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Oak Lane Cemetery
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
All of us have a bunch of store bought Styrofoam tombstones. Whether your a veteran haunter, or just getting started, we all buy them at some point. I started out with a bunch of them and after learning to make better ones I've been gradually phasing out all of the store bought ones, most of which just have "RIP" on them. lol I do have one or two larger ones I plan on keeping though, especially the one I made over in this video. It's big and has a decent looking design, but suffers from a lack of support for staking and it's pretty thin and unrealistic looking in that aspect. I've had it for 14 years and it's in a lot of Halloween photos with my kids when they were younger so it has some sentimental value too. I wanted to repair, upgrade and improve it so it can continue to be in our display for years to come. I doubled it's thickness, added pvc pipe inserts for staking and did a full repaint on it. A pretty simple project that didn't take a lot of time or materials to do. Now it's more realistic looking, sturdier, and a lot simpler to set up.

 

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Love this - impressive job!! Have a bunch that I use mostly as templates for shapes for ones I make because didn't like the less realistic look - definitely going to give this a try to bring them to life. Thanks so much for sharing! I have tried using spray bottles in the past with watered down paint but they always clog on me--what type of paint did you use?
 

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Oak Lane Cemetery
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2,237 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Love this - impressive job!! Have a bunch that I use mostly as templates for shapes for ones I make because didn't like the less realistic look - definitely going to give this a try to bring them to life. Thanks so much for sharing! I have tried using spray bottles in the past with watered down paint but they always clog on me--what type of paint did you use?
I just use regular old acrylic paint and water it down a lot. Mine always clog too, but I've started using screens over my pickup tubes to see if it helps keep clumps out. I buy the filter funnels and rip the screen out of the bottom, then use a zip tie to secure it as a little bag over the tip of the tube. Fingers crossed. In the past I've filled a bucket with clean water, taken the spray head off the bottle and stuck the straw into the bucker and pumped water through it. Then I took off the nozzles and soaked the heads and nozzles in the bucket of water for a few days. Saved some, but not all. Best bet is to just consider them disposable and hope to get a bunch of uses out of them before they clog. The dollar store is your friend when it comes to spray bottles.
 

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I have a sentimental attachment to a lot of our styro, store-bought tombstones too, even though I know they don't always hold up all that well. I really like being able to say "oh, that's from our third year!" or looking back at pictures and still being able to recognize items we still use now. But I like to do this type of update to keep them useable when I can and your repaint looks great!
 

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Sculpture Cross Religious item Artifact Art

The main part of this tombstone was the front of the cross down to Betsy. It was a store bought Styrofoam tombstone my wife found at a garage sale. It was originally a tan color with some green aging. I added foam insulation to it to make it thicker and then mounted it on a small Styrofoam cooler I had. Coated the whole thing with thin monster mud then dry brushed and aged it with some black and gray paint. I like the way it came out.
 

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I just use regular old acrylic paint and water it down a lot. Mine always clog too, but I've started using screens over my pickup tubes to see if it helps keep clumps out. I buy the filter funnels and rip the screen out of the bottom, then use a zip tie to secure it as a little bag over the tip of the tube. Fingers crossed. In the past I've filled a bucket with clean water, taken the spray head off the bottle and stuck the straw into the bucker and pumped water through it. Then I took off the nozzles and soaked the heads and nozzles in the bucket of water for a few days. Saved some, but not all. Best bet is to just consider them disposable and hope to get a bunch of uses out of them before they clog. The dollar store is your friend when it comes to spray bottles.
Excellent tip! Thank you for sharing your technique!
 
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