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Cleo - Bench/Planter

Posted by slowmedown (My Page) on
Mon, Apr 18, 11 at 16:43

W/Riana's permission I copied her design for a bench/planter that she made for the Hacienda Mosaico in Puerta Vallarta. Cleo says that if her creator was talented, she'd look more beautiful w/slinder ankles, nicer profile, a nicer behind, etc. She's ready for mortar.
Cleo Bench/Planter


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Oooh, I was wondering how to put together something larger like a chair or bench! So excited you're doing this. I can't wait to watch your progression.

It doesn't look like you've got any reinforcement like rebar inside. Does this really end up strong enough to sit on without it?

Also, when you mortar, do you do the undersides of the feet first? If so, how long do you wait before doing the rest? Or do you do it all in one shot?

(See? Why do I need a class when you can teach me? LOL)

Hope you don't mind all the questions. I just love this stuff. And I think Cleo's maker is pretty darned talented, BTW!


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Will it really be a bench. Its amazing. How long does it take to build such a large armature? I'm looking forward to watching the progress.
Kathy


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

This little animal bench/planter is from chest to beehind 30" and from the ground to her back is 26". Yes, you can sit on the bench, and no, this size doesn't require rebar. Re mortaring, if my back weren't so bad, I'd put her on the ground and mortar the whole thing today, but I have to work on my worktable now. I'll turn her on her back, mortar the feet/legs and under belly and as far as I can reach around the sides today. Then, I'll call my yard man to come in a couple days to turn her over (and plant a rose bush) and I'll finish mortaring, and start mosaicing the dry parts. I've ordered from Wholesalers USA some large black gems to replicate those we put on Riana's panther. The part I dread is cutting a gazillion 1/4" X 3/4" strips to go around the gems to make the flowers. CONCRETE: This took me parts of four days to build. I can only work about four or five hrs. a day now. LORI: If you'll look on the Blog site of the Hacienda's website, scroll down to October Gardens, you'll see the bench Riana's class made year b/f last in just two days. She had three students. Friends of Sam mosaiced it later. Benches are easy to build. When you get ready to build one, I'll walk you through the process. Attaching the website for you.
Hacienda Mosaico


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Wow, and you really don't need rebar reinforcement for any of that? Sheri Warner's armature projects always have rebar reinforcement once they get beyond the "small" stage. That has kept me from thinking about doing anything like that because I don't weld. LOL

Can't wait to see this one!


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Loribee:FYI: Rhiana has told us she has used rebar pcs that are just wired together when she couldn't get her son over to weld it.
Slow: This looks Great! I am squirming with wanting to start something...anything!lol! Well, I'm breathing again, thanks to the meds so outside to the garden.... but you save stuff for me to do for you when I get there, I expect a big list of "To Dos" for you! I love cutting/grouting, heck, just all of it!!!


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

EVEN on the large bench at the Hacienda, Riana didn't use rebar. There's a way to build it that doesn't need it. This little bench doesn't either. We'll see when I get it mortared. Had to stop on it today - building a planter to go behind the front fountain in which to plant English Ivy to grow up the back of the fountain. Hope to have it ready for mortar tomorrow - a sweet l'il planter. CALAM - only the fountain extension do I need help on - mortaring down on the ground. Many thanks.


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter - mortared

Mortared, slurried and ready for some spots. Since it's misting rain I'll cover her and begin cutting a gazillion tiles to go around the black gems for spots. LORI: I don't know how you got such a smooth slurry on Mr. Sea. Some of the warts w/sand off, and I'm hoping after it's grouted some other wrinkles w/disappear. I slurried her w/the Mapei polymer modified mortar. Don't want to buy the huge bag of Portland cement. W/have to carry it around in the Jeep until my yard man comes to unload. Just too much trouble.
Cleo mortared


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Ohhh, I love her! I can't wait to see the face you put on her (Cleo is a she, right? lol) She sure looks nice and smooth to me. As for Mr. Sea, I did use a file to smooth him out a bit, then went over him with some sandpaper. I was mostly hoping to make the mosaic easier so I wouldn't have to compensate for divots and bumps. But that slurry does come out nice when it's just Portland cement and water. I need to do better about screening mine. I don't use it fast enough and it starts getting lumpy. I made the mistake in thinking it would smooth out as I mixed it with sand and water, but now I know that's not the case.

Can't wait to see what you come up with for a finish!


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Cleo is looking awesome! So...tomorrow you'll have it all mosaiced?heh heh!


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Thanks, y'all. 90% chance of rain today, so hope to at least get her shoes on b/f it starts. Yes, LORI - all my sculptures are girls.


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter - mo begins

Oughta be a sin to be having this much fun. Got chased in by a little shower after braving sprinkles all day. Notice her patent leather shoes. Saving the face/hair 'till I come up w/ideas.
Mosaicing begins


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

WOW! Gangbusters! Ha! I was re reading the first post and Cleo and I both say the same thing about our Creator!!!heh heh!


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

She is so dang cute!!!!!


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Thanks, y'all. CALAM: Say WHAT????? Glad I remembered to drill some drain holes in Cleo's tummy. Rained all night last night, and more coming today. DRATS - I wanna play.


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Kiss My Tooty? Hahahah! She's adorable! I love her heart-shaped behind, and the spots. Some of those tiles look like glass. Very pretty! I love the way they shimmer.


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Thanks, LORI: All the tiles are glass except the white on her tail - those are halves of the octaganal ceramic tiles I got at Lowes. It's a pain cutting those little strips and rectangles. Got lots cut today, and am standing in my workshop looking out at the rain - wishing it away. I can't stand not being able to work on her today. Re the shimmer - some of these tiles are recent purchases from Mosaics by Maria. Check out her sparkly mirror sheets. It is soooooooo beautiful, especially the orange. Oh my - y'all gotta try some of these. Remember - she provides free shipping on orders over $60, and it's not hard to get to that total w/these wonderful colors.


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

I love Cleo! What an amazing bench. Somehow I thought she was bigger from the picture. It must be her amazing presence. Can't wait to see her done. Where will you put her?
Kathy


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Sending a link, CONCRETE, to show you where she w/reside. The little area shown in the bottom row of pictures, fourth from last, labeled "from the swing" where there's a pot on a pedestal, another pot, and not shown is a small bench. I've been wanting to name that area for so long, and now I have "Cleo's Corner". She w/face toward the swing area. I haven't posted pictures of this year's gardens. Need to take time to edit my photobucket pics.
Cleo's Corner


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter - ready for mortar

She's ready for mortar. I'm having so much fun on this baby. Click to make large to get better details.
Cleo Ready for Mortar


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

LOL she is such a diva! I love her choker. Did you ever see the movie Thoroughly Modern Millie? (tap tap, tap tapioca!) She reminds me of Carol Channing in that movie. Lots of attitude and glam.


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

She's prettier than her older sister!ha! Excellent Job!


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Thanks, y'all. LORI: I think I saw that movie, but it's been so long ago, I can't remember. From your comment, I achieved my goal - attitude and glam. CALAM: Yeah, I sent Sam pictures, and told her "Sorry, Sam, mine is prettier than yours". Had Sam not walked out to the studio when she had, hers wouldn't have had the tiles around the spots. All Riana wanted was the spots, and had vetoed my making them into flowers, but Sam said "I love it". Of course, there wasn't any time left. Hers was done on my last day. Gonna try to go back again cuz Sam has a couple projects she wants me to do.


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Slow- I have to say that you are one of my new heros! I have spent weeks drooling over your (and everyone elses) works of art on this forum.

I'm finally ready to jump in and try my hand at something similar.

I love your Cleo and would like to try to create her Floribbean cousin for a small concrete slab that a previous owner poured for what I'm sure was a good reason at the time off-center (of course) in my garden area. I've long wanted to put a bench there, but just hadn't seen the the right one until I saw your Cleo.

I understand the armature creation- in theory anyway. I'm not sure about the stitching, but I've printed out an earlier post and have it where I can refer to it while I try to walk my way thru it.

What mix do you use to fill the armature? I scoured the forum before I asked and found where you made mention of having posted it "in an earlier post last spring", but I can't seem to find it. When I did a search of your name on the forum 1529 results were found, and I didn't read all of them but I did read a lot of them before I decided to go ahead and ask.

I did find Rianna's website thru your posts and let me tell you a workshop with her is now #1 on my Christmas wish list. Things are tight and it's probably not going to happen for a year or two, but I promised Santa that I would be a really good girl and who knows... I could win the lotto.


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Well, bless my soul. I know you have no idea how happy your posting made me. It is always so satisfying to inspire another artist to make something similar to what we create. The important thing is to make your armature as neat and w/o warts (exposed stitches) as you can. Two layers, remember. While Riana gave us the recipe for the mortar, she also told us we could use mortar mix. That's what I use. I did buy that huge 96-lb. bag of Portland cement and sand, and for awhile I made my own - two to three parts sand to one part Portland. I find it's just easier to use the mortar mix - just add water, and spread it between the two layers. Sometimes I add another smoothing slurry, smoothing w/a wet paint brush. The stitching: Riana recommends 19-gauge wire, but I can't find it where I am, so I use 17-gauge electric fencing wire. That's a little too flimsy, but it works for me. You cut a length about six inches long, and w/your linesman pliers put a hook in one end. That's your needle. Slip it through the layers, w/your pliers, pull it as tightly as you can and twist a couple times, then trim w/your tin snips as close to your stitch as possible. Riana is successful in using her linesman pliers to cut, but I can't manage it. KLINGER and CALAMITY took Riana's class w/me, so we'll be happy to help you through your structure. Just ask away - we love to teach others to do this. It has become so addictive, I no longer seem to be inspired to do small things. Good luck and be sure and post pictures of your WIP. Re taking Riana's class, I hope you'll go to Puerto Vallarta to take it. I'm going again this year during her class. Sam, the Hacienda's owner, wants me to mosaic something for her. If you've never been to PV, there's no way to describe what a paradise awaits you. The Hacienda is an artist paradise in itself, and I love the city. For the last two yrs., I never left the compound except to wander a block away to my favorite little restaurant. Come join us. You'll never forget it. This w/be my sixth year, I think - have lost count.


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Thank you!!!! I'm half terrified and half excited to start this project.

So not to question the master, but I want to make sure I'm understanding this. I can fill the armature with either homemade or bagged mortar mix and I don't need to use rebar or any other kind of reinforcement? After reading some books on the subject I am so confused as to the necessity of rebar. If I don't need it GREAT. Cutting and bending and tieing it would definately add to the difficulty.

And plaster lath is the best "wire" to use. Is that right?

Thanks again for your help. You have no idea how much I appreciate it.


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

No need to be terrified - what do you have to lose - fear keeps us from enjoying soooooo much.

Not a master - just an old lady who loves what she does, and does what she loves.

Yes, homemade or ready mix mortar, and yes on the diamond lath. I didn't use rebar in Cleo, a longer bench needs reinforcement, and I won't go into it here, but Riana showed us a new technique to avoid having to use rebar in benches. If you take her class, she'll show you, so I'll let her do the teaching. If you are making a long bench, let me know, and I'll give you a quick teaching note. It w/be long, so it might be better to do it via e-mail.

I'm hankering to make another bench for my back area, so we might be able to build one together, and you can see what I do step by step. Let me know if you're interested. Like I said b/f, KLINGER, CALAM and I w/be happy answer any questions as you go forward. Can't wait to see your first WIP pics.


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

I might take you up on the info for a longer bench one day, but one step at a time.

Thanks again. I've got an expected free day and I'm pretty sure there's a trip to the hardware store in it now for some lath.

Oh, boy this is gonna be great.


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Yes, it w/be great to see your WIPs, so hope your beginnings are sooooooooooon.


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Hi Lizzardly! Here is a link...I hope to my album when I made the castle this way...you don't FILL the castle, you smoosh cement/mortar onto the wire mesh...filling the wire part in with cement/mortar.
The castle pics are backwards but look from last to first....

Here is a link that might be useful: castle


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Slowmedown & Calamity -

I sent you each an email thru the garden web forum. I was just wondering if you got them.


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

I did not as of yet, but usually do...I'll go check...


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Haven't received, and just checked my Spam Patrol, and there's nothing there either.


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

Well my goodness. I wrote you each a small novel and sent it thru the GW email thingy.

Since Calamity's email is listed I'll send it directly to her and maybe she can forward it to you Slow. I'm guessing you guys have traded emails. :) The subject will be: from Lizzardly


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RE: Cleo - Bench/Planter

We're in constant contact, so I'll probably receive the forwarded message tonight or tomorrow - can't wait!!!!!!!!!!!!


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