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RE: bathroom finished & mosaiced! (Follow-Up #14)

posted by: slowmedown on 03.02.2008 at 07:05 am in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

When I read your response, CAIT, re looking up "The Recipe", I didn't have time to search for it, but this mornig I do, so here it is. Since I posted this I found the written instructions from Riana, which states "Cement Formula: Mix one part Portland cement to three parts Mason sand with water to a thick peanut butter consistency." She also said Fiber-Optic (fiberglass) can be added to cement for structural strength in high stress areas., and laytex polymer additive to make the cement shrink less and water and crack resistant. I'm sure you know all this already, cuz of your garden work, but wanted to offer this up for anyone else interested. BTW - the shiner is still there but fading ever-so-slowly.
Riana's Recipe

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clipped on: 03.03.2008 at 11:42 am    last updated on: 03.03.2008 at 11:42 am

The Recipe - Hope I can do this RIGHT!!!

posted by: slowmedown on 03.08.2007 at 03:44 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

Painting my ironing board legs, but decided to check in and am thinking I better take the time to try to relate what we learned. The others can fill in where I leave gaps, or I'll be happy to answer any questions.

For those who have a sewing background, this w/be a little easier. I used to sew all my clothes, so I related the proceedure to making a pattern to cut a dress. All her structures are a double layer of the mesh, so do everything in twos. The wire mesh is the galvanized lathe - diamond-shaped stuff used to plaster walls. To make a life-sized person, Riana begins by sorta measuring her face, cuts a piece of the mesh and begins to shape the face by folding the chin area into sorta a v-shape, cutting darts where she needed to fold and overlap for stitches, etc. To shape the forehead she cut a piece to size, leaving enough to bend and lay across to shape the forehead enough wings to attach it to the face, w/stitches made from 19 guage wire. She cuts a piece about 6/8" then turns in about an inch w/the pliers, pinches the folded end to make a "hook needle" that she pushes through the layers, to catch the pieces and then she can pull it through to wind around a couple times w/the pliers then cuts the ends off w/the cutting part of the pliers as close as possible w/o cutting the "knot". Use as many stitches as necessary to hold the piece to shape. W/each additional piece of mesh to shape the ears, nose, leave "wings" for attaching it to the base of the face. Sculpturing the face/head she then goes on to the shoulders by just bending a piece into an arched piece the length from shoulder to shoulder so the head w/be able to sit in the middle by cutting, shaping, darting so it sits properly. Remember - double layers of everything. The neck w/be a short tube you w/cut around bottom/top for the wings to attach to the head, then cut and darted to fit the shoulders once the head is attached. She goes through the whole process of sculpturing the whole body, darting, patching, pinching, folding, punching to shape, etc. The recipe for the mud mixture to be gently pushed in between the two pieces of mesh layer and smoothes over the mesh (not to completely cover) is: 1 part Portland cement to three parts of mason sand. She was using local stuff so the sand was course, and b/c the metal mesh wasn't available there, she used hardware "cloth" metal mesh - ungalvanized - 1/4" holes. After pushing through and smoothing out the structure, she covers w/plastic to dry over night. There were spots of the mesh not completely covered w/the concrete, and that was ok. It is a just a very thin layer on the outside, thereby making the statue light enough to move around easily. Next day, in most cases, it is ready to be refined or smoothed out the rough edges, especially trimming the "stitches", bumps knocked off, it is ready to be mosaiced. She doesn't cover all parts in mosaics. As shown in ROSIE's photo of the statue she made of our hostess Sam, bird and dog, she uses different colored grouts and exterior house paints to finish her pieces. She uses powdered colorants, and paints when she can't find grout in colors she wishes to use. On the arms and legs, she showed us how to use a runny mixture of grout to smooth over the skeleton to cover the mesh and concrete that won't be covered by mosaics. She makes her own grout w/one part type 1 Portland cement w/one-two parts silica sand or you can buy a regular sanded grout. For mosaicing she uses cement-based polymer fortified tile adhesive for adhering. The local stuff wasn't great, and when an occasional piece fell off, she used Weldbond to put it back on. The climate there is mild, so ...... She didn't even know what a pistol-grip glass scoring tool was. Her only tools are a hammer, a tile nipper, the tile cutter w/the little wheel to score and a trowel for mixing the cement/sand mixture - VERY BASIC TOOLS. Ask away, if this isn't clear.

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clipped on: 01.09.2008 at 10:02 pm    last updated on: 01.09.2008 at 10:02 pm

Breaking glass flowers

posted by: bamasusanna on 12.11.2007 at 12:30 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

Here's how I do it.
Step 1: score flower stem approx 1/4" from flower.
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Scored stem
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Step 2:
Now, find a hard surface with a straight edge. In this photo I used the edge of a stone, but you could use a brick or perhaps a table edge would do.
Line up your score line with the edge.
Tap the score line on whatever hard edged surface you're using. Flower should break on your score. BE SURE you have somewhere for your flower to fall that's safe. After all this you don't want to break THAT!!
Step 3:
If your little piece of stem is still a tad too long, you can grind it down.
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To insert in my mirror, I dremmeled a hole out the size of the stem. The MDF was 1/2" thick, the hole was about 1/4" deep. This will give you room to really secure the flower with a lot of glue.
I do not attach the flower until AFTER I have grouted. This way you're not trying to smoosh grout up under the flower!
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clipped on: 12.11.2007 at 12:54 pm    last updated on: 12.11.2007 at 12:54 pm

finished window pictures...

posted by: lisa_4 on 08.24.2007 at 12:32 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

here's a picture of my finished window. the purple in the bottom flower looks black without light behind it...bummer!

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clipped on: 08.25.2007 at 05:11 pm    last updated on: 08.25.2007 at 05:12 pm

Epoxy Tutorial with lots of PICS :)

posted by: ladyronnie on 06.27.2007 at 09:23 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

I am making a new thread for this since the previous one got stale waiting for me to get this done! I did this on a very small project, a little 3" square coaster, mainly in the interest of the time I had to glue the tessarae. You would follow the same steps on a larger project. One thing that is very important, is that your project needs to sit LEVEL! And the bigger the project, the more important it is. So, that said, Here Goes:

First, arrange everything you need AHEAD OF TIME! I learned the first time around that not having something when you have epoxy ready to go is NOT GOOD!
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What you need: Your project
--two-part epoxy (resin and hardener)
--measuring cup (I used a tablespoon for small amount)
--container to mix in (straight sided)
--something to mix with (needs a straight side to scrape container sides, I use a plastic picnic knife for small amount)
--a piece of stiff cardboard or a throwaway paintbrush (I have a craft paintbrush that is getting stiffer and stiffer, but I keep using it)
--rubbing alcohol (the only thing that will clean up wet epoxy)
--a rag for wiping your hands, etc (to wet with ALCOHOL, not water)
--something to time for two minutes (watch or clock with second hand, kitchen timer, etc. Not in pic, I used clock on wall)

Measure EQUAL AMOUNTS of resin and hardener into your mixing container, (I quickly wiped out my measuring spoon with alcohol-rag), and begin stirring. Time stirring for TWO MINUTES.
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Be sure to scrape sides and bottom of container frequently. Use kind of a whipping action, like hand-whipping egg whites. Mixture will get frothy and even have little bubbles float into the air.

POUR mixture onto your project. You can pour it all in the middle on a small project, pour it all around on a larger one. You can see all the bubbles in this pic:
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To be continued...
(I just don't want to accidentally delete this whole thing before I post it! So I'll do it in a few parts.)

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clipped on: 06.29.2007 at 12:08 pm    last updated on: 06.29.2007 at 12:08 pm