Clippings by mylalaland

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RE: Leaf Casting Bench (Follow-Up #27)

posted by: flowrpowr on 08.15.2007 at 09:22 pm in Hypertufa Forum

Syllabus, sorry I took so long to get back to you. I don't know where time goes sometimes. I kept thinking I would show my hubby your e-mail, but he doesn't get in until late at night, and I keep forgetting to ask him. So I will try to answer your questions myself.

1. The leaves are cast from actual leaves, no molds. We used a portland and sand mix to get the fine texture. I think we just put the leaves on a sheet of plastic and put the mix on them. I guess that's why the edges look so fine. The aren't cast on a bed of sand because we wanted them perfectly flat.

2.The leaves on the legs were cast with regular quickcrete 5000 poured into a round concrete tube with the leaves attached to the inside of the tube. You spray the top of the leaf with adhesive, and then stick them on. It's best to use a heavily textured leaf, because you loose a lot of detail with the chunky quickrete.

3. The leaves we used were grape, hosta, burdock, and I don't really remember what else. I know the hosta leaves worked well. The dimensions are: the top: 44" x 18" x 3". The height of the legs I didn't measure, it's raining outside, and I don't want to run back out there! :) My hubby says he thinks we used 10" or 12" molds for the legs, with a smaller tube inside to take up some of the space, (so they wouldn't be so heavy).

4. I don't really remember how much concrete colorant we used. I think we mainly colored the original leaves, but not the bench, but I can't swear to that.

5. The cast leaves were very thin, I would probably make them a little thicker. We made the frame out of 2'x4's and set the cast leaves into the wet cement. Then we sprinkled small rock around the leaves.

If I did it again, first and most important, decide where you want it, and make your bench as close to that location as possible. This puppy was heavy, I don't remeber exactly how we got it to that location, but I remember it wasn't easy!
I think I would probably skip the little rocks on top, to be honest, they hurt your tush when you sit on it! :( But it would look kind of neat with little marbles or those flat marbles you can buy at craft stores stuck in it here and there.
I also think you could put the leaves on the bottom of the seat mold and just pour concrete over it. They would match the legs better, but you would loose the detail.
We never did seal it, I know bad me. It did develope a couple of small cracks in the thincast leaves. That really surprised me, but maybe it's because I didn't put sealer on it.
Hope that answers the majority of your questions. Let me know if you have anymore.
One last thing, you have to make sure that everything is as level as possible, you don't want a bench that is thinner at one end, and you don't want your legs to be uneven, or your bench will wobble.


clipped on: 12.21.2007 at 04:30 am    last updated on: 12.21.2007 at 04:31 am