Sunday, September 9, 2012

Feeling Blue (and White)

 I've been working on another project for the last week or so. For a while, I've been unhappy with the look of my gallery roombox, which sits on my worktop. I really threw the box together, and some of the shortcuts I took looked really bad. It was also in constant disarray. Usually, it had more paintings waiting to be hung than actually on the walls. It was definitely time for a change.

Since the gallery roombox idea hadn't worked out, I decided to try something completely different in the same box. I decided to make it into an old-fashioned dairy,with tiled walls and stone floors, such as you might find on an old English estate! I'm taking a few liberties with the design, but hopefully it will capture the feel. 

I'm not going to show the room yet. Suffice it to say that I have a long way to go. I'm still working on tiling the walls, and I'm undecided about the best way to get the look I want for the floor. In the mean time, I thought I'd show how I'm making the tiles...
First, I found images of old tiles I liked online.I re-sized them to be 1/2" square (the border tiles are 1/4" by 1/2") and fiddled with the colors until the tiles were approximately the same shades of blue and white. After that, I printed the tiles on watercolour paper. This particular pad of paper had a little too much tooth for my miniature paintings, but the heavy texture creates a realistic ripple effect in the tiles.

Next, I needed to create an easy system for "glazing" my tiles. I glued plastic 'pony' beads to a sturdy old piece of cardboard. I spaced the beads approximately 1" apart. Once the glue had dried, I placed tiny pieces of poster putty (aka blu-tack) on each bead. You can see the green putty on the bead in the background.
After that, it was a simple matter to cut the tiles apart one by one and stick them on beads. I used a drop of gloss medium to 'glaze' each tile, and let them dry for a few hours.When they were dry, I glued the tiles to another sheet of watercolour paper, using a square to keep the rows relatively straight.
 

9 comments:

  1. Hi Eliza, you've made some beautiful tiles! The nice blue color looks like the Delfts blue, famous porcelain from Delft, Holland. Thanks for sharing this tutorial.
    Greetings, Ilona

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  2. Dear Eliza,
    Thanks for sharing this item.
    Hugs Dorien

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  3. I like these tiles and their colors.
    Kiss Fbay

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  4. Hello Eliza,
    Great idea. The tiles are lvoely and I can't wait to see more pictures.
    Hugs,
    Giac

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  5. Thanks for the show! Great idea!

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  6. Very clever! They look so much like 1:1 tiles.

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  7. Hi Eliza! How ingenious to support the cut tiles the way that you did and then gloss them individually!!!!! I never would have thought of that.
    I have made tiles and glossed the entire sheet and then cut them out. I didn't get the kind of corners that I wanted and the paper edge shows. I like your way a whole lot better and next time when I make tiles I am for sure going to try it YOUR way! Thank you for sharing this.

    elizabeth

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  8. This worked beautifully! Thank you! I'm delighted with my new tiles --

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