Deck Railing Refresh – What a Difference!

Our deck has gone through several transformations over the years. When we bought the house 20 years ago, the back yard featured a dilapidated deck structure with only one level, broken boards on the skirt, and wisteria gone wild climbing over and around a few boards sticking out from under the roofline.   It was quite an eyesore. I wish I could locate the before pictures, but for the life of me, they’re no where to be found.

 This was the first project we tackled. We added a lower deck, a pergola, and a new railing. All of that new wood was gorgeous. I love the look of natural woodgrain, but to keep it looking bright and protected, the maintenance was enormous. So a few years later, when we repainted the exterior of our house, we painted the railings as well.

Here’s the way it looked a couple of years ago.

As you can see, there still was a lot of surface to paint. It proved to be very expensive, so…

we decided to replace the middle balustrades with inexpensive galvanized metal pipe. What a difference!

We really liked the new strong horizontal lines.

However, our intense California sunshine and hot Chico summer temperatures really took their toll on that top railing. The paint began to bubble, blister, and peel. What to do?

We replaced it with a slightly larger version that coordinates with the existing pipes,

then we topped the posts with stainless steel solar lanterns.

I have to tell you, this latest update to the railing really finished off the deck. We’re loving the lights that glow out there at night. They seem to work even when there’s been little sun during the day. Look for those glowing solar lanterns in an Instagram post soon.

A fun fact –  our little winter finches seem to think that those lights are bird feeders. They look so puzzled when they can’t put their beaks through the glass, poor things. We don’t feed birds except for the hummers, but I’m feeling sorry for those little finches. I’m beginning to think I should put out a feeder for them too!

Until next time…


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I’m passionate about design in all forms – interiors, architecture, food, fashion, and…life. Join me in my adventures.

2 thoughts on “Deck Railing Refresh – What a Difference!

  1. The transformation of your deck railing is really great. I love the ingenious use of the pipe and solar lights! It looks just industrial and modern enough but still cmplements your house perfectly. So glad you shared this creative solution.
    Those birds will be ever grateful if you decide to put some food out for them 😉