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Make Your Own Mosaics (Paperback)

Ancient Techniques to Contemporary Art

Colour Books Hobbies & Lifestyle > Art > Decorative Arts & Crafts Photographic Books

By Helen Miles
Imprint: White Owl
Series: Make Your Own
Pages: 120
Illustrations: 120 colour illustrations
ISBN: 9781399006354
Published: 4th April 2023



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Explore the powerful medium of mosaic in this book which offers a fresh perspective on the ancient art. Packed with photographs, clear instructions, and new ideas about how to create stunning mosaic pieces for indoors and outdoors, Make Your Own Mosaics explains the principles of mosaic making as practiced since Roman times.

This easy-to-follow book contains step by step instructions on how to make mosaics, covering every aspect of the process from designing mosaics to tools, adhesives, and substrates. Written for creators with all levels of experience, this book opens up a fascinating world showing how ceramic and glass alongside recycled and reclaimed materials can be used to make lasting pieces for the home and garden.

Make Your Own Mosaics offers eight unique mosaic projects and seven different approaches to this addictive skill. Chapters on Learning from the Ancients are included alongside practical tips and information on how to choose the right mosaic method for your project. From making a mosaic house number to a garden wall plaque or seasonal decorations, this book will show you how. Whether you want to make classically inspired mosaics, experiment with found materials or decorate your space with beautiful and expressive art, Make Your Own Mosaics is for you.

As featured in

Townswoman, Issue 01 2024

The historical material highlights the rich tradition of the art form, and Miles’s comprehensive guidance ensures readers have all they need to get started. Crafters will want to check this out.

Read the full review here!

Publishers Weekly

Helen Miles’ new book is a very fresh and welcome addition to the how-to-mosaic library.

Both well informed, and a natural storyteller, Helen has woven together a highly informative historical journey in which she transports the reader from Hellenic, Greco-Roman to Byzantine, and then on to contemporary mosaic practices.

Using straight forward language, clear explanations and inspiring examples, this highly practical book springboards from history straight into the hands-on. It offers up a range of robust projects, using them to demonstrate different mosaic making techniques.

Including great tips – from using scrim tape to edge friable boards, to French cleats (also known as split batons) to hang heavy works – Helen has solutions to solve common mosaic engineering problems. So even the most experienced mosaicist will find new information in Make Your Own Mosaics, to enhance their own work or firm up their teaching practices.

Tell your birthday and Christmas buying buddies – Helen Miles’ new book Make Your Own Mosaics – is a must have. Put it on your wish list ... or do yourself a favour and just buy it for yourself now.

Dr Helen Bodycomb, Australian mosaicist and author

Helen has passionately championed the art of mosaic making for many years with her numerous mosaic journal articles, active social media presence, global mosaic connections, extensive mosaic research, accomplished oeuvre and her many mosaic courses. Her depth of knowledge and experience are magnificently reflected in this new book aimed at beginners in mosaic making.

There is a beautiful flow of written and visual information through the book, touching on the history of mosaics, materials, techniques, tools and a series of practical projects with detailed instructions and helpful tips. At the heart of the book are three chapters on ‘Learning from the Ancients’ in which Helen shares her deep love for and wisdom gained from ancient mosaics.

Helen is a highly skilled communicator and her generous spirit and lovely sense of humour shine throughout the book. She managed to condense her vast knowledge and experience of mosaic art into a visually stunning book. It is accessible to all, very helpful for beginners in mosaic making as well as a real treat for accomplished artists.

‘Make your own mosaics’ is simply a beautiful book and a unique, generous contribution to the world of Mosaic Art.

Read the full review here!

Wilma van der Meyden

As featured on The Ruins Podcast.

Listen to the episode here!

The Ruins Podcast

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

This is a well written and logically arranged teach-yourself course for beginning to quite advanced mosaic technique. The author (a mosaic artist & teacher) puts together an accessible and graphically appealing set of learning materials. The book is arranged in chapters from a surprisingly concise and comprehensive historical background, through materials, cutting and gluing techniques, and a well ordered historical perspective for techniques. The theory chapters are followed by 8 project tutorials. Each tutorial includes introduction and explanations for the project, supplies lists, step-by-step directions and -many- photographs. Photos are clear and without hands or tools figleafing the action shots.

The book has the feel of a well arranged and led workshop/retreat with a gifted teacher. I can imagine Ms. Miles is a worthwhile and engaging learning resource. For the folks who can't take a class or workshop in person, this book could be an acceptable substitute.

The resource/links guide in the back of the book with stockists is slanted toward readers in the UK, but most (if not all) of the supplies can be found online for readers elsewhere in the world.

Five stars. This would be a superlative choice for public or school library acquisition, home studio, makers groups, and similar.

NetGalley, Annie Buchanan

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Great book - I have done some mosaics in my time, and I found this book covers a lot of information - much of the information is very useful and not seen in other books. Great photos and a little history to start with, but the best are the lovely projects, and how to create them to look both professional and fun.

NetGalley, Leyla Johnson

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Just what I was looking for- a book on mosaics. It actually solved the issue of what to do to a table own, but want a new look for! It's abit advanced for what I want to accomplish, but a fascinating read with lots of great art for inspiration. I Enjoyed this book, but will be looking for books that show me HOW to begin my journey in mosaics!
Great book for those interested in mosaic art.

NetGalley, Catherine Hankins

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Make Your Own Mosaics: Ancient Techniques to Contemporary Art is an information, ideas and instruction book all in one. The pictures and photography are wonderful and so inspiring. It looks at historical mosaics right through to modern contemporary design. Information on tools, techniques and step by step instructions for each project are included. The structure of the book is easy to follow and the writing is clear and easy to understand. Overall this is a brilliant book, just browsing through will fill you with inspiration.

NetGalley, jc Cross

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I am absolutely fascinated with mosaics. It might possibly be one of my favorite art mediums. The history and images depicted in the beginning of this book was fascinating. I From Mesopotamia to ancient Rome, Turkey and beyond they are all so unique and stunning - including Mexico and their use of turquoise. Mosaics are not culturally specific and are prevalent everywhere using various types of material. Various types of shapes and how to cut... I loved every detail of this book. It was easy to follow and I loved it.

NetGalley, Nikki King

Make Your Own Mosaics is both a history of mosaics and a comprehensive instructional manual. It draws on techniques from the old masters to create modern day art works. Many photos of not only the art itself, but also tools, techniques, and step by step instructions for creating or preparing your own mounting surfaces and mosaic art using different mosaic media illustrate this book. The author communicates information in a straightforward and clear tone with contributes to a overall sense of being able to get started with this craft quickly and confidently.


Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

WOW! This book was WAY more in depth than I was expecting. I had thought this would just be teaching you to use those cheap stick-on little glass/plastic tiles you can get in the arts and craft section and a bunch of stencils for you to follow.. I was very wrong!

This is the real deal - with power tools and everything. Teaching you how to cut stones, apply grout, and about the history of mosaics.

NetGalley, Belle Hart

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I've picked up this book for curiosity. While it's improbable that I begin a new hobby as I work with many media and subjects already but I've found this volume very informative and as far as I can judge, complete. It's very practical, introduces to materials and techniques, from antique to modern, provides step by step tutorials, is rich in illustrations. If you are interested and dedicate time and effort, this book surely is an excellent guide.

NetGalley, Agnes Preszler

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

This small volume has an amazing amount of information for would-be mosaic artists, including detail on materials, tools, techniques, and planning out your work. We start with a chapter on mosaics in the ancient world, and the author notes that for thousands of years, humans have felt the call to collect, arrange, and make beautiful things from a variety of media ranging from found objects to professionally made tiles. She reaches back to the ancients for wisdom on planning your mosaic and applying time-honored techniques. The end of the book has several chapters with step by step instructions on sample projects.

Two things set this book apart from some other how-to art books. First, the design and photography are gorgeous, with lots of detailed closeups of techniques and examples of traditional and contemporary mosaics. It is not for the casual hobbyist, but for someone who wants to take this process seriously and create beautiful art.

NetGalley, Ellen Rosewall

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Such a helpful book for getting started with mosaics I did a little mosaic workshop last summer and it gave me a taste for this art, and this book is really useful for helping me carry on with it.

NetGalley, Katie Smith

I don’t need any more hobbies but making your own mosaics sounds like a wonderful craft to pick up! Imagine the possibilities, for decorating your own house and later further down the line, even making some to sell.. This book looks like a good one to pick up to learn some basic techniques and designs with step by step instructions accompanied by photographs.. Some of the projects are really appealing They would look stunning in any setting.

4 stars for me.

NetGalley, Flora Fung

This is such a thorough guide to mosaic making and there's far more to it than I had initially thought! I've read the overview and equipment, health and safety and preparation in readiness for starting my own projects. This book has given me the impetus to start on something over the winter months and I look forward to referring back to the book as I go along. Thank you NetGalley and the publisher for my early copy, the illustrations look fabulous and this is going to be stunning in print!

NetGalley, Books in Wales

About Helen Miles

Trained in Greece, Helen Miles has more than 20 years’ experience designing, making and teaching mosaics. As a mosaic artist Helen believes in the importance of understanding the fundamental principles of the ancient art and the joy and creativity that can be found in exploring and pushing the medium in new directions.

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