Mosaic fish

mosaic fish 1

After becoming inspired by Sher Davidson during our girls’ art day last winter, I managed to do these fish all on my own this past summer by following the directions in Garden Mosaics.  The most difficult part was acquiring all of the supple and materials – of which there were many! – since it was my first mosaic project.  The next hard part was the realization that the tiles come in regular square shapes, so if you want them irregularly shaped (as you do for most mosaic projects) you have to cut them with tile nippers.  It took a lot longer to cut them then it actually did to lay them out and glue them down!

mosaic fish 2

I created the fish molds out of sculpey clay (cool because it can be reused, and can be used to make pretty much any shape you want for your mosaic design).  I also bought Diamondcrete – which I’ve learned they no longer manufacture – to use as the concrete mixture, and I bought a ton of it, so I should have enough to make mosaic projects for the next ten years . . . it set up very quickly, but I let it go extra long, because I really didn’t want the finished fish to crack.  It was a lot more time-consuming than the book indicated to peel the paper off of the front of the fish after they set up (you trace the fish shape onto brown paper, then glue the tiles upside down to the paper, then form the mold around the shape and pour the concrete mixture into the mold), and I had to use (and toss) several toothbrushes to get all the last bits of paper off (it helped to run the toothbrush under water and then scrub away at the paper).

Luckily, the concrete was the right consistency so it flowed in around the tiles just enough so that I didn’t have to grout – after I got all of the paper scraped off, all that needed to be done was to put tile sealant on the fish so that they could be placed outdoors.

I’d like to try a project like this again (especially since I now have all of the supplies!) but I think it’s better suited to summer time, because it’s messy work and better to do outdoors.  Now all I need to do is build an outdoors craft station (complete with plumbed sink)!

mosaic fish 3

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