Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Mud

Last year about this time, I decided to rip out that horrid indoor outdoor carpeting which covered the concrete slab in front of my house. The slab was cracked, and heaved, so when I went to paint it, I used this really neat material. It comes in several colours, and when it is done, it supposedly looks just like stone. Well, you be the judge. It took as long as stone to put down! click on this image to enlarge. You can see how the white primer has been painted on, and the quarter inch strapping tape has been applied in a crazy paving design. It took longer than you might think to do this! But you can clearly see the tape in the pic below.
Spread out the base colour....
Dabble on some contrasting colour. A little goes a long way! I had both red and black to dabble on...I don't think the black really shows up...
Above, you can see what I do...which is to place the trowel down onto the surface of the wet material, and pull it straight up, to get little mountains of coloured stuff. Then, in the pic below, you can see how I use a thin plastic piece to break those little mountains down, and streak them across...like veins of contrasting material in the rock. I don't think it looks that bad...
After it dries for a day, but before it gets too hard, I dragged out all the tape from under the "stone" to leave a "crazy paving" effect.
My conclusion? It is expensive, lasts a very long time, is safe and non-toxic, looks great, takes forever to do, and is a total pain in the tush! In this case, it would have saved time to jackhammer out the old slab, and pour a fresh one, but that would have left me with another ugly piece of concrete. Besides, this was a learning experience. If I had a complex concrete structure, say, a set of stairs, then clearly this is the way to go....it will re-habilitate the crummiest, cracked and broken concrete, and make it look good. A plain slab would have probably looked okay with a cheaper "roll on" concrete paint, some of which look so much like granite that it is startling. This took longer, and the result is just fine, even if it DID take a week out of my life.

1 comment:

kimberly said...

Hey, where's the "after" photo??? LOL