TILE IT: PAPER FLOOR MOSAIC
Fig. A: "Squaring up" the sketch makes transferring the
image on a large scale easier. Fig. B: The design transfer
is complete, and the gluing begins. Fig. C: Spreading
Elmer's glue in a small area in order to tile part of the
dog's ear. (Meanwhile, Taco the dog carefully supervises.) Fig. D: A little glue on the end of the brush makes
picking up and placing individual tiles a snap.
the contents of a small drawing to a larger area.
Using a pencil and ruler, draw a grid of 1" squares
over the top of your mosaic sketch. If you like,
you can use letters across the top and numbers
down the left side of the grid for easy reference.
3b. Count the number of boxes on your drawing,
and lightly draw with a colored pencil and T square
to re-create the same number of boxes on your
larger work surface. In my case, eight 1" boxes on
my design sketch came out to eight 1' squares on
my floor, but the ratio of the size of your sketch
to the size of your mosaic area might produce a
slightly different scale for you.
3c. Use a pencil to transfer just what you see in
grid A- 1, A- 2, etc., into their corresponding areas on
the mosaic surface. If you like, go back over your
lines with a marker or a very dark colored pencil.
4. Glue those tiles.
4a. So that you won’t need to tread on areas you’ve
already tiled, it’s best to work from one end of your
design out. (Psst! Grab a pillow to place under your
knees, and don’t forget to take breaks.) To start tiling,
pour about 1" of Elmer’s glue into a small bucket or
plastic tub, and use the chip brush to paint a fairly
thick coat of glue in one 6" area at a time.
4b. Gather several cut paper squares, dip the tip of
a small paintbrush into glue, and then pick up one
square at a time by touching the tip of the brush to
the middle of the square. With just enough glue, the
square magically sticks to the end of your brush!
4c. Stick each square down one at a time onto the
glued mosaic surface, making sure to leave equal
amounts of space around each. You may find the
need for a custom shape or two. Use scissors to cut
triangles or skinny rectangles as needed.
NOTE: For a softer look, I mixed cream squares
with white squares for the background, and gray
squares with black squares for the dog’s body.
The border areas, however, are tiled solely with
black and white for maximum contrast.
4d. In between gluing sessions, cover the mosaic
with your tarp to protect your work. Completing my
mosaic took several weeks, so be patient!