GROUTING 101:

For those of you taking the class and have the homework of grouting or want to take on the challenge of grouting at home, we wrote up some safety tips and instructions below:

Safety:

  • You used broken objects of glass and ceramics in your mosaics so please be careful when grouting because edges are sharp.  Use thick gloves to protect yourself.
  • Do not throw the grout down your sink, or clean up grout in your sink!  Grout is basically a form of concrete, if it goes down your sink you may have a very expensive plumbers visit.
  • When mixing grout you should use a safety mask since it poses a dust hazard.  You also should use gloves when handling grout.
  • All tools and containers you use for the grouting process should never be used for food again.  We recommend you mix your grout in disposable containers like the kind you get when you get Chinese takeout.
  • We use Mapei white sanded grout.  For safety information and MSDS you can go to there website here.

Mixing Grout:

  1. When mixing grout just add a few drops of water at time. and mixed until all the water is absorbed.  Its easy to add a few drops, but if you don’t always have enough grout to dry it up.
  2. Use half the grout first and add water just in case you add too much you have some dry power to dry it up
  3. You are looking for peanut butter consistency.  
  4. Let the grout sit for 10 minutes before using.  This process is called slaking and it gives time for the grout to suck up the water.

How to Grout:

  1. Take a glob of grout and start to shove it in to the nooks and crannies, until you have covered the whole piece.  Sometimes you have small spacing between you pieces and the grout won’t go in there until you push it in.
  2. Wait usually about 10 -20 minutes.
  3. Using a semi dry sponge and a clean edge, pass the sponge from left to right.  Turn the sponge until you have another clean edge and run another swipe.  
  4. Don’t worry about cleaning it all off this round, becuase you should wait another 20 -30 minutes and repeat step 3 one more time.
  5. If you have gotten all of the big grout off your pieces, you are done, go to step 6.  If you have not, repeat step 3 after waiting another hour until you are satisfied. The purpose of waiting is to let the grout continue to dry.
  6. Wait 24 hours and using a clean paper towel and some windex, remove the left over residue.

Tips:

  • Use clean water when you are removing the grout
  • Keep your sponge semi dry, you don’t want to introduce water into the grout
  • Reveal the bodies, if you have 3D objects work around them to reveal the pieces around them, you worked so hard to put them there, dig them out!