping to my neck of the woods would probably make it NOT so cost-effective 😦

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