Tuesday, May 8, 2012

It's "silk purse out of a sow's ear" time

I just finished the new covers for the patio furniture.  Amazing what some 50% off Sunbrella fabric will do for ratty wrought iron furniture.  Just look at the covers and not at the starting-to-rust chairs.  I debated sanding them down and painting the chairs this spring, but the surface rust is the least of their problems.  Water gets in the hollow tubes of the furniture and it rots from the inside.  I used to have another chair, but last spring when I was washing windows, I gave it a tiny shove to scoot it over out of the way of my stepladder and a leg snapped off the chair.  The outside wasn't even rusty, it was all on the inside.  So these may be on borrowed time, but at least their last days will be pretty!
This is where we sit most evenings, so they and the bench across from them got full covers including the arms, since the wrought iron on the arm rests makes a checkerboard pattern on your skin if you lay your forearm on them.  Ouch.  These covers aren't padded like cushions so they dry quickly after a rain.  They just protect your clothes from the furniture and add a little color to the patio.
The bench gets the most sun so we'll see how long the fabric lasts.  I got all smarty-pants and made velcro tabs to attach the covers instead of ties.  Those things drove me crazy and took twice as long as assembling the rest of the cover.  
The chairs at the table got the simplest covers, just on the seats.  The woven metal on the seats of these chairs will chew up the back of your clothes unless they are covered, which is why I made the first set several years ago.  After two summers they were bleached almost white by the sun and starting to mildew.  As long as I can buy the fabric on sale, I'll make new covers before I try to clean them;  they were ugly anyway.
My last chair is on the front stoop, which is really too small for a chair but I like to sit out here in the morning and in the late afternoon after I pick up the mail - it's a great place to sort the junk mail and read catalogs.  You can see a little footstool under the chair so I can even prop my feet up.  And notice my wild blue flowerpots which match the shutters.  Why blue shutters, besides the fact I like blue?  It makes directions easy.  "It's the brick house with blue shutters."  Nobody else fits that description.

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