decor, inspiration

Decorating with mosaic tiles


If you're looking to add colour to your surroundings, rejuvenate a dull area in your home or to make gifts for friends and family, mosaic tiles are a great tool to achieve just this and much more. These small tiles brighten up plain surfaces and add a fun and playful ambience to anything from walls, floors, tables to photo frames and other decorative elements.

Tile Africa has compiled some step-by-step ideas for you to craft your own mosaic item at home.

Always start with a small project that won't cost you too much. To begin with, use what you already have at home such as an old table or wooden frame.

How to create your own mosaic table

A mosaic table with a vibrant design and bold colours will add life to any decor. First you'll need to find the right sized table to mosaic. Look for an old table that you won't mind covering up. If you don't have an old table you can buy one from a second hand shop or an outlet that sells untreated pressed wood furniture.

  • Plan your mosaic design. It can be anything from geometric shapes, or organic shapes like fruit and even fish.
  • Select your materials and lay out your pieces on a piece of cardboard that is the same size and shape as your table. Work from the middle outwards. Make sure your pieces don't touch each other to allow space for grouting.
  • To test how your table will look, place the cardboard with the mosaics laid out on the table. If you're not happy with the design you can still move things around.
  • Once you are happy with your design, remove the cardboard from the table. Ensure that your table is clean.
  • Spread adhesive over the table and transfer all the pieces from the cardboard to the table top in your chosen pattern.
  • After 24 to 48 hours you'll be able to grout your mosaic.

How to make a mosaic picture frame

Complement a beautiful family photo with a mosaic feature.

  • Find yourself a frame, either an old one or one from an art and crafts shop. A wide flat frame is recommended to allow more room for your design.
  • Once you have picked your frame, remove the glass so as to not damage it while working.
  • Always lay out your tiles on the frame or a piece of cardboard that is the same size and shape before gluing them on. Once you are happy with your design transfer it onto your frame by gluing each piece on with clear craft glue.
  • Once the glue is dry (after 24 hours) you can grout your mosaic. Apply grout with a dry sponge or a plastic knife. Wipe the tiled surface clean with a damp, clean sponge and let it dry for at least 24 hours.
  • Once the mosaic frame is completely dry replace the glass.

Mosaic tiles are also great to use on other surfaces in and around the home. They make for an eye-catching splash back in the kitchen when placed behind the sink and stove. The bathroom offers various areas to incorporate mosaics, from a colourful column behind the bath and toilet to a textured floor surface in the shower.

The entrance area of your home is the perfect place to have a striking mosaic pattern on the floor, either on the threshold before you enter the house, or inside the entrance hall. This will give your guests a gleaming welcome.

Tile Africa stocks a wide range of mosaic tiles as well as adhesives, grouts and tiling tools to meet all your tiling requirements. For more information visit tileafrica.co.za or call 0800-002-783.