Project Spotlight: Patti Wagner’s Refurbished Outdoor Dining Space

Patti Wagner is an interior designer with an immense passion for homes, interiors, and renovations. Along with her husband, Brian, they thoughtfully renovate rental properties in their home state of Minnesota. When it comes to their own 1927 Tudor home, they have remodeled, renovated, and refurbished many of the spaces in their home. This summer, it was time for their outdoor dining space and teak furniture set to get some love. 


Outdoor dining area with a black and white striped umbrellaOutdoor dining area with a black and white striped umbrella
After a 10-year anniversary trip to Italy, Patti decided to create a beautiful Italian-inspired outdoor space for her family.


The Space

The Wagners’ second-hand Smith & Hawken teak wood outdoor dining furniture for their patio was already badly weathered when they got the set nine years ago. Despite the durable design, busy schedules and a lack of teak wood restoration know-how led the set to begin to mildew over the years.


Patti wanted to make this space more functional for her family, giving the space new life with a good cleaning and a fresh new style. Patti described her vision as, “A place that was charming, relaxing, pleasant and where our family could have conversations after a nice meal. I imagined planters filled with blooms, comfortable seating, and an outdoor umbrella with a little personality.” 


Outdoor dining set with white cushions on teak chairsOutdoor dining set with white cushions on teak chairs
White cushions add the finishing touch to the refurbished teak dining chairs.


The Process

When it came time to refurbish the dining set, Patti researched the best ways to clean and restore the teak wood furniture to its former beauty. You can read all about Patti’s no-sanding restoration process on her blog, including all the products they used for the project.


With lots of research and a little elbow grease, Patti and Brian were able to revive their teak wood dining set. The next step was outfitting the space with beautiful, functional, durable fabrics to complete the refurbished design.  


A family sitting and talking at an outdoor dining areaA family sitting and talking at an outdoor dining area
The easy-to-clean, fade resistant, long-lasting Sunbrella additions give this outdoor space the finishing touches it needs for the Wagner family.


The Details

Patti chose the Piped Outdoor Dining Chair Cushions from Pottery Barn in Sunbrella Natural to add a comfortable, stylish touch to the newly revived teak chairs. Patti explains, “I knew I wanted light colored seat cushions so it was imperative that not only were they comfortable but also easy to clean, mold and mildew resistant, and would last a long time.”


She added the Premium 10’ Rectangular Sunbrella Outdoor Patio Umbrella with Rustproof Bronze Aluminum Frame in Sunbrella Black Stripe from Pottery Barn to shade the dining area. After their last umbrella malfunctioned in less than two years, Patti was determined to choose an umbrella that was great quality. “I wanted an umbrella that was weather resistant and could resist mold and mildew because it would be sitting outside all year long. I really wanted the black and white stripe to add some personality and charm; therefore, an umbrella that was fade resistant was also important.” 


Outdoor dining set with white cushions on teak chairsOutdoor dining set with white cushions on teak chairs
Patti’s newly refreshed outdoor space is full of personality and charm, creating a beautiful and durable space for her entire family to dine and enjoy.


Advice from Patti Wagner

Patti’s advice for starting your own outdoor refresh project? First, think about how you want the space to feel and choose a theme. Then think about the function. Ask yourself what existing useful products can you breathe new life into and what do you want to purchase new?


“Think about some key items like an umbrella, pots/planters, outdoor rugs and seat cushions, that can add personality and charm to your space. But it’s also important that aside from aesthetics, you’ll want something that can withstand the outdoor elements and is worry-free so you can actually enjoy your space!”


Get Inspired with Sunbrella

Sunbrella outdoor fabrics are tough enough to handle the elements and still comfortable enough to spend hours on your patio relaxing. Browse Sunbrella outdoor fabrics and get inspired with more project spotlights featuring Sunbrella fabrics