Robin Flies South...

A blog about decorating and tablescaping with an emphasis on creativity and smart shopping over cash!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Patio Umbrella Pole Problems

It seems as if every week I am on here complaining about the umbrella pole on my patio table.  We use this table year round here with our mild weather so it's not just a seasonal problem with me. Sometimes I have used 2 table runners, other times just used placemats.  I came up with this great idea that I could buy one of the round outdoor tablecloths with a hole in the center and a zipper and came home with several.  I was so proud of myself thinking this would look good. It  just needed to hang over the square edges and look great.  Nope, didn't work!  This table is too big.  Of course I wanted it big. And the square shape is great for socializing.  It came with 8 chairs and we've even been able to add a stool or two if needed.   I can't help it though.  I still felt slighted by the patio linens manufacturer's!

Then this week I wandered into Home Goods (my happy place!) and after looking through the runners came across this one.  Great idea!


It's a table runner made of outdoor fabric that has a hole in the middle with a zipper.  Genius! Obviously I was not the only one who had this problem.

I had to lift up the cardboard thing to make sure I wasn't dreaming and there it was.  A hole in the center with a zipper.  Just like it should be!  Even the colors were good for me and since they only had one I grabbed it quickly and through it in my cart.

I was so excited to try it out, I didn't bother to iron it first, so please excuse the creases.

I  placed a few candles on it to make it look better (probably would have taken less time to iron it!  Oh well!)  It's long enough so that hangs down on both sides and I'm sure it would look great on a long rectangular table.  Problem one solved.  One to another one.

We don't have any electrical outlets on this corner of our lanai yet (hint, hint if my husband reads this!) and if we are sitting here after the sun goes down we have 2 choices.  Drag out a bunch of candles or opt for the motion sensor lights (I call them the prison lights) mounted on the back of our house for security. Not happy with either of those options.  I came across this candle holder on clearance at Ross for less than $4 and thought it would help with our lighting needs. The umbrella would protect it from the weather so we could leave it there all the time.   I saw the same thing at Home Goods for $14.99 so it was a good deal.

The pole needs to be taken out and then the candle thing goes on and the pole goes through it.  Our pole weighs a ton so I had to wait for my husband to get home and pull it out.  He was so excited and couldn't wait to help with my latest project (don't believe this for a second!).  After some grunting and complaining the pole came out, candle thing went in and looked pretty nice.   I was busy deciding if I had blue and green tealights to place in the glass cups.   Until...

we tried to open the umbrella.  The handle couldn't turn because the candle thing was in the way.  Instead of putting our thinking caps on and figuring out a solution, my husband was ready to give up and relax on his Saturday afternoon (the nerve of him!).  So I will put my thinking cap on at a later date and try to come up with a solution.  After all, under $4 is a hefty investment!

Next house I will have a covered part big enough for my outdoor living room AND an outdoor dining room!  No more umbrella!

I would love to hear if you have any solutions for my problem or just leave a comment to show you care!  Ha!

Visit my sister's blog at Creating Wonderful Spaces and see what she does with burlap!

I will be joining the following parties...

Overflowing with Creativity at It's Overflowing

Tabletop Tuesday at A Stroll Thru Life

Seasonal Sundays at The Tablescaper
Masterpiece Monday at Boogieboard Cottage
Motivate Me Monday @ Keep It Simple
Wow us Wednesdays at Savvy Southern Style
Show and Tell at mrs. himes class
What's It Wednesday at Ivy and Elephants

Show off your Cottage at House in the Roses

Show and Tell Monday at The Delectable Home

Thrifty Thursday at Thrifty Decorating


PAT said...

The table runner is great. I haven't see one of those.

I could use one of those candle holders on our patio table. We will be going by Ross, Monday. Might "need" to pop in for a look see.

Snap said...

The table runner is great! Can't help with your umbrella problem. We are coming up on hot and humid season here and that means stay inside with the AC and stare out the windows!

The Tablescaper said...

It's such a great idea. Thank you for sharing it with Seasonal Sundays.

- The Tablescaper

pembrokeshire lass said...

Hi, I came across you when you made a comment on another site (can't remember which one) but loved your motto...does the "if you look at it every day it may as well be beautiful" mean I can get rid of hubby?? Only joking! I really like the's so true! Having been work focussed living and working on a dairy farm for most of our married lives, this 'creating beauty' thing is very new to me! We don't have the weather to be outside too much here in Wales so that sort of umbrella is not a problem for us. the other sort is as the wind and rain mean they turn inside out very regularly! back to the subject in question. Love your patio table and those candles that are matching the runner are lovely. I have a lot to learn! think I'll be one of your followers!Have a great Sunday. I was about to go to church but have decided not too as it's raining and blowing a gale outside...I'm not joking! Joan

Jojo said...

Oh no! There must be a way but if you can't top load it, how do you get the fixture over the handle...hummmm

Elaine said...

Hmmm...your umbrella control thingy is a lot lower then ours. Have you tried raising the umbrella in it's stand? Or, is there a way to cut off the feet of the candle holder? We have the half circle candles that you put around the pole. I know you'll come up with something!

Judy Bigg said...

I have an umbrella too and so wish my deck was covered. The umbrella is always a hassle. Good luck.

Judy Bigg said...

I have an umbrella too and so wish my deck was covered. The umbrella is always a hassle. Good luck.

eleven-o-one said...

Love the runner. I have a round table with an umbrella and have used the zippered round table cloths. What took somebody so long to come up with that?? Well on the candles...good luck. Can you put the umbrella back in already up so turning the handle isn't required? Then just pray for no wind. :)

Mid-Atlantic Martha said...

What a great idea for the runner with the umbella hole. We're enjoying a visit to your part of the world this week -- taking a break in Sanibel.

Anonymous said...

I'm laughing just thinking about how hard something that should be simple is. And the handle not turning is a real bummer because your candle thingie is so cute, and I can just see the atmosphere it would help create at night. Life just isn't perfect, is it?

elizabeth said...

Hi! Just wanted to stop by and say thinks so much for your kind comment on my blog about my old watering can.
Oh, I'm jealous that you have nice enough weather to be outdoors much of the time.

Cynthia @An Accomplished Woman said...

Love the runner. Thanks for stopping by and visiting my "Bee Table"


Kaysi @ Keeping it Simple said...

Super cute, I love the colors of the runner!!

Anna said...

I love your table runner you will probably need to add weight to the ends to keep it from blowing around. Mine would always be blowing around. Sometimes I think we live in a wind tunnel. As for your candle dilemma with the candle I was wondering if you could add a small piece of pipe under the table to extend your pole just high enough to crank up your umbrella? If this will work you can just add 2 small screws to keep the pole together.

Hope you find a solution. Enjoy your outdoor space.

Suzy said...

How clever! I've never seen one of those. I'm a warm weather kind of girl, so I'm jealous that you get to be out of doors year round! Our winters here in NC typically aren't that bad, but they aren't nearly so mild that we can sit outside under the umbrella year round.

Magdalena said...

Really nice blog!
Greetings from Poland ✿ܓ

Lynne (lynnesgiftsfromtheheart) said...

Hi Robin, your tablerunner is fantastic! I'll be keeping my eyes open for one. You are just too funny, hubbies just don't like to stick in with our projects do they? I'm sure you'll figure it out, looking forward to seeing what you come up with.
hugs ~lynne~

Tammy Partin Spangler said...

I'm having umbrella problems too! A big gust of wind broke ours and I'm trying to get my husband to rebuild it using bamboo and thatch so it will match our tiki hut...Blessings, Tammy

Tisha said...

I love that table runner - such pretty colors! Wonder if anyone on etsy has started supplying zippered tablecloths? Thanks for linking up.