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Restoring Outdoor Cushions

Ok, I have a confession.  I totally didn’t put my outdoor cushions away in the winter.  I should have because by spring they were REALLY moldy.  I got this fire pit/outdoor living room set back in 2012 for somewhere around $350 off of Craigslist.   It was a great deal and has served us well for the last 8 years.   But, their age is definitely showing.

Restoring Outdoor Cushions

Eek. They needed some love. This was after I washed them with Comet.

Most people would have just thrown these cushions out and bought some new ones.  But, thanks to this hack, I can bring them back to life for my new house.  The trick is fabric medium.  All you have to do is mix any latex paint with fabric medium, and you’re set to paint fabric.

How to Paint Cushions

I started the process by spray painting the metal with some high heat paint (due to the fire pit).  Then, I washed the cushions with some Comet because there was legit moss growing on them.  Nature will find a way.

I ordered fabric medium, got some Benjamin Moore paint, and got to painting.  

The cushions are a custom color and the throw pillows are Benjamin Moore Silver Fox (but it looks more white). 

For the design on the pillows, I ordered a stencil and some gold fabric spray paint.

Time Efficiency

All in all, this project took me maybe 5 hours.  I put the first coat on the first day, then the second coat the next day.  Spray painting the pattern was one afternoon.  And voila- a new looking set!

Lessons Learned

This is actually the second time I’m painting these.  The cushions started out a beige color.  I last painted this set 5 years ago to the bright blue.  Last time, I used Valspar paint and that actually did a little better.  The high resin in the Benjamin moore Aura makes the cushions less porous so it takes them a bit to reinflate after someone sits on them.  Also, this time I did 1 part medium to 2 parts paint ratio.  I think that made the paint a little too thick and stiff.  Also, I forgot to add water.  Last time, I did a 1:1:1 ratio of paint: fabric medium: water and that worked better, so I’d recommend that.  

Cost Breakdown

Total Cost of this project:

Fabric Medium: $10.72

Paint: $35

Stencil: $19.99

Gold Spray Paint: $9.18

Total Cost: $74.89

Not bad!  Definitely better than buying a whole new set.  I don’t mind a little stiffness for outdoor cushions.  Plus, they’ll loosen up over time.  

Stay Frugal, y’all!


Standard Disclaimer: Not meant as individualized financial or medical advice.  This post contains affiliate links.            


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