Interesting week. Some soul-searching, fun and learning took place. I love when that happens!

When I get inspired to work on mosaics, often I fast-forward through the experience. I learned after getting hurt, that fast is just one speed, not the only one. And painful. Being assured that the muse would be there when needed, I have slowed down and started to enjoy, once again, the Zen-like feeling of cutting glass and placing it on the piece I’m working on.

Using dish shards that came to me from a sweet lady not so long ago as a gift, I made the cutest tea pot in Cottage Chic style and listed it on Etsy on Monday. I wasn’t even sure I liked it after I made it – the dish shards were chunky and too big. I was out of my comfort zone a bit with this one but I left it alone and finished it up. Surprised that I liked it once grouted, I knew it was good to go out of the comfort zone once in a while.

Cottage Chic / Shabby Chic mosaic tea pot. Yellow, pink and magenta stained glass were used all around the outside of this pot. The handle and inside of the lid and back are painted in magenta.

I finished up the peace sign I made using the wooden brooch as inspiration once I learned I had shards similar to it (thanks again to the sweet lady who gifted them!). I am not sure I’ll list this one but it is grouted and ready should I change my mind.

I made this peace sign while still regaining strength in my left hand. My cuts aren’t very good, the dishes were hard to nip and the old pottery I used disintegrated when I tried to cut up some of it. This was a challenging piece. For that reason, I am emotionally attached to it. When I become too attached, I can’t let it go. The struggles I had with it, made me think it is best to love it no matter what it looks like and not fight the process of trying to get the shards to cut the way I wanted them to. I named it “Make Love, Not War”.

"Make Love, Not War" is the name of this peace sign and the name of the effect I used in the photo too, giving it a 60's feel to it which makes me love it even more.

I grouted the  napkin holder / bill holder / desk appliance. Before I got to it (wish I had taken a “before” shot!) it was old, dusty, darkly stained wood. Painting it a fresh lemon yellow gave it the “oomph” it needed. I think this would do well at a craft fair or in the craft shop I am going to be working with so I’ll hold it until I’ve had the chance to pass it on.

I also grouted the flower for the 3-D piece I am sort of working on. Sort of means I have it sitting on the shelf. Until I feel the need to take it off of the shelf and do the next step, it will stay there. I know what I want to do with it next, I just need the desire to do it.

I used more of the gifted dish shards to create a funky purple peace sign. Not yet grouted or sides/back painted, I love it already.

This peace sign is 10 inches in diameter. Once grouted and finishing touches added, it will probably get listed.

Next was a bit of a challenge cutting up glass for the 3 inch peace sign. It was easier than I anticipated, which means the other 4 pieces the same size will get a mosaic on them too instead of painted.

I'll glue a hook to the back for mounting (this isn't going to be very heavy even after grout) on the wall. Will put glass around the outside of this.

I finished painting the other side to the one I had started over the summer. Both sides are painted slightly differently so when hung up by the string (yet to be attached) you can see them both. I just sold one of these on Etsy and thought it would be good to finish this one and get it listed.

The bowl is going well. I am deliberately working slowly on it. I want the process to be enjoyed and so far, I’ve accomplished that.

Bottom of bowl with light red and gold stained glass added so far. Still to come, yellow, green, dark red, iridescent rust. Once completed covered in the glass, the clean up of thin set and scraping involved may be pretty intense since I have a heavy hand most of the time with the adhesives. I'm so glad I have a few tools to help me!

I started work on a gazing ball too. I will be adding lots of flowery dish shards to this. The white shown here is really an awesome iridescent white with pinks and blues when in the sun. It’s the outer rim of many dishes that have city and state info on them. These came to me in pieces too. The inside areas of these dishes are quite colorful and many still have some info visible on them. I haven’t decided what to use them on yet, but maybe another gazing ball. I certainly have enough of them laying around ready to mosaic in a few different sizes! Nothing much to look at yet but I’ll share as I go.

And I haven’t forgotten that I wanted to make one Christmas item a month however it’s not really working out that way. Limited time to “play” with mosaics and ideas not really bounding around for them has caused that thought to get left in the dust. I have, however, thought of something I want to do with a luminary so when I get that started, I’ll use green and red stained glass. 🙂

I promised myself that I would use any money I got from selling items through Etsy towards supplies when I needed them plus one fun thing for myself if there’s enough left over. It’s the only income I have, so being diligent with it is what I have to do. Saving it, of course, is the best thing but what fun is that? I do make sure I always have enough for Etsy’s monthly fees. That is always first on the list.

I wanted to find something I could do online or purchase for download that could help me learn how to do certain things. Never having formal training and being self-taught, there are things I don’t know in order to get better and move forward with my craft. I know the basics. Heck, I’ve taught them to others. But there are certain things I do and think it’s just the way I do them and I’ll never get any better at. That’s not true and if someone else were to say that to me, I’d be barking that they needed to find a way to reach beyond their own comfort level and push past the fear, etc. Learning something new can be intimidating even after almost 8 years of doing it.

The first thing I did once I had a sale (3 recently – yay!!) was to purchase a tutorial from Crystal Thomas that I got in a PDF file and is now on my computer. Hooray!!! On her website, she offers 4 of them from basic stuff to how to do a flower. I wanted to learn keystoning which is something I should know by now but have never been able to master. That’s why I go with wonky cuts and simply say I’ll always use them because I never could cut a straight line. That may be so, but there are times when I know the mosaic would look better if the cuts were done using the keystone method.  The newest gazing ball for example, has pieces of recycled mirror on it that was cut up in really odd pieces because it’s how I do things. I’ll use them because I have to, but I really would’ve liked to have already mastered this technique so they would look a whole lot better. Remembering Crystal offered these booklets was a miracle! Making a sale so I could purchase one was even more so! It will take me a while to learn this technique because I have to force myself out of the spaced out zone I’m always in and into concentration mode. Ugh. But in the end, it will be worth it. I will document how it goes for me and post it here once I get going on it. If you’re interested in checking out Crystal’s tutorials or just cruising through her website to see her awesome mosaic work, head here:

Later today I’ll be making a new treasury featuring some favorites I have saved on my Etsy profile. Depending on how the day unfolds I may share it here. It will certainly be posted on my Facebook page. There’s lots of vintage, mid century modern, copper and bohemian things I find so worthy of a treasury!!

Stay peaceful.

©2012 Cindy White, EarthMotherMosaics