Thursday, July 08, 2010

Mo' Better Paving Stones

Previously... [Paving stones part 1] [Paving stones part 2]

I've made a bunch of stones since then.
This one was made for a plant to grow through the middle.

Here's how many I've made so far. The eye bolt in the top one is so I can chain down the table and chairs to make them harder to steal.

Saturday, Yummy and I dug up the front yard to make sure it was level and that the stones wouldn't be resting on top of the soil. We filled two trash barrels with dirt. We then placed the stones and filled in between them. Sounds easy if you say it fast.

After sand was added and the ground leveled we started applying blocks. Then we'd stand on them to see how they felt. Most needed something. They were wobbly or not level or something. We'd spend some time pushing dirt and sand around until it felt good and solid. Some areas had to be made bigger. That dirt got tossed on top of the blocks and swept between them.

A couple of days later we got chairs.

I do need to make more blocks. Three at least, probably five. But we pushed ahead because things had reached the point where I couldn't make a decent estimate of how many were needed until these were in place.

On the right you can see a stone that has some leafs on it. They were pressed in, the mortar allowed to dry a bit, and then removed. It looks better than the camera shows.
To the left of my foot is a block with my hand print.
Behind that you can see a block with a series of dents. While the concrete was still wet I flicked my trowel at it. There was enough gook on the trowel that it flung off and gave the block impact crators.
The eye loop is on the block my foot is on. I just screwed it in while the mortar was fresh.

I'm not done yet, but I'm very happy with how things have turned out.

P.S. - Anyone in the DC area who wants some dirt should let me know. I can set you up.


Mike Rhode said...

Looks good, but you're still nuts.

Unknown said...

Neat, Doug. Another option would have been to pour concrete over the entire area and then press in octagonal molds, though you may have lost the variety in color and shape. A small level may help to set the stones, though perhaps you want a more casual look. Will you half the bricks at the edges or just plant some bushes for cover? Going to plant some small sedums or moss between the cracks?

I like it, though how will you capture the eerie quiet of Mist in DC? Is your gate squeeky or can you replicate a broken, chugging piece of machinery? Going to leave journals laying around?

Ibid said...

Mike: That's never been argued.

Jerri: Probably not going to add in half bricks unless we need just that little bit extra.
Moss would bake and die in my yard, but I'll probably get something growing between them.
I left the smoke belching machinery in Kansas. I'll have to get it for next year.

Unknown said...

They look fabulous but I still like the cardboard table the best.

Scott said...

Nice fancy new background too.

Ibid said...

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I just needed to care enough to change it again. It's working now.
33 unique visitors today.