How to put handprints in concrete

Updated February 21, 2017

Ever since the roaring twenties, scores of Hollywood stars have left their handprints in the sidewalk in front of Grauman's Chinese Theatre. Just like the stars, homeowners involved in paving projects can immortalise themselves with imprints of their hands. For a craft project, make handprints of each family member in concrete, using stepping stone concrete forms. Guarantee crisp, clean impressions by making handprints at just the right time after the concrete is poured.

Cut a piece of wire mesh to fit inside a stepping stone concrete mould. The mesh will embed itself into and strengthen the concrete.

Coat the inside walls of the mould with oil soap or cooking oil to guarantee its release once the concrete cures.

Add water bit-by-bit to dry concrete mix until a thick, goopy consistency is created. Stir in concrete pigment if coloured stepping stones are desired.

Pour concrete into the mould and smooth the surface with a concrete float. Leave the concrete to set up until it is stiff but still impressionable.

Coat the palm of your hand lightly with oil soap or vegetable oil. Position your hand, palm down, lightly on the surface of the concrete then press down, keeping the hand as stable as possible. Push down until the concrete surface is near the back of your hand. Pull your hand quickly straight up and out of the concrete.

Sign your name under the handprint using a wooden skewer.

Cover the concrete with cling film while it cures. Mist it regularly with water during the curing process.

Release the stepping stone from the mould and paint it with concrete sealer.

Things You'll Need

  • Stepping stone mould
  • Wire screening
  • Wire mesh
  • Tin snips
  • Oil soap or cooking oil
  • Concrete dry mix
  • Bull float
  • Wood skewer
  • Cling film
  • Concrete sealer
  • Paintbrush
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About the Author

Mason Howard is an artist and writer in Minneapolis. Howard's work has been published in the "Creative Quarterly Journal of Art & Design" and "New American Paintings." He has also written for art exhibition catalogs and publications. Howard's recent writing includes covering popular culture, home improvement, cooking, health and fitness. He received his Master of Fine Arts from the University of Minnesota.