How To Outdoor-Proof Indoor Furniture

Use designer Kenneth Wingard’s instructions to bring wooden furniture safely outside.

Pop quiz:

What should you do with that neglected dining room table you never use and those cute wooden chairs you found at a garage sale?

Answer:

Give them a new purpose and a new spot in your home – in the great outdoors! Learn to repurpose old indoor furniture into beautiful pieces that can stand up against the elements – and serve as a conversation starter for your next backyard barbecue. Protect your new furniture with these expert tips from Home Made Simple.

Before you begin, gather your supplies:

  • Soft bristled brush
  • Mr. Clean Magic Eraser
  • A bowl of warm water with a squirt of Dawn Ultra Dish Soap
  • Damp cloth
  • Cotton Rag
  • Outdoor furniture oil
  • 80-Grit sandpaper
  • Paintbrush
  • Exterior primer
  • Ventilation masks
  • Outdoor enamel paint
  • Polyurethane sealant

How to Repurpose a Wooden Table

  1. Gently clean the table using the soft bristled brush to remove any dust or loose dirt. If the grime is extra stubborn, try using a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser to remove it
  2. Clean the table with the Dawn Ultra Dish Soap solution and a damp cloth to remove dust and dirt. Once cleaned, allow the wood to dry completely
  3. Use a cotton rag to apply furniture oil, wiping along the grain of the wood. Follow the directions listed on the furniture oil packaging. The oil will protect the wood from fungi and mildew

Tip: Use a cotton swab to apply the furniture oil to any small nooks and crannies of the table.

How to Repurpose Wooden Chairs

  1. Sand down the chairs with 80-grit sandpaper to remove the existing finish and any imperfections that may exist. Make sure to sand along the grain of the wood to avoid scratching the wood’s surface in multiple directions
  2. Wipe the chairs with a damp cloth to remove the sawdust created by the sanding process
  3. In a well-ventilated area, coat the entire chair with exterior primer and allow time to dry. Be sure to wear a ventilation mask as well
  4. Once the primer has dried completely, paint the chairs with outdoor enamel paint, following the grain of the wood. Allow time for the paint to completely dry. Repeat with a second coat
  5. Once the chairs have completely dried, apply a sealant to each using the polyurethane. Cover the entire chair, applying one to two applications

Remember these four simple steps for preparing indoor furniture for outdoor life: Sand it, seal it, paint it and protect it!

Related Articles

Beyond The Home

How To Deep Clean Your Charcoal Or Gas Grill

Get your grill ready for summer with our complete cleaning guide.

Kitchen

Waste Not With A DIY Kitchen Compost Bin

Don’t let your kitchen waste go to waste – make this easy DIY kitchen compost bin.

Beyond The Home

6 Essential Compost Tips For Beginners

Make your garden greener and more sustainable with a compost bin. Use our 6 tips to get started!

Beyond The Home

Back-To-School Cleaning Products Perfect For Little Hands

Start back-to-school season right with products that are perfect for little hands.

Beyond The Home

Natural Ways To Prevent Indoor Pests

Discover natural methods for removing 6 common insects from your home.

Beyond The Home

Natural Ways To Prevent Outdoor Pests

Learn how to keep outdoor pests controlled naturally with our simple tips.

Beyond The Home

DIY Stepping-Stones With The Kids

Enlist your kids' help to create a personalized, beautiful piece of garden art that will last a lifetime.

Beyond The Home

How To Decorate Your Front Porch For Any Season Or Holiday

Our simple formula will help you add holiday spirit to your front porch, from Halloween through the winter season.