How to Make an Easy Patio Privacy Screen {Step-by-Step Tutorial}

How to Make an Easy Patio Privacy Screen {Step-by-Step Tutorial}

Our house is built on a slope which gives us a front entrance at street level, but a totally daylight lower level. We spend most of our time on our upper deck, but occasionally entertain on the patio below. When we do spend time on the patio, we have the houses across the street looking down on us from their decks. I feel so exposed! Even though we don’t spend a lot of time on the downstairs patio, when we do, I want privacy!

How to Make an Easy Patio Privacy Screen {Step-by-Step Tutorial} | organizedCHAOSonlineI’ve seen several DIY projects for privacy fences, but I didn’t want to spend a lot of money or put a ton of effort into this project. Paul (the hubs), was going to be doing most of the work, and I would be the job foreman. I’m happy to report that we’re still married, considering our…”lively” discussion during which he informed me he couldn’t make my champagne vision work on my beer budget. Why can’t we have full growth ivy winding it’s way through the lattice panels, while we sit in cushy new patio chairs sipping Mojitos listening to the gentle gurgle of a three-tier water feature? Asshole!

How to Make an Easy Patio Privacy Screen {Step-by-Step Tutorial} | organizedCHAOSonline He patiently waited while I threw a small fit and allowed a sufficient amount of time for pouting before we got to work. The week before, we had picked up three lattice panels at an estate sale for like $5 total. Cheeeaap! I wanted to keep the lattice it’s natural wood color, but I wanted to paint the frame white. We had some 1×3 boards left over from a previous project, and a half can of white paint in the basement, so all we needed to buy was a bit of hardware and we were good to go.

How to Make an Easy Patio Privacy Screen {Step-by-Step Tutorial} | organizedCHAOSonlineOur lattice panels measured about 32 x 48, so Paul cut enough 1 x 3’s to create frames for each. Instead of mitering the corners, we decided to straight cut the boards and just butt the corners together.

How to Make an Easy Patio Privacy Screen {Step-by-Step Tutorial} | organizedCHAOSonlinePaul took a break while I painted all the boards with a couple coats of white exterior paint. I made sure to paint the ends of the boards since some of the ends would be exposed. I wanted to sandwich the lattice between two frames, but we were out of lumber, so I agreed to seeing how it looked with the frame on just one side. If it looked tacky like that, we’d add a frame to the back.

How to Make an Easy Patio Privacy Screen {Step-by-Step Tutorial} | organizedCHAOSonlineWhen the boards were dry, we laid them out, squared the corners, and glued the frame corners with wood glue.

How to Make an Easy Patio Privacy Screen {Step-by-Step Tutorial} | organizedCHAOSonlineWe did a final check to make sure everything was square, then air stapled the end of each lattice slat to the frame. It turned out a lot sturdier than I thought it would be. We quickly finished the other two panels, and the construction phase was done. (At this point we had begun speaking again).

 How to Make an Easy Patio Privacy Screen {Step-by-Step Tutorial} | organizedCHAOSonlineNext, we hauled the panels to the patio (notice that I said we?), and drilled starter holes in the center of both end boards on each panel.

How to Make an Easy Patio Privacy Screen {Step-by-Step Tutorial} | organizedCHAOSonlineWe then screwed eyescrews into the starter holes. These suckers were ready to hang!


How to Make an Easy Patio Privacy Screen {Step-by-Step Tutorial} | organizedCHAOSonline I wanted the panels to be placed at a height that provided privacy both when we were sitting or standing. Paul held up a panel while I eyeballed the height (very high-tech precise measuring system, yes?). Then we measured and marked to be sure the three panels were evenly spaced across. Starting at one end, Paul slipped the drill bit through the chain , attached a screw to the drill bit (I love that they’re magnetic), and drilled the screw at his first mark. We used 10 lb capacity chain (that I was certain wasn’t strong enough to hold the panels).

How to Make an Easy Patio Privacy Screen {Step-by-Step Tutorial} | organizedCHAOSonlineHe measured the chain from the drilled screw to the length we needed to attach it to the panel for the height we had decided on. Using two needle-nosed pliers, he opened the last link on the chain and slipped off the excess chain. He then attached an S-hook into the bottom link, and squeezed the link back together with his pliers.

 How to Make an Easy Patio Privacy Screen {Step-by-Step Tutorial} | organizedCHAOSonlineFinally, we hooked the S-hooks that were attached to the end of the chains, into the eyescrews on the top of the frames, and hung the panels. We stood back to take a look, and I’ll be damned! After only a little bit of adjusting, which we did by moving the screws holding the chains a hair up or down, the panels were level and evenly spaced. Not bad for a couple hours work!

How to Make an Easy Patio Privacy Screen {Step-by-Step Tutorial} | organizedCHAOSonlineTurns out, all my kicking and screaming was a waste of energy, because the end result looked almost exactly what I had envisioned (minus the furniture and waterfall). I had originally wanted the bottom of the panels to be anchored, but was talked out of it. I ended up loving the airy feeling it has by just letting them hang free. I had also originally wanted to use heavier chain, but by using the lighter-weight, the chain is barely visible and gives the panels the appearance of being suspended in mid-air. I really need to work on this control issue a teeny bit, and put a little more faith in my man. Obvs he knows what he’s doing.


How to Make an Easy Patio Privacy Screen {Step-by-Step Tutorial} | organizedCHAOSonlineSo, by using a lot of materials we already had, and scoring a great find at an estate sale, I’m able to enjoy my private little patio for under $30. And I LOVE IT! (Thank you honey).

Patti signature

Spruce Up Patio Chairs – Quick, Cheap & Easy

Spruce Up Patio Chairs – Quick, Cheap & Easy

patio set makeover table shot

Last week, I shared the first part of my outdoor project called Inexpensive Outdoor Makeover. That was just the quick, cheap, and easy way to add an umbrella and make a stand for $35. Next up: The ratty chairs.

Here’s what I was left with after the first project was complete.


It definitely needs some more color and something to sit on.

FYI, we have three chairs. Again, the reason for this set and why I’m not buying a new one is in the previous post.

With less than $30, mom and I marched ourselves to WalMart. It’s a hidden gem, people. We simply put on our best pair of sweats, knot our hair on the top of our heads and remove all makeup. That’s how we roll. It’s the WalMart way, dear friends.



  • 3 travel pillows – $3 each
  • 3 travel pillow covers – $2.97 each
  • Camping pad – $7
  • Industrial strength velcro

The next steps are so freaking easy, it’s insane.

Cut the camping pad into squares that fit into your seats.You can even cut slits so the pad will fit snug on your chair.

Place the adhesive side of the velcro on the chair and the other adhesive side on your pillow. Pull the velcro apart and you’ve got a detachable pillow.

final-look-450x450Ta da!!!

I have to admit that I’m not too hot on the pads. It needs more.

I’ve considered buying regular pillows and placing them vertically in each chair. Of course, with some cute pillowcases. Have you looked at the price of pillowcases lately? They are freaking pricey! The ugly old man designs are inexpensive (well, duh) but the striped, chevron, bright or (insert cool design here) ones are around $9. I mean, really?

The chairs need more fluff and not something I’ll have to race outside and rescue when rain comes along.

So, while I wanted this to be an amazing “look at me, try this great idea” DIY project, I’m now looking to you.

What do you suggest?

patio set makeover table shot

tawsha connell

This post was shared on Show Me What Ya Got

Inexpensive Outdoor Makeover

Inexpensive Outdoor Makeover


I’m on a mission to make my small back patio welcoming without spending much. We’re sprucing up the front but the back leaves so much to be desired.

I will post this DIY project in sections. The first, is the umbrella with stand. The second, will be how we added a little flair to the chairs and table top.

For $35, you can have an outdoor umbrella and base

that’s ACTUALLY cute!

(compared to a minimum of $110 for both)

When we moved into our house, we didn’t have any patio furniture. The owner offered to leave what she had but it was pretty ratty at the time. It sat for awhile. The lawn was kind of a mess and we have a retaining wall that holds back a weed factory. In a week, you can have a full-blown rainforest on your hands, they grow so fast.

Our summertime project is to completely overhaul the lawn/grass. I’m impatient and don’t want to wait until that project is complete to start on my own “stuff”. That being said, I don’t have an extra $700 lying around for the outdoor set (complete with a screened-in area) that I want. So, to improvise, while mom was in town, the two of us obsessed and DIY’d our way to a “brighter-looking” outdoor area.



We took a ratty-looking outdoor set (which looks really white in the image – it’s not) and added a pop of color for, literally, $35.


1. Market Umbrella for outdoor (found at Dollar General for $20). If you don’t have a Dollar General nearby, search for this brand. It’s not a cheap-o feeling/functioning umbrella, either. SCORE!


2. Head to a hardware store and grab:

  • Quickrete – $3ish
  • PVC pipe – $2ish (make sure you measure the circumference of your umbrella pole. It should fit inside the pipe)
  • Planter – $5ish (we got ours at WalMart)
  • Bucket – $3ish (to stir concrete)

Total: $33ish (including umbrella)



Follow the directions on the concrete for the concrete to water ratio.


Mix the concrete.

We used the handle of a mop and a shovel. We’re super-classy like that.


We put a bit of concrete at the bottom of the pot. Then, we plunked the PVC pipe into the middle-ish part of the bucket and surrounded it with concrete. It’s so freaking hard to mix and sets quickly. We’re talking, like, completely set within 40 minutes.


Obviously, we stood the PVC pipe upright once we put more concrete in the pot. We also should tell you that wearing cropped yoga pants and flip flops is required. OH, and you should start on this project at about 11:30pm.

Or is that just the way we do EVERYTHING?

Pat the concrete a bit so you feel like the project is complete.


Once you’re ready, wait until sunrise because you won’t be able to see anything on your back patio 40 minutes after you started this project.

Simply place the table over the pot and line the PVC pipe up with the hold in the table. Add your inexpensive awesome umbrella and you have this:


We can’t stop there.

The chairs need some love (new ones are around $25 each and pads are anywhere between $12 and $30 each). Now that I’m on a DIY kick, there’s got to be a quick, cheap and easy way to finish this project.

Here’s a little teaser.


Do you have any DIY suggestions on how to make this project possible?

tawsha connell