Rough Kambamba Jasper is natural undyed material best used in mixed-media mosaics with other found objects that are attached by thinset. Do not expect these to be attached or grouted in the same way as flat tiles. Use these for accents instead of coverage for large areas. Order with confidence if your project can tolerate variance in size and shape.
Rough Minerals In Mosaic Art
Avoid Grout Staining
Crystals are fairly resistant to staining, but other unpolished minerals are easily stained by grout, just as seashells and other porous materials are.
That is why mixed-media mosaics made from porous materials are not grouted. Instead, these type of objects are pressed into a layer of
thinset mortar applied with a small trowel or
palette knife. Use enough thinset to ensure that some of it
squeezes up into the gaps between objects but not so much that is covers the object.
Rough minerals are not sold for area coverage, and there is no way to give an objective answer to how much area a bag could cover even if every bag contained identical pieces. Why? No two artists would ever position or nest the same set of irregularly-shaped pieces in the same way.
Irregularly-shaped objects do not necessarily look best when mounted side by side like flat tile. Instead, most artists tend to position
them in partially upright postures that stick out from the surface of the mosaic. Also, these materials are usually nested with pieces
partially leaning on neighbors. The extent to which pieces partially overlap each other is a subjective decision.
Most of our glass mosaic tile is about 1/8 inch thick, and rough chunks of minerals and crystals are significantly thicker, but they can be used in the
same mosaic provided the artist understands that the unpolished minerals cannot be grouted in the same manner as the tile.
Different mineral types can be cut with varying degrees of success using a
compound tile nipper, but be aware that some crysals and semiprecious stones
may break in unpredictable ways rather than cut cleanly. Avoid designs that require precise cuts. Use designs that take advantage of natural shapes, and if
there is a rough edge that needs to be hidden, press it into thinset.
- 1/2 pound of natural undyed material.
- size and shape varies by batch.
- piece count varies by batch.
Use in Mosaic Art
Mosaic artists experienced with flat tile only should carefully read the information above before using minerals and other non-flat objects. These materials
are not difficult to use in mosaic art, merely different from flat tile. Each piece is best thought of as a unique object instead of stock material that can
be cut up precisely as needed.
For more information on how to create mosaics from found objects like minerals, see our page of
Frequently Asked Questions or our
List of How-To-Mosaic Pages, which are topic specific.
We also have a How To Mosaic Blog where new content is added regularly.
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