Flagstones, anyone?

The next step was to determine the type of landscaping.  A rough cobblestone sidewalk and path would have been ideal, and in keeping with the “quaint” look of the book box.  But clay and I are not really friends (barely acquaintances), so I always opt for real materials whenever I can.  Nature is much better with the palette and the knife than I.  In this case, a few hours with a mallet and some shale paving stones from the yard produced hundreds of tiny usable pieces.  The question was then:  How to create a level path, and how to adhere them to the base of the book box firmly.

Basically: the steps were:

  • make a slightly sticky surface using paper labels (just sticky enough to hold the stones in place, but not so sticky that it couldn’t be removed) glued to a piece of mat board
  • place the stones close together
  • spray with sealer over everything (so mortar doesn’t stick to label paper when you put it on)
  • drip mortar (spackle powder and paint and water) into place between all the stones, so no paper shows, let dry (try not to touch the stones, because they’re not well-secured to the paper)
  • make an edge to the desired height of the bottom (higher than the stones)
  • spread Moreflex or some other caulk or adhesive to the height of the edge; use cardboard to level off. moreflex is textured which is a nice look, stays flexible, and comes in different grays (although dark gray didn’t come in a small tube, so I used light gray, as you can see in the middle of the picture)
  • dry thoroughly!
  • remove the edge carefully, paint edges of Moreflex if needed, flip over and glue in place useing Weldbond or other water based glue (if use Moreflex, which is acrylic)
  • peel off mat board layer by layer (carefully) and then the label paper–if stones come out, just hold onto them and glue them back in later
  • use dental tools and craft knife to clean up the mortar if it shows
  • and add mortar as necessary. dry thoroughly
  • spray all with sealer or matte medium

It was a rather painstaking process, so you can view a more detailed tutorial here–or just see the finished product below!

To see tutorial, go here: Flagstone path

10. Tidy up mortar

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