Asked on May 29, 2020

How to make a decorative river rock wall

by Sandy

Looking to DIY a rock look on a wall. Would like to find something I can sculpt my own rocks with. I have been told cement would be to heavy on a drywall backing. Does anyone know of a lightweight sculptable product I could make individual stones then apply them with mortar or even if mortar itself would work in the sculpting process. I don't need to make them very thick but would lick to make some of them at least 12 inches wide. On a limited budget of course.

would like the look to be somewhat like this...

  19 answers
  • GrandmasHouseDIY GrandmasHouseDIY on May 29, 2020

    I'm wondering if you could use cardboard or foam board cut to the shapes of the stones and then cover them with a light coating of motor to achieve the look you want without the weight?

  • Kathy Gunter Law Kathy Gunter Law on May 29, 2020

    You might try sculpting them from styrofoam. You can also buy faux rock panels like on this house.

    comment photo
  • William William on May 29, 2020

    This question has already been answered

    Drywall will not carry the weight of concrete. Use foam board insulation to make the stone.

  • Agnes Chrzanowska Agnes Chrzanowska on May 30, 2020

    it all depends what rocks you are going to use .. for sure you need metal mat and some good tinsel and lots of imagination

  • Jan Clark Jan Clark on May 30, 2020

    For an interior or exterior wall? In the theatre, we created faux stone by shaping chicken wire around crumpled paper then applied paper mache on the surface before painting and sealing. Then we used a mastic to attach it. If this IS an interior wall, remember not to make the depth of the stone too wide. It will be impossible to clean! Happy creating!

  • Robyn Garner Robyn Garner on May 30, 2020

    I think your easiest way would be to use something called Great Stuff. It's a spray like whipped cream that expands A LOT! Depending how much area you want to cover, it may not be really cheap but also won't be too pricey (maybe you can order a case???) and will be light, easy, and fun to do!

    It's used to spray into things like cracks around a window casing. You shoot it in and it explodes A LOT! (you do notice I am really warning you lol!) I think you should spray some into a small box at first to get an idea of how big it gets.

    Let it harden - happens pretty fast - and you can carve it with any kind of knife or box cutter. It's also paintable.

    You haven't told us what the project is and this won't work for something like a walkway but your pic is a wall and this will be perfect! You have GOT to let me know how things go and a picture of your final project puhleeze?!? After all, I'm the one who told you what to use lol! 😎

  • Jeremy Hoffpauir Jeremy Hoffpauir on May 31, 2020

    Interior or exterior wall?

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Jun 01, 2020

    Hello there,

    As it so happens, I have a large quantity of faux cladding stone sitting on my driveway at this moment - pity I think I will end up selling through eBay sooner or later. Do you want this stone for indoor or outdoor use, as you could use a styrene that is safe for the home or even Very heavy Super Glypta wall paper to give that effect.

  • K. Rupp K. Rupp on Jun 01, 2020

    This seems like your best bet!!! I knew these existed because a restaurant near our house used this when they remodeled....

    Also, if you are thinking about something to diy, you could make your own concrete stones. You would have to remove your drywall and put up wonderboard to make this work so that it's not too heavy....

    Here is how to make your own concrete stones:

    Good luck!!! Looks like a great project!

  • Em Em on Jun 01, 2020

    Home Depot or Lowe's carries tile that looks like rock that is super thin.

  • You could use joint compound though that expense might add up quick. You could also carve stones out of pink insulation or white bead foam sheets, then prime and paint.

    • See 2 previous
    • Sandy Sandy on Jun 04, 2020

      thank you ...had no idea there was a coating will definitely look into this thank you

  • Redcatcec Redcatcec on Nov 07, 2022

    You could do a paper mache version of rocks and then paint them and seal. Mastic will hold them in place.

  • Mogie Mogie on Nov 08, 2022

    Is this interior or exterior?

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Nov 11, 2022

    Go shoping at the big DIY stores. They should be able to help you gat what you are looking for.

  • Annie Annie on Sep 22, 2023

    This video may help:

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Sep 22, 2023

    Had you thought to use Paper Mache and a various moulds lying around your home?

  • Mogie Mogie on Sep 25, 2023

  • Janice Janice on Oct 15, 2023

    The paper mache idea should work well. Perhaps you can find some rock "molds" at the big box home improvement store ie onkubw. They would be much lighter than any type of concrete, use up old newspapers/paper, etc. Add flour & water and you could then paint to look like rocks. What a fun project this could be.

  • Plaster of Paris may be light enough.