The mosaic apron is a non-trivial and at the same time time-proven alternative to aprons made from large-format ceramic tiles, porcelain tiles, stone or glass. And although the mosaic tiles are made of the same materials (and not only), the properties and appearance of such an apron have their own characteristics. Let's find out how to plan the design of the future panel, prepare for the trip to the store, calculate the consumption of materials, choose glue and grout, and how to lay the mosaic with your own hands.
Step 1. Select the size and format
So, you are thinking about decorating the working area with mosaic tiles. To do this, you first need to make measurements of the apron and calculate the consumption of the material based on the size of the tile.
- Modern mosaic is usually sold not in loose form, but in the form of blanks, that is, matrices in the size: 24 × 24 cm, 28 × 28 cm, 30 × 30 cm, 31.5 × 31.5 cm, 32 × 32 cm, etc. Usually for a total area of 1 square. m you need to buy 9 matrices.
- The mosaic consists of small fragments, which are called chips. The size of the chips varies from 1x1 cm to 5 × 5 cm, and sometimes up to 10 × 10 cm. For the cladding of the kitchen apron, mosaic tiles with a size of 2 × 2 cm-5 × 5 cm are most often used. Below in the photo slider you can see the chip formats are 1 × 1, 2 × 2, 5.5 cm.
- Apron made of small-format mosaic
- Apron of mosaic 2x2
- Apron from mosaic 5х5
- The most running form of the plates is square. It is convenient in laying mosaic, calculating the consumption of material and fits into any interior.
- Also popular are rectangular chips. But circles, triangles, rhombuses, hexahedrons and other forms are less common. In the next selection of photos you can see aprons of mosaic with chips of different sizes and shapes.
Some more useful information
The details of the mosaic can be fixed in three ways:
- Connected to each other by polymer bridges;
- Glued to polyurethane mesh (mesh is located on the back of the matrix);
- Fixed on paper basis (paper is glued to the front of the composition, and is removed only before grouting the seams).
The worst option is the first, as the jumpers easily break off during the mosaic laying process. The most convenient and reliable option is a mosaic on a grid that does not tear, so it's easier to glue it. In addition, the grid in this case performs the function of reinforcement.
Step 2. Choose a beautiful design and good material
Now you can start planning the design of an apron, which can be conditionally divided into groups:
- Monocolor - when the mosaic on the grid is lined with modules of the same color and shape. In the photo below, examples of an apron for the kitchen from a mosaic of the same color in the interior.
- Mix - when the tile-mosaic for the kitchen consists of different shades of the same color, all the modules with the same format. The more colors and shades are collected in the mix, the higher will be the price of the apron.
- Stretching ("gradient") - differs in that the grid for "stretching" is not square, but rectangular (1: 5), and the mosaic is laid out according to the gradient principle - from saturated color to slightly saturated, for example, from blue to light blue. But this type of matrix is more often used for finishing bathroom walls.
- Panel - when the factory mosaic on the grid is arranged in the form of a pattern or pattern.
The design of the apron for the kitchen from the mosaic and its performance characteristics also depend on the materials from which the composition is composed.
Ceramic Mosaic компонуется из формованной керамической плитки, поэтому от крупноформатной керамики по свойствам ничем не отличается – она такая же износо-, термо– и влагоустойчивая, вариативная по дизайну и долговечная. Но керамическая мозаика выглядит изящнее и колоритнее, создает впечатление ручной работы, лучше вписывается в интерьеры в восточных стилях. Минусы: стоит почти вдвое дороже обычной плитки и требует большего расхода затирки. Стеклянной мозаике керамика проигрывает в вариативности дизайна и цветовой гаммы, но выигрывает в фактурности чипов – керамическая композиция может быть матовой, глянцевой, шероховатой, с эффектом старины, имитирующей гальку и камень. Толщина керамической мозаики в два раза толще стеклянных панно - 8-10 мм.
The following photos show the traditional white mosaic in the interior of the kitchen.
But the kitchen apron is made of mosaic, complemented by a curb and decor.
Glass Mosaic – популярнее всех остальных видов плитки-мозаики для кухни, так как и выглядит она красиво, и стоит дешевле, при этом очень легка в уходе и долговечна. Благодаря высокотемпературному обжигу и маленькому размеру плиток (минимум 2×2 см) стеклянная мозаика гораздо прочнее обычного стекла, несмотря на одинаковый состав.
Conditionally, a mosaic made of glass can be divided into:
- Homogeneous glass. Small glass blocks can be glossy and look like colored candies or matte, similar to glass, turned over by the sea. Also, in glass cubes can be added glitters, foil, minerals, etc.
- Smaltu. Smalta is a baked mixture of pressed colored glass with metal oxides. From glass, smalt has a very high strength (because of which it can be placed even on the floor), as well as saturated color, the effect of internal glow and man-made, as each plate of smoked glass differs slightly from each other in shade. Smalta can be very different depending on the additives and coatings. For example, she can imitate mother of pearl.
- Glass with the addition of minerals. To obtain a mosaic tile, similar to precious stones, the glassmass is mixed with minerals with aventurine or iridium. The mosaic turns out to be expensive, but very beautiful - with a flickering or iridescent surface.
How to choose a grout for glass mosaic?
Glass Mosaic особенно требовательна в подборе клея и затирки, так как неправильно подобранные составы могут испортить вид фартука с прозрачными, полупрозрачными и матовыми плитками.
- The best mortar for glass mosaic is a mixture based on epoxy resin in a light gray color, and the best glue is white.
- Since glass, unlike ceramics, has no pores, its adhesion to the surface is less durable, so special glues and grouts are used for laying the mosaic of glass with increased adhesion values of 20 to 28 kg per cm 2.
To produce it, a variety of stones and minerals are used: from marble to onyx. The stone is very durable and practically eternal, each natural stone is unique and unique, but still it is a porous material, therefore, in order to preserve its beauty longer, it should be treated with a special protective compound filling the pores and facilitating the care of the apron.
- From buying an apron of soft and porous stone rocks it is better to refuse, as they absorb the coloring food contamination like red wine or beet juice;
- The thickness of the stone mosaic is 8-10 mm;
- Stone mosaic относится к категории элитных и дорогостоящих материалов – облицовка 1 кв. м будет стоить от 7000 рублей.
Chips can be polished, rough, have a relief or cut out pattern, and even stone slabs can be combined on the same basis with glass, smalt or ceramic. By the way, the basis they always mesh.
The photo below shows an apron made of mosaic with stone and glass chips.
Mosaic tiles from porcelain tiles
Ceramic granite is an excellent alternative to pottery and stone, as it is as durable as a stone, yet less porous and more affordable. Ceramics of granite is superior in strength, but loses to it in the variability of design - it has less glossy surface and, as a rule, a neutral color palette - from beige to dark brown. In addition, ceramic granite mosaic is cut, and not poured into molds, like ceramic tiles.
Mother-of-pearl is one of the most beautiful finishing materials, possessing unique properties: reflecting and muffling the directed light, it makes it diffused and soft, while pouring iridescent shades. If mother-of-pearl mosaic is made of natural mother-of-pearl, then it will be quite expensive, but you can choose a mosaic made of glass or smalt with pearlescent coating.
Metal mosaic tiles are made of ceramics, rubber or plastic, which are covered with a layer of stainless steel, brass or bronze, resulting in chips of steel or gold shades. The metal mosaic apron will be practical and reliable, and yet - the metal decorative coating is subject to abrasion.
Mirror Mosaic составляется из кусочков зеркал и имеет толщину 5 мм. Она вполне износоустойчива, но требует чуть более частого ухода. Зеркальные чипы могут быть тонированными и чаще всего выпускаются в прямоугольной или квадратной форме. На фото ниже представлены интерьеры кухонь с зеркальной мозаикой на фартуке.
Some more useful information
- The most popular variants are a glass mosaic and, of course, a ceramic one. In these categories you can find both excellent budget (600-2000 rubles / 1 sq. M.), And exclusive high-priced panels. A quite affordable price kitchen apron will also come from a metal mosaic (500 rubles / 1 square meter). All other types of tiles are significantly more expensive.
- As a rule, the brighter and richer the color range of mosaic tiles, the higher its price. The most inexpensive designs are monocolors and mixes of white, light beige, brown and gray tones without decorative additives, because their production is less complex and expensive. If the color palette of the mosaic is bright, multicolored, decorated, with flickering effects, etc., then the price will be much higher.
- If the complete lining of the apron mosaic does not fit into the budget, then you can use it as a ceramic tile decor. The photo below shows examples of such a combination in the interior of the kitchen.
Step 3. Select the grout and glue
- Grout for mosaic is based on cement or epoxy resin. The first option is easier to apply and distributed, more suitable for laying the mosaic with your own hands, and it is cheaper. But it does not withstand frequent washing, it absorbs household pollution and eventually darkens, spoiling the appearance. Grout for mosaics based on epoxy is considered to be the best for both adhesion quality and performance characteristics - it does not absorb moisture or dirt, is not afraid of frequent joint cleaning using household chemicals and does not change its color. If you want to make the seams white, then the mixture based on epoxy will be especially relevant.
But the "epoxy" has its disadvantages: high cost and capriciousness in mashing the seams, as the mixture dries quickly. It's very difficult to deal with this task with your own hands, so it's better to entrust the laying of the mosaic to a good professional.
- The glue for facing the kitchen apron with mosaic tiles should be waterproof and preferably antifungal;
- The most universal color of the grout is light gray and white. Also, you can choose a mixture in the tone of the kitchen apron, or contrast.
- Glue for glass mosaic must necessarily be white.
Step 4. Laying the mosaic on the apron with your own hands - a step-by-step instruction
So, tile-mosaic for the kitchen is chosen, glue, grout and auxiliary materials are prepared, it remains only to put the mosaic on the apron.
- Laying the mosaic with your own hands - it's not very difficult, if you use a trowel mixture not from epoxy resin, but on the basis of cement. Otherwise, and if you use expensive mosaic, it is better not to risk and invite a master.
Stage 1. Preparation of the base of the apron
The wall under the future apron should be leveled, clean and completely dry - you can start laying the mosaic only 10 days after the completion of the preparatory work. For finishing alignment, it is better to use white shpaklevku.
Step 2: Marking
To make the size of the seams the same and the apron neat, the mosaic on the grid or paper basis is laid out on the floor with the same interval equal to the value of the seams between the chips. Then the resulting layout is consistently and accurately transferred to the wall, marking the dimensions of sheets and seams. The more accurate the layout, the faster and easier it will be to lay the mosaic.
Stage 3. Dilution of glue
Now you need to dilute the glue according to the instructions to the creamy condition with the help of a drill with a nozzle-mixer. It is better not to prepare the entire volume of the composition at once, so that it does not have time to dry up, because you can not dilute the dried up glue with water.
Stage 4. Laying the mosaic on the apron
In order to glue the mosaic to the wall, apply the glue first with a smooth spatula, then level with a notched trowel with square teeth 3 × 3 cm. Then start the computation according to the marking, and then fix it by tapping lightly with a rubber spatula. At this stage, the tile can be leveled, if necessary - trimmed (photo 1-3).
- Laying and fixing the mosaic, try not to press on it strongly - the glue should not be squeezed out of the seams. If this happens, then you need to choose a spatula with smaller teeth. It can also mean that the surface of the wall is uneven.
Step 5. Wiping the seams
As soon as the glue dries (about 3 hours), the paper or film on the mosaic must be removed.
- If the mosaic is on a paper basis, then it must be removed, pre-wetting with a sponge with warm water. The film is removed diagonally, the adhesive from the base is washed off with a sponge (photo 4, 5).
Now you can start rubbing the seams. To do this, the trowel mixture, with a slight pressure, is applied with a rubber spatula and spread over the mosaic along the vertical and horizontal lines, simultaneously removing the excesses diagonally. After 30-60 minutes (when the grout began to freeze, but has not yet dried), the remnants of the mixture begin to wipe with a damp sponge, without washing it out of the seams (photo 6). If the grout is poorly washed, then you can additionally wipe the mosaic with an alkaline solution, and then wash it off in time. Well, that's all, it remains only to polish the apron felt or baikoy (photo 7).