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Cover a Purse in Colorful Mosaic Tiles

Sheila Sornsin uses tiles to design her argyle- and circle-patterned purse.

Materials and Tools:

wood purse from a craft store
7 different colored tiles
3 colors of acrylic craft paint
2 patterns of fabric
poster board
Thinset tile adhesive
craft glue
sanded grout
tile cutter
tile nippers
foam brush
artist paintbrush
wooden craft stick
containers for mixing
rubber gloves
wet sponge

Steps 1-2

1. Mix heavy-duty craft glue and water and apply it with a foam brush to the wood craft purse to seal the wood. Let dry.

2. Select tile colors and cut each into 1/2-inch strips with a tile cutter.

3. Cut the strips into squares and circles or desired shapes with a hand nipper.

Step 4

4. Arrange the mosaic tiles on the side of the purse until you are happy with the design. One side of the purse had an argyle pattern and the other a floral design.

5. Mix Thinset with water to the consistency of hummus. Using a craft stick, glue the back of each tile piece and cement the pieces onto the sides of the purse. Let the Thinset cure for 24 hours.

Steps 6-7

6. Mix grout with water according to the manufacturer's directions. Wearing rubber gloves, apply the grout to each side of the purse, pressing and smoothing the grout in between the tiles. Rub the tiles to compress the grout and remove the excess.

7. Clean the tiles with a wet sponge. Let dry.

Step 8

8. Paint the sides of the purse.

9. Paint the wood beads of the handle with acrylic paint. Let dry.

Steps 10-11

10. Cut out templates of the interior of the purse using poster board. Cut pieces for the inside of the front and back and strips to go around the inside edges. Cut fabric to cover each poster board piece 1/2 inch larger than the poster board pieces.

11. Wrap fabric around each poster board piece and glue the fabric to the back. Let dry.

Step 13

12. Apply glue to the back of the fabric-wrapped poster board pieces and glue them to the inside of the purse.

13. Glue ribbon around the outside edges of the purse. Glue two ribbon strips between the lid and the bottom of the purse to hold the mosaic purse in place while open.

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