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Glass Mosaics Part 3- Grouting and Finishing

This is my last post on the glass mosaics. You will see how to grout and finish your mosaic piece. Don’t forget to check out the first two posts for all the steps on creating a glass mosaic.

Glass Mosaic Step 1:
http://www.summerscloset.com/blog/2014/01/31/glass-mosaics-step-1-how-to-make-mosaic-glass-using-repurposed-glass/

Glass Mosaic Step 2:
http://www.summerscloset.com/blog/2014/01/31/glass-mosaics-part-2/

IMG_1602What you will need for this step:

-Bag of sanded grout in color of your choice

-Grout mold and mildew preventive mixture (optional) good for bathroom projects

-Mixing paddle for electric paint mixer or cordless drill (optional), You can also mix it by hand with a paint stick, but it is much easier with the electric mixing paddle.

IMG_1491-Tile float

-Rubber heavy duty tile gloves

-Empty buckets

-Large sponge

Make sure your mosaic completely dried from step 2.  You should have left it to dry for 24-48 hours depending on how humid it is where you are. Here in South Florida, we have to leave it at least 48 hours on these big projects because it is so humid.

IMG_8996Mix the grout according to the directions on the packaging. I mix mine to a slightly thicker consistency than I normally would for normal tiling.  Start with a small amount of water in a small amount of grout and mix in a large bucket, adding water and grout as needed.  You can always mix another batch of grout.  Only mix what you will have the time to use since the grout will harden if left in the bucket after it is mixed and you will have to throw it out.  Add mold mildew mixture if you choose, before water as it will water it down. Let the grout mixture sit after mixing for 10 minutes or according to package directions.

Work on one area small area at a time perhaps a couple of square feet. It is best to start from the top down of your mosaic. Using the tile float, spread grout back and forth and up and up and down in the section you chose. Make sure you are getting grout in all the little holes and spaces. Use your tile float to scoop some grout from your bucket, and work from the bottom up of your section to help keep the grout from spilling off the wall while you work.

IMG_1608Let the section sit for a couple of minutes and then take your damp sponge and gently sponge over the section to wipe off excess grout.  You will need to rinse your sponge several times as you clean the tile. You will need to change your water often as well.

Continue the same steps until you have completed grouting your mosaic.  The glass will have a haze over it that you will wipe off with a dry cloth after everything is dry.  Make sure it is only a haze left before you let it dry.  Do NOT let the grout dry on the glass without sponging it or it will be difficult if not impossible to remove.  This is why you need to work in small sections.

IMG_1599Also, make sure you tape off everything but the edges of the mirror if you do a mosaic around a mirror, since the grout can leave a haze on the mirror that doesn’t come off.

On the tropical mosaic dock, I added tiny little pebbles on the dock posts and edges that I had gotten from a trip to the German Alps.  Try adding fun little mementos into your mosaic, be creative, just remember grout doesn’t stick to wood like it does stone. The wood edge framing that we built on the bathroom wall, and any other edges like that need to be caulked with matching color caulk when everything is completely cleaned and dried.

Use cheesecloth or a soft cloth to buff and clean all the grout haze off when the grout has dried. If there is a lot of dust you may want to wipe it again with a clean damp cloth again first to remove some of the dust.  You will then need to let this dry and buff again with a soft clean cloth.

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