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How To Paint Concrete Lawn Ornaments

Updated on February 23, 2013
Natural (unpainted) concrete
Natural (unpainted) concrete

Spruce up your yard or garden

Concrete lawn ornaments are a great way to spruce up your yard or garden. They come in so many different varieties that you can always find something that is right up your ally. Whether you like wildlife like deer, bears, or other animals, or if you prefer things like a dutch girl and boy, or jockeys you will be able to find an ornament that will fit your personality.

My mother and her husband ran a concrete lawn ornament business for 7 years. I was amazed at the variety that they had and what you could do with them. To this day their yard is loaded with ornaments and it really adds a lot to their yard.

The ornaments usually come natural, or unpainted. They did get some that were prepainted, but they painted most of their own.

Unpainted girl on log concrete statue

A little paint can make this stand out
A little paint can make this stand out

No Experience Necessary

Neither of them had any previous experience painting anything let alone lawn ornaments. It really isn't that involved or difficult. They went on to teach many. My nephew was about 12 at the time and he did a great job painting many ornaments for them. Their neighbor also loved to come over and paint for them. None of them had any previous artistic abilities.

They would also let my children try to paint too. They were about 6 and 4 at the time. The ornaments that they painted definitely were a little rough. So I wouldn't say "anybody can do it!"

Painted Bear

This painted bear looks great in a yard
This painted bear looks great in a yard


Painting concrete lawn ornaments can be great fun and very relaxing. It just takes a little bit of know how and a few tools. Painting concrete isn't like painting a painting.

1. Start by cleaning the piece thoroughly. This can be accomplished in many ways:

  • Power washing,
  • jet spray from a garden hose,
  • brushing loose dust off with a stiff brush

These are a few of the ways to prepare your piece. You can use warm, soapy water if needed. Just make sure to rinse the soap off thoroughly. Check your piece over to see if there are any needed repairs or rough seams that should be smoothed down.

2. Once the concrete is clean and dry, you will paint the piece with a base coat. Since the concrete is porous, you need to use a latex block filler which can be found at most hardware or paint stores.

3. When the base coat is dry, use a dry brush and paint the piece with the colors chosen. You can use exterior latex paint and can get any colors you wish.

4. Concrete sealer or an outdoor sealer can be used to help protect the paint from the weather. It won't protect it forever, but it will add life to your painting.

Deer ornaments

Deer ornaments, both painted and natural
Deer ornaments, both painted and natural

Repainting Or Touching Up Ornaments

If you have ornaments that are already painted and just need touching up (or maybe you just don't like the paint job on them!) you can still follow the instructions above. You just need to decide if you will be painting the entire ornament or just doing a little touch up.

Touching Up: Touching up an already painted ornament is simple. Just make sure the ornament is clean and then just simply touch up the areas that need it. Once done, cover with a sealer.

Repainting: Repainting an ornament is like starting from scratch. Just make sure the ornament is clean, then cover the existing paint with a base coat. Follow all instructions above as if the ornament was never painted. Once done, cover with a sealer.

Painted Bear with Fish and Basket

This cute little bear is full of personality
This cute little bear is full of personality

Using Ornaments to Decorate Your Yard or Garden

Concrete ornaments can be used in so many different ways. You can use them as a centerpiece in your yard, or just as accents. My mother used to put some in her flower beds. They were not always right out in the open. Sometimes they were hidden amoung the flowers and plants. She also used many around her pond. It really added a lot of character.

They actually had a loch ness monster on one end of her yard that was mostly visable from the road as people drove by. She lived on a highway with a lot of traffic so it was seen by many!

Many people also like concrete ornaments for gravesites. A little angel or a stone with a saying can be very nice. The only problem is that they are sometimes stolen. It's sad that someone could steal an ornament off of a grave but it unfortunately happens.

However you choose to use concrete ornaments, they can be a great addition to your landscaping.

Concrete Jocky

These are popular statues with many.  They are not my personal favorites.
These are popular statues with many. They are not my personal favorites.


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    • profile image

      Teresa 2 years ago

      I wondered how to get the edges of extra concrete cleaned up?

    • ytsenoh profile image

      Cathy 4 years ago from Louisiana, Idaho, Kauai, Nebraska, South Dakota, Missouri

      Philip, this hub was interesting and you did do a good job with your content and instructions. The images, especially the bear, provide a good visual of what can be accomplished with this hobby or skill.

    • Philip4 profile image

      Michele Redmond 4 years ago from Central NY

      Thank you. I enjoy writing and love to be able to share knowledge that can help others!

    • dilipchandra12 profile image

      Dilip Chandra 4 years ago from India

      Useful hub Philip. Well written, i voted it UP