Grout Colourants Adhesives and Sealers


When mixing grout use a disposable plastic container and add a small bit of water to the powder little by little, stirring and mixing in between.  Mix with a craft stick or small spatula, and add water until the grout becomes a fudgy consistently ... thick enough not to drop off your stick.

A small rubber or plastic spatula can be used to apply grout, or you can use your fingers (remember to wear gloves).  Push the grout into every little nook and cranny.
Wipe off excess grout with a dry, soft sponge, and allow to sit for approximately 15 minutes.
Keep a bowl of clean water within reach and rinse the sponge or cloth often as you wipe away excess grout.
Wipe again after 15 minutes, then allow it to dry for another 15 minutes.  Using a soft cloth, wipe away any grout residue and polish the tesserae until it shines.
Once the grout has dried, smooth any rough edges with sandpaper.  Sandpaper can also be used to remove grout from a surface where it doesn’t belong.  However, be careful not to scratch the surface of the tesserae.

White grout can be coloured with powder or liquid colourants.  The colourants are mixed with the grout while it is being prepared and blended, prior to the water being added.
Other options for colouring grout include acrylic paints, concentrated food dyes, herbs and spices and glitter to name a few.
You can also colour the grout after it has dried on the mosaic with diluted acrylic craft paint, strong coffee or tea, or liquid fabric dyes (both natural and synthetic).

There are a variety of adhesives that can be used with mosaic projects, to glue the tesserae to surfaces.  

PVA GLUE (White Craft Glue)  
This can be used to glue flat materials (such as glass, flatback marbles and tiles) to flat, horizontal surfaces.  This glue holds the pieces securely, flattens out as it dries leaving ample room for grout between the tessarae pieces, and dries clear.

Silicone adhesive works best on vertical and curved surfaces.  Because silicone adhesive is of a thick consistency, it holds pieces of in place during the drying process.
Silicone adhesive is especially used for ungrouted mosaic effects, and decorative China and glass pieces.  Silicone adhesive is also useful when using materials of different textures and thicknesses.

Mosaic craft glue works for both indoor and outdoor pieces. 

Mastic is a ready-to-spread adhesive that is applied with a trowel.  Mastic is suitable for mosaics that will be used outdoors, and for large, flat surfaces (such as walls).  It can also be used on projects such as stepping stones.

The grout of mosaics that will be used and kept outside must be sealed.  Grout sealer comes in liquid and spray can forms.
The finished project can be sprayed, ensuring that all of the grout is well soaked.  Wipe the grout sealer off the tesserae with a soft cloth and allow to dry.

Brush on laminating liquid can be used to protect porous surfaces from the elements.  It is simply brushed on, then left to dry.

* ALWAYS read manufacturer’s instructions and safety precautions when using colourants, adhesives and sealers.

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