The above is a “kit”. These bricks are all preformed, manufactured absolutely perfectly to form circles suitable for all the many uses pavers like this might have. They even come with terrific little designs on paper which you can use to fit in like a puzzle! I adore these, frankly, and that aint hay. There is something truly magnificent about the design artwork and the excess of care involved in breaking up all the hard lines of driveways, sidewalks and patios and putting in something for the sheer pleasurable beauty of it. As a design co-pilot, I can testify that these features add a truly value-added dimension to the curb appeal and resale value of a home – yada yada yada. As eye candy, it is even better. And that’s my thing.
Click any and all images to enlarge – even twice for detail)
Now, typical me – I have often decided long after the “kits” became unavailable to order in a timely fashion that- “Wow!” - some sort of this circular mode of paver patterns might be ‘just the thing’!
The above picture, for example, originally looked boring as heck. All those nice tumbled pavers, set on in rows like little soldiers just wrecked my personal appreciation of a very special project overall. So – I decided to add a bit of “gingerbread!’ And did. It took Kenny about 3 days to successfully negotiate this particular feature and he took to it like a man possessed. I’d stop by and comment (not always well-received, lol) and be bossy and stuff.
This following feature was one I had my very own gnarly hands in, on a project with John Stone. Naturally, no one bothered considering whether or not “Circle Kits” were available for this particular stone and thus it became yet another round of hand work, cutting, chipping, antiquing and swearing – in no set order. In this case, that fire pit determined the desirability of circularity and I happened to agree, wholeheartedly.
I’ve posted this picture elsewhere and, as I recall, the comment was something along the lines of “Only a landscaper could appreciate this picture.” There is definitely some truth in that. These shots give some idea as to what is involved when someone opts – late in the game – to add circularity to brick paver expanses. Inasmuch as we are dealing with “Tumbled Pavers” – those pavers intended to give a worn, antiqued sort of solidity – it is actually easier rather than harder to make them fit. In these cases “approximate” is still good owing to the greater tolerances between the bricks allowed by these “old suckers”. What is a bit more challenging, from a strict design sense, is integrating the colors and style of the two radically different bricks featured here. We’ll check out the result below.
A better look at the working environment above shows the cutting machine very, very close by. It is loud and obnoxious but walking any distance to deal with the enormous numbers of cuts involved in a circular adjustment is plain cruel and hugely time-wasting. Heaven forbid! The other consideration involved with cutting and shaping anything somewhat Feaux aged such as these, involves how truly exact the cuts are, when completed. Naturally enough, the diamond blade saw will leave a clear and extremely well defined edge where the cut was made. It seems to sometimes shock people to watch us sit there with hammers and pound the edges down to a similar antique edge – or grind them – to replicate the other 4 edges, but that is exactly what we do. We “ruin” them to save them, as it were.
Of course, from there, we polish off all the edges from the other paver styles, having them meet the outer edge of that stupid circle we aspired to. Band aids help the process. As in all projects, we spread the sand and sweep it in just prior to re-compacting it all to a uniform surface. Also, as in all projects, the carpenters wanted us out of the way, “Yesterday”, so they could work somewhere beside the mud which we seemed to take to so naturally. It took a total of about 7.573 minutes for us to spread the sand before the table saw in the picture above showed up.
Here is the finished look of that area, subtly integrated with some success. I was unable to get back and take more pictures owing to the rapid strain of financial necessity. We left. Hey – we were done, lol.
Now, some circles can also be rendered using other items – like wall blocks to form circular things such as Patio Fire Pits in otherwise unlikely areas:
A bit more finished look. That is a lot of grinding, lol:
Next time, I’ll deal with curves – always a favorite! – and how we do much the same thing, using boring square and rectangular items to form the curves and somehow sinewy passages of non-linear walks, patios and even driveways.