Mosaics are an excellent way to recycle extra color into a garden. Using old china, glass tiles, mirrors, ceramic plates, flat marbles, or even shells, anyone can create a unique mosaic.
- Terra Cotta Planter
- Pottery Shards (or stained glass tiles, old china, mirrors, ceramic plates, flat marbles, shells)
- Tile Adhesive
- Sanded Grout Mix
- Large Sponge
Step 1: Place large pieces of old broken pottery, mirrors, ceramic plates, or glass tiles in a towel and gently break with the hammer. Store-bought stained glass tiles, flat marbles, or mirror tiles will also work for this project.
Step 2: Apply a small amount of adhesive to the back of a pottery shard or mosaic material. Place onto the planter, leaving an ⅛ to ½ inch between each shard to create grout lines. Let dry completely.
Step 3: Mix the sanded grout according to the package directions.
Step 4: Use your hands to add small amounts of grout between the shards. Make sure to push the grout into the spaces between the shards. WARNING: DO NOT wipe the grout across the shards as they could cut your fingertips! Let the grout set for at least 30 minutes.
Step 5: Use a damp sponge to clean the excess grout off the tiles without scrubbing the grout lines. Let the grout dry for 24 hours before using the planter.
Ideas to take your mosaic planter to the next level:
- Before creating a mosaic, look outside for inspiration. Take note of the different types of birds, flowers, or insects and incorporate them into the artwork, whether by their colors or shapes!
- Anything in a garden can become a mosaic: flowerpots, doors, walkways, benches, tables, fences, signs, birdbaths, and more! Click here for a list of unique mosaic projects for both outside and inside your home.
- Create a set of mosaic bricks to outline the walkway to your door.
Learning and Discussion Questions:
1. Since ancient times, mosaics have been a popular art form and are prevalent in several cultures worldwide and even in places close to home! In Philadelphia, PA, artist Isaiah Zagar created mosaics using handmade tiles, bottles, bicycle wheels, mirrors, and more to covered Philly’s streets and corners. His work is preserved at Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens, where the public can step into his mosaic world. Use this link to take a virtual tour of Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens.
Thank you to our sponsor, PNC Arts Alive!, for helping to make this video possible!