Summer DIY Backyard Patio Refresh Under $50 – Copper String Lights + Spray Paint a Faded Umbrella

It all started with a little inspiration.

These lights.

I saw them, fell in love, and had to have them.

If you are looking to spend a little time to spruce up any part of your home, now is the time to do it – SO MUCH is on crazy sale, it’s the best time to do it! I saw these copper lights on a Monday, went back and forth over if I could make them work in our backyard patio area in the city, went back on a Thursday and they were slashed in price! Orig. $29, on sale for $14 {which I thought was a great deal} and when I went back for them – $7!!!! WHAT!?! I bought 3 sets and was on a mission.

Backyard city lights are the best, and these were an amazing deal.

But then I had this problem – seriously faded umbrella.

Nothing else was wrong with it, except the discoloring, which was serious as you can see. I wish I took a before picture with it up with the lights, but you can imagine, it did NOT look good. The new lights were so fresh and so clean and the umbrella was not fitting in with my new backyard vibe.

Here’s the before after I took it off the umbrella body and washed it – both of which were super easy I might add.

Not cute.

I did a little research and was able to find a super affordable outdoor fabric spray paint at my local hardware store – each can was about $4 {like these} – I got 3 of them and each can was basically a full coat on the umbrella. You let each layer dry for about 25 minutes and then on to the next.

The spray paint was pretty easy to locate – you just have to make sure it’s indoor/outdoor spray paint that works on fabric – should clearly say it on the back. I did a full layer to make it even and then focused a bit on the whited out sections of the umbrella.

After two coats:

Third coat – red & rich!

For $12 spent on spray paint, instead of the cost of a whole new umbrella, I think it looks pretty amazing. Along with the new refresh, I moved some things around in our patio area, basically putting all the kid stuff behind a corner, so it’s more of an ‘adult’s space’ and it feels so much more inviting to spend time out there!

You can get an idea of what it looked like previously here & here.

And guess what? Since that refresh, almost two weeks ago – we’ve spent SO MUCH more time out back – it’s a great space to have in the city, sort of an extension of our living room. We’ve had dinner back there most nights and it’s been lovely.

I still want to do a little more, maybe find some new pillows and what not, but it was a great start and a fun project I was able to do on my own in a few hours. The hubs came home from work one day and was completely surprised!

And now I think I’ve got the DIY Home Improvement bug – what should I work on next?

I’d love to hear from you – are you a DIYer? What’s the best thing you’ve updated?!

Please share!

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1 Comment

  • Reply Patricia July 27, 2018 at 6:43 am

    Fabulous job and a big look change in your patio area! You have inspired me to paint our faded umbrella too! Those copper inspired lights are awesome!

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