DIY Tutorial

How to Reuse an Old Iron Arbor | DIY

May 28, 2020

Last week I found an old iron arbor on the side of the road with “free” attached to the front. Aside from the arbor being my favorite price, the design was perfect for my English garden! I grabbed my hubby and we tossed the arbor in the back of our truck. Today I am going to share how we fixed this beauty up and added her to our garden. It’s like it was meant to be there all along.

Old iron arbor

If you enjoy upcycling projects, check out the bed frame I refinished for my daughters room!


How to Upcycle a Rusted Iron Arbor

With this DIY I am sharing how we fixed up an iron arbor, but the same process can be applied to any iron piece.

Tighten Screws and Bolts

First, we tightened any loose bolts and screws on the arbor to give it more support. Before sanding and spray painting any iron piece, make an repairs needed to ensure it is structurally sound.

Iron arbor found on the curb

Sand Flaking Paint & Rust

Next, we used sandpaper from our garage to sand off any flaking and rusted parts of the arbor. You can see the difference clearly in the image below.

Iron arbor diy

This was a fun project for the kids to be involved in. Evie enjoyed sanding the railings with her daddy.

Upcycling an iron arbor

Spray Paint the Piece

We broke up a few cardboard boxes and laid the arbor on top to prep for paint.

Spraypainting the rusted arbor black

I purchased Rustoleum black flat spray paint for the finish. Once we sprayed one side of the arbor, we waited for about an hour and flipped it over to spray the other side. The entire piece took three cans of spray paint to fully cover.

Spraypainting an iron arbor
How to spraypaint an iron arbor

Install Arbor & Secure in Place

Once the arbor dried we set it in place and it is perfect! We plan on getting stakes to keep it in place, but for now, we just connected each side to a stake in the ground with some wiring. I am planning on purchasing clematis to climb the arbor for the perfect English garden look. Clematis is another popular perennial that is added to many English garden designs.

English garden arbor
English garden arbor DIY
Black iron arbor

Have. you ever refinished old iron? They are such great pieces and last forever!


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How to fix up an old iron arbor to add that English garden charm to your yard | Building Bluebird #upcycle #affordablediy
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