Thursday, June 12, 2008

What was trash - now eclectic trash

How my creativity saved me money - or - how to survive being cheap. I needed an umbrella stand and having little cash to spare and being on the skimpy side of the moon - I improvised. And I did a darn good job improvising and saving the planet one plastic bucket at a time. Pat myself on the back.


Lightweight Umbrella
Large Plastic Container (bucket) with lid
Sand or (weighted materials, bricks, stones, broken concrete)
PVC Pipe (optional)

Any large plastic container with a lid will work. Chlorine pool tablets come in a large bucket with a lid. Take a small piece of PVC pipe; make sure the umbrella post fits snugly inside. This can be used for balance and strength. Measure for the PVC pipe from bottom of bucket to approximately 3 inches above the lid, it can be higher or lower depending on how much pvc pipe you already have. Trace with crayon or marker around the diameter of the PVC pipe on the lid in the center. Drill or cut around the marking in the center of the lid to fit in the PVC pipe. A sharp knife can be used to cut the plastic lid.

Place the cut PVC pipe in the center of the bucket (lid off). Fill the bucket with sand, rocks, gravel or any other usable material. I used left over play sand. Slip the lid over the PVC pipe and seal. Place the umbrella pole into the PVC pipe.
You can place the umbrella pole directly into the lid and then add weighted materials into the bucket and not use a PVC pipe. It makes removal of the umbrella easier with the PVC pipe in place.
This works great with small to medium sized lightweight umbrellas. You can paint or decorate your white bucket to match your d├ęcor or mood.

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