Patio Makeover – The Before & Nitty Grittys

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Have you ever read that sweet child’s story,  “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie”? The story goes, “If you give a mouse, a cookie, he’s going to ask for a glass of milk. When you give him the milk, he’ll probably ask you for a straw”…and so on. It’s a circular tale about a series of events happening all because of a cookie. Our patio makeover is titled, “If You Give a Lady a Patio Set”. Seriously.

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Last winter my parents said I could have their worn out patio set, and I gladly accepted. It had seen better days, was missing a chair and coffee table that had rotted out, but the couch, other chair and ottoman were still functional…sort of.

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

The back rest of the chair was missing a slat, the ottoman had a rotted leg, and the couch back slats were about to fall out as well. So why would I take these things? If you know me, I just couldn’t let them go to the dump or fire pit.

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

*post was sponsored by DFOHome and HomeRight, and does contain affiliate links (see full disclosure)

Our current patio had consisted of the mud bar and sand table we built our kids (DIY tutorials if you click on each project), a hand-me-down grill, and a mixed set of curbside patio chairs paired with Freecycle glass table. It served us well for several years and wasn’t planning on replacing unless it fell apart.

So, when my parents offered, I thought, “Why not?”. I’d like to change it up and I wasn’t about to spend big bucks to buy something my kids would mutilate. tsk. This, my friends, is how you end up spending more time and money on a patio makeover than you’d ever think. All because you give a lady a patio set.

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Originally, we were going to just paint the set, and call it quits, but then DFOHome contacted me to see if I would like to try some of their product. My jaw hit the counter because they were offering patio supplies. What awesome timing?! I eagerly accepted knowing this was a blessing. Let me just say choosing what to pick was not easy. They have an awesome selection!

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

After deciding to pick out some curtains, we had planned to put up some posts and hang the curtains between them in the corner of our patio. Well, like I said, the story goes on…we went from posts to full-blown pergola. Oh yeah!

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

*side note: We do plan to replace the sidewalk (damaged from a ginormous tree we had removed) and to have the patio elevated to close the crack, but the estimate for that was $800 and didn’t fit our budget. We plan to wait for the freeze and thaw of winter then get it done.

Just getting started with building the pergola had a bit of hurdles. Our head-banging experience with ordering lumber from Menards set us back (we will never use them again because this is the second time they’ve screwed up our lumber order and make no recompense to fix it). Finally, the lumber arrived late, but at least arrived, and we got started.

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Our patio is roughly 18′ x 20′, and that is no small space at over 300 sq ft. This was no “let’s just paint the patio set” project anymore. wow. The whole family got into the patio makeover. We have been working our tails off to get this thing done.

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

A pergola is a simple build, but when custom orders come in for my shop, lumber delays, required overtime for my hubby comes along, it can slow things down. But…we got it done.

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Here it is in rough form…still needs the grid slats on top and another header in the middle.

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Once that was done, my husband pressure-washed the patio, and I spent some 10 hours up on a ladder staining. This was my view for about  3-4 days. Remember, I have 6 kiddos, so getting a large chunk of time to work is nearly impossible. Oh, and they all got sick while I was working on this, so time went v e r y  s l o w….

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

I considered using my HomeRight Heavy Duty Paint Sprayer we used in our boys’ room, but since this was a lone job and I didn’t want to climb up and down to backbrush, I decided to just brush it out myself. whew.

The stain of choice is Sikkens Proluxe in Oxford Brown. A rich, deep color that suited our rustic exterior. It went on easily and created such a lovely color.

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Once the structure was up for our patio makeover, it was time to get to work on the extras, like the patio set that started all this. hee hee.

There was no way I was going to brush the set by hand, so I eagerly whipped out my HomeRight Finish Max Paint Sprayer, the one I’ve used several times on a dining set and a highchair. I had this set first coated in about 20 minutes. SCORE!!

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

My color choice was an exterior seconds paint I found a couple of years ago that I’ve used on our shutters and on our home. It’s a subtle taupe color that blends well with the outdoors.

Now don’t laugh, but I also sprayed the cushions. They’re in sound condition, but had fading. We were given a free glider swing at one point that was really rough, I cleaned it up and spray painted the ENTIRE thing, including upholstery. It lasted until the day we SOLD it 5 years later. So of course I would do it again.

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

I went for another neutral beige color, gave each side a couple of coats, let cure, then sanded down with a bit of sand paper. You would never know the difference. Here’s a sneak peek from my last post how I’m creating the decor for our space.

Two thrifted planters get a faux zinc makeover that take them from throw away to French beauties by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Next came the free porch swing my dad gave me about the same time as the patio set. It was originally green, but we gave it a good pressure washing, removed the rusty hardware and chains (I’m keeping those in my stash!!), and gave it a fresh coat with my sprayer too.

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

We gave it a dry run before painting and I can already tell this is going to be a sweet spot for everyone.

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

One coat done in 1o minutes…you can’t beat it!

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

After that, it was time for the curtains and hardware. Just look at how gorgeous they are!

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Easy install and functional right away. I’m lovin’ it.

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

One other addition that struck my brain was a coffee table. Not just any coffee table, but a funky one, of course.

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

I had this pair of washtubs that I found on Craigslist just burning to be used for something, and when the idea struck me I ran with it…a coffee table with storage…and on casters! YIPPEE!!

My stash had the most perfect pallet wood for this project…

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

…and it dawned on me to make use of a side of our torn down trash bin I just couldn’t send to the dump. It’s been leaning on the side of our house for a year and I’ve used it as a photo backdrop, but now it will be my coffee table top. You’re seeing the back side here, the other is rounded paneling.

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

I got to be friends with our table saw again – I buzzed my fingers a couple of years ago, and have been nervous ever since, but this got me back in the saddle.

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

This is the underside of my coffee table lid using the trash bin wall torn apart and rebuilt. Just needs a spine and some screws.

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Also, my favorite tool, the Kreg Jig, was also my best friend. If only you could see inside my head at all the things I want to build with this thing. It makes it so easy!
If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Don’t you love how I’m using a vanity to work? tsk. Gotta get my work table built…soon!

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Here are my casters of choice…they’re rustic, industrial style and oh so perfect. ♥

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

I can’t wait to show you it completed…not yet, but soon. We are also building a farmhouse table with benches and adding lighting. Then there’s the fun stuff, like these orb planters I scored for a dollar. Can you guess what I’ll be using them for?

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio overhaul is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

My hope is that you’ve had fun seeing our patio transform. We want to encourage you to make use of random items to create your own unique space. ⇒ UPDATE: The final reveal of our patio makeover can be seen HERE!!

I’d love it if you’d share our patio makeover to inspire others too!

If You Give a Lady a Patio Set...this major patio makeover is the result of receiving a free patio set. With a DIY attitude, we're creating an outdoor room complete with pergola, dining, swing, and living room. Come see! by Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.com

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More DIY goodness for you like our patio makeover:

Two thrifted planters get a faux zinc makeover that take them from throw away to French beauties by Prodigal Pieces www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpiecesdiy-faux-wood-garage-door

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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15 Comments

  • Debra Shoppe No 5

    I love what you have done so far. It is like a new addition to the house. This post is filled with a ton of good ideas.

    September 11, 2015 at 8:27 am Reply
    • Larissa

      It is. An outdoor space and it’s amazing how we are enjoying it already. So glad you enjoyed it!

      September 11, 2015 at 3:47 pm Reply
  • Kimm at Reinvented

    Oh my goodness, I CANNOT WAIT to see the final reveal! The suspense is killing me! 🙂 LOVE the pergola.

    September 11, 2015 at 8:46 am Reply
    • Larissa

      hee hee. We don’t mean to tease, but just so much has been going on and to put it all in one post would be a book! 🙂 Thank you, Kimm.

      September 11, 2015 at 3:46 pm Reply
  • Diane

    Cant wait to see the finished result of all your efforts…I would love one of those paint sprayers maybe i can persuade my husband to get me one for christmas! That and a staple gun!

    September 11, 2015 at 10:35 am Reply
  • Marie@The Interior Frugalista

    I can’t wait for the full reveal Larissa! I think I know what’s happening with those orb planters and if I’m right, they are going to be mahvelous dahling! Your patio is coming along beautifully.

    September 11, 2015 at 3:06 pm Reply
    • Larissa

      I think you know me too well, girl. 😉

      September 11, 2015 at 3:45 pm Reply
  • Mary Prinzavalli

    Very nice and I’m sure you will love being out there. You will make lots of memory with your children as they love to be outside. When my children were little, we lived on a small man made lake which had outlets with very little water in them and t hey would pack a lunch and go down to that area. They would watch tadpoles in the shallow water and watch ants make ant hills and probably did a lot of make believe. I wish children would do more of that these days but there is too much technology. I’ll bet your children love to be outside as you have a great back yard.

    September 11, 2015 at 3:12 pm Reply
    • Larissa

      We are always outside and sort of dread the winter months. But, maybe we’ll be having a party in the winter now. 😉 So many memories from being together.

      September 11, 2015 at 3:44 pm Reply
  • Erica @ Dwell Beautiful

    Eeee I love it! Can’t wait to see the full reveal! Everything just looks so relaxing and wonderful 🙂 Can I come over? 😉

    September 11, 2015 at 3:25 pm Reply
    • Larissa

      We are so excited and are anxious to wrap up this project and share, Then have a party!! 😀 Come on over!

      September 11, 2015 at 3:43 pm Reply
  • GWEN

    okay, i’m EXHAUSTED just reading about all you’ve accomplished! it looks fantastic! one question – why did you NOT coat the beams BEFORE assembling them? i’m guessing those hanging baskets you scored for $1 are going to be lights? LOVE, LOVE, LOVE all your ideas AND that you get them done! (p.s. such a cute photo of the ponytails and porch swing- hey, i think those could be lyrics in a song!)

    September 12, 2015 at 8:35 am Reply
    • Larissa

      Hahaha…we didn’t stain before because we would need an enormous amount of space and have to only stain one side at a time. THAT would be a headache worse than the other. Thank you for the love!

      September 14, 2015 at 11:45 am Reply
  • Lymari Navarro

    Love how it’s coming along. What a great extended space:)

    September 14, 2015 at 3:13 pm Reply
    • Larissa

      Thank you! We love how it seems to really enlarge our home space and family space too. We can’t wait to wrap up this project and enjoy.

      September 15, 2015 at 10:32 am Reply

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