Broken Millefiori Bouquet Mosaic Coaster Before Grouting.

Broken Millefiori Mosaic Coaster

I made a mosaic bouquet coaster using our Broken Millefiori and Morjo 12mm Recycled Glass Tile. I used clear contact paper to lay out my design so that I could improvise without a pattern and make revisions as desired BEFORE glue is involved.

I wrapped the contact paper around the backer temporarily so that the design I laid out would be the exact same size as the backer.

I could have just traced the outline of the coaster on a piece of paper and taped the contact paper over the square outline.

Either way, the sticky side of the clear contact paper has to be showing because that is what is going to provide the little bit of stickiness required to keep the tiles from sliding around.

How Clear Contact Paper Is Used To Lay Up A Mosaic Design.
How Clear Contact Paper Is Used To Lay Up A Mosaic Design. Option 2 is probably more effort than required. If you don’t have a pattern drawn on your backer, all Option 2 does is make sure the mosaic is the same size as the backer.

Design Without Glue

In the photograph below, the mosaic design is improvised on the sticky surface of contact paper.

Mosaic Laid Out On Contact Paper, Revised As Desired.
Mosaic Laid Out On Contact Paper, Revised As Desired.

Mosaic Mounting Tape

Mosaic Mounting Tape is clear and sticky like clear contact paper, but the adhesive is MUCH stronger (although still temporary/removable).

Once the design was completely laid out, Mosaic Mounting Tape was pressed onto the face of the mosaic and rubbed to ensure it is securely stuck to the tape.

Then the mosaic is lifted off the clear contact paper.

Mounting Tape Pressed Onto Mosaic, Then Lifted Off Contact Paper.
Mounting Tape Pressed Onto Mosaic, Then Lifted Off Contact Paper.

After the mosaic is lifted off the contact paper and pattern, the contact paper can be removed and reused (possibly) or discarded if tackiness is degraded.

Since I used the coaster itself as a blank “pattern” (to get the size right), I removed the contact paper and discarded it, and then applied glue to the backer.

Apply Glue To Backer

Spread mosaic glue evenly onto the backer. Use a high-quality white PVA adhesive, such as the Weldbond we sell.

Make sure to follow the coaster’s instructions to avoid warping the backer with too much glue. It helps to seal the coaster with a minimal amount to glue a day or two before mosaicing.

Spread Mosaic Adhesive On The Backer
Spread Mosaic Adhesive On The Backer

Press Mosaic Into Adhesive

I prefer to turn the mosaic face down so that the backs of the tiles are showing, and then press the glue-covered backer down onto the mosaic.

Mosaic on Mounting Tape Pressed Onto Glue-Covered Backer.
Mosaic on Mounting Tape Pressed Onto Glue-Covered Backer.

Prevent Warping During Drying

Applying a weight to the back of the mosaic as the glue dries can prevent warping, but the wood needs to be exposed to speed drying. I put a tile at each corner and place a couple of hardback books on top of that.


9 responses to “Broken Millefiori Mosaic Coaster”

  1. Sue Kafas Avatar
    Sue Kafas

    I love these!!! Two questions from a beginner:
    Is there a video version of this? I don’t entirely understand how you are using the contact paper and the mosaic mounting tape.
    What do you suggest to use for the base? I assume any wood..?

    Thank you!!

    1. Joe Moorman Avatar
      Joe Moorman

      Any wood should work for a dry indoor mosaic. This article explains more about using mounting tape and contact paper. It’s no video, but there are numbered step, and the method is very simple.

  2. stella hastie Avatar

    Hi, Thanks for the post, very helpful.
    I’d like to know a little bit about the self-adhesive way of making small plaques. I’m not a good planner and the contact paper seems complicated for me. I’ve heard about the self-adhesive and seems like a good option for me. Could you please explain the pros and cons and how to go about it? If weldbond and/or thin set could be used?
    thanks so much!!

    1. Joe Moorman Avatar
      Joe Moorman

      I’m not familiar with the self-adhesive products. There are many craft products that aren’t concerned with longevity. We recommend archival materials and methods.

  3. B. Sadie Bailey Avatar
    B. Sadie Bailey

    This is a great tutorial, and I love how the coaster turned out and how you used the broken millefiori.

  4. Catherine August Avatar

    I am making several HUGE mosaics (8′ x 8′) which I will have to cut up into sections after completing. I am using this reverse tape method with the mosaic tape as explained here. I will need to store the sections (cut up) for a period of 3-12 months as I complete each one. For how long will the adhesive on the mosaic tape last? Will it still be sticky and strong enough on the earliest finished mosaics to hold the tesserae and stones in place when I want to install them in the mortar at the job site?
    Can I stack the sections on top of each other for storage as long as they will be in an “air conditioned” space? Thank you, Catherine.

    1. Joe Moorman Avatar
      Joe Moorman

      Hi Catherine,

      This is the same tape that tile manufacturers and mural makers use, and so the adhesive should be fine with longer storage, especially in a climate-controlled space. Stacking is fine.

  5. Barbara Okun Avatar
    Barbara Okun

    I love the image of the flower with the millefiori flower.
    It looks as if it was a smali type of mosaic used, and not a morjo cut mosaic, can you tell me the specific blue and red color as I would like to order the exact colors. Also what is the size of this costar?
    Thank You

    1. Joe Moorman Avatar
      Joe Moorman

      That is a 4-inch coaster.

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