sandywillowJune 1, 2012

Ok, I have been reading and researching this forum on this new hobby I would love to get into and have even made a couple of pots with broken china.

Now, I would like to try other types of materials to work with on other projects.

Home Depot and such is very limited with their color selection, as far as tiles are concerned. They have very basic neutral colors and not much of a selection with bright colored tiles and such.

Can someone here on this forum give me some ideas where I can buy online?

I am very new to this and not very familiar where or which reputable places I can buy the materials I need for my new hobby.

Please Help!

Thanks to anyone for your suggestions...

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Hi, Sandy. Welcome! If you Google "mosaic tile" you will get lots of places to check out.

Here are a few to start with.

Do you have an arts and crafts store near you, such as Hobby Lobby or Michaels? They have mosaic sections. Also, the larger towns, such as Austin, Houston, San Antonio, Dallas, will have at least one or two stained glass shops. I live near Austin and buy locally from Blue Moon Glassworks or Artisan Glass. Stained glass shops usually have bins of glass scraps for mosaics. Blue Moon has recently started carrying the 3/4" tiles and other mosaic material.

For plates, I haunt Goodwill and other thrift shops, always looking for that elusive pattern. I avoid plates made in China. I try not to pay more than 99 cents per plate, and after awhile, you will learn which ones are easy to nip and work best for you. Then you can get on eBay and buy plate rims, already nipped.

You can get up early on Saturday mornings and check out local garage sales, looking for old costume jewelry. Sometimes you can find beautiful stuff, perhaps missing the pin in the back or one stone out of the design, things that don't really matter for mosaic work.

I suggest you do lots of looking on Google images and you will be inspired by the creative way mosaic artists use material.

Have fun, and come back and post pictures!

    Bookmark   June 1, 2012 at 9:54AM
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I live just out of Houston and have been to Hobby Lobby here, but their selection is very limited and only sell very samll bags of glass tiles. Micheals here no longer sells supplies for Mosaics.
I have been hitting the thrift stores and I have stocked up on plates and such.
I have a good selection of those and would like to incorporate other types of tiles as well to my projects.
Your response is greatly appreciated and thanks for the links, of which I will look into and try Ebay as well.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2012 at 10:15AM
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WOW! Silvamae!!! That is such a thorough reply!!! Way to go!!!

    Bookmark   June 1, 2012 at 11:27AM
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Great suggestions Silvamae! I would like to add one more. Check with local tile stores for outdated samples or broken tiles. I've had success with that before.

Good luck collecting your tess!

    Bookmark   June 1, 2012 at 11:09PM
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Also Home Depot and Lowes w/special order for you more colorful tiles, but only in case lots. I've ordered cobalt blue 4"X4", and penny tiles from Home D. and bright red 4"X4" from Lowes. Look through their catalogs for colors.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2012 at 8:05AM
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Yes, everything Silva said and Slow.

On line, I get all my tile from Mosaic Art Supply

They have helpful color charts and are the most reasonable I've found in terms of price and available quantities.

One word of caution: You need to be careful about the type of materials you use depending on whether you're doing indoor projects or outdoor. Ceramic tile isn't considered weather resistant. It's porous and will crack in hard freezes. I live in California, and have a couple pieces I've made with ceramic that have been outdoors year-round through two winters now. We get frost, but nothing extreme. I've been okay so far. But if you are making outdoor projects and that's an issue, you'll want to stick to glass and porcelain.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2012 at 9:52AM
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Thought of one more source to mention. It's hit or miss, but doesn't hurt to check. One night when I couldn't sleep, I got on the computer at about 3 in the morning. I looked on Craig's List and there was an ad for for free stained glass; someone was getting out of the mosaic business and just wanted to give it away, first come, first served.

I sent an email and didn't hear back for a week; then out of the blue, a lady emailed me and said I was the first to respond so I could have it all. She and her husband own a car repair shop in Austin, so I made arrangements to meet her there, and thankfully I drive a van because they loaded the entire van up with heavy boxes of glass. I got home and immediately started opening boxes and I was overwhelmed -- it is beautiful expensive stuff in every color.

So, Craig's List is one place to check, and another is word of mouth. I went in a local hardware store one day to buy a carborundum stone (kitchen sharpener) and when the clerk asked what I used it for and I said mosaics, another worker approached me and asked if I wanted all her mosaic supplies because she is starting to work only in metal, so again, I met her at her house and she loaded my van with not only glass, but also many tools, including a Glastar grinder.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2012 at 10:09AM
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