How to Make a Mosaic Seahorse Birdbath

Form glass tiles into a seahorse shape to create this colorful birdbath.
hclvr112_1final

hclvr112_1final

Materials and tools:

14" terra cotta tray
indoor-outdoor white acrylic paint
stained glass:
- 3 shades of blue for water layers
- green or green mottled for seaweed
- yellow, yellow-orange and orange-red for the seahorse
- small bit of black or dark iridescent piece for eye
3/4" vitreous glass tiles, white and blue for the border
Weldbond PVA glue
wheeled glasscutters
black sanded grout
acrylic ad-mix for use in grout
latex gloves
eye protection
breathing mask
sponge
paper towels
1-gallon empty water or milk jug*
acrylic concrete sealer
3 foam brushes
fine-grit sandpaper

*Use as a mixing container for grout.

Steps:

  1. Clean the terra cotta tray. Seal the back and front of the tray by painting on a 50/50 mixture of PVA glue and water. Let dry overnight.
  2. Paint the inside bottom of the tray with white indoor-outdoor acrylic paint. Let dry according to paint instructions, usually about an hour.
  3. Lightly trace an appealing design onto the bottom of the tray with a pencil.
  4. Cut pieces of glass and tile to fit the design. Adhere tiles by painting tray with PVA glue using a foam brush and fill a small section at a time. Fill the entire design with glass remembering to leave about 1/8 inch spacing between the glass pieces for grout.
  5. When design is complete and covered in tile and glass, let PVA dry or cure for 24 to 48 hours.
  6. Wearing a breathing mask and gloves, mix dry grout with acrylic ad-mix. Work grout until it is about the consistency of toothpaste. With your hands, spread and push the grout down into the spaces between the glass. After the grout is spread, let sit for about 15 minutes. Remove as much grout from the surface as you can with a dry sponge. Wait another 15 minutes, then buff dry with a handful of paper towels.
  7. After grout completely cures, usually 48 to 72 hours, seal the project with concrete sealer on both the front and back. Apply two to three coats of sealer, dry in between coats. Follow instructions on packaging for drying times.

Arlene Chyke, Nashville, Tenn.

Keep Reading

Next Up

Landscape Design Supplies and Materials

How to choose the best landscape design supplies and materials for your next residential landscaping project

Mosaic Tile Backsplash Ideas

Explore mosaic tile backsplash ideas, and get ready to install an attractive and visually diverse backsplash in your home.

How to Make a Mosaic Tile Table Design

Make over an old tabletop with a unique mosaic tile design and breathe life back into dull furniture.

Mosaic Tile Backsplash

Create a fun mosaic tile kitchen backsplash with these simple do-it-yourself ideas.

How to Paint Tile Backsplash and Stenciling

Step-by-step instructions show you how you can use stencils and paint to spruce up a tile backsplash.

How to Make a Colorful Birdbath

Even when the birds aren't dipping, sipping and sunning, this easy-to-make, easy-to-clean birdbath is plenty festive in the garden.

Create a Mosaic-Tile Tabletop

Give new life to an old table by resurfacing the top in tile.

Cork, Carpet Tiles and Beyond

Go beyond predictable ceramic tile in the bathroom with materials like cork, carpet tiles or rubber.

Wainscoting and Tiling a Half Bath

A small half bath gets overhauled with new walls and a floor. If you’ve never installed drywall, wainscoting or tile, a half bath is a good place to start.

Carpet and Carpet Tiles for Basements

Carpet can be a difficult flooring choice for basements given its natural ability to absorb water. But with the right guidance it is possible to have a comfy basement floor.

On TV

Shop This Look

Found a living space you love in HGTV's Photo Library? Get the look in your own home with products from Wayfair.

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.