My favorite creations: mosaics

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Today I wanted to share my most favorite of all of my creations.  Several years ago, before I got interested in fixing up old furniture and other junk, I decided I really wanted to create a mosaic.
I did a little research and then got started and this is what I ended up with.

tree mosaic

Pretty ambitious for a beginner but I like to go big.  (Now, I have to say this was not an original design – it is based on a mosaic I loved that I saw online.) This mosaic is around two feet by three feet and was created using vitreous glass tiles.  Here is a close up that shows the shading on the tree trunk.

tree mosaic close up

I have to tell you, this thing took me months to complete.  But I really enjoyed the process.  It was kind of like putting together a really beautiful jigsaw puzzle.

A year or two later, I decided it was time to create another.  This time I came up with my own design based on a photograph I found of Big Sky Country.

big sky mosaic

This mosaic was created using various types of stained glass.  I especially like the mirrored glass incorporated into the water at the bottom.

water mosaic close up

For some reason, these gems have been hidden away in rooms we don’t really use.  But I decided that was crazy.  So the Big Sky mosaic became part of my newly styled bookcases and the Tree mosaic recently came out of storage to preside over the mantle.


mosaic and scale

These might not be the typical DIY project I share here at Lovely Etc. But I wanted to share them because I really love them.  And because making these taught me that if you really want to try something new, go for it.  Figure out how to do it and get started already!  You might just find a new passion.

What have you been secretly wishing you knew how to do?  Painting?  Photography?  Furniture building?  I definitely want to try reupholstering some chairs, but I gotta tell you – I’m kind of scared.

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  1. says

    Those are stunning! And to think the tree was your first project – wow! My secret ambition is to learn how to blow glass. I could watch that process

  2. says

    Your mosaics are beautiful…I’m so glad that you are displaying them in your home. This is an art that I have always admired, but haven’t tried it myself. After looking at yours it makes me want to give it a try!

    Given your talent, I’m sure you won’t have any problem with reupholstering some chairs.

  3. says

    Both mosaics are stunning, Carrie! You did a fabulous job on them. Love how you achieved subtle shading…what a delightful talent. They look wonderful on your new shelves as well…so many great achievements! Love these!

  4. Anonymous says

    These are so beautiful! I’m looking at trying some mosaic pieces myself, do you have any tips? Did you just smash the glass? How do they all fit together so perfectly? Any help would be great! Thanks so much.

  5. Karen says

    I’ve been doing stained glass for years, and have done some mosaics and stepping stones. Looking forward to doing some benches with stained glass mosaics this summer. Love your mosaic tree, sorry love them all! Just beautiful. Tell me what did you use as the base for your mosaic? Plywood? And what glue?

    • Carrie says

      Karen, Let me just say first that I am no expert, I just love to make stuff. For the tree mosaic, I used plywood but I wouldn’t really recommend it. The wood ended up bowing slightly – I am not sure if that is related to the weight of the tile or the moisture in the adhesive. You can only tell when you look at it from the side, but still, when you spend hours on something you want it to turn out great. For the Big Sky mosaic, I used tile backer board like what is used on tiled bathroom walls. It worked out much better. As far as glue, I just used a basic tile adhesive from Lowes.

  6. Mary says

    Carrie, These are just beautiful. My sister and I were just talking about doing a mosaic, but we don’t know where to start. Would you be willing to give us some tips to get us started? Thanks!

    • Carrie says

      Thanks Mary! Before I made these, I checked a few books about mosaics out at the library to learn some basics which really helped. It has been awhile since I made a mosaic so I don’t know if I am the best person to give tips but I will try! You can get mosaic supplies at any craft store but the selection online is much better. The general process is basically like putting together a puzzle. Draw your design and then cut tiles to fit the design. To get a clean looking design, be sure to keep the spacing between your pieces as even as possible. If you choose to use stained glass for your mosaic, just remember that some stained glass is opaque but some is not which means you will be able to see the glue through the glass. If you have more specific questions, let me know – I will definitely help if I can.

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