How to make a resin coaster with ceramic tiles
For Christmas this year, I wanted my kids to create something extra special for their Grandmother. She is like most in that she doesn’t need much, but always appreciates anything her grandchildren make for her.
I thought it would be neat for them to make something she could display without having to worry about framing. I decided to give tile art a try! I let my kids pick from my collection of sharpies to create their masterpieces. The tiles I used were white, glazed ceramic tiles from a major home improvement a store. They were less than $1 each.
To make sure the ink didn’t come off the tiles once I applied resin, I followed a suggestion on Pinterest for adding art to ceramic mugs. The tiles air dried for 24 hours. I then placed the tiles into a cold oven and turned it on to 450F. After 30 minutes, I turned the oven off and let the tiles completely cool overnight.
After coming out of the oven, I was disappointed that the colors faded a bit. Next time I do this, I will either let the tiles air dry for several days and not bake them or use oil based Sharpies for the project.
My resin of choice for this project was Envirotex Lite. I chose this product because I wanted a doming resin that would give a glossy finish in one coat.
If you want to know how much resin to mix, you can use the formula I used for how to resin a painting.
Prop up your project, then pour the mixed resin onto the ceramic tile. I poured enough to cover approximately two-thirds of the tile. If you pour enough to cover the tile, it will definitely be too much and run over the edge. You can always drip more on if you need it.
Technical note: Envirotex Lite mixes very thick — like honey thick. It is almost impossible to avoid bubbles when mixing this resin. The best way I have found to get the bubbles out of this resin is to use a heat gun. Drawing out the bubbles with a toothpick or blowing over the resin with a straw is very tedious for this resin!
Use your stir stix to push the resin to the tile edge. After removing the bubbles, cover and allow to cure.
Because one of the edges was tapered, the resin didn’t know to stop at the edge. Drat! I scraped off the edge several times while curing, but unfortunately was unable to avoid every drip.
Since I wasn’t able to avoid all the drips, I used my flex shaft with a sanding tool to sand down the big drips. You could use coarse sandpaper here too, but it will take awhile. Note: Don’t forget to wear a dust particle mask and safety glasses when using any kind of rotary tool.
To make sure the tiles didn’t scratch a delicate surface, I added felt pads to the back. These are the same pads you can put on the bottom of furniture legs to make sure they don’t scratch the floor. Corkboard would be appropriate to use here as well.
The finished resin tiles are now ready to hold a glass or simply decorate a table.
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