We transformed our rotten decking into a dream pergola and it’s all thanks to £3.99 eBay bargains | The Sun

A DECKING in the summer is a luxury not everyone is lucky enough to have – but it's no use when it's rotting and unusable.

Which is why Emma Grant and her partner Leigh were desperate to tackle their own and did so all on a tiny budget.

By doing it themselves, the couple were able to save hundreds and they now have their dream pergola with bargains as cheap as £3.99 from eBay.

Emma from Camberley told money-saving community LatestDeals.co.uk: "We had very tired, rotten decking. Leigh decided he wanted black composite decking, so once that was decided I was filled with ideas.

"Most of my inspiration came from Instagram. We’re really into the moody Maximalism vibes, with a twist of Victorian and boho. We love thrifting – 90% of our furniture inside and out is second hand and full of character.

"Leigh built our composite decking and pergola himself as he’s a carpenter by trade. As we’re south facing we decided to put willow up for shade. The composite decking was from Specialised Roofing Supplies in Hampshire at £50pm. The timbers were from Selco, £350 for all. The pergola is 6m x 3.2m."


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While Leigh sourced supplies for composite decking and a pergola, Emma got the rest of the decor – and lots of it came from Facebook Marketplace at bargain prices.

"I was thrilled to find a wicker chair set on Marketplace for just £40! The colour wasn’t to our taste so I primed it in white before painting and spraying them black.

"The table was also a Marketplace find, at £90. I then picked up a metre of waterproof fabric from eBay for £3.99 to recover the cushions, changing them from a floral pattern to plain white so it contrasted nicely with the black.

"I also used some fabric I already had and created leopard print star cushions, as I create crafts on my Instagram account @sew_dita"

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Some other bargain bits included some faux ivy for £15 from eBay as well as 6 foot Mandala rug £68.

And while some bits might still sound pricey, the total amount spend was only a fraction of what they woule have paid had they bought everything brand new.

Emma continued: "The mirror came from Yateley Cobblers & Curios for £160, and the disco balls cost £99 and £75 from an online store called Mirror-Balls.

"My next stop was Amazon, where I picked up copper wire warm lighting and a solar panel for £12. At this point I had all the essentials. I added in some pieces I already had at home, such as candles, further chairs and hanging baskets."

Emma said the project was very much a "lockdown labour of love" and while it did take some time, they are "thrilled with the results."

She said: "It's a great place to relax during the evenings and weekends."

Top tips for creating a garden with composite decking in your home:

  1. Consider factors such as shade, privacy and wind when deciding on a location for your decking. If you’re going to be sitting outside shivering in a breeze, or on display for all of the neighbours to watch you, perhaps you need to move it somewhere else.
  2. If you’re going to build decking next to your house, make sure that air bricks aren’t covered. These are important to keep ventilation levels up and ensure the chances of serious rot and dampness is kept to a minimum.
  3. Mark out pilot holes during the drilling process to ensure that the wood won’t be at risk of splintering. Pilot holes also prevent screws from stripping or breaking off.
  4. Be safe at all times. Wear protective gloves when appropriate and wear safety goggles and a dust mask if you’re using a jigsaw.
  5. Don’t burn composite decking if you have any leftover supplies. These need to be disposed of safely, so contact your local recycling centre for advice if necessary.’

Tom Church, Co-Founder of LatestDeals.co.uk, said: "Emma and Leigh have the kind of garden dreams are made of!

"If you want to build decking or a pergola, it definitely helps if you’re a carpenter already – but more and more people are taking on projects like this themselves and saving lots of money in the process.

"Composite decking is popular among those who want a strong alternative to wood that will last longer and doesn’t require much regular maintenance. Plus there is no need to sand down or stain wood during the building process."

Meanwhile, thrifty couple transform drab garden into dream outdoor space with epic DIY decking job & it saved them over £1,000.

For more home DIY stories, this woman gave her ‘boring’ kitchen a multicoloured makeover but people think she’ll never be able to sell her home.

Plus, this single mum built a new FLAT inside my £139k home – and rents it out for extra cash.

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