Wednesday, May 16, 2012

how to make garden stepping stones {tutorial}

We used to share reader projects almost weekly, but it's been a really long time since we did one! We're so excited to have a reader submission from Michelle at Shelly Homemaker today, showing us how to make these beautiful concrete stepping stones! This is one of those projects I would be totally scared to try to figure out on my own, so I'm so glad Michelle has done the hard work for me! Enjoy!

Garden Stepping Stones Tutorial

Quickset concrete (I got a 50lb bag at lowes for $5)
Water (from the tap... free, ish)
Flower pot trays (from the $1 store, came in packs of 3 or 4, got 3 - $3)
Oil and Basting brush... I had these, in my kitchen, might be buying a new basting brush now, (FYI they have them at the $1 store too)
Stones, Marbles, or tiles (can find lots of places! My favorites were the flat marbles from, you guessed it, the $1 store)
Old rag

Step 1:
First things first, prep work. Collect all your materials.
Brush some oil into the one of the plastic trays

Step 2:
Mix your concrete. Add some concrete powder to a old bucket, and add water slowly until you get to the right consistency.

You are going for Malt o meal, or cream of wheat - NOT oatmeal!
Step 3:
Place your stones in any pattern you want! You want them to sink down a little bit, so they close to flush with the top of the concrete, this will keep them from falling out as they are outside being weathered.

Don't worry about the tops having concrete on them, once they are relatively dry, the concrete will wash off with that old rag you have on hand.

We made some stones for my mom and mother-in-law for mothers day, with the girls hand prints in them, also decorated with stones.

After a little trial and error, we discovered it DOES need to be a little thicker and more set up to preserve a hand print over put in stones. SO do what you can to decorate the stone, then add the hand prints.
Step 4:
A few hours later, or the next day, you can pop them out of the plastic, and wipe the tops down with a damp rag, they shine up sooo nice!

With our 50 lb. bag of quickset, we made 10 stones! 5 - 10" and 5 - 8"

This is a very fun project, and perfect for those of us that are monetarily challenged!

I think I need like 27 to do around my yard!

Thanks, Michelle! Awesome project! If you have a project you'd like to share with our readers, shoot us an e-mail! 

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9 Responses to “how to make garden stepping stones {tutorial}”

marie said...

This looks like a lot of fun...thanks for sharing all the tips for making them. Love the variety that you created!

Chiwei @ One Dog Woof said...

This is great, and I'm pinning it! We're tearing apart our yard right now, and were thinking about a little shade garden with a bench and some stones, so this would be perfect to add a little personality to the garden! Thanks for sharing!

Colleen said...

Wonderful tutorial.
It's been ages since I have made stepping stones.
I could use more stepping stones in my gardens so thanks for this bit of a reminder

Jenni Renee said...

these are beautiful! I have been wanting to try this forever! Im hoping to maybe get to do it soon. Keep Smiling!

Miche'al said...

This is awesome! A must for me to try this summer!!!!!!

Unknown said...

Found through Pinterest

I love this tutorial! It's very well done and the pictures are wonderful.

I have 2 questions though-

1) Where did you get the square mosaic pieces? I know the oval/round ones come from the $1 store, but not sure about the square ones. (My favorite is the step with the red square border, fantastic!)

2) Have you ever tried doing this in the opposite order? I mean making your design on the bottom of the plastic bin and pouring the quick set over top? My 6yo DD is not the "mess maker" type and I would like to actually get her to participate...

Thanks again for a great find!

Christy's TLC,C&C said...

Thank you for this! We will be making these at our Women's Retreat this summer! The theme is based on feet and stepping stones will be a perfect craft!

Unknown said...

I made a stepping stone that is shaped like a foot. It was a complete accident but I have been working on it for a while. I love the way that it looks. I wish I could make more.

Unknown said...

Great tutorial! Looking forward to making these.

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