Outdoor Living Room and Al Fresco Dining Space 6 of 8

Spring 2021 ORC: Week Six


Thanks again for joining me for the Spring 2021 One Room Challenge!


If you’re new to this blog series, start at Week One to see all the initial design plans and follow along each week to see the progress.


Continue to follow along here for weekly blog updates and on Instagram for stories, tutorials, and more!


We left off last week with my plan to build the sofa table, work on adding passementerie to some of the upholstery, and start a mini-project.


I knocked a few of these things off my list so that’s exciting! These final touches are what really start to make the room come together.


Building a Sofa Table from Scraps

My sofa table is built and looking fabulous, lol! I never had any intention of anyone seeing this table knowing I was going to cover it with a skirted tablecloth. That said, I wanted everyone to see how I made this using scrap wood.



Lumber prices being what they are, I’m glad I had a small stash of lumber in my garage. But I was kicking myself the other day when I realized how low it had gotten. We got rid of a TON of lumber and scraps late last year (before I knew what a goldmine we were sitting on) as a part of my effort to stop hanging on to so many things “just in case I need them.”


One thing I did still have was primer, spray paint, and wood screws. Between that and the scrap lumber, I threw this thing together in just a few hours.


The part that is going to take more effort is the skirted tablecloth. I used this tutorial from The Funky Little Chair to help me create the skirt panels. The dimensions worksheet in the video was invaluable for this project.


I chose this pretty blush pink fabric. It’s very simple but has a little bit of striation to it which gives it some texture and movement.

I also chose this circle fringe trim which is going to be applied around the top edge where the skirt meets the top panel. I originally wanted something more traditional but decided that this fit better outdoors by keeping the style light, bright, and airy.


In my designs I always think about balance. It’s a key component to my work. Regarding the skirted sofa table, I was looking to balance the flowing drapery fabric with the structured box cushions on the sofa since it will sit between those two items.


My solution was to choose a stiffer outdoor fabric and create kick pleat panels to give it a more structured look but in a soft pastel color to give it a lighter feel.


Adding Trim to a Patio Umbrella

The other project I completed this week was adding fringe to the umbrella in the al fresco dining area. I debated between a brush fringe and a bullion fringe (see examples below).


In the end I decided I wanted to make a big impact on the space. The only punch, so to speak, in this area are the two chairs I added DIY navy and white tape trim to in Week 4. So I went with a bright white 6” bullion fringe on the umbrella.


It was another incredibly easy project that did wonders for the look. I simply used heavy duty fabric glue to adhere the trim, pinning as I went to hold it in place while the glue dried.




It looks fantastic and gives the space a vintage vibe.


Customizing Premade Curtains

In order to stick with the budget, I purchased premade curtains rather than have them custom made. They all needed to have the hem lowered about an inch. When I did this I added vinyl covered curtain weights into the hem. This will keep them from blowing around in the wind.


I also wanted to add some tassel fringe. Again sticking to budget required a little DIY. While you can buy tassel fringe which can be sewn on in one long strip, I didn't find anything quite right in my price range.


Instead, I opted to buy these inexpensive mini-tassels and apply them individually.


First, I prewashed them to make sure they wouldn't bleed onto my white curtains the first time it rains. Then I strung them and hung them up to dry.


Before I rehang my newly hemmed curtains, I'll hand-stitch the tassels to the edge of the curtain panels. The only panels getting them are the innermost ones (those that will sit next to each other when pulled closed).


Week Six Wrap-Up

Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to start the surprise mini-projects due to the heat we’ve been experiencing. But putting it off did allow me to focus more on my daughter’s prom, graduation luncheon and ceremony this week. Those are the things that truly matter in life, so it was no sacrifice.


I’ve only got one more blog post to share next week before the big reveal. In the final weeks we plan to get those mini-projects finished, then stage and photograph our Outdoor Living Room and Al Fresco Dining Space.


This is going to be an incredible before-and-after and I’m just so sincerely happy and excited to share this transformation. I know everyone says this but everything has come together so spectacularly well, that I’m positively giddy.


Have you seen any other One Room Challenge projects that you’re excited for? Let me know and I’ll check them out!


Don’t forget to follow along with all the other participants over at the One Room Challenge website.


And don’t forget to follow me on Instagram and like me on Facebook for all the updates and tutorials I post throughout the week.


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