Thursday, December 6, 2012

How to revamp your old patio furniture … for PENNIES!


Let’s have a little test to see just how ghetto I am (and you are):

Raise your hand if you have rusty old patio furniture in your back yard???

Now. Raise your hand if you have been thinking for months (possibly YEARS), “Dude. That rusty old patio furniture is GHETTO! I need to drag it off to the dump!” ??? (or, in our case, haul it to the street for bulk trash pick up)

Yeah. We are THOSE people.


I give you … our rusty old porch swing:

spray painted rusty swing17

This little gem is 10 years old, people … give or take. We bought it shortly after getting married. And, it’s been a rusty mess since about 2 years after we bought it.

How rusty, you ask? Well. If rusty could rank in belts, like karate, this swing would be sporting a black belt. No lie. It was so rusty that the rust ate the old rust for breakfast … and then the pole thingys holding up the swing broke … and the swing was just dangling there. True story.

spray painted rusty swing15

This thing was HOPELESS. And every month … about 30 minutes after bulk trash came to pick up, Superman and I would look at each other and say “Crap! We forgot to haul out that piece of junk swing, AGAIN!” We played that game for about … 4 years. At least. (We are THAT ghetto)

spray painted rusty swing16

See all that rust around the bolts in the picture above? Yeah. You do not want to sit on that swing.


One day … I was outside, admiring my glorious view of this rusty old piece of junk and I thought, “Hot dang! I’m gonna make Superman fix that swing, spray paint it, and save myself a quick $150 on buying a new one!”

Poor. Superman.

But, as always … he obeyed.

*** Y’all. Please do not let Superman know that there are prettier, skinnier, taller, and less demanding wives out there. I don’t think he knows that. Shhh.

So. Off he went. To Home Depot. To buy some steel rods … to replace the rust rods. He bought some steel pipe and some nuts and bolts and screws. I have no idea which ones. But, I don’t think it matters because the chance of you having the EXACT same porch swing as us is slim. If you decide to do this to your patio furniture, just measure your nuts, bolts, screws and go buy new ones in the same sizes. Easy peasy.

spray painted rusty swing14

So, he brought the steel pipe home, cut it to the exact right size, then hammered the ends so that they were flat, the way he needed them … and then he reconstructed the swing.
 spray painted rusty swing 10

See? That steel pipe in the picture above is just plain old galvanized steel pipe that he cut and hammered on the ends to make things fit right. The nuts and bolts are new as well. (Ignore the blurry spot in the middle of the picture on these next few pictures … one of my babies apparently got a hold of my camera, and I didn’t realize the fingerprint until today, when I uploaded the pictures. Fail.)

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After he got everything reconstructed, he took his sander and sanded off as much of the rust as he could. Obviously, it would be impossible to get all of it, but the dude tried hard. Because he is Superman.

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Then, he put it up on some fence posts, took the seat apart (it all unscrews fairly easily) …

spray painted rusty swing13

And, then … he sprayed the whole thing with a good coat of Rust-Oleum Primer Spray Paint … that stops the rust. And THEN, he spray painted the whole thing with Rust-Oleum Textured Spray Paint in Desert Beige.

And when he was done … and it was all put back together … and my patio was swept off and the 1,546,893 chalk drawings were washed away … the porch swing actually sang to me.

rustoleum spray painted rusty swing3

Dude. Seriously. I can’t even believe what you can accomplish with spray paint. For real. If I ever meet the makers of Rustoleum, I just might kiss them.

 rustoleum spray painted rusty swing4

I am soooo looking forward to reading the news on my phone while sitting on that swing listening to my kids bicker and argue on the swing set. ;)

rustoleum spray painted rusty swing 4

And, I know that we are missing a few bolt covers here and there. And it might not be 100% perfect … but, dude. I don’t even care. For about $30 in materials, Superman literally transformed a wasteland into a beautiful oasis.

rustoleum spray painted rusty swing 6

I love the color and texture. It doesn’t appear to be any different from the original color (which was the point), but the texture is awesome. And, BONUS, Rustoleum guarantee’s their products to be RUST FREE for 2 years! BAM!!

rustoleum spray painted rusty swing1

I can’t decide what I love more: the ‘new’ swing … or my clean back porch. Sidewalk chalk can junk up everything in no time flat.

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And he finished it just in time to celebrate this chilly weather with a s’mores roasting party with our kiddos this weekend.

I can’t wait!

As always, here’s one last side by side comparison:

rustoleum swing before and after

Man. I love Superman. The guy just plain rocks my socks off with EVERY renovation he does. This project makes me want to go hunting/dumpster diving for old patio furniture … that we can hit with a little Rustoleum and turn into a treasure. I’m doing it!!! (Meanwhile, Superman shakes his head … poor guy!!)


  1. I have a superman that lives at my house too - we call him McGyver and he makes miracles out of rusty patio furniture...I picked up rusty patio furniture all the time...don't you just LOVE Rustoleum!

    Cheryl @ The Creative Me and My McG

    1. Yes!!! I do!!! I love it more than words can say!!

      LOL @ McGyver! The guys at Gary's fire station call him the McGyver of the kitchen. Apparently, he has a gift for combining all their old food (before it expires) into some delicious recipe. Makes me laugh. Gotta love these handy boys that brighten our lives. :D

  2. Love the transformation and love the war you write about your Superman :) too cute

    Brie @ Breezy Pink Daisies

    1. Aw, thank you, Brie! I have a lot of fun bossing him around. Poor guy. I think he mostly just tolerates me with a grin. I like to think I have a few redeeming qualities ... Just not sure what they are!!! ;)

  3. And that's why I love my teak patio furniture. It's easy to maintain and restore :]

  4. How is the paint holding up after a year? Did rust reformed?

  5. That was a good job indeed! From old and rusty eye clutter, it turned into a beautiful swing—in full swing! Haha! Just a reminder, don’t forget to put some lubricant in the nuts and bolts every once in a while, so that you can prevent the rust from forming there, and to maintain its smooth swinging motion. Cheers!

    Ian Hawkins @ Wicker Works of Brownsburg

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