Monday, March 10, 2008

Feelin' Kinda Crafty

My loyal Roxiticus Desperate Housewives readers know that I'm not exactly a crafty kind of person. However, my daughters are always looking for interesting craft projects involving lots of different media: paper, clay, yarn and potholder loops, seashells or mosaic tile, to name just few. Every time we go to Studio U in Chester, the girls want to try one of the mosaic tile projects, but the cost and level of difficulty is prohibitive. I think the helper ladies want to run for cover when they see a non-crafty mom like me with two little girls in tow looking to help themselves to the glittery jewels of mosaic tile on display.

When Rex and I were replacing the linoleum floors in our beach house, we learned quite a bit about different types of flooring and ways of decorating with mosaic tile. Using glass tiles for mosaics allows for some really colorful and creative designs, and we had the advantage of having a professional installer to help us to implement our design. We explored using ceramic tile with glass mosaic tile highlights in the kitchen, but it turned out that, because an addition had been put on years ago that wasn't entirely level, we either had to undergo major construction or use linoleum. We went with a linoleum pattern that actually resembled an Italian ceramic tile pattern. I liked the result better than Rex did.

We did get the opportunity to use large blue and white ceramic squares with a harlequin mosaic tile pattern in the bathroom. It looks terrific, especially with the beachy wallpaper we had chosen a few years back.

Unfortunately for the girls, we had no leftover tiles for the crafting projects they had in mind. I have since found an online source of mosaic tile called Wholesalers USA, where the prices are much more reasonable than the flooring store down at the beach. I also learned that using glass instead of ceramic for mosaic tile is preferable due to the color availability of glass tiles and the ease of working with glass. They also sell sea glass for $1.37 a pound. It could take us years of walking on the beach before we had a pound of sea glass for a project! So I'm thinking I might let the girls do a small mosaic tile crafting project like a picture frame or mirror frame...Wish me luck!