Don’t you just love turtles?

broken turtleI do, because, besides being cute, they have such potential to be whimsical. I like them in drawings, on stepping stones, in mosaics, photos, and even in real life. Except that if you get those really tiny ones at the pet store, you have to wash your hands after touching them because they can spread germs. (Having been raised by Swedes, I felt the need to throw that in. Just in case you weren’t.)turtles crackingSo it shouldn’t surprise anyone to know that when I saw these turtle “stepping stones” and they were half price, I had to get two. They are made out of some kind of resin, and I had a feeling they weren’t supposed to be actually stepped on, but I put them in the garden anyway. Needless to say, after a short time they were already cracked. Just recently I decided to see if I could fix them.broken turtleOne was much more cracked than the other. I decided to break it at the cracks and brush the dirt off the pieces. Then I tried to glue them together with my new favorite craft supply, Liquid Nails.gluing turtleBesides being cracked, the turtles were also somewhat warped, and so in order to keep the pieces from falling apart as the glue dried, I propped them up with different items.turtle pieces

second turtlesBecause of the turtle being warped, I could not fit the last piece in. But that wasn’t a problem, since I was going to put glass gems on it anyway.

I put the square gems on first, then decided they would look cool with round ones in the spaces between them. blue turtleThe gems are glued on here, but the grout hasn’t been applied. I painted it as an afterthought with some sparkly blue paint I had gotten over the summer.blue with groutHere it is with the grout between the gems. I tried to color the grout with the same sparkly blue craft paint I used on the head and feet, but it didn’t work. I really liked it best without the grout. (I probably should have painted the whole turtle first, then it would have had blue showing through the gems and possibly wouldn’t have needed grout at all.) So I ended up trying to paint the grout after it had dried, with a questionable level of success.

The second one had fewer cracks so it was easy to glue. I added grout to fill the spots I couldn’t glue. After all the trouble I had with the first one, I decided to just paint this one and be done with it. I used green sparkly paint, leaving the blue that was still on the brush from the first turtle for a nice, two-tone effect.green and blueThis is where they are now, primarily in the shade and not out in the yard!

And then…

black sphereIf you have read “Just Add Water, Part 3”, you know that of my three cement spheres, one of them wouldn’t fit on the “bird house tower”.  That’s it off to the right. But not to worry, because the leftover, “ugly duckling sphere” turned out to be a beautiful shabby chic turtle!

china bits

Rather than give you the play-by-play description, I’ll just tell you the highlights. If you put too much pink paint in white, non-sanded grout, it will look just like bubble gum. Bubble gum is not a shabby chic color, in case you hadn’t heard.

But, if you put white paint over it it will get lighter. Paint rocks pink for the head and feet, then glue on with Liquid Nails.

Get brave and paint the face. You can perfect the edges with a Sharpie marker too.

Voila! There she is, an official shabby chic turtle!

shabby on bricks And you thought it couldn’t be done!