Ways to Reupholster Outdoor Furniture

Outdoor furniture is generally made of wood, metal and wicker. While these type of outdoor furniture looks good on its own, most homeowners prefer to have some cushions placed over the furniture for comfort and style. But as these cushions are left out in the open, it fades over time and becomes dusty and dirty. While it is possible to wash them out, there are some cushions that are fixed to the furniture and cannot be cleaned out. So the next best thing to do would be to reupholster the furniture to give it a fresh look.

If you are tired of looking at the same chaise lounge and outdoor benches and chairs, then reupholstering the furniture is a great idea. While choosing upholstery fabric, make sure that they are weatherproof. Water resistant and fade resistant fabric like solution-dyed acrylics and canvas are just right for upholstering outdoor or patio furniture. It is always better to stick to a warm and bright color palette with bold prints for outdoor furniture. Once you have figured out which fabric to choose for reupholstering your outdoor furniture, you need to get all the supplies for doing the same.

Reupholstering Outdoor Furniture

Things required

  • Outdoor fabric (in a pattern and color of your choice)
  • Foam padding
  • Zippers
  • Scissors
  • Serrated knife
  • Sewing machine
  • Screwdriver
  • Quilt batting
  • Thread
  • Fabric stapler

Procedure

  • To reupholster the seats of a chair or a chaise lounge, first you need to remove the cushion seats. If they are unattached to the furniture, then your job is simple enough. However some cushion seats are either tied back to the furniture or screwed down.
  • If the seat cushions of your outdoor furniture is fastened to the frame, then simply turn the furniture upside down and unfasten the screws holding the seat to the frame with a screwdriver.
  • Next carefully remove the outer fabric of the cushion by loosening the tacks from around the edges with a screwdriver.
  • If the padding of the cushion has shrunk and does not provide adequate cushioning, then you need to replace it too.
  • To replace old padding, simply remove it and cut out required amount of foam padding. Cover the foam padding with a sheet of quilt batting and place it on the seat of the furniture.
  • Next place you new upholstery fabric on the work table. Place the old upholstery fabric that you had removed from the furniture over it. Now cut the new fabric with a pair of scissors, using the old fabric for pattern. Keep 2 inches of seam allowance on all sides
  • Place the fabric, over the seat of the furniture and pull it taut over the edges. Now staple the fabric along the corners of the furniture, making sure that the fabric lies smooth. Cut off excess fabric along the corners.
  • Once you are done upholstering the bottom seat of the furniture, it is time to concentrate on the back cushions. Measure the dimensions of the old cushion and cut a 4 inch thick foam padding to this size with a serrated knife.
  • Cut six pieces of fabric to cover the dimensions of the cushion, one top and bottom piece and four side pieces. Remember to leave a seam allowance of ½ inch on all the sides.
  • Sew the fabric pieces together to make a cushion cover leaving one side unstitched to insert the foam.
  • Insert the foam piece that you had cut out, slip-stitch the open edge of the cushion cover. Your back cushion is ready and you can place it over the outdoor furniture.

As you can see, reupholstering patio furniture is not difficult and all you need to have is some patience and elementary sewing skills. Now that you know how to reupholster outdoor furniture, you can change the look of your patio furniture and jazz it up by using bright and bold fabric patterns.

Tips to Care for Outdoor Teak Furniture

Teak is the ideal choice for outdoor furniture due to its natural properties that make it highly resistant to the outside elements. Also, the natural beauty of this wood has made it very popular, or should we say, a status symbol these days! Teak contains natural oils that help it survive in the rainforest where it grows. Hence, it is almost immune to outdoor elements including rain, sun, insects, and decay. Even though teakwood furniture is more expensive when compared to oak, redwood, or cedar, its natural durability and strength makes it well worth the price.

Teak furniture has a rich honey hue when it is new. But, with the exposure to external elements, as it ages, it gets a silver-gray patina. Even though the change in color does not make a difference to the durability and strength of the furniture, it does make a difference to its looks. Therefore, it becomes essential for those who own this furniture to decide whether they want the article to become silver gray as it weathers, or maintain its original honey-brown color. The following are some tips to help take care of the gorgeous teakwood.

Use a Cleaning Solution

A solution of bleach and mild-detergent water in the ratio of 25:75, is ideal for cleaning purpose. Ensure that the cleaning is done using a brush with soft bristles. Once the furniture is cleaned, the entire piece should be rinsed thoroughly to get rid of all the cleaning solution and dirt residue. Ensure that the water pressure isn’t very high. This cleaning approach works fine for both the weathered as well as relatively new teak furniture.

The process of graying, when the furniture is left outdoors, takes about nine months, depending on the degree of exposure to the outside elements such as the sun and rain. If you like this naturally-weathered look, then the primary care required for your prized furniture is just regular cleaning. These days you can easily get ‘teak cleaners’ in the market, which have more or less become a necessity for teak maintenance. If you love the silver-gray look of your furniture, a thorough-yet-gentle cleaning once in a while is all that it takes to treasure this vintage possession; well, this and the next point.

Use Teak Protector

Experts recommend applying a ‘teak protector’ if you want to prevent stains from becoming a part of your furniture. Stains of edible items such as tea, coffee, red wine, oil, etc., generally seep into the wood and spoil the beauty of it. A coating of teak protector not only helps against staining but also protects the wood against UV rays and mildew growth.

It is crucial to apply this solution only after thorough cleaning and dusting of the furniture. This treatment should be done at least once in a year. However, in case you have a tabletop made of teakwood, application of a protector is suggested more frequently.

Use Teak Sealer

Many people prefer the original golden-brown color of teakwood over the weathered silver gray. A ‘teak sealer’ comes in very handy for this purpose. The coating(s) of this solution needs to be applied once every year, so that the furniture looks as good as new in terms of the color.

There are teak oils also available for the same purpose; however, note that it is not recommended to use teak oil on the outdoor furniture due to the high maintenance that is involved in the process. It will have to be reapplied every three months so that the brown finish remains intact. Experts also state that regular oiling can cause irregular coloring and development of mildew.

Avoid Painting Or Staining Your Furniture

Some people opt for painting or staining their furniture. However, experts frown on this practice, as the natural oils that occur in the wood will prevent the stain or paint adhering to it. But, if you do want to stain or paint your outdoor teak anyway, it is best to get an expert advice about how you should go about it.

While teak furniture is left outside all year round by some people, others think it is better to bring it indoors during extreme weather conditions. Because it is hardwood we are dealing with, it is resistant to swelling, shrinkage, and warping. Plus, its natural oils preserve the furniture remarkably, giving it a wonderfully beautiful look for many years. By following proper care and guidelines, your outdoor teak furniture will last for a lifetime indeed.

Tips to Outdoor Dining Table Design

The patio is without doubt an extension of your living room. It doubles up as a space where you can catch up with family and friends over lunch or dinner. Having a garden has its benefits, one of which is that you get to entertain guests to sumptuous barbecue dinners and lazy summer afternoons. While having settees and hammocks is what comes to mind when one thinks of extending the living room to the garden, you can very well place a dining table with a couple of chairs to have a truly outdoors experience. Besides, we are all aware of the old adage―a family that eats together stays together.

Dinner tables are indeed the best possible places to catch up with each other’s lives, which is why taking the dinning activity outside is even more beneficial. Besides, sitting out in the open will help you clear your mind and refresh your senses.

Ideas for Outdoor Dining Tables

Set in Wood

Wood is one of the most preferred materials used to make dining tables. Dining tables can be designed as picnic benches, tables for two, or circular tables―you name it, and it can be done. Wicker dining sets or dark wood table tops work fairly well to do up the outdoors.

Sculpted from Stone

Stone tables emerge clear winners when it comes to withstanding the elements of nature. Hence, they serve as the best option you have in hand. You can opt for an entire stone unit or only the table top that is made of stone. The only maintenance needed is to wash the tables regularly, to keep the formation of moss at bay.

Glass-top Tables

Glass-top tables are suitable for covered patios and decks. While glass-top tables enhance the look of the dining area, always remember that they are fragile. Metal-framed glass tables are the best bet if you are planning to invest in a glass-top dinner table. Weatherproof wooden frames will also work to enhance the look of your garden.

Basic Essentials

  • Ensure that everything you place outdoors is weatherproof.
  • Outdoor furniture needs to be of very good quality to last for a long time.
  • Pergolas, awnings, and trellises can be incorporated to cover the dining area.
  • Use lighting that will keep bugs away.

Enhance the look of your garden and dining area with decorations. Put in a few centerpieces and your outdoor dining experience is sure going to be the best. With all this in place, I bet you would love to eat outdoors more often.

Tips to Build a Park Bench Easily

Important Tip
Always keep extra pieces of wood around. In case there are mistakes while working on the original planks, one will have ready pieces to complete the park bench with.
Park benches have been hailed as one of the most comfortable outdoor furniture that one can spend leisure time on. This is why it is a dream of many enthusiasts to have one in their backyard or the porch. While hiring help and getting a bench built can become a costly affair, making one by oneself can definitely be taken up. Park benches can be made from wood, metal, and concrete. In the following sections, we will give you information about one of the easy to implement garden bench plans.

How to Build a Wooden Park Bench
Materials Required to Build a Park Bench
• Wooden Planks:
• 4 planks of 366mm length
• 2 planks of 565mm length
• 1 plank of 960mm length
• 2 planks of 485mm length
• 2 planks of 760mm length
• 7 planks of 1400mm length
• Bolts: 10, 12mm
• Clamps
• Drill
• Nails: 90mm (galvanized and flathead)
Instructions to Build a Park Bench
• Cut all the planks according to the lengths as shown in figure of materials.
• All the planks will be cut in a 10º angle, off square.
• To begin, lay the two legs (A) flat on the ground and follow this up by the leg brace (B).
• Next, place the seat support (D) on top of the two legs, followed by placing the back support (E) on top of the frame. Refer to figure of front view to get a clarity of how to place these.
• Once these planks have been placed in the right position, hold them together with the clamps and drill, and then bolt all the adjoining pieces.
• To bolt the pieces, use four 12mm bolts at a distance of 110mm long and one 12mm bolt at a distance of 150mm long. This completes the first frame.
• Make the second frame in the same manner by mirroring the first frame.
• Once both the frames are complete, stand them upright and nail the spreader (C) in place.
• Next, begin by nailing the first seat slat (F) into place―it should be in line with the front edges of the legs (A) and extend the length from the sides of the leg (A) by 150mm.
• Continue nailing the rest of the slats to the seat frame. Make sure to spread them out evenly by maintaining a 10mm gap between each slat.
• Keep checking whether the slats extend the length from the sides of the leg (A) and that the seat frames are parallel and square. It is important to nail all these with 90mm galvanized and flathead nails.
The plan that is mentioned above should enable you to build a comfortable and strong park bench in the backyard or patio. Building the bench all by yourself would increase the joy of relaxing on it manifold.