Tips for laying stepping stones and creating a beautiful walkway.
Silke has been asking since the day we bought our house why there was no sidewalk leading to the front door. This is the side of the house that our address is on and where our mail box is located. We needed some better curb appeal for the front of house! A quick trip to the local brick and stone store and we had a Saturday afternoon project all lined up in no time. It was time to lay a stepping stone walkway!
When you pull up to our house, all you see is the door with a small wooden stoop and lawn. There are not even stepping stones to walk on. Of course there are DIY projects you should leave to the professionals, this isn’t one of them.
Can I lay stepping stones directly on grass?
Yes, you can lay stepping stones directly on grass. However, over time your stepping stones will most likely become uneven and wobbly to walk on due to changes in the weather and soil corrosion. For better stability, use a shovel to remove the grass under each stone or paver. They should only be surrounded by the grass to hold them in place and to keep the stepping stones from moving.
Laying stepping stones was far easier and less time consuming than we expected.
The confidence to begin the task came from an old issue of the This Old House magazine that we subscribe to. It showed step by step instructions, I’m holding the magazine above. The colorful pictures in the article lead to the now infamous phrase, ‘We can do that!’.
On the morning of the DIY project we counted out 11 stepping stones. We also needed a shovel, an axe to cut through tree roots, a grass edging tool, a hand shovel and two 70 lbs. bags of sand for leveling and to keep the weeds at bay.
Step By Step Photos for Laying Stepping Stone Walkways:
Step 1 – Lay out the stepping stones
We put the stones on top of the grass the way we wanted them, to make an eye-appealing walkway to our front door.
No two stones are alike and this wasn’t a straight shot to the street. A small curve was needed to get around a very large tree. We also had to create steps for an incline leading up to the porch. With the stones in place we were now ready to begin marking them.
Using the grass edging tool I simply went around each stone to make a cut-out in the lawn so we could begin digging. So far, it’s pretty easy.
Step 2 – Remove the sod & create steps
Removing a layer of sod from under each stone, the project was beginning to take shape and we were ready to start placing our new steps.
There is a small incline from the city sidewalk towards the house that levels off into our yard. Using some bricks that we had left over from a backyard DIY project, we were able to raise up the first two stones to actually make them steps.
On the first step we added six bricks vertically to give it the needed height. On the second step we added four bricks horizontally. We filled in any gaps with dirt and added a layer of sand. After placing the stepping stone the way we wanted it, we used more dirt to fill in and secure the stone.
Step 3 – Level the rest of stones
The rest of the walkway would be nine stepping stones leading to a small deck.
Digging a little deeper than necessary to allow for leveling and layering in some sand, the walkway quickly came together.
Each rock was tested to make sure it didn’t wobble when you walked on it. Lars (our son) and I jumped up and down on each stone a few times to get them firmly settled. With each stepping stone now in place we began to fill in around the edges with dirt. This final process secured each stepping stone and gave the illusion that the walkway had always been there.
With a new walkway our home has great curb appeal and the mailman is happy as well!
Have you created curb appeal by laying stepping stones? Leave us a comment below. We’d love to hear from you and remember to subscribe to receive our newest DIY article.