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Saturday, December 22, 2012

Mirrored Mosaic Tables


Back to business today...my fun new DIY project!




        A while back, I purchased this great set of tables. Two end tables with a matching coffee table.  They are dark wood, chunky (like I like) and very sturdy.  The entire set was....wait for it....$25 on craigslist!  Can you believe that?  I was pumped.  Craigslist is full of "wish I could afford that's" and "that's ridiculously priced" items but these were the REAL deal, a REAL steal. Let's be honest, I was expecting more from the photos, even though the ad claimed damage from plants, ect.  I got them and we've used them as-is for about 6 months now.  Here's the before:


Definite damage as you can see.  There are actually significant round water marks when the previous owner had plants sitting. 


Lets talk materials.

You will need:


-A plastic bag
-A hammer
-Gorilla Glue (or some other permanent adhesive)
-White grout
-Mirrors (I picked mine up a while back on sale at Walmart.  6-12" squares for $5)
-A sponge and old towel


I started by painting the tables.  In preparation for painting I gave both tables a light sanding with 220 grit sand paper.  It is important to rough up the surface so your paint has something to stick to.  It also helps even out any dings or imperfections in the wood.  Next you wipe everything clean with soap and water and clean up any extra dust with a dry cloth. 


I gave everything 3 coats of white paint.  I used Rustolium Semi-Gloss white.  Spray paint is SO much easier to use than the ol' brush and bucket and it doesn't leave brush marks or drips (if you're careful)  The finish is smooth and fabulous! 


THEN came the fun part.  By fun I mean extremely tedious and time-consuming.  I placed my mirrored panels in the plastic back and gave them a good whack. 
I began placing the broken pieces on the top to get the placement worked out.  This is like a puzzle with no right answer.  Which is awesome if you like puzzles and don't mind having to try and re-try combinations a lot.  I ended up just gluing as I fit pieces in.  It helps not to over think it. 
This was my Saturday night, a beer and broken glass, I'm not sure I can think of anything more fun :)

I finally completed gluing down all the glass pieces!  One thing to remember is that Gorilla Glue does expand.  You only need a minimal amount of glue and try not to let it seep out the sides or it will expand in the cracks which will cause problems during the next step.

Time to grout!  I bought white grout.  Standard stuff you use for tile floors, it was about $6 for the tub and it is more than enough to do both tables.  I didn't take photos of this part, my bad.  I used a spatula-like tool to spread the grout in all of the cracks.  I wiped off any excess and let it dry.  My product said 15-30 minutes.  I waited about 20 and wiped it down with warm water and a sponge.  I let it dry over night and repeated the grout process.  After it was all dry there was still a film of grout over my mirrors so i cleaned it with a wet rag and then dried everything with a towel. 

I think they turned out great!  Ok, honestly the second one isn't quite done.  I just could not wait any longer to show them!


 Added bonus: the mirrors put a really cool reflection on the wall and ceiling at night!
 I hope you all like it!  There are all sorts of things you could do this with, I encourage you to try your own mosaic project!