Terrazzo is traditionally made by adding marble chips, stone pieces or crushed glass to a concrete formula that is poured into a mould, left to harden, and polished. It’s mainly used for tiles and flooring, but it's becoming more on-trend for homewares.
Making your own D.I.Y. terrazzo table is easier than you might think. We’ve used a plastic pot saucer as a mould to make this table, but you could use any shape mould that you like. To adjust the volume of mixture, simply change the size of the measuring jug to suit bigger or smaller projects. For a deeper pink, add more red oxide with less white, and vice versa for a lighter shade.
To turn the terrazzo slab into a functional table, we simply cut a base from a MDF panel and fastened a couple of metal furniture legs. Here's a step-by-step guide to making this attractive piece.
Cover an old basin with insect mesh. Use a large spatula to sieve three parts off-white cement, one part sand and one part oxide (three parts white, one part red).
In a jug, combine one part bonding agent with four parts water. Pour small amounts into the dry mix, combining until it has the smooth consistency of toothpaste, discarding any leftover solution.
Sprinkle crushed mosaic glass evenly over the base of the mould. Use a small spatula to dollop concrete directly onto the glass, without moving the pieces.
Spritz with water and smooth the edges with 120-grit wet-and-dry abrasive paper. Sand over the top with 180-grit abrasive paper and then wipe away dust with a damp cloth. Brush with two coats of concrete sealer and leave to dry.
Cut the 9mm MDF panel to 710mm x 300mm. Smooth the edges with 180-grit abrasive paper and wipe away any dust.
Spray paint the MDF and metal legs with the primer. Apply light, even coats, leaving to dry after each. Centre the legs upside down on the MDF, marking them 100mm in from the ends.
Apply fast-drying, high-strength construction adhesive over the leg plates, reposition and secure with 13mm screws, leaving to dry for 30 minutes.
Flip the leg assembly upright, apply adhesive over the MDF base and centre the tabletop, clamping and leaving to dry.
• When mixing the cement and during sanding and spray painting, work in a well-ventilated area that is out of the wind and wear the appropriate safety equipment (dust mask, disposable gloves and safety glasses). Cover bare skin to avoid irritation from airborne material. Before spray painting, cover surrounding areas with a drop cloth to avoid overspray.
• Cement is a dry powder that is combined with other elements including water to create concrete. Choose a white or off-white cement; otherwise, the concrete will be grey.
• Use washed sand rather than builder’s sand. (Builder’s sand contains clay which will make the concrete too sticky and heavy for this project.)
• We used store-bought crushed glass because it’s safer to work with than crushing your own glass or marble mosaic tiles.
• The terrazzo table is for decorative, indoor use only. It is not designed to be used as a seat. Lift it by supporting the leg plates. Avoid placing food directly on the tabletop – always use a serving board or plates.
Asbestos, lead-based paints and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber are health hazards you need to look out for when renovating older homes. These substances can easily be disturbed when renovating and exposure to them can cause a range of life-threatening diseases and conditions including cancer. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer or visit our Health & Safety page.
When following our advice in our D.I.Y. videos, make sure you use all equipment, including PPE, safely by following the manufacturer’s instructions. Check that the equipment is suitable for the task and that PPE fits properly. If you are unsure, hire an expert to do the job or talk to a Bunnings Team Member.