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Vacation Projects: The Patio Set

July 11, 2011

So we have this funny little patio area out back. Definitely needed a table and some chairs. But have you shopped for patio furniture lately? Minimum $350 and up to over $1000. For patio furniture. Um, no thanks.

So I found some chairs on the side of the road. And decided that I could do better than pay $500 for two chairs and a table.

This is the “before.” It’s actually VERY before because this is a card table, not the actual table (I hadn’t found the actual table yet). This photo does not do justice to how trashed these chairs really were. The back of one of them came right off when you pulled just slightly, and all the varnish was coming off in dusty flakes. Covered in cobwebs and redwood needles. Yuck. Still, they had such a neat pattern on the back that I thought I could do something with them. Also: free! Tablecloth was $2.50 at Ross and I decided to use it for color inspiration. The seats were so gross that we had covered them in towels just so we could sit down out here every so often until I got around to finishing them.

See what I mean? Gross.

I found a table on Craigslist for $20 (came with a leaf, so it can seat 6-8 if we wanted). It had a formica top so I knew I would need heavy-duty primer and would need to do some good sanding.

Nice to be able to do this in the garage when it’s windy outside, like it was when I was trying to prep these.

Five million coats of paint later (that’s what you get for playing it cheap), we have a very very cute patio dining set.

Grand total for the whole project? Probably around $60. $20 for the table, and $40 for paint, sandpaper, fabric and stuffing for the chairs.

Not too bad.

The only problem is that this looks so cute, now we want to go out and get a new colorful outdoor rug, some chinese lantern lights, and something really needs to be done about that boring wall behind the furniture.

In time. For now, I’m so happy to have another project crossed off the list, and just in time for some guests coming later this week!

13 Comments leave one →
  1. July 11, 2011 5:08 pm

    Very nice make over! 😀 (And outdoor furniture is *insanely* overpriced: i wanted a chair I could sit in and not aggravate my fibro, and I finally got one for $32 thanks to a JC Penney sale, but that was down from $120. For one chair. ?!)

    • July 11, 2011 5:09 pm

      Make that $140, actually! I mean who would pay that?!

  2. July 11, 2011 6:23 pm

    That’s part of the reason why we did this — Terri needs to sit upright (not slouched back) and they’re impossible to find, and if you do, they’re crazy expensive. This solution fit our needs and was cheap!

  3. July 11, 2011 8:09 pm

    oh my god chinese lanterns would totally complete the look.

    beautiful job. i love how DIY you are. im totally motivated by the fact that you picked up something half dead on the side of the road and created something gorgeous.

    and yes, patio furniture is INSANELY priced. much of it costs more than my inside furniture. WTF?!

    • July 11, 2011 10:10 pm

      We are totally getting Chinese lanterns tomorrow! And maybe something to replace the totally skanky rugs out there now.

      YOU inspire ME, Miss Roadside Garbage Lady. Are you kidding? You’re the queen of trash transformation.

      That’s exactly what I was thinking: I am not paying more for my patio furniture than I did for my dining room set. Not that I paid a lot for that, because I didn’t, but that’s even more reason why not.

      Besides, you can’t buy a set this cute!

  4. July 12, 2011 4:13 am

    Beautiful! Outdoor furniture is pretty ridiculous. You can find some inexpensive Adirondack chairs around here ($20 each), but other than that, I’m always surprised how much it costs. I guess it does have to be sturdier than indoor furniture, but still. Considering we’re only going to be in this apartment another month and our next apartment has the tiniest balcony ever, we’re holding off outdoor furniture. I DO want to start getting planters though! Maybe our whole balcony will just be flowers.

    • July 12, 2011 11:11 am

      That sounds awesome! I mean, I could get a really cheap little set from Target, but Terri’s back needed something a little more comfortable. And frankly this solution is way cute!

  5. Mom permalink
    July 12, 2011 7:05 am

    As for your wall, Daph, you’re the artist lady!!! You could do a wonderful mural, I’m sure.

  6. July 12, 2011 8:51 am

    Oh Daph! It looks fantastic! Very impressive.

    • July 12, 2011 11:12 am

      Not very impressive, but fun. I’m just glad another project is off the list! (thanks!)

  7. trapunto permalink
    July 12, 2011 4:23 pm

    Ooh, I hate sanding. I just did a shelf (wall shelf!) this weekend and resented every minute. You did a beautiful job, so much prettier than “real” outdoor furniture! That is great seat cover material, by the way.

    • July 12, 2011 6:40 pm

      Thank you, Dad, for the electric sander. Whew, made a tough job much easier. I’ve had this sander for… at least 7 years? And just opened it now. But! It was great to have it. The seat cover fabric was on sale in the remmnants bin at Beverly’s. At half price, an excellent deal. It’s even “upholstery” fabric, whatever that means.

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