“Cabana” Patio Makeover with DIY Drop Cloth Curtains

how to sew drop cloth curtains

It’s finished! Our patio makeover is complete and I’m excited to show it to you today before summer is over! Our goal was to create a nice “cabana” inspired seating area. You see we have been spoiled in the past living in two major resort cities Phoenix, and Vegas. We used to love doing small staycations during the deeply discounted summer months. There’s nothing better than renting a cabana at The Trump or laying out at the Scottsdale Fairmont Princess, except maybe our own cabana in Fresno! (The beers are cheaper and you can be less self conscious in your swimsuit).

Lets take a look at some before pictures. The previous owner of this house started to stucco the wood pillars of this pergola and just left it, so we asked our landlords if we could remove that and he was fine with it.


I knew I wanted to do curtains in order to hide the garbage dumpsters, and to create two separate seating areas instead of having one large one. You may remember our first seating area makeover earlier this summer featuring cushions, pots, an umbrella, and outdoor rug from Walmart.


Let’s start with the curtains. Since curtains with actual outdoor fabric can be crazy expensive I decided to use drop cloths from the hardware store made out of heavy canvas. They are around $10 per panel and I used four. Since it rarely rains here, this is a perfect option for me. I’ve had them up for a month and they look the exact same.

All I did to sew them was fold one side down iron the fold really well, and sewed a straight line. It was so easy. I’m so doing this the next time I need indoor curtains!

My husband bought a couple wood dowel rods and hardware like you would use in a closet and installed them, They are really easy to take down in case you need to wash.

drop cloth outdoor curtain tutorial

bringing the indoors outside

drop cloths as outdoor curtains

Lets talk about my two end tables. My husband works in construction and brought them home for me. They are spools for electrical wire. I can just imagine this conversation. “Hey man can I have those two spools. “Ya what for?” “My wife has this decorating blog…and spools are the new pallets” HA

They were huge so he was also nice enough to cut them down for me.

electrical spools as side tables

electrical spools as side tables

I had fun styling this space and love the idea of bringing the indoors outside. We’ve had these metal wall art faces forever and my husband keeps trying to take them to Goodwill or sell them at every yard sale. I painted them green along with some other random accessories.

patio cabana makeover

Did you see my post a few weeks ago on how I gave these pillows a makeover with Chalk Paint? They were the plain beige pillows that came with our five year old outdoor couch.

painting and stenciling pillows

green patio accessories

basil plant

cabana makeover

I love these simple outdoor patio lights from Target.They are inexpensive and work great!

patio seating area

This other seating area under the umbrella was pushed to the side a little bit and we have this little pool for the kids now. Its a small above ground that has a filter. It’s been so great for the kids and us to cool off in. Now I can sit in my shaded cabana, watch the kids swim and sip my iced tea. Perfection…

I hope you’re having a great summer! Thanks for stopping by to see my little cabana.

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34 thoughts on ““Cabana” Patio Makeover with DIY Drop Cloth Curtains

    • Hi! I loved the cabana look and loved the price of the curtains even more! I actually copied this project and used a piece of rebar from Lowe’s as a curtain rod – very cheap and they cut it for me!

      However – word of warning. These curtains were on my screened in porch and could get damp. The drop cloths apparently had some sort of adhesive or wax in them and it attracted all the dust from the yard and the moisture from outside. I had them up less than a month and had to throw them away they looked so bad. It looked great for awhile but, unfortunately, did not work for me. If you are in a drier climate than I am (coastal) and your porch is not under a huge tree- I bet these will last for quite a while!!! Still love all of the tips!!!

  1. Lina I LOVE your patio!!! I am so copying your curtains! You are so talented my friend!!! Keep posting cool stuff for me to copy 🙂

  2. What a fabulous and frugal idea to make curtains out of drop cloths. Thanks for the inspiration! I’ll be featuring your project on Pinterest/HomeDepot and it’s featured on the “Garden Party” pinboard.

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  4. Wow – what a great outdoor space! Love your use of dropcloths for curtains and those cable spool tables are brilliant! Must remind my husband to do that for me!

  5. Oh I have a drop cloth and looked at it the other day to think about making curtains for my patio. Yours looks amazing and your curtains are wonderful. I love your pillows too. Gorgeous. Thanks tons for linking to Inspire Me. Hugs, Marty

  6. Cute patio makeover. Love the colors and the curtains. thanks for sharing at wow and it will be one of the features. I did have to correct the way you linked to the party. Always be sure to just link with the blog post url not the url to your whole blog. Just click on the post title to get the blog post url. thanks

  7. It looks so wonderful and cozy, and what a great area!
    Just a note though, from my own experience, dropcloth material mildews, at least mine did (same brand). I used it outside last summer, and on chair covers, which I left out, covered….they mildewed something crazy….
    Be sure to bring them in when it’s wet out…..

    • Thanks! I will! They are easy to take down, it hasn’t rained really all summer yet..very dry. I think I’ll take down completely for winter maybe. Thanks for commenting!

  8. Back in ‘the day’ when I was young once of the first things that I refinished and used was a spool! 🙂 We used to decoupage the tops of them / torch and stain them and then apply high gloss wax to them. That was budget decorating old-school. I enjoyed seeing YOUR spool, clever lady! 🙂

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