Polymer Clay Ambitions and
Twisted Kneads . . . How to
Make a Mini Mosaic Tile
You will need:
White clay (I have used Premo for this tute)
Small clay canes in colors of your choice
Small ceramic tile or heavy paper
Sharp blade
Old credit card or something equivalent in size and thickness
2 Popsicle sticks at least 2" long or 2 old credit cards or
equivalent.
It is not absolutely necessary to have a sketch or design to follow unless you want a real specific
picture for your tile. A simple little doodle or 'the picture you see in your mind' will do for this basic tile.
Or, you can just place the came slices randomly to explore with color! This is mostly to see how to use
this technique.

NOTE:
For the best results, I recommend that you do not remove your clay tile from the ceramic tile until it is
completely done with both curings (bakings). Removing or pulling it on and off the tile while the clay is
raw will distort the clay and it will not be uniform.
Condition white clay and put through pasta machine on thickest
setting. Cut clay in half and stack one piece on the other to make a
thicker base.
Make a 2" x 2" square of white clay ( I used a paper template to make
it easier and it will come in handy later on too.)
Cut away excess white clay.

Square up the white clay ... I used two wooden blocks (from a Jenga
game) and put one on each side. Popsicle sticks would work too.
 
Take the canes you have chosen and cut very thin slices from them
and set aside.

Begin placing the cane slices however you want them arranged. I've
use some tiny cane leftovers that have been around for years
.

Once you have the desired pattern, use a roller to roll the clay slices
to adhere to the clay and to get a smoother surface. Be
gentle and
roll the surface just enough to embed the slices. The surface does
not have to be completely smooth.

Take the paper template and draw a 5 x5 square grid (the squares
are 3/8" in size). Lay the template on the clay and using a needle,
mark (indent) the clay on all sides to match the grid marks as shown.
In the photo on the left you can see the marks on all sides of the clay.
They are the guides for your next step.

Take an old credit card ( or something similar in size) and press into
clay lining up each side with the indentations and press into the clay
approximately half way through ... do not cut all the way through the
clay as you do not want to separate the squares.

The photo on the left shows how the piece will look after it has been
indented vertically and horizontally.

Once again, place the template over your tile.

Trim edges as shown and your tile is now ready for curing in the
oven. It will be cured (baked) at 275 for 30 minutes.
  This is as far as I have gotten with the tile. It is ready for the oven and
then we'll experiment with the grouting process!
   
   
   
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by Mae Holley
2006, 2007,2008

This tutorial created July 1, 2007