I have always been a wee bit scared of working with concrete, cement and hypertufa. In my mind, it was messy, difficult and would ruin everything it touched, including my hands, my house, my kitchen, my tools. You get the picture. WELL. 'Tis not true, my friends! Yes, it was slightly messier than my pom pom ceiling, but not any more messy than making clay plant tags or working with DIY playdoughs and such. I have completely overcome my fear of cement and might just jump over into the camp of "I wanna make as many things as possible out of concrete".
Cement VS Concrete -- Let's get something straight right away. Concrete and cement are not the same thing. Concrete is made out of cement mixed with small rocks, etc. Craft projects are typically made of cement, though concrete might be used for larger items like planting troughs. Concrete is more often seen as a driveway or parking lot covering. However, the words are often used interchangeably. Let's get started, shall we?
SUPPLIES: There are several different cement "kits" that Consumer Crafts has, but there are also a bunch of tools and accessories that would be fun to work with in cement or concrete. I am going to show you a few options and give you some idea for a few more. Here are the two kits I used:
I would also try:
As you can see, the options are pretty much limitless once you get going, but you basically need your cement, a mold and something to make it FUN! The plastic molds in the kit work perfectly (we made the flower), but I also used a metal pan and cardboard box as molds with success. I sprayed all of them with cooking spray to be on the safe side before pouring the cement. Today, I want to share my "broken" Easter egg stepping stones inspired by Mr. Humpty Dumpty himself. I used the large cement bag from the BASIC kit, a large oval metal pan and the letters from the flower kit for this project.
INSTRUCTIONS:1. Start with a large oval pan, sprayed with cooking spray. Fold a piece of cardboard for the "broken" part of the egg and spray with cooking spray. Place in pan/mold.
2. Mix your cement in a throwaway box or pan with water. Follow the instructions on your kit for the amount of water, but basically, it should look like brownie dough. BE CAREFUL when opening the bag, pouring and mixing as the dust should not be breathed in. This is a great project for outdoors due to this, but we were able to do it indoors fine. We just had to work slowly.
5. When the cement is the consistency of gritty, chunky playdough (it should have give, but also be slightly firm), press your letters in to make whatever saying or text you choose. You will know the cement is too "wet" if your letters just disappear after pressing. Wait awhile and try again.
6. Once the lettering is complete, you simply have to be patient. Let the cement dry completely (24 hours at the very least, 36 to be safe) and then gently unmold the stepping stone. Note: The cement will whiten and become completely solid to the touch once fully dry.