Chase the Rainy Days Away with this DIY Painted Umbrella (With Video!)

Chase the Rainy Days Away with this DIY Painted Umbrella (With Video!)

How to turn your boring umbrella into a work of art

Do you remember this joke?: April showers bring May flowers, what do May flowers bring? The answer is “pilgrims” for those of you skipped the third grade. Cue eye roll. Anyway – we are headed right into the rainy season as March comes to a close and winter is finally releasing its chilly, chilly grasp. It’s finally time to break out the umbrellas and rain boots! Keep reading to see how to make your rain gear more personal by DIY-ing this painted umbrella (P.S. it’s totally waterproof, too!).       

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Watch the video to see painting in action, and keep reading for all the details! 

Materials

A white umbrella is leaning against a white wall near other items.

Step

A white paper with blue paint is sitting next to the tube of paint and three paint brushes.

This specific type of paint is the key to the waterproof aspect of this project! Make sure to use a fabric paint that requires washing after application (per the instructions on the bottle). To prep for painting, get a scrap piece of paper or a disposable plate to use as a palette.

Step

A person's hand painting on the top of an open umbrella.

Now to start painting! Open the umbrella, and start in the middle. Begin with something easy, like a circle. Paint one panel at a time. Keep your designs simple. 

A blue design is visible on the end of a white umbrella.

Step

A person draws a blue design on an umbrella.

Put a podcast on, and keep working until you have an entirely painted umbrella. Try not to be heavy-handed – using less paint on your brush looks better than more paint. Use simple patterns, like triangle, lines, dashes, and zig-zags.  

A person has used a brush with blue paint to paint on a white surface.

When your painted umbrella is complete, leave it open to dry overnight. Wash brushes with dish soap. Done!


How to paint an umbrella (it's waterproof!)

Transform a boring umbrella into an indigo blue beauty!

Tutorial for a painted indigo umbrella

How to transform a boring umbrella using waterproof paint

How to paint a (waterproof!) umbrella

Since the fabric paint is built to be washed, you don’t need to worry about the paint running!  

Make This! Indigo Painted Umbrella
Share this DIY on Pinterest!

There’s just a little bit of snow left on the ground here in the Twin Cities, but hopefully a few days of springtime rain will kick it all out of town. Happy spring!

This Home Has Wallpaper Used in a Way You’ve Never Seen Before

This Home Has Wallpaper Used in a Way You’ve Never Seen Before

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Name: Shea Keating, husband Rich Lamiroult, and two girls: Billie Ever and Seeda Honey, along with Charlie the rescue pup and Georgie a rescue cat
Location: Sag Harbor, New York
Size: Just under 2000 square feet
Type of Home: It’s a weird modern ranch — I’ve dubbed it the funky Ranch
Years lived in: 4 years, owned

We were lucky enough to be able to build our house on a subdivided lot and right next to my family’s house. My dad, who is no longer with us, used to say we would have a compound — his dream is now a reality. For budget sake (and timing — I was pregnant with our first child during the process) we chose a modular option. The timing really wasn’t that expedited unfortunately; we moved in when our first daughter Billie was almost a year and a half!

One of the main requirements for us was an open floor plan and a kitchen/dining area that would house my grandmother’s 11-foot dairy farm table from the 1950s. It’s an heirloom for our whole extended family and we all feel very lucky to keep making memories around it while remembering all the old ones. The modular option let us do just that: we opened a wall between the living room and kitchen area and the table fits perfectly.

Sag Harbor is where I grew up from the age of 12 and it’s just a really beautiful spot. We do a lot of dancing in our house — my husband is a musician and our two girls love to sing and groove; we have a weekly Friday night dance party. And we even installed a working disco ball and lights to make it shine in the corridor — because why not?! The house is just fun, open and colorful — but it’s also warm and homey. All the things in it either have meaning for us and our history, or are just really cool design wise — it’s very eclectic and I’m constantly adding or tweaking the decor.

Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: Eclectic, Colorful, Fun, Mismatched

Inspiration: I find inspiration in a lot of places, but a lot of it just comes from things I’ve always liked from childhood on — those things haven’t really changed: Color, pattern, lips, glitter, hearts, art, the “Wizard of Oz” (you know Dorothy was a redhead right?)

Favorite Element: So hard to say; I really love something about almost every room, but the living area/kitchen is the place we spend the most time — and its just so conducive for living and cheerful.

The other spot is the girls room, all anchored around a vintage Pendleton blanket I bought on our honeymoon. The room started as cutouts of pictures on my house plans — and then got brought to life when we finally moved in — and it just evolved from there. The glitter wall is beyond magic and it really can’t be captured in photos no matter how hard I try! It’s such a special space and I hope my girls remember it as a sanctuary and the place they could be anything as they get older.

Biggest Challenge: BUDGET. I have expensive taste and was eyeing so many big ticket items to fill this house I couldn’t wait for. I was very particular and did not compromise for certain things such as the Anthropologie chesterfield  couch, but the ABC Home overdyed rug… well that I probably will never be able to have, and that’s okay — I’ve worked around it. Some stuff is vintage, some stuff is hand-me-downs, but for me it’s all how it comes together and the pairing.

Proudest DIY: Hmmm, well up until recently I would have said my custom “too shea” lip wallpaper that I purchased and installed from Spoonflower. But recently I was inspired by a wallpaper that I’d been loving but the scale was just off for the space I was thinking (our cathedral ceiling living room wall that houses a “Let’s Stay Home” Sign, which funny enough I purchased PRE PANDEMIC less than three months before!) So instead of settling for the wrong scale, I took to the wall with paint and did a hand painted mural in the same color way and feel (it’s all brushstrokes). I’m really pleased with how it came out and it all came together very quickly — probably a total of three and a half hours for all layers.

Biggest Indulgence: Probably the couch. It’s the chesterfield sofa from Anthropologie in an beautiful orange-y red. I HAD TO HAVE IT. It paired with the console unit behind it were probably the two items I was set on as they separated the foyer from the living area. 100% worth every penny — I love that thing every time I see it.  Other than that, the three chandeliers that hang over my heirloom farm table were a splurge but again so worth it. Lighting is important — if I had my way the [recessed lighting] would never go on!

Is there something unique about your home or the way you use it? Hmm, well the lit spinning disco ball and “dance floor” is probably a bit unique, although disco balls are popping up in home decor all the time now and man that just makes me so happy. Our newest addition is the Preway vintage fireplace. I’ve always known the space in that corner would have a gas stove but it took us this long to get it in place, so the main living room has always had swivel chairs opposite the couch with the design that the space could be used for viewing the TV, checking out the backyard through the 8-foot sliding doors, socializing with people in the kitchen, or swiveling to see the crackling fire in the cozy corner.

What are your favorite products you have bought for your home and why? I am a rug fanatic — I mean I would just keep buying and layering them. I got a beautiful runner from Etsy for my kitchen that tied the blue walls and magenta chairs together perfectly. But rugs don’t have to be expensive (I say to remind myself I can live without that ABC home overdyed beauty from 2016). I have found some of my favorites on websites like Overstock or Wayfair. Rugs are a great way to add color that can be changed. I have seasonal rugs — like one that comes out for winter and the other for spring in the space between the kitchen and living room where my kids Lucite table and chairs are set up — they can help divide a space and change the feel in an instant.

Please describe any helpful, inspiring, brilliant, or just plain useful small space maximizing and/or organizing tips you have: Everything does have its place. My best piece of advice would be for kids toys — invest in clear containers and a cabinet that can hide them! We also have the clear containers for our pantry, although that takes daily clean up to keep it tidy with tiny hands in and out all day.

Finally, what’s your absolute best home secret or decorating advice? FIND STUFF YOU LOVE AND SURROUND YOURSELF WITH IT — your home should be the most uplifting, relaxing space — it’s where you can be authentically you 100% of the time. To do that I think we all need to let ourselves show more.

This house tour’s responses were edited for length and clarity.

This UK Home Has a Tropical Pattern-Clashing Hallway & a Home Office in a Closet

This UK Home Has a Tropical Pattern-Clashing Hallway & a Home Office in a Closet

Name: Victoria Shipp, partner, and pug, Biskit
Location: Birmingham, United Kingdom
Type of home: House
Size: About 840 square feet
Years lived in: 8 months, owned

Tell us a little (or a lot) about your home and the people who live there: After living in a rented flat for seven years, I was dying to finally own a home of my own. I was lucky to have such a relaxed landlord who let me paint and decorate my previous home, but I was quickly running out of room and had so many ideas running through my head.

I live with my fiancé who, thankfully, is very easygoing and lets me crack on with my bold ideas and home decor choices. Luckily he has similar taste — or just loves me too much to say anything! We did have two gorgeous pug boys, but unfortunately lost one recently, so we’re readjusting to being a family of three now. We’re constantly fighting a never-ending battle of pug hair (if you know, you know!) and hiding dog toys. I feel my home is a perfect mix of dark interiors, bold colors, and a tropical kitsch paradise.

We recently made the move from the North of Birmingham, to the South, to a really up-and-coming area, which was recently voted by Conde Nast Traveller as one of the “coolest neighborhoods in the UK.” As much as that has inflated house prices, I think we were lucky to secure our modest two-bedroom 1930s terrace on a leafy road. The house was a beige and boring home when we first moved in eight months ago. It was lacking any personality but also had some gorgeous features that made me fall in love with it. I am the most impatient person ever, so I quickly got to work bringing my ideas to life.

I know what I like, and I try not to be sucked into trends. I am very particular when it comes to patterns and designs, and also a very impulsive person. I make design decisions quickly, but I know my own mind, and I know what’s going to be something I will always love and appreciate. I have always been drawn to dark colous (emo forever) and also contrasted with bold pattern and bright colors. I know my taste isn’t for everyone, but my home decor is for me.

I am decorating on a budget and often upcycle items and have collected a lot of items from car boots, charity shops, vintage shops, and even furniture people have dumped. I love to give old furniture a new lease of life, and one of my favourite items in my home is a Schrieber sideboard I got for £20 from a charity shop.

I can remember where I got everything from, even if it was 10-plus years ago. I created mood boards for each room before I even moved in, and am constantly updating them as I have new ideas. I have pineapples in every room, I have plants everywhere, and I love that all aspects of my personality is spread across this house. I have tried to allow all rooms to flow but also introduce different colors into each room. We have a long way to go yet, but I’m very proud of what we’ve achieved so far. Although this isn’t our “forever home,” I am quietly confident that it will forever hold a piece of my heart…

What is your favorite room and why? My favorite room is definitely the living room. Although this room can be quite dark in the winter, I decided to go dark in here. Don’t be afraid to go dark. It’s only paint, and you can always re-paint it in the future if your ideas change! I feel the dark colors make all of the accessories pop, and I love the yellow accents in this room.

My curated gallery wall is pride of place above the green velvet sofa, and I have plenty of storage and places to display my never-ending collection of decorative items (or junk as my partner calls it!). I never envisioned having a log burner, but this fireplace has become the heart of the house. It’s so cost-effective during winter, and gives this room a rustic feel. I also turned the cupboard under the stairs into a home office. Because of Covid, I found myself working from home germanely and needed a space to work. It’s perfectly tucked away, but also in the heart of the home. I built the desk myself for under £20. This space could have become the ‘Monica Cupboard,’ but I utilized the space and now have the perfect cosy nook for home working.

Describe your home’s style in 5 words or less: Eclectic kitsch dark tropical paradise.

What’s the last thing you bought (or found!) for your home? This summer we’ve been slowly trying to refresh the garden. To be honest, we have no idea what we’re doing when it comes to outside space, so this is a learning curve. We inherited a huge covered lean-to, which I’ve been trying to inject some personality into.

Any advice for creating a home you love? You do you! It’s your home, you spend every day here, so make it your own sanctuary. You don’t need to follow trends or do what everyone else is doing. Go wild with colours, buy that ugly piece of furniture, clash colours and prints, but just do what ever makes you happy and what you love.

This submission’s responses and photos were edited for length/size and clarity.

A Formerly Beige UK Home Got a Major Transformation During Lockdown

A Formerly Beige UK Home Got a Major Transformation During Lockdown

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Name: Rich O’Gorman
Location: Birmingham, UK
Size (in square feet): 1000 square feet
Years Lived In: 1 year, owned

Rich O’Gorman lives in Erdington in Birmingham, in a two-bedroom Victorian home he bought only a year ago. “It’s just outside the city center and has some gorgeous parks, beautiful Victorian houses, and it’s definitely up and coming,” describes Rich of his new neighborhood. Having purchased his home during the pandemic, he, unfortunately, lost his job during this time, too. With lockdown in place and nowhere to go, Rich turned his focus into his house and transformed it into a colorful space, and started documenting on Instagram, which has now turned into a full-time gig. 

“You know how they always say you’ll find something when you’re least expecting it? I went to view this house on a whim and as soon as I opened the door, I fell in love. I immediately felt at home and knew I needed to bring some color to the beige walls!” Rich writes. So with a few buckets of paint and some paintbrushes, Rich did exactly that and used the walls as blank canvases, turning them into these fun, bright, and colorful murals. “There’s nothing more joyful than walking into a bright, colorful room and people are denying themselves that!” writes Rich. “I think people are worried about getting it wrong or it looking silly, but homes should be fun and reflect your personality!”

Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: I describe my style as retro futurism; it’s a term used in fashion for designers like Prada and Louis Vuitton but I feel like it rings true in Househomo — lots of retro color palettes and textures with bold, unexpected color choices!

Inspiration: I am inspired by fashion (Prada and Louis V always and forever!), the amazing work of Peter Tarka, Mr. Buckley Interiors, and artists like El Dibujo, Printed Goods. I try to absorb as much inspiration as I can before designing and try and emulate them ALL in my work, which is probably why there’s always so many shapes and colors!

Favorite Element: My favourite element is the pineapple light in my hallway; it was a housewarming gift from my grandma but also a low-key dig as I have a pineapple tattoo that she loves to rip me for.

Biggest Challenge: The biggest challenge was probably the bathroom; I’ve never plumbed anything before but I was determined to do everything myself, including tiling the floor, a bespoke sink cabinet, and new tapware, but a handful of YouTube videos and a couple of glasses of wine later, Shazam! 

Proudest DIY: My favourite DIY is the fringe table in the living room; it was an old piece of marble hearth that I added legs to and later added fringe, which gives it an amazing texture and movement!

Biggest indulgence: The biggest indulgence is the furry chair I’m sat on, by far the most expensive item in the house but no question it was completely worth it! It’s a well-known styling trick but high low styling — having one expensive piece surrounded by less expensive pieces elevates the whole space!

Is there something unique about your home or the way you use it? I think it’s probably unique in its use of colour; I’m not sure the neighbours even know about the colourful wonderland inside.

What are your favorite products you have bought for your home and why? Definitely the dining room table and chairs! As the dining room is quite large, I wanted something to fill the space in an opulent, shapey way and they have given the room such a clean aesthetic (from which I’ve gone crazy with color and shape). The chairs were actually old boardroom chairs (think chrome and black leather) which I spray painted gold and recovered in shades of velvet; I think they cost just under £50 for all 6!

I’ve redecorated the dining room twice since moving in; it was the first room I painted when I moved in and as my aesthetic grew it no longer felt right, so now it’s a full vibe and I can’t WAIT to have friends over for dinner parties!

Please describe any helpful, inspiring, brilliant, or just plain useful small space maximizing and/or organizing tips you have: I’m actually the worst for organization; I never think about practicality or storage. Luckily I have a basement for collecting! But maybe my best tip is to look at the designs from DOIY; most of their homeware serve as multi-purpose and they look STUNNING in the process, so a great way to double up.

What most people get wrong about using color in their home: Being afraid of it; there’s nothing more joyful than walking into a bright, colorful room and people are denying themselves that! I think people are worried about getting it wrong or it looking silly, but homes should be fun and reflect your personality!

What are the biggest tricks/secrets to using color in decor? Go big or go homo; try pairing bold colors together, work through the whole color wheel (even if you think they won’t work, it might surprise you!). Try and go for a color story of four to five colors; a warm pink, a cooler blue/green, and a surprise orange and red, even if they’re just accents like cushions and tchotchkes, but the more you lean into color, the more rewarding it is! 

What’s your favorite wall paint color of all time: It has to be “Fleurie” from Craig & Rose; it’s the color on my fireplace in the living room and the jumping-off point for this whole color maximalist journey I’m on; I owe it a lot! 

Finally, what’s your absolute best home secret or decorating advice? PLANTS! They bring a space to life, they add depth to murals, and they add natural texture (and they give you oxygen, too!)

This house tour’s responses were edited for length and clarity.

Viv Yapp

Photographer

Designer/maker based in Bristol.
I make handcrafted homeware with Jesmonite, an eco-resin.
www.vivyapp.com

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This NOLA Shotgun Proves You Can Have a Stylish Home on a Tiny Budget

This NOLA Shotgun Proves You Can Have a Stylish Home on a Tiny Budget

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Name: Emily Thibodeaux Meyer, Andy Meyer, and our dog Clementine
Location: Mid-City — New Orleans, Louisiana
Size: 860 square feet
Type of Home: Double Shotgun House
Years lived in: 4 years, renting

Emily Thibodeaux Meyer and Andy Meyer’s double shotgun in New Orleans’ Mid-City neighborhood embraces the city’s porch life. “Porch sitting is one of our favorite New Orleans past times. We’ve met most of our neighbors by either passing them on their porch while we walk Clementine or seeing them walk by our house! After seeing someone over and over it just makes sense to strike up a conversation,” begins Emily, who is a creative director, stylist, and maker documenting all of her projects on her website and on her Instagram feed

“This is the second place me and Andy have lived together but I would very much call this our first home. We found it on Craigslist and couldn’t have got luckier! It’s a double shotgun meaning there are two units that mirror each other and a shared porch. Our landlord lives in the other half and he’s basically turned into a part of our family. It’s an everyday occurrence that we both leave our doors open and our dog Clementine runs back and forth between our house and his. We also share food, which is so amazing. He will give us fish he caught and I’ll give him homemade baked goods.” 

Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: Thrift store chic but make it comfortable

Inspiration: Bold colors and pattern are my biggest inspiration and usually my starting point for any kind of creative project whether that be decorating a room or making a costume.

Favorite Element: I love our porch and the street we’re on. It’s pretty busy and there’s a lot of foot traffic, which I really like. It’s fun to sit and people watch. We’re also on the second floor, which means you can overhear some really great pieces of conversation because most people don’t look up to see that there’s someone on the porch on the second floor.

Biggest Challenge: The combination of the layout and size of the rooms is a big challenge. Because it’s a shotgun-style you have to leave a walking path to get through each room into the next and that combined with a relatively small room means there are very few options for where to put furniture and what kind of furniture will work in the space. 

Proudest DIY: Definitely the cabinets I made! They’re really simple but the thing that makes me the most proud is that first, they came out exactly how I envisioned them, and second I only used a hacksaw and a drill to put them together (plus a ton of patience and maybe just a little crying). It was one of those projects that prove you don’t need to have expensive equipment to make it happen. I’m very much into the idea that you should use what you have and make it work. It’s also the most recent “big build” I’ve done so it’s the star child until I work on something new.

Biggest Indulgence: Our couch! I wouldn’t purchase this couch if we had a bigger living room but this one was worth it because it’s literally the only couch that fit all of our criteria. This goes back to the biggest challenge in our house being layout and size of rooms. We knew we wanted a sectional because we wanted something all three of us could sit on together and because we thought it would look the best in the room versus a smaller couch and armchair combo. It was a huge challenge finding a sectional that could fit in this room without completely blocking the doorway. Most of the small sectionals have a chaise as the short side but that would have looked really strange in our space because it would have been facing the wrong direction to fit and it would have looked out of place. We also wanted it to be in a light color because Clem sheds so much that we have to buy furniture that matches her. I’m aware of how ridiculous that statement is but it’s the honest truth. We ended up finding this modular sectional from Abbyson Living that’s available at Target and Wayfair and I’m sure lots of other retailers. The complaint is that because it’s modular the pieces tend to shift as you’re sitting on it so there ends up being a gap between the sections and it’s super annoying. I tried to attach the pieces together at the bottom but it did not go smoothly.

Is there something unique about your home or the way you use it? I think we have a pretty conventional home for the most part. The front room is my studio, which I guess is a little odd but when you live in a city where literally everyone has a costume closet it doesn’t feel that strange to have a room dedicated to pom poms and sequins. We’ve deemed both my studio and Andy’s office the messy rooms of the house. I can’t complain about his office being a mess as long as he doesn’t complain about my studio being a mess. It’s a pretty fair deal in my opinion! 

What are your favorite products you have bought for your home and why? I just bought this lint roller from an Instagram ad and part of me felt like it was going to be such a scam but it’s actually amazing!! Clementine has very coarse hair that gets into everything and this does such an amazing job at removing it. It’s kind of a workout to use but totally worth it. I’ll run it over the rug after I’ve vacuumed and still manage to collect so much of her fur. 10/10 would recommend it if you have a pet.

Please describe any helpful, inspiring, brilliant, or just plain useful small space maximizing and/or organizing tips you have: Like every room of our house the bathroom is tiny! Mix a tiny bathroom with a short human and there’s no place to keep a step stool so instead of trekking to the kitchen to grab it I installed rock climbing holds on the wall so that I can reach the top shelf easily. My tall friends were very confused when I told them about my brilliant plan because I don’t think it crossed their minds that reaching a top shelf would be such an ordeal.

Because we live in an old house there’s not a lot of storage or closet space so we keep our shoes in almost every room of the house under whatever furniture it fits under. It’s like a game of memory trying to figure out where your shoes are when you’re getting ready in the morning.

Finally, what’s your absolute best home secret or decorating advice? I watched a home tour with Amy Sedaris and she said once you accept that you’re never getting your rental deposit back it’s amazing because then you can just do whatever you want. I think about that all the time. Because of that I’ve decided I’m never asking permission to paint an apartment again and let me tell you it is liberating. Another piece of advice I would say is to find a barter or free Facebook page if there is one in your area! My biggest setback from creating the home I wanted for years and years was not having the budget. Thrift stores are great but a lot of times my budget was zero. Finding barter/trade groups or attending or organizing swap meets are excellent ways to get things like house paint, furniture, scrap wood, etc. I would also go on drives the night before trash day to look for curb alert items people had just put out that I could snag. Some of my favorite pieces to this day are roadside finds! You can always upgrade later on but don’t let lack of funds stop you from rolling up your sleeves and making your house feel like a home.

This house tour’s responses were edited for length and clarity.