How to Make Ceramic Tile Coasters with Napkins or Photos
Make Expensive Looking Ceramic Coasters
Whether you are looking for an inexpensive and memorable gift or wanting to add some flair to your home décor, ceramic tile coasters are a great craft to consider. Coasters are handy gifts appreciated by many, and highly customizable. At a cost of about $.40 each, a set of four coasters costs little to make. Ceramic coasters can be customized with anything from decorator napkins to scrapbook photos, greeting cards, or your favorite photos. They can be decorated to match any décor or taste.
Supplies Needed Per Set of Coasters
4 Ceramic Tiles in the size 4" x 4"
Mod Podge or other White Glue
1 Sponge Brush
4 Decorative Napkins or 4 images sized to 3.75"
One small can of clear polyurethane or Envirotex Lite Pour On- High Gloss Resin
One sheet of medium grit sandpaper or a medium sand block
4 -4" Cork pads for backing. (Felt can also be used but it does not look as professional)
Instructions for Ceramic Tile Coasters with Napkins
Customizing ceramic tile coasters with decorator napkins is very simple and a great project for beginners. This design is very forgiving and the folds and creases give the coaster its unique personality. Decorator napkins are available everywhere for under $2.00. I get mine at Party City.
- First, select your napkin. Open it so it is one ply. Locate the company logo and make sure that it doesn't appear on your coaster.
- Coat the the top and sides of the ceramic coaster with a thin coat of Mod Podge using a foam brush. Make sure the coat is smooth and even.
- Place the most interesting design of the napkin on top of the coaster. Fold it over the edges of the coaster.
- Allow the glue on the tile to dry for about 30 minutes. When the glue is dry, tear the excess napkin carefully off of the tile.
- You can either let the napkin cover the sides of the tile or you can gently sand the napkins from the side with medium grade sandpaper.
- Coat the coaster OUTSIDE with polyurethane or with the Environtex Resin. Use the manufacuter's instructions for preparation. Do make sure your coasters are in an area where they will not be subject to dust or dirt. Let the coasters dry overnight.
- When the tile is dry, apply the cork to the back with super glue.
Tip: Any irregularities in the finish of your coaster can be sanded out lightly with medium grade (350) or finish grade (400) sandpaper.
Instruction for Ceramic Tiles with Photos
Making coasters from ceramic tile with photographs is a simple craft as well. Photos can be enhanced with printing software to add interest. If you want to make your photo coasters look uniform, consider turning your photos into black and white or sepia before use. Photographs can be personally sized on the computer, printed, and cut to fit on the coaster.
First, print a photo to fit the 4 x 4 coaster. For a finished look, print your photos in a 3.75" size to leave a white border on your coaster.
If you are printing your photos from a home bubble jet or ink jet printer, the ink on the photo may smear when you touch it to put it on the tile or when you apply finish to it. To ensure that your photos do not smear, print them and spray them with an acrylic protectant such as Mod Podge acrylic sealant. Apply it very lightly and evenly to the entire sheet. A thin coat will dry in five minutes.
Cut your photos into 3.75" or 4" squares.
Apply Mod Podge glue lightly and evenly to the back of the picture. Make sure you cover the corners evenly. Place the glue side down on the tile and adjust the picture so it is straight. If there are any glue bumps in the photo, pat them down even with a paper towel. Make sure the top is smooth.
Let the glue dry completely for at least 3 hours.
Photo coasters can be finished with Polyurethane or with EnviroTex Lite Pour On High Gloss Finish. As you will see in the photo, polyurethane can warp a photograph. The EnviroTex Lite is a better sealant for this project. Mix according to the directions and pour a light coat onto each coaster outdoors.
Allow the coasters to dry overnight. When dry, add the cork tile or felt pads to the back of the coaster.
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Other Ideas for Decorating Ceramic Tile Coasters
- Use photos or logos from your favorite sports team to decorate ceramic tile coasters.
- Add your favorite scrapbook paper to ceramic tiles to make coasters.
- Use scrapbook letters from the craft store to make monogrammed ceramic coasters.
- Size favorite photos to 4" x 4" and add them to coasters for a great memento or gift.
- Permanently save your favorite greeting cards by turning them into a set of coasters.
- Stencil your favorite images to the ceramic coaster for a handpainted look.
- Maps of your favorite vacation spot are both beautiful and memorable when cast onto coasters.
- A set of coasters with pictures of a beloved pet would be a great gift for a pet lover.
- Covers from your favorite CD's can be trimmed and cast into a set of trendy coasters.
- Movie tickets from a first date can be added to a set of coasters with other mementos for a romantic gift.
- Music scores look beautiful when cast onto ceramic tiles and make a great gift for music lovers. A die cut image of an instrument can be placed on top of the music for a layered look.
- Take a large 8" x 10" photo and cut it into four squares. Make four tiles and turn your photo into a ceramic tile "puzzle."