Tuesday, October 13, 2015

DIY Tombstones

This Halloween I wanted to have a mass grave site in our
front yard and we already had a few (6) but 
it was not enough to get the look that I was going for.
And as everyone knows I'd rather not spend a lot
of money so I thought why not make my own.
I found a pin on Pinterest where the site used Styrofoam
from a hardware store and then they used their fancy
cutting machine to cut out the shapes and engrave 
the tombstone sayings.
Well I bought a Dollar Tree saw and it fell apart the second
I started cutting so DON'T DO IT!
  • 6 pack insulation foam ($10) - makes 12
  • Pint of gray paint ($10) - only used 1/3
  • Box cutter
  • Black acrylic paint
  • Large & small paint brushes
  • Black & white spray paint for effect (optional) ($.98 each)
  • Plastic throw away gloves
  • Paint sticks or wire hangers to stake in the ground
First outline the design with a marker to where 2 designs fit on 1 board
Second cut out the design with a box cutter which is really easy.
The picture shows the saw that broke after a couple of moves
I then rubbed off the access Styrofoam (there will be a
big mess so do this outside!)
On some of them I etched out the saying,
I sprayed painted the words in black which was a big
no-no, I guess something in the spray paint melts
the Styrofoam but regular wall paint & acrylic paint is fine
After all the boards are cut out I painted the front and sides gray
and then let them dry for a day and painted the backs.
A second layer was not needed and I only used 1/3 of
the can & we'll be able to use the another time.
I wanted to make some of the tombstones look older so I
used a spackle/spray method (I don't know the official name) where
you put your finger almost covering the paint spray hole (use the
plastic glove for this) and then shook the can 5 or so inches away from
the tombstone. This creates little dots which gives it an older look.
I uses both white and black for this.
Also I sprayed the black 8 inches away from some of them
to give it a darker gray look.
I googled some stupid/spooky/funny tombstone sayings
and painted it on with acrylic paint.
Some tombstones I made a drippy look with
watered down black paint.
After everything was dry I used both paint sticks & wire hangers
as spikes to secure them in the ground.
The paint sticks I tried to stick half way into the
Styrofoam (did not work) and also tried hot gluing the
paint sticks on the back (does not stick to paint).
The best method is taking apart a wire hanger and cutting
it into 4 pieces. I stuck 2 pieces into each tombstone so
it would be more stable.

So far they are sticking up!