Stay with me on this post, it’s a little long but the result is so good! Have you ever made plans and saved for a larger purchase only to have your plans totally get derailed? That’s exactly what happened to us this spring. You see, we have a really large patio that we practically live on during the spring and summer. We love having family dinners, inviting friends over and just hanging out in the warm California sun. This spring we were planning on buying a new patio set and setting up a larger sitting area so we could hang out more comfortably outside. Also on the agenda – new chairs with a slimmer profile for the patio table so that we could fit more chairs there (did I mention I have a big family?).
Well, we were hit with a huge tax bill this April, much larger than we anticipated (we actually hadn’t anticipated one at all!). That devastated us for more reasons than one. But, I was so determined though to not be miserable and I really didn’t want to change my plans, so we decided to do a budget patio. All in all we spent under $300. We had a lot of space to fill, so we reused as much as possible and revamped as much as possible and got creative where we could.
As you can see from the photo, our patio is actually a decent size. We have a large wood dining table and benches that Sean and I made last year (we made it from this plan), it seats 10+ and it is awesome (in a pinch we can fit 4 kids on each bench!). We have a sofa sitting area and at the far end we have a fire pit with some chairs. Nothing was cohesive and it all looked kind of bare and not pulled together. Not to mention, the finishes were really worn and the cushions were really old and run down.
A few summers ago my sister-in-law gave me their hand me down furniture. I was super happy to get it since the set I had was literally falling apart. But after a few years at her house and then an additional few years at my house, as you can see they look so sad and worn! There was a lot of it, 4 chairs, 2 ottomans, a loveseat, 2 larger chairs and coffee table. Replacing all of that would have cost us so much. So we got to work fixing these up!
After tightening and replacing the majority of the screws – there were many times I thought that a chair was going to fall apart when someone sat in it, we got to work painting. We bought Rust-oleum spray paint that works on plastic. You guys, the thing that made ALL THE DIFFERENCE in spraying painting all that furniture was that spray trigger on the top of the can. OMG it was like using an electric sprayer! The paint went on so easily and smooth and my finger did not hurt after going through one can of paint! I would strongly recommend that you buy one of those and just keep it on hand for all your spray painting needs. It’s less than $5, so well worth the money.
I also threw away all the cushions on the chairs around the dining table, and the back cushions on the other chairs. The seat cushions on the larger chairs had already been destroyed a few months ago (have I mentioned my dog yet, Coco – destroyer of all things?). The rest of the cushions that were on the chairs around the fire pit and the sofa were thrown in the washer.
After that, here is where we got really inventive with what we had. I went through all of our closets and garage and pulled out things that were hidden away, un-used or under-used in other areas of our home. I also went to my moms’ house and got all kinds of succulent cuttings from their garden.
And here’s how it turned out! I’m so thrilled with how it turned out and how warm and cozy it is now. We have already celebrated our mothers day lunch out here with my family and I can’t wait to use it more.
By adding new turquoise cushions on the lounge chairs and matching ones on the dining chairs it brightened up all the black furniture. I was also able to find a perfect rug at World Market that coordinated with the turquoise cushions. Deep blue planters from Costco planted with citrus trees bring the whole space together. Everything was bought on sale which drastically cut down on all my costs.
By planting succulent cuttings in planters we already had I was able to create some green areas for just the cost of dirt. I also brought some indoor accessories outdoors like a couple throw pillows and throws.
Our new drink station was brought to life by using an old buffet that I had bought years ago at a garage sale for $20. It had been sitting in someones garage for years and desperately needed a paint job. After that, it sat in my dining room but I recently decided to move it outdoors and moved something else in it’s place indoors. The white lanterns had been on the side of the house leftover from our wedding. And the plant basket had been sitting unused inside. The cute mason jars were created from this tutorial and frame our new bar area so nicely. Another, smaller rug, bring blues over to this space and brighten the area up.
Don’t the flowers look so pretty in this corner? I arranged this using grocery store flowers using this tutorial.
Don’t you just LOVE this little potting area! This black iron bike rack that I had bought years ago from Ballard Designs had been sitting unused on the side of our house. I pulled it out and we now use it for staging all our garden plants that Sean is getting ready to plant. The small table used to live in Analiese’s room, but has been in our garage for a few months, it was serendipity that the color matched all our new cushions. I have a black thumb, but Sean’s is all green. So this little area will definitely come in handy.
We bought this firepit at the end of last season for a REALLY good price (I think we paid $70). It’s so nice to have it setup in a nice area so we can actually use it. The ledge makes it perfect to rest drinks on.
The dining area got a mini upgrade with a couple a couple lanterns, a wood planter that I received at a fundraiser planted with succulents and melamine plates and place mats that we already had.
This is where we ended up spending our money.
Dining cushions – $9.99 x 6 – 59.94
Lounge cushions – $23.99 x 2 – $47.98
Throw pillows – $8.99 x 2 – $17.98
Outdoor rugs – $13.99 + $31.99
Planters – $20.00 x 2 – $40.00
Citrus Trees – $20.00 x 2 – $20.00
Miscellaneous Plants and Dirt – $30.00
Spray Paint – $10.00
Total – $271.88
The motto of this story, when it comes to creating a space on a budget is beg, borrow and steal from un-used and under-used areas of your home!
And if you are interested in this look for a budget patio – here you go!
- black wicker patio set | 2. lounge cushion | 3. globe string lights | 4. outdoor rug | 5. throw pillow | 6. lemon tree | 7. large resin pot | 8. outdoor patio table | 9. lantern | 10. patio chairs | 11. patio chair cushion | 12. wooden cart | 13. buffet | 14. wicker basket
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