DIY Outdoor Umbrella

Outdoor umbrellas add decor and style to lawns, gardens and patios. They also help to shield guests and family members from harsh UV rays and uncomfortable heat during those hot summer days. Creating an umbrella from scratch is an extremely complex process that involves a level of engineering understanding and an availability of umbrella parts. However, redesigning an old umbrella and remaking it to serve as an outdoor umbrella is relatively simple and the adventurous umbrella renovator can choose from his or her own designs to make a unique outdoor accessory.

Outdoor umbrellas complement personal style.

Calculate how deep the flower pot is using your tape measure. Subtract 2 inches from that depth and cut the PVC pipe to match that number of inches. (For example, if the flower pot is 18 inches deep, cut the PVC pipe to 16 inches long.)

Attach the PVC pipe to a flange and lay the flange at the bottom of the flower pot directly in the center. Place the flower pot where you would like your outdoor umbrella to go, then fill the flower pot with gravel until it reaches 4 to 5 inches from the top of the pot.

Fill the rest of the flower pot with soil if desired, making sure not to fill it so high that the PVC pipe is covered. Plant seeds or flowers in the soil to add decor and style to your outdoor umbrella.

Measure the length of the old umbrella lengthwise along the spokes, then open the umbrella and measure the circumference. Lay out your canvas and cut a circle to match the circumference of the umbrella and the length of the spokes. Cut a hole in the center of the circle of canvas so that the umbrella spike can fit through. Place the new canvas over the umbrella and secure the canvas to the old umbrella with a hot glue gun or with a staple gun.

Place the umbrella into the PVC pipe, making sure that it is securely in place. The umbrella will be removable and can be taken out of the PVC pipe to be stored indoors whenever necessary.

Things You Will Need

  • Heavy flower pot (18 to 24 inches tall)
  • PVC Pipe (2 inches wide and 2 inches shorter than flower pot)
  • Hacksaw
  • Metal plumbing flange (must fit PVC pipe)
  • Gravel
  • Tape measure
  • Plastic bag
  • Soil
  • Flowers or seeds
  • Umbrella
  • Scissors
  • Canvas (optional)
  • Hot glue gun (optional)


  • The umbrella will be heavy and difficult to move once in place. Choose its location before building it.

About the Author

Tessa Holmes has been writing professionally since 2007. Her short stories and articles have been published on Relevantmagazine.com and in the "Cypress Dome." She has worked with the "Florida Review." She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Central Florida.

Photo Credits

  • IT Stock Free/Polka Dot/Getty Images