Hi there Friends!
Slowly progress on the side yard is happening. In this hot weather, it’s been harder, since who wants to be cooking themselves in the sun?!
Baking… well, that’s another story. I’ve been having fun “baking” my very own stepping stones, after failing at finding any round ones around my neighborhood home stores. And, you know what? It’s totally easy. I LOVE this project and it’s got my mind spinning… What else can I do with a bag of Quikrete?
Plus it’s sooooo cheap! A bag of concrete costs less than $3, and most of the supplies I found at the dollar store. For all my stones (10 large and 26 small) I spent about $35 dollars!!
So, let’s dig in and I’ll tell you how I made these super cute ROUND stepping stones.
- A bag of Quikrete
- A Mold; in this case I used CAKE PANS!!
- Cut up pieces of chicken wire. I had left over hardware cloth, so I just used what I had lying around, and I’m sure you can dig up something in your garage that’s similar.
- Vaseline or Petroleum Jelly
- A bucket and mixing stick
- A tarp was a nice to have, but not required
For the majority of these, I went down to the dollar store. One small vaseline jar was enough for 20+ stones, and I was lucky to find a bucket, tarp and cake pans there, too! They only had 9″ though (and I purchased 7 of them to make a bunch faster). After making about 14 stones, I knew I needed some larger ones mixed in. For that, I used these cake pans I found on Amazon. They are super big, beautiful and still look great – even after using them!!
In fact, the largest pan was so big, at 14″, I didn’t even use that one.
Now this can get pretty technical – HA! Not. I scooped out some Quikrete into the bucket, and added water until I could mix it up into a thick batter. I measured nada. Slather your pans with vaseline and then pour in about half way up. Next, add the chicken wire…
Then fill it up with the rest of the concrete.
Let it dry for a day. You guys, listen to me here. Make sure to take your new stones out of the mold the very next day. I didn’t do this one freaking time and it took me forever to get it out of the pan, and actually, I broke two of them trying to get them out. Learn from my mistakes. Okie dokie?
What to do while they dry? Well, prep the area of course!
I had decided to use some decomposed granite to create a base and filler for my new stones. You don’t have to do this, but it’s how I made mine.
Once your stones are dry, literally just turn over the pan and let ’em slither out.
They will get stronger and stronger, so just let them chill for a few days or in my case, a week or so.
Then you can play around with your pattern…
The big stepping stones were something I had in the back of the house… so I used a few of those and then filled in with my new stones, making sure that they were all on the same level and at the same height… easier said that done.
As you can tell, at this point I only had the 9″ stepping stones made… it just wasn’t enough. Right?? Tweak, and tweak, that’s what we do.
Then I just filled in the space in between with more dg. I wet it down really well, and then tapped it down.
This path is done!! And so tough. I can push a wheel barrow through it, no problem.
As you can see I’m still finishing up this whole side yard, but at least I can cross this little project off the list!! YAY!!
This was where I started…#Progress
Now what to do with that dirt next to it? I’m taking a minute to pause… since I’m having a bit of an internal battle…Artificial grass? More rock? Succulents? Mulch? I have an issue with all of these options. What say you?
Hopefully I’ve inspired some new bakers out there!!