How to set up a mosaic studio

THE STUDIO

Setting up a suitable workplace is important if you are going to enjoy making mosaics, even if its the temporary use of kitchen table.  A comfortable and well organised space will allow you to work productively and safely

LIGHT

Making mosaics requires a lot of close-up work so good light is essential Natural light is best but no necessary.  A swing lamp is ideal as it gives you directional light that shines accurately on your work.  It also helps to work with more than one light source so there aren’t any shadows cast on your work.

WORK SURFACE

The average kitchen table is an ideal height and the surface needs to be strong and stable.  Don’y use furniture you value unless it is covered with a heavy ditry protector as it will get damaged.  The surface will also get wet when you are grouting and cleaning your work.  If you don’t have a spare table an offcut of wood or a large piece of MDf that you can buy from most hardware stores will be suitable protection and a good surface to work on.  Place paper or cloth between the layers to stop the good surface from being scratched

CLEANUP

It is very important to keep your work area clean.  Vacuum or sweep up frequently.  This will stop fragments and shards being carried to other parts of your home.  You can do you cutting in a large plastic tub or container, or a plastic bag to reduce the amount of shards that end of on the floor.

FLOORS

Hardwood, tiles, lino etc…are the best surfaces to work on  Avoid doing your work in an area that is carpeted.  Shards will work their way into it and damage it.  If you only have carpeted areas painter drop sheets are a suitable protective layer.

SEATING

A good chair is important.  You can become so engrossed in what you do that you can seated for many hours  Stand up and stretch regularly and try to be mindful of your posture.

WET AREA

This may be a luxury but if you can have a dedicated wet are this is ideal, but not necessary.  Grouting is messy. Doing it outside is an option.  Never dispose of leftover grout by washing it down the drain.  Use a  plastic container and when the left over grout has gone hard flex the container to break it up then pop it in the bin. Never us grout around food areas and always use dust masks  The fine dust is harmful

STORAGE

I store my glass in plastic takeaway containers  They stack well, are very cheap to buy and as they are clear its easy to find what I am looking for.  Larger pieces are kept in larger plastic stack-able tubs and sheets of glass which are usually 30cm x 30cm in size are kept in wooden shelves similar to a book case.  Whatever you choose to use, separate storage areas for glass and ceramics, paints, glues, and grouts and storage that is able to be added to and stacked will make life easier.   Below is an  examples of a home based mosaic studio

 

 

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