Recycling. With a Laundry Tub and Plates


A Personal Blog                                                                                                   A fewIMG_4666 years ago one of the kids messaged me. He asked me to meet him in Spain for a few weeks. After pondering the thought for a millisecond I  accepted his invitation before he had a chance to change his mind. And three weeks later was breathing in the air of Barcelona.  And ‘oooohhh’ and ‘ahhhing’ over every tile, every mosaic, every church, every cobbIMG_4651le street, every tapas, every sangria … well you get the idea.  I was a long way from Brisbane suburbia – and loving it!

Inspired by Gaudi (of Park Guell fame) I came home vowing and declaring to mosaic every single thing around my house.   As you do – when full of holiday dreams, rainbow colours, tiles at every turn,  amazing food and  Spanish summer sunshine. And possibly that drop of  Port from Porto.

But life went back to garden bags and skip bins,(Commercial break.  Want a skip bin? Ring 1300 548324 now!)  the logistics of small business management, truck maintenance, various accounting procedures,  computer hiccups, P & L’s and random phone calls from people trying to sell me adwords, more insurances or a phone system. (grrrr)

Until the day John came in with a treasure from a skip bin.  With herculean effort he had rescued a  massively heavy three bay concrete wash tub from being dumped at landfill.

My inspiration again flourished and I had grand designs in my head. The famous Barcelona Park was going to be replicated in a Brisbane  suburb.  But it turns out I have no idea how-on-earth Gaudi ever found the time or energy  to mosaic Park Guell and everywhere else he laid his artist eyes on.

None the less, my dream came to a somewhat less vivid reality with the aid of random tiles, secondhand shop china plates and the aid of DIY  tiling YouTube clips.   It was a humble method that I am sure Gaudi did not need to resort to in the early 1900’s.

The journey is in pictures below.  Eventually when I find the ‘right’ plants they will be popped in between the begonias currently planted.

The RR 01
Upside down the concrete wash tub sits. Full of potential and nikko marker scribbles.
The RR 02
Already I can see the difference between Gaudi and myself. Am starting to panic.  Needed to get some more lime green tiles. Had to buy 1 cubic m. Went to a local tile shop that had been in business as long as  I can remember.  Ordered and paid for the tiles. Two days later they went in to receivership.  Seriously? Waited months until they finally rang me and gave me my little box of tiles.  Word of warning. Never choose odd colour tiles for any major part of a mosaic.  It may be your undoing.


The RR 05
Started working on the other side. Turns out floor and wall tiles are different thickness. Who would have known? Did Gaudi have these issues I wondered.
The RR 04
Second hand shops were a fabulous source of bright china.


The RR 03
Perseverance with tiling. Less and less like Park Gruell fantasies. More and more like a try-hard Aussie woman creating a monolith for future generations which will  require  10 strong men and a hook bin service to remove.
The RR Tile 2
Tried a few concrete stepping stones.
The RR Tile 33
With mixed, albeit colourful results

The RR Tile 1

The RR 11
And finally the laundry tub was hauled into the garden and planted out


It has been a long time since I was in Spain, which is good, as the wonder of Gaudi’s tiling has faded a little. And the joy of having a little mosaic to call my own has brightened.




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