How to Make a Mosaic Tray

April 16, 2012

How to Make a Mosaic Tray

Stylish and functional this mosaic tray is a simple mosaic project that can be completed in a weekend. It's a great project for those of you that are new to the art of mosaics! 


  • Mosaic Tray
  • A variety of mosaic materials
  • 1 Piece of Millefiori for centre
  • Weldbond or a cement based adhesive
  • Brown grout
  • Wheeled Nippers (for cutting glass)
  • Geometry set for drawing design (optional)
  • Sealer for wooden tray
  • Brown acrylic paint
  • Paint brush
  • Latex gloves
  • Safety glasses
  • Disposable or plastic bowl, sponge


  1. Sealing wooden tray base
As this is a wooden tray which (depending upon its use) may be exposed to water, it is really important to seal it well. Coat the inside of the tray, including the walls, with 3 coats of sealer. A common sealant is PVA glue diluted in water (1 part PVA glue to 4 parts water). Once the project is finished paint all other surfaces with acrylic paint.
  1. The Design
The design of this mosaic is very simple. To start draw your outer boarder to the width of your tiles, in this case 2 cm's. Next draw a number of concentric circles in the centre of the tray (take your time to get the positioning correct). Than draw your triangles so that they are in the middle of each side, ensuring that opposing triangles are identical in size. A geometry set comes in useful for getting the measurements correct. I've used the concentric circles in the middle of the tray are a guide rather than being exactly where the tiles will be laid.
mosaic tray design


mosaic tray design


  1. Adhesive
As it is an inside mosaic piece either Weldbond (or another clear adhesive suitable for mosaics) or a cement based adhesive can be used. The adhesive was applied in sections to ensure it didn't dry out. When the surface of the frame is complete, allow the adhesive to cure for 24 hours before applying the grout.
  1. Grouting
Brown grout was used on this project. When removing the grout be careful not to use too much water as you are mosaicing a wooden surface that is prone to water damage. A damp sponge will do the job. Once grouted allow 24 hours for the mosaic piece to dry thoroughly. A coat of grout sealer will also help with water protection and stain resistance. When you've completed the grouting paint the tray inside and out with acrylic paint to seal to ensure all surfaces are sealed (including the bottom of the tray).


If you need more information about grouting your mosaic project click here.



mosaic tray project


Legal Disclaimer: No warranty is implied by these instructions. Use at your own risk. The Mosaic Store and its proprietors are not responsible for the results of any actions taken on the basis of this information, or for any omission in the advice. Please wear appropriate safety equipment when cutting mosaic materials and using grouts and adhesives. Keep out of reach of children.