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Garden stepping stones are useful and decorative. They can allow you to walk through the garden without walking on the dirt or mud. They can add color and new shapes to the garden for decorative purposes. Garden stepping stones are easy to make, and it can be a project for the entire family. Here is the basic idea.


What you need…

1 bag of cement mix (the amount depends on how big the stone will be)

Mosaic tiles or decorative stones (these can be bought at most craft stores)

1 aluminum baking pan (try the large roasting pans for oval shapes or cake pans for rectangular shapes)
OR
1 plastic mold (this can be bought at most craft stores)

Contact paper (optional)

Method 1
This method gives you the opportunity to write names or dates on the surface of the stone. Be sure to leave space in your design for this.

1. Decide on your design. Plan where all of the colors will go. Use an outline of the pan or mold as a guide. Leave room in between the tiles or stones for the cement. The cement will hold the tiles or stones together.
2. Mix the cement mix according to the manufacturer’s directions. Be sure not to get it you soupy.
3. Pour the cement into the baking pan or the plastic mold.
4. Place the tiles or stones on the cement making your desired design.
5. Push the tiles or stones into the cement to cover the edges of the tiles or stones.
6. Write any name or dates in the cement.
7. Let sit 48 hours in a cool dry place.
8. Carefully take it out of the pan or mold.
9. Place in the garden on level ground.


Method 2
This will produce a smoother finish on the surface of the stone, but you won’t be able to write your name or a date on the top. You can always write it on the bottom for reference.

1. Decide on your design. Plan where all of the colors will go. Use an outline of the pan or mold as a guide. Leave room in between the tiles or stones for the cement. The cement will hold the tiles or stones together.
2. Put the mirror image on contact paper. You can have the mirror image printed at you local color copy store.
3. Place the contact paper in the bottom of the pan or mold with the tiles facing up, paper on the bottom.
4. Mix the cement mix according to the manufacturer’s directions. Be sure not to get it too soupy.
5. Pour the cement into the baking pan or the plastic mold.
6. Write any name or dates in the cement.
7. Let sit 48 hours in a cool dry place.
8. Carefully take it out of the pan or mold.
9. Place in the garden on level ground.


Other tips
1. Don’t leave the stepping stones out during the winter months.
2. Look in clip art books for design motif ideas.
3. Try simple geometric ideas with lots of colors.
4. Make imprints of your child’s hand on the stones.
5. Bright colors work best.
6. Add dye to the cement to get even more color.
7. Break dinner plates to use instead of tiles
8. Use marbles instead of tiles
9. Combine different elements like marbles, tiles and seashells to make a design.