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Pink Repurposed Patio Chair Garden Planters

With a little bit of colorful paint, we repurposed old patio chairs into pretty and functional planters for our gardens!

Bright pink painted cast iron patio chair in a lush green garden.

Transforming Trash to Treasure!

Have you ever stumbled upon an item that someone has thrown away and think “I can do something with this!”. When you see beyond the ugliness to only the potential beauty? That overwhelming feeling you get of excitement and surprise at your own good fortune? Well that exact feeling happened to me earlier this month as I was walking through my neighborhood.

I came across some pretty hideous looking patio chairs sitting alongside the curb. And with an open mind, I tentatively approached the set (not wanting my neighbors to notice me looking through someone’s garbage) and to my delight I discovered that the chairs were made of solid cast iron.

The iron chair frames were still in great condition although slightly rusting in spots. The upholstered seat, on the other hand, was moldy, gaudy and worn. Immediately I thought I had hit the jackpot!

I urged the kids to pick up the pace (as fast as their little legs could take them) and head home so I could quickly return with my van to load up the great find.

All the chairs needed was a simple makeover. With an upcycled design plan in place I began the transformation.

I decided to repurpose the patio chairs into a fun holders for potted flowers. I planned to use one for my garden and give the other to my sister.

I chose a lovely shade of pink paint (“Wildfire” Dulux Metalclad Gloss Alkyd) that matched to a potted geranium I had sitting on my porch.

And I couldn’t be happier with the results!

How to Paint Cast Iron Patio Furniture:

  • Metal paint scraper and wire brush (if sanding is needed)
  • Quart of paint in your choice of colour (use a paint specific for metal)
  • Small bristle brush or foam brush (to get into the corners of the chair frames)
  • Small paint roller and tray

To start, I used a paint scraper and removed any larger areas of rust that were showing. I then vigorously brushed with the wire brush to smooth our the iron as much as I could.

I then gave the chairs a good cleaning with soap and water and left them to air dry completely.

Once dry, I placed them on top of old newspapers and began applying thin even coats of paint. Several coats of paint were required in order to get full coverage. I allowed enough time to dry in between coats and then flipped the chairs upside down and repeat on the undersides.

Once dry, I found a compatible sized pot to fit inside the seat. I planted some beautiful annuals inside the pot and positioned the new garden accessory into my garden.

And that’s how patio chairs destined for the landfill were transformed into pretty planters for our gardens! To think someone actually thought these chairs were trash?!

I guess it’s true what they say, “one woman’s trash is another woman’s treasure”.

UPDATE: It’s been 5 years since we painted these cast iron patio chairs. They’ve held up extremely well and continue to provide a pretty pop of color in the garden year-round! You can see them peaking in the background of this DIY camo tote bag photo shoot!

What trash have you turned into treasure lately?

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Thursday 26th of October 2023

The chair looks lovely and it's great to know how to paint metal right can not wait to paint my table and chairs

Terry Sauerhoefer

Friday 17th of March 2023

I love what you did with the iron chairs. I, too, did this with wooden, dining chairs that my GF wanted to trash. I sanded them down and put a primer/sealer on two of them. I painted one purple and the other a pink similar to your pink. They had leather in the middle of the seats surround by wood. I cut the center out round and it is now home to some of my succulents along my walk way. I have two more to do for the other side of my yard. I, too, look at things with the thought of what I can do with it. I have begun drilling holes in pitches, ceramic and glass bowls, oh boy, most anything but a plain old plant pot. I have the cutest, ceramic, victorian style shoes that now hold plants. If I could post pictures here, I'd show you all of the things I have turned into planters. Vase, bowls, sugar and creamer, etc, etc, etc will never be looked at by me as anything other than, " what do I have or can get to plant in that". Haha

Sandra K. Salisbury

Wednesday 14th of December 2022

I have a chair that is waiting for spring so I can make it into a beautiful planter!!! Thank you for all the great tips in cleaning and painting it!!!


Monday 15th of February 2021

You are perfect time, I already started my home renovation and I need inspiration. Thanks for giving us your ideas.

Sam - Raggedy Bits

Wednesday 29th of June 2016

Thank you so much for sharing your Upcycled Patio Chairs with us over at #WasteNotWednesday! They turned out so amazing!! Love the colour that you used! We are excited to be featuring your awesome chairs this week! Look forward to seeing what you bring to the party this week :-)

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