Homeowner paints patio grey with 'faux rug' to transform outdoor space – for just £60

It's amazing what you can do to a small outdoor space, with a little imagination

Thanks to a splash of paint and a stencil this courtyard patio has gone from drab to fab. Karen McCarthy, from South Wales, decided to transform her courtyard with newly painted patio slabs and a faux outdoor rug design.

The tired outdoor area is now a chic Mediterranean-inspired space, and better still it was done on a budget – costing just £60.

Related: Homeowner uses Victorian-style tile stencil to paint the patio – it looks amazing

Karen's patio before

room with tiled flooring black chairs and purple flowers in pots

(Image credit: Karen McCarthy)

Karen told money-saving community Latest Deals, ‘I wanted to spruce up the area outside my kitchen and decided to use some light grey masonry paint to cover the tired old slabs.'

‘Having seen outdoor rugs online I came up with the idea of using paint to create a 'faux rug' effect for underneath my bistro set.’

Stage 1 – faux rug painted onto the patio

room with tiled flooring black chairs and purple flowers in pots

(Image credit: Karen McCarthy)

Karen used dark grey and white Frenchic Al Fresco paint and a homemade stencil to create the faux rug design. 'I cut the stencil out of mylar plastic. I bought several sheets for £7 but you can buy ready-made stencils online.'

‘It took around two days to complete and the materials available online cost around £60.' Detailing she spent £27 on Sandtex paint, £18 on the Frenchic paint.

Karen goes on to explain, 'I also bought LED solar lights for the ivy on the wall for £5, and the mirror cost £6.99, both from Home Bargains.’

After – painted patio makeover

room with white tiled flooring and round table with chairs

(Image credit: Karen McCarthy)

Karen is delighted with the look of her newly transformed patio. And says just how it's changed her life, ‘It's lightened up the whole area. And not being able to go on holiday because of the current situation, I've brought a touch of the Mediterranean to my home instead,’ she adds.

room with printed blue tiled flooring

(Image credit: Karen McCarthy)

The painted stencilled area creates a zone dedicated for dining. Dressed to impress with a stylish bistro table, decorative wall clock and blooming hanging baskets.

Karen's top tips for painting patio slabs

Tip 1: 'My advice would be to make sure the area is cleaned beforehand. I had it jet-washed a couple of weeks beforehand.

Tip 2: 'When painting in an area that you need access to, paint every other slab so you can still walk on it whilst the painted area is drying.'

white building and green tree with fairy lights

(Image credit: Karen McCarthy)

'I have added small white LED solar lights to the foliage on the wall making it cosy at night' Karen explains. A beautiful finishing touch to add further ambience for evenings spent alfresco, holiday style.

More ideas: Six incredible balcony garden makeovers for small-space inspiration

Feeling inspired to makeover your outdoor space?


Tamara was Ideal Home's Digital Editor before joining the Woman & Home team in 2022. She has spent the last 15 years working with the style teams at Country Homes & Interiors and Ideal Home, both now at Future PLC. It’s with these award wining interiors teams that she's honed her skills and passion for shopping, styling and writing. Tamara is always ahead of the curve when it comes to interiors trends – and is great at seeking out designer dupes on the high street.