Mosaicism: what is it and how to do it?

A decorative technique used for thousands of years that has lasted until today. It is an art form that recycles the most diverse objects and materials.

Last update: February 18, 2022

Painting a picture or putting together an indoor garden aren’t the only ways to create home decorative art. The mosaic technique is a ancient practice, simple and accessible for those who want to renew an old piece of furniture, table or create new objects.

One of the advantages of mosaicism is the versatility of the instruments to be used. As it is the combination of heterogeneous pieces, with different shapes and sizes, they can be applied from pieces of ceramic to the shiny parts of a CD.

What is mosaicism?

mosaicism is a decorative method based on the union of pieces with different colors, textures and shapes. These objects are called tesserae and, although they are available in stores, they can also be made with elements that are about to be thrown away or to be recycled. For example, broken ceramics, worn porcelain, parts of tiles, glass or any disused material.

Once the tesserae have been chosen, they will be unified using some type of adhesive that can be common white glue, filler cement or whatever the surface being worked on requires. The placement has to be as precise as possible. At the end, after a few hours of drying, the result is an old element renewed with bright colors and textures.

Mosaicism is one of the oldest artistic techniques of humanity. Objects with these finishes dating back thousands of years, built from river stones, were discovered. Its popularity grew during ancient Greece and the Roman Empire.

Tesserae are the small pieces that are then put together to form the final design.

How to mosaic?

During mosaic work, adhesives are used that are toxic if ingested, as well as pieces that can be sharp. So it is recommended have a sponge nearby to remove the remains of glue and follow the steps very carefully.

The elements that cannot be missing are the decorative pieces or tesserae, in the desired shape, size, texture and color. In the case of buying them, you can select their characteristics. The next thing is a support base to work with, which will be gray cardboard (resistant and cheap), cork boards, light wood plates or compact plaster.

It is important to draw the outline of the design in pencil, that is, the shape of the drawing and where the pieces will be placed. This way you avoid removing or moving them once the glue comes into contact with the surface.

The adhesive, the filler paste, the white glue or the ceramic glue must be spread with precision and with the help of a spatula. Finally, sealant must be placed in the gaps that remain empty.

After about 10 minutes, remove excess glue with a sponge or cloth. At the end, must be left to rest for 24 or 48 hours.

Where to perform mosaicism? ideas and suggestions

This simple technique can be applied in many sectors of the homefrom the kitchen to the bathroom, passing through the garden objects, as can be read in the following list.


Arming the frame of a glass mirror with the mosaic technique is a widely used idea. The materials for the tesserae can be chosen, but in this case, the remains of compact discs are common, because they have a mirror effect. The contrast with the glass gives a beautiful effect.


In the kitchen it is also possible to apply mosaicism. For example, in everyday objects such as bowls or cup holders.

In general, these elements do not have decorative details or are very expensive, so the creation of a mosaic It is a good option to add brightness and color.

Bottle caps

A recyclable use for plastic bottle caps has been promoted for years. Making a decorative object from them is a aesthetic and environmentally friendly idea.

Plastic can find a new life in mosaics, in a way that also takes care of the environment.

garden benches

Outdoors, mosaicism is more common than it seems. The old ceramic benches and tables carry this technique, generally with traces of porcelain. It may be a little more advanced, but with the right knowledge, stairs and even floors can also be decorated.

mosaicism with CD

The era of compact disc fury is in the past and many homes have hundreds of them. There are those who choose to collect them, but for those who wish to discard them, carefully cutting them into multiform pieces can be a way.


Assembling a painting with the mosaic technique is simple. Pieces of multicolored paper are often used as tesserae. The placement of them can vary and even form words, drawings or abstract shapes.

Final tips for mosaicism

If you want to preserve an old memory worn over the years, adding mosaics is a way to restore its shine and splendor. Furthermore, the technique It has the advantage of being cheap, homemade and manual..

Those who are encouraged can also use wood as a base and form drawings on top of it with different materials. The best thing about mosaicism is its invitation to imagine multiple works with the most varied objects.

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