Monday, March 31, 2014

Attack Of the Pint Glass!: Quirky B-Movie Themed Coaster DIY

Hi, all! I'm back (sort of)! Things have been nuts, but I'm happy to report that my sunroom renovation is about 90% done. There's still some light clean-up to do, and a couple of small decorative pieces to buy...and, of course, an air hockey table to pawn off find a good home for, but the room is functional again. That's huge, y'all. I was starting to wonder if we had a house elf sabotaging us--sort of a "Harry Potter must not finish the sunroom!" kind of deal.
Anyhoo, while I'm not quite ready to inundate you with pictures just yet, I did want to share a DIY project that worked out. I'm not even going to say "worked out well". It did, but the mere fact that it worked out, period, makes it one of the most successful projects I've tried, to date. Basically, the idea of spending upwards of twenty bucks for a set of coasters made me ill. We needed them, but even the cheapest, ugliest ones at, oh, pick a store, were hella 'spensive. I don't want to spend more on something to set a glass on than I did for the glass. Maybe I'm cheap, but it irritated me.
Somewhere along the way--can't remember where, but if I can find it, I'll link it--I heard about using decoupaged ceramic tiles, and thought, "Well, duh. Why didn't I think of that?" I already had the perfect decorative pieces ready to go. Thomas bought some B-movie poster postcards a few years ago, but we repurposed their frame, so they've been collecting dust. How cool would they look sitting around the bar? Thomas loved the idea, so I set to work.


This is a very simple project, so very few supplies are needed, and you probably have most of them if you're even slightly crafty. I wanted to make six coasters, so I needed:
  • 6 movie poster postcards. I already had mine, but you can find them for pretty cheap on ebay. The linked ones are $5.99 for a lot of six.
  • 6 ceramic tiles. These cost a whopping $.16 each at Lowe's.
  • Mod Podge. This was the priciest component at $7.99, but I barely used any. This bottle will last for ages, and pay for itself in future crafts.
  • Clear spray paint. You need this to seal the coaster, and take away any of the tackiness from the Mod Podge. (side note: Thomas wanted to know if we could use clear spray paint to take the tackiness out of other stuff, like reality shows or leisure suits. I said I didn't think so.) Again, I already had this, but it runs about $3 at Walmart.
  • Plastic bumpers. I got two packs for $5 at Walmart.
  • A brush of some sort. I had a sponge applicator left over from another project, so I used that. Honestly, a makeup wedge would probably work. You shouldn't have to spend more than a few cents on this, if that.
If you have to buy everything, this project could run about $23, which is more than the store-bought ones I refused to buy on principle. That said, I had some stuff, already, bringing the total down to slightly less than $14. The next time I do this, I won't need to buy the Mod Podge, which will bring the total down to about $6, plus whatever decoration I put on the tiles.
I apologize for not taking in-progress shots, but this is pretty self-explanatory, anyway.
  • Measure the tile, then cut your decorative piece to fit. You'll want to leave a little room on the outer edges, so, if your tile is 4"x4" (for example), you might want to cut your decoration to 3.5"x3.5".
  • Using your sponge applicator, spread a thin layer of Mod Podge over the tile.
  • Center your decorative piece, and allow to dry.
  • Using your sponge applicator, spread another thin layer of Mod Podge over the tile, covering the decoration, and allow to dry. Multiple coats may be needed, depending upon the thickness of your decoration. I used four thin coats, with a little extra built up over the corners. The finish will be textured, so keep that in mind.
  • Seal with 1-2 coats of clear spray paint.
  • Attach bumpers to the underneath corners, to prevent the tile from scraping up your furniture. You could also use felt or cork--anything that can act as a safeguard for your tabletops.
This may seem like a lot of applying and waiting for tiles to dry, but each coat only takes about 15 minutes to set. If you do these in an assembly-line fashion, by the time you finish the last tile, it's time to start in on the first again. Here's the finished coaster:

Top View

Side View. You can see some of the texture, and where the bumpers lift the tile off of the table.

Here are a few on display in the wine bar. I think they work well with the orange, gold and brown color scheme.

And here's a final look at a couple on our pub table. The shot glass centerpiece is going to hold candles...eventually. Until then, tequila, anyone?
I hope you've enjoyed this project and sneak peek at the finished room. Have a great week, everyone!

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