How to Lay Tile - Mosaic Tile Laying

Quest for the Sangreal
by Norman Tellis
Quest for the Sangreal by Norman Tellis

When creating a mosaic, it is a good idea to lay the tiles first before you fix them with glue. This way you get an idea as to how the colors and shapes look together in the mosaic.

Always lay tiles for the main subject first and then do the boarder as these tiles are the most important. If you need to cut or move tiles around each other it is easier to do so without the background getting in the way.

When laying the boarder tile of your mosaic, start in the corner and work your way out as the corner tiles are often a little more intricate than the normal side tesserae.

If you are going to grout your mosaic (which most people do) remember to always leave a little gap between each tile or tesserae.

When laying mosaic tile using the direct method, you can either butter glue on each individual piece or lay each one done one-by-one. This process is slow however the results will be very accurate and you can see the effect each individual tile has immediately.

The second approach is to put a small amount of glue on the base (enough for about 6 pieces) and then quickly lay the tiles down.

Mosaic Tile Laying Tips

  • Always follow the manufacturer's instructions.
  • Wear rubber gloves.
  • Make sure the area is well ventilated.
  • Lay a dust or paint sheet to protect the floor from glue and grout.
  • Make sure you wear old clothes or an apron as you will undoubtedly end up marking whatever you are wearing one way or another!
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