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Mosaic info

Hi, Im looking for I am working on a "Found Object"
Series, and want to do a small mosaic (1/2 inch), What should I use as
grout for something this size? I would prefer a black, red, or dark
grout,something that could withstand ring or pendant wear, any
suggestions? karen in vancouver

Karen, Consider pulverizing some Coral branches, for your red, black
dyed Howlite, or any other dark material you may have. Grind it in a
mortar and pestle until fairly grainy, mix with epoxy and use as
grout. Teresa

Hi Karen, You’ll get lots of responses on Orchid for sure, and I’m
interested in what some of them will be myself. I’m a hawker of
epoxy resin for a lot of uses, and I bet you could use it to set
small pieces into, but you couldn’t “grout” per se, unless you used
clear resin and didn’t mind it over your pieces. However, colored
resin could be used as long as you were careful not to let it get on
top of your pieces. I’m wondering if there’s an enamel-type
procedure you could use if your pieces wouldn’t melt? --Arts

Hi Karen,

I have a rather similar problem on a much larger scale: I’m
refinishing an antique stone topped table which I guess to date from
about the 1820’s and whose stone top looks like this:

The plates are very closely fitted together side by side, and are set
into a routered-out round marble base with an adhesive which seems to
be something like Canada balsam. The stone plates and the marble base
would presumably have been fitted warm, when the adhesive would be

Whether this will work for your purposes I can’t predict. However, I
do believe that before epoxies, Canada balsam was used in making opal
doublets and triplets; hence it seems to offer enough strength and
permanence for ring and pendant use. It has the advantage that it’s
soft when hot, quite soft, - indeed, it flows - so that would help
with positioning. But it’s slightly brittle when cold so the tighter
the fit-up, the better, probably.

There’s a mosaicist’s web site at

It has a Q & A page where you can post questions to visitors and
review old questions. I posted a query as to my table top about a
month ago, without, as yet, any replies.

I would be curious to hear what you do end up using.

Cheers & good luck Hans Durstling Moncton, Canada Bay of Fundy
geo-guiding; minerals, custom cut agates, faceting, silver &

G’day; with reference to mosaic inlaid table tops, may I suggest that
for advice on a grout for mosaic pieces the people with the best
are the specialist tile merchant/shops. They are usually
most helpful. I have made fireplace surrounds and part tiled
bathroom in the past and used the special grout sold by the tile
merchants to good purpose. 17 years ago I made a tile surround for a
stand alone fire, with some thin tiles I had to shape myself for our
present house, and it looks the same now as it did when it was
completed, despite parts of it being occasionally walked upon…

John Burgess; @John_Burgess2 of Mapua Nelson NZ