Category Archives: Making a Mosaic FAQ

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AQIS: Mailing your mosaics to Australia

On the offchance that your mosaic contains shells or you are not sure if your packaging is questionable…

Mailing items to Australia

Quarantine and Export Services Home

The Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service (AQIS) checks goods arriving at international mail centres, airports and seaports.
Quarantine officers, x-ray machines and detector dogs screen all of the 150 million items of international mail sent to Australia each year, intercepting around 80,000 high-risk items.

Tips for sending international mail to Australia:

  • Do not send prohibited food, plant material or animal products.
  • To find out about product requirements and import conditions visit
  • Fill out the declaration label clearly and correctly. Make sure you itemise
    everything inside the package, including any packaging materials
    you’ve used.
  • Do not pack items in egg cartons, wooden boxes, or cardboard boxes that have been used to hold fruit, vegetables or meat/smallgoods: this packaging is a quarantine risk and is prohibited.
  • Do not pack with straw or dried plant material: this packaging is prohibited. Use newspaper or foam to wrap fragile goods.
  • Thoroughly clean all footwear, sporting and camping equipment to remove any soil or seeds.
  • Tell friends and family overseas about Australia’s quarantine laws and ask them not to send prohibited food, plant material and animal products.
  • You could be fined up to $60,000 for breaching Australia’s quarantine laws.
  • What will AQIS remove from international mail?
    is not a complete list of prohibited items. Some of these items can be
    treated and released (fees will apply). Any items containing insects or
    larvae will be removed and must be treated.

    meatproducts.jpg Meat and Meat Products

    Prohibited dairy produce. Dairy, Eggs and Egg Products

    • all uncanned meat — including fresh, dried, frozen, cooked, smoked, salted or preserved meat
    • packaged meals (including noodles) containing meat
    • mooncakes containing meat
    • remedies and medicines containing animal material
    • pet food including canned and dried food and supplements
    • cheese, milk, butter and other dairy products*
    • packaged
      meals and other foods containing more than 10 per cent dairy or egg
      (whole, dried and powdered, such as cake mix, salad dressing,
    • mooncakes containing egg

    seeds.jpg Seeds and Nuts

    mask.jpg Plant Material

    • seeds
      including vegetable and flower seeds, unidentified seeds, birdseed and
      some commercially-packaged
    • gifts, ornaments and toys filled with seeds
    • pine cones
    • raw nuts
    • grains and legumes including lentils, popping corn and cereal grains
    • raw/green coffee beans
    • tea containing seeds, fruit skin (for example citrus and apple peel) and fruit pieces
    • remedies and medicines containing herbs, seeds, bark, fungi and dried plant material*
    • dried flower arrangements and potpourri
    • dried herbs or leaves
    • handicrafts
      – including wreaths and Christmas decorations – containing
      seeds, raw nuts, corn, pine cones, grapevines, bark, moss, straw or
      other plant material
    • wooden items with bark or signs of insects present

    Prohibited plant material. Plants and Soil

    liveanimals.jpg Live Animals, Animal Products

    • all plant material including bulbs, whole plants, cuttings, roots, flowers and stems
    • soil, including small souvenir or sentimental samples
    • footwear,
      sporting and camping equipment contaminated with soil, manure or plant
    • gifts, ornaments and toys filled with sand or soil
    • all
      mammals, birds, birds’ eggs and nests, fish, snakes, turtles,
      lizards, scorpions, amphibians, crustaceans and
    • souvenirs, artefacts and goods made of animal products such as raw hide, feathers, teeth and bones

    Prohibited fruit and vegetables. Fruit and Vegetables

    Laboratory Material

  • medical and animal samples
  • diagnostic kits and micro-organisms*
    • fresh fruit and vegetables
    • dried fruit and vegetables containing seeds or fruit peel
    * Special conditions apply-check import conditions on ICON

    For further detailed assessment on individual items please refer to

    the AQIS Import Conditions Database (ICON)

USPS info for posting to Australia

Country Conditions for Mailing – Australia

Prohibitions (130)

Coins; bank notes; currency notes (paper money); securities of
any kind payable to bearer; traveler’s checks; platinum, gold,
and silver (manufactured or not); precious stones; jewelry;
and other valuable articles are prohibited.

Fruit cartons (used or new).

Goods bearing the name “Anzac.”

Goods produced wholly or partly in prisons or by convict labor.

Perishable infectious biological substances.

Radioactive materials.

Registered philatelic articles with fictitious addresses.

Seditious literature.

Silencers for firearms.

Used bedding.


Meat and other animal products; powdered or concentrated
milk; and other dairy products requires permission to import
from the Australian quarantine authorities.

Permission of the Australian Director-General of Health is
required to import medicines.


Duty may be levied on catalogs, price lists, circulars, and all
advertising introduced into Australia through the mail,
irrespective of the class of mail used.


Letter-post Rates

Weightnot over




Weightnot over




Weightnot over




1 $0.84 12 $8.85 44 $19.95
2 1.80 16 10.20 48 21.40
3 2.75 20 11.60 52 22.85
4 3.70 24 12.95 56 24.35
5 4.65 28 14.35 60 25.80
6 5.60 32 15.70 64 27.30
7 6.55 36 17.15 blank blank
8 7.50 40 18.55 blank blank
Weight Limit: 64 ounces (4 lbs.)


Parcel Post Rates

Weightnot over




Weightnot over




Weightnot over




1 $16.00 16 $86.15 31 $153.35
2 20.80 17 90.65 32 157.85
3 25.80 18 95.10 33 162.30
4 31.35 19 99.60 34 166.80
5 36.90 20 104.10 35 171.30
6 41.35 21 108.55 36 175.75
7 45.85 22 113.05 37 180.25
8 50.35 23 117.50 38 184.70
9 54.80 24 122.00 39 189.20
10 59.30 25 126.50 40 193.65
11 63.75 26 130.95 41 198.15
12 68.25 27 135.45 42 202.65
13 72.75 28 139.90 43 207.10
14 77.20 29 144.40 44 211.60
15 81.70 30 148.90 blank blank
Weight Limit: 44 lbs.

Note: Ordinary air parcel post includes indemnity at no cost based on
weight. For an item not over 1 pound, the indemnity is $62.84, and the
indemnity increases $3.03 per pound or fraction up to a maximum of
70 pounds, which has an indemnity of $271.91. (See 280.)

Country Conditions for Mailing – Australia

Check the above link to see more information!

Itching to get started?

The FAQs aren’t ready yet but this should get you started…

* make whatever creature that inspires you. any size. (you may send
your mesh mosaic in segments if necessary – info on this coming for those
who need it)
* make it on the mesh (use Weldbond, thinset or pva) – Note thinset
may make your postage a little more expensive.
* if possible and it suits the mosaic put an opus vermiculatum
(imagine a line or shadow surrounding the outline of your mosaic) around the
mosaic in black or a dark colour or perhaps a colour in the mosaic that
works well. The opus may be traditional small cuts, or it may be a flowing
opus, irregularly shaped, but forming a shadow in black around the mosaic
you have made. The opus could be pebbles, or mirror, whatever works. This
will be shown in the fact sheets. If this is a problem, don’t do it – we
will do it here.
* please do not fill in any background as we won’t to meld all the
mesh mosaics into the background we create when piecing all the mesh mosaics
together (however the mosaic may feature a lizard on a rock or a crocs
coming out of water, so to speak. If you are unsure please post a pic of
your design or photo
* make as many as you want
* if your mesh mosaic has something unusual re the tesserae, possibly
send a few spare pieces with the mosaic so we may add a few extra touches in
the main mosaic, if it works.
* keep a spare copy of the sketch or photo that inspired you for our
records (we are going to make a story of the making of the mosaic for
* send us a bio, a photo of yourself, perhaps one of you making the
mosaic, pics in progress and your story of your mosaic. materials used –
what inspired you to make the mosaic creature/s.

Need Mosaic Mesh? We can help!

This project seems to have captured people’s imagination and we have several very generous offers of FREE mesh [and maybe even some tiles] for those who need some!! 🙂 Contact these people to discuss the details of postage and the like.
Here are the contacts we have already…

Australia: Sandy Robertson of Ozmosaics [the link for her website is in the links section on the right]. Her email is

Jacqui Douglas of lives on the Sunshine Coast and is willing to give away some of her materials if you call in. Contact her first to arrange a time whether via the website or by email at

USA: Kathy Scherr from Maryland Mosaics will send a few sheets of 12×12 mesh sheets and/or 1 lb of tiles to anyone who needs them. This also includes Canada :). If you want the tiles you will have to talk to Kathy to discuss shipping costs. Email her at .
UK/Europe: Angela Kingshott who can be emailed at
Canada: Belinda Robinson can be contacted at

I have always been impressed with the generosity of spirit in the mosaic world to share information and promote mosaics. It’s bloomin’ marvellous to see it here too! 😀


About the project – Sandy Robertson

Steve Irwin was a great Australian bloke who passionately cared about the world’s wildlife, apart from being highly interesting, entertaining and proud of his family.

Tonight I watched his wife on the Ray Martin Interview and I sat for a while afterwards on my Queenslander deck, listening to the gentle rain falling (at last) and thought deeply about her words about her husband. It was one of the most touching interviews I have ever been privileged to watch and she touched me and my husband. Dave and I were moved to tears. Terri is an incredible woman and she and Steve were lucky to have had what most people often wish for, a happy marriage, a family and a passion that could set other people on fire and follow their dream. I feel so sad for Terri and the children but pray they will find strength and comfort keeping Steve’s dream alive.

So, this mosaic project started last week after I was shocked to hear of Steve’s passing away, so tragic. As I worked on a mosaic that day I could not get out of my head the vision of how so many people were paying tribute with flowers, kindness and messages at Australia Zoo and the outpouring of emotions worldwide.

I posted a note on the mosaic addicts group about how said I felt and later posted again with the idea of making a mosaic mural and presenting it to Terri, perhaps for the Australia Zoo or somewhere in Queensland. I had decided to make the mosaic with the help of some amazing friends, all mosaic addicts, here in Brisbane but thought how many people may get behind a community mural, but from around the world!

I should have known that the support will be there and I am stunned at the positive reaction to the idea. So many have pledged to make a mosaic on mesh of any wildlike creature and send it Downunder. It’s wonderful.

I am currently drawing up a proposal and when a decent time has passed to approach Australia Zoo, I and another lady will organise things at that end and find out what may eventuate as a place for the mosaic. That will all transpire in due course and be advised.

To get the mosaic rolling, the brief is simple:

Make a mosaic, on fibreglass mesh suitable for mosaic art, and send it to OzMosaics in Brisbane. Make as many as you desire, whatever you desire. Information on packing, how to pack the mesh mosaic, where to send it, adhesives, mesh instructions and much more will be uploaded by me to this blog, my website and the mosaic addicts group in the next few days. If you wish to get started, please do so or post a question on this blog or the addicts group or email for any further info until the FACT SHEETS are uploaded.

If you join mosaic addicts group, you will be able to ask questions regularly.

A cartoon will be made at Sandy’s studio and as segments are received or photos received of mosaics made, they will be photographed and placed on the mosaic cartoon and this will be shared. It should be amazing. I will co-ordinate a team here in Brisbane to put the mesh segments together as one large wall mural on moZboard, so that it will be easy to install and be transportable. The mosaic will be grouted in the studio for easy management. OzMosaics will donate all the materials needed to put the mosaic together and the team will do the labour (of love).

So if you make a mesh mosaic, you will be donating it to the mural project and paying for the postage to Brisbane Australia.

If you require materials or mesh, contact the members who have offered these services. If you are in Australia and would like mesh, I will provide it.

So, the Fact sheets and photographs will be here in a day or so, after I have finished compiling info suitable for this project. I will advise here and on mosaic addicts group when the file is ready.

Please submit ideas via mosaic addicts or here, all are appreciated.

Thank you to everyone who has become part of this wonderful tribute – it means to much to me that you are care enough to be part of the “bigger picture”. I believe Steve and Terri and family really got the message out there for conservation and wildlife and this is a thank you to them and an enduring tribute from artists who also care.


Sandy Robertson