Concrete Lions Before and After Before & After Concrete Lions

They were painted in this hideous, ‘Eddie Munster Creepy’ look, so it was easy to pass on by and not even give them a 2nd glance.  Yet, they found their way into my possession and have been transformed into something very different looking!

They weren’t even marked for sale… But as it is, or should I say, as I am, things tend to sit in my brain and start to gain momentum bouncing around until I  realize there may be something to it…

That’s how it was with this ugly brown pair of concrete lions, previously sitting in someone’s backyard, flanking their tin storage shed… Soooo easy to just not give them a 2nd glance… and I didn’t… give them a 2nd glance, or a 3rd glance for that matter… because it was a yard sale just a block or so from our house, and as it turned out, I actually stopped in there a few times in 2 days… re-checking their stash as they were pulling things out from the house to sell.

But every time I didn’t give this lion pair a thought.

Not until after the 4th visit, (I know… 4 times? ha ha I swear, I’m not a ‘garage sale stalker’!)

Then I was telling my husband about the sale, and it suddenly popped in my head about these lions. Strange how one can have stuff in their head, and hardly even be conscious of it until suddenly it pops out like that.

He was interested in seeing them, so off we went… again… well at least this time he was with me, maybe there would be a chance they wouldn’t notice it was me back again…

It wasn’t until that final trip to the sale that I even asked the gal if she wanted to sell them.

Well, long story short…

Here they are in our yard, waiting for something to happen to them: Before & After Concrete Lions

They had these wonderful concrete bases.

Wonderfully heavy, my husband may add. Since we lived so close to the sale, he decided it’d be easiest to transport them to our house via furniture dolly… forget loading them up into and out of a truck…

So that’s what he did… back and forth he went with the dolly, hauling 1 piece at a time. He estimated they weighed a couple hundred pounds each… I know I tried to move them, and couldn’t budge them.

I brushed them with a wire brush to remove the dirt and lichen growing on them.

Then sprayed them with the hose and let them dry for a day.

Next day, after my husband moved them to a tarp on the grass, I started to spray paint them… Before & After Concrete Lions

I liked the way the Rustoleum hammered bronze paint looked on them… more of an old cast iron garden statue look.

Here’s a tip, (and it’s a life-saving… well, finger-saving tip!) get this handy spray paint sprayer attachment. It makes spray painting so so so much easier! (see links at end of this post)

Here you can see the comparison of the brown vs. the black: Before & After Concrete Lions

Two to three coats of paint later, they were done, and sat in the backyard, looking like they are keeping an eye on the back fence for a few days until we had time to move them to their permanent home. Before & After Concrete Lions


at the front entry of our 100 year old house…. Before & After Concrete Lions

On a side note: The boxwood topiaries in the planters are all faux, (in other words Fake!) but they are so real looking, even when you are standing next to them, it’s very difficult to tell. I really wanted fresh greenery here, but no sun, so these were a wonderful maintenance free solution. (Here are several choices online) I’ve had them there year round, through cold NW Wisconsin winters and they still look fantastic!

The concrete walkway going up to the front steps looks like it was made special for this pair to flank the stairs. The perfect sized pads flank out on each side of the walk where the stairs start, just the right size for the base of the pedestal.

So why lions at all?

Well… a couple of thoughts about that…

First, it is somewhat historically fitting for lions or something similar to be used in the garden entrance of a home of this age etc.

But really, mostly the reason for lions at our home, isn’t so much the historical-ness but because my husband’s Italian surname, was translated into ‘mountain lion’… that was before the officials at Ellis Island shortened it to sound more ‘American’. So a few lion things are always family favorites in our home. Before & After Concrete Lions

Even though these lions seemed huge, especially when he was hauling them on the dolly home, in relation to the size of the house, they don’t look huge at all.

I was concerned that they might look a bit ostentatious, but I’m so relieved to see they don’t at all. I actually love how they just tuck in at the front steps and fit in with the other pieces.

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This post is linked at Between Naps on the Porch

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