I have a very dear friend who I love like a second mother and she has the most wonderful taste in home decor, gardening… everything. Her home is just loaded with cottage charm. One of these days I am going to convince her to let me photograph her amazing home. Anyhow, I called her up a few weeks ago because I was on the lookout for patio umbrellas. I wanted the kind she had with canvas and real wood poles. She told me that she had bought new ones and was wondering if I wanted her old ones. She said they needed a little elbow grease, and they would probably be pretty again… and she was right! I think they turned out beautiful! They really only took me about an hour total (minus laundering time), so it was pretty easy! If you have any umbrellas that need a little sprucing up, it might be easier than you think.
Here is what they looked like before. You can see the wood didn’t have much of a finish left on it at all, and the umbrella was pretty stained and dirty. First, I took off the canvas umbrellas and washed them separately with a little Oxyclean on the delicate cycle. When they came out of the washing machine, I hung them to dry. Then, I sanded the poles down using a sanding pad. It flaked off pretty easily so it didn’t take long at all. I wiped all of the sanding dust off of the poles with a damp rag and allowed to air dry for a few minutes. Then, I just applied my stain using an old rag. I used a stain that had polyurethane already mixed in it. I applied 2 coats total. The raw wood sucked up the stain pretty quickly so they definitely needed the 2 coats. Once the canvas part of my umbrellas had air dried, I put them back on the poles and they looked so new again! I think they are gorgeous! I was so surprised at just how beautifully they cleaned up!
They make such a huge difference and I love the way they function and look! We have been spending a lot of time out here and I just love them. In case you are wondering, she originally bought these umbrellas several years ago at a local-ish grocery store (Albertsons).
To see the rest of my patio makeover, click HERE.