Thursday, November 01, 2018

DIY: Stepping Stones

Pavers and stepping stones in your garden are essential for navigating your way around precious plant materials. The decorative aspects are unlimited. Make a path of them, create some as personalized gifts, or use them to mark the burial spot of a beloved pet.

We did these ones (pictured) from a kit, but you can easily gather the supplies and do one from scratch.

This is an easy craft for kids, though it does require close adult supervision as the mixing needs to be precise and the glass mosaic pieces can be sharp.

Caution: Cover your mouth and eyes with protective gear when mixing concrete as the dust can be hazardous if breathed in.





Materials:
- Bucket to mix in
- Water and measuring cup
- Stir sticks or skewers
- Acrylic Paint (optional)


Instructions:

Step 1- Spread out newspaper and lay out a pattern for your mosaic. You may wish the use the cutters to cut the pieces to the exact shape you desire, but I think it is more fun just to work with what you have as a puzzle.

Step 2 - Coat the sides and bottom of the mold with cooking spray so the stone will easily release afterwards.

Step 3 - Add water to your concrete mix according to package instructions and stir. Once it reaches a pancake-batter consistency, pour it into the mold. Use a stir stick to level it and lightly tap the mold on the table it to get out any air bubbles.

Step 4 - Transfer your mosaic art on to the paver surface. Leave at least an 1/8-inch space between the glass pieces. This is where you made need to adjust things as I always find your pattern "expands" when transferred. Next, decorate with the glass gem pieces as desired.

Step 5: Set aside to cure for a day and then un-mold it. Then let it set for another couple of days to totally dry before setting it outside.

Optional: After it has set for about 30 minutes, you can use one of the stir sticks to scratch in some words or a design into the concrete. After the stepping stones are totally dry, you can paint them or leave them plain. 

TIP: Decorate with found objects from marbles to small toys. Press in a leaf or plant stems to make neat-looking impressions.


This is a monthly blog series on DIY projects for the beginning home gardener. Look for the other installments in this DIY blog series by putting "DIY" in the search box here at washingtongardener.blogspot.com
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